When the clock struck 12 on the 31st of December 2020, everyone breathed a sigh of relief, thinking that the worst was behind us. 2020 was an appalling year, and certainly NOT what I signed up for! But the new year doesn’t seem to be any better. It hasn’t miraculously sent COVID-19 packing. Almost two weeks into 2021, and everyone simply seems to be living in limbo – waiting for the virus to disappear, waiting for the economy to improve, waiting for the vaccine (or Ivermectin, depending which side of the fence you’re on, but let’s not even open THAT can of worms – everyone’s suddenly a virologist).

Everywhere you turn, it’s just doom and gloom, and it’s really difficult to remain happy (I have stopped using the word ‘positive’, as that’s not something anyone wants to be right now). And the world truly seems to have gone mad – if you need any convincing, just check out the footage from the storming of the Capitol by Trump supporters last week. And then, there’s the WhatsApp/Facebook drama – no, I will not be deleting mine FYI – I’m really rather quite boring, so they are welcome to share my data with whomever they like.

We may be in limbo, but we still need to make money – our expenses are not in limbo, I can promise you that. With us now back in level 3 lockdown, many people are looking for ways to increase their income by working from home – if you have time on your hands, why not improve your social media marketing skills?

But why social media marketing? Did you know that in 2020, just over half of the world’s total population (3.96 billion) was using social media? Furthermore, nearly 60% of the world’s population now uses the internet, and two-thirds already has a mobile phone. Internet users are currently growing at a rate of more than 8% per year, with 346 million people having come online for the first time within the past 12 months. Social media users are growing even faster – global user numbers have increased by more than 10% since this time last year (that’s 376 million new users i.e. 1 million new social media users EVERY DAY). But the big numbers aren’t limited to user figures.

The typical global user currently spends around 40% of their waking life using connected tech, with the latest data showing that people spend an average of more than 6½ hours online each day. However, data shows that people have been spending even more time online since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, especially during the initial wave of lockdowns, when people were largely confined to their homes.

But what does this mean for marketers? Connectivity is helping people all over the world to make their lives easier and better, and marketers need to keep that in mind. Have you browsed a website looking at leather bags (for example) and then you go onto Facebook and all you see are adverts for…you guessed it…leather bags? Well, you’re not exactly being stalked, but it’s also not a coincidence. This tactic is known as “remarketing” and is super powerful for businesses that are able to tap into this powerhouse to reach their ideal customers. [Do yourself a favour and watch “The Social Dilemma” on Netflix for more on this].

Most businesses that fail at social media don’t understand that they can’t just post ads and think they are going to get sales the next day. The real secret to running your own successful social media page is using a strategy. At first, designing your social media strategy may seem like a lot of work, but with the right strategy in place, you’ll be able to shave hours off the time spent on your social media every day.