It’s been a minute since the social media industry has been in the spotlight, but the past six months have been poppin’ off. Between the launch of Threads and Twitter rebranding to X, there’s a wealth of new info to digest if social media falls under your purview (in-house or via an agency partner).
In this episode, Karri Carlson, VP of Operations at LeadTail, updates us on the changes that matter and discusses emerging platforms — looking at you, Mastodon. Plus, she digs into the trend of “atomizing” social media into niche communities, each with its own set of rules and community standards.
WTF is happening with Twitter? Eh-hem, X?
In the heyday of Elon Musk’s Twitter acquisition — that is to say, a few months ago — news about Elon’s questionable choices littered the news cycle. Now, Twitter has evolved into X (long live Twitter), and many B2B social media managers are scratching their heads as they assess how to handle the bird platform.
Karri’s advice? In an age of social media turmoil, it’s wise to step back and see where the chips fall before making rash decisions.
“When it was clear that the ownership [of Twitter] was going to change hands, [we had to ask ourselves], ‘What do we do? How do we advise clients? What is going to be the approach?'” said Karri. “For us, we decided early on to take a ‘wait and see’ approach… so, when there’s a new change announced, let’s see if it’s an announcement of a change or an actual change. And when the actual change hits, let’s give that a minute and see if it bakes in.”
For example, Karri has dubbed September 2023 the month that LeadTail internal materials will transition to referring to the bird app as X, approximately two months after the change officially occurred.
Up-and-coming B2B platforms (and some late bloomers)
Many newcomers have entered the social media game in response to X’s volatility. Karri provided the 4-1-1 on these platforms, advising marketers on how to handle each.
- Threads — “Threads is essentially a Twitter clone that Instagram launched. And so essentially short text messages, threaded messages, per the name,” said Karri. She’s currently drafting plans with clients to leverage Threads effectively, but the platform’s popularity has already waned since its launch. It received 30 million downloads in the first 24 hours.
- Mastodon — This platform is niche, according to Karri, and may herald a new era in social media wherein online communities become smaller and more focused. More on that to come later in this article.
Some other social media platforms to watch in the B2B space include:
- LinkedIn — You know it; you unironically love it. But did you know LinkedIn is officially cool? Karri suggests taking advantage of the platform’s newsletter publishing capabilities to build an audience.
- TikTok — “I think we’ve only just crossed the threshold from, ‘TikTok is for kids and irrelevant to B2B’ to, ‘Um, hey, I think there might be something here,'” said Karri. Many B2B marketers are waiting for more data or resources to build a presence on the video platform, but it shouldn’t be counted out entirely.
So… is social media dying?
All of this hubbub about emerging — and dying — social media may have some marketers questioning the longevity of their social-based strategy. But Karri said we shouldn’t worry about the death of social media. However, we should be on the lookout for its rebirth.
“Things are going to atomize and go into lots and lots and lots of smaller communities, lots of more niche communities, smaller groups of people who can be governed more effectively by one set of community standards,” said Karri. “It’s unsurprising that you cannot create a town square for the whole world and have everybody agree to the same rules.”
Listen to episode 355 of SaaS Half Full to hear more of Karri’s insights.