What social media trends will you need to be ready for in 2022? Research shows that time spent on social media has increased from 1.5 hours a day in 2012 to almost 2.5 hours in 2021. It’s also the place where Millennials (aged 25-40) and Gen Z (aged 5-24) spend most of their time online.

As you’re reading this blog, you’ll already know that there have been some rapid turnarounds in the social media sphere; the rise of new platforms like TikTok, new formats like Instagram Reels, new features such as social commerce, and a great many other developments to keep up-to-date with.

Fortunately, you’ve come to the right place! In this blog post, we will guide you through the emerging trends we’re seeing in social media as a result of these developments, and show you how to approach each one.

What are the social media trends for 2022?

1. The rise of video

Instagram’s video-first strategy shift took us all by surprise…or did it, really? We all know that video has been appearing on trends lists for a while now but 2021 really felt like the year it fully arrived for influencers and audiences. In 2022, we’ll see video enter the mainstream for brands. However, the question remains: Why video?

After a year in which millions of ‘real-world’ lives were put on hold, consumer appetite for entertaining, engaging content online has become voracious. Shut in their homes and isolated from family and friends, internet users knew there was one place they could still turn for those feelings of convivial fun: social media! But it isn’t just the quantity of content that changed but also the type of content that social media users flocked to. While videos of tropical holidays and private jets fell flat, everyday, authentic material provided the relatability and humanity that everyone was craving. Video – more raw and in-the-moment than any feed flat lay – became the perfect vehicle for this new genre.

To give you a perfect example, consider live streaming. When physical events and real life socialising was restricted, consumers started looking to replicate these experiences on social media instead. What did they find? The live format! With interactivity built-in and a semblance of the community we were all missing, it’s no surprise that when we look at the numbers we see that ​​over the past three years live streaming has experienced a CAGR growth rate of 25% compared to the 15% exhibited by photo, video and chat.

Live happenings on social media are a concrete example of a format that has been amplified by the pandemic, and one that will continue to grow in 2022.

There are plenty of opportunities for brands to capitalise on the live video format. Especially as more and more social platforms bet big on social commerce, this is something you should be ready to take advantage of.

Make sure you’re:

  • Tagging products featured within the live stream
  • Hosting live streams together with influencers to reach your target audience (i.e. the influencers’ followers)
  • Giving consumers the opportunity to purchase products directly from live streams
  • Posting live streams on IGTV afterwards to gain greater benefits e.g. improved reach

Below is an example of a live shopping event we did together with Ellos and Sara Biderman, where the livestream have been published to IGTV afterwards.