Here’s what the S2 team wishes would happen in social media marketing in 2023.
Now that 2023 is underway, many brands and marketers are watching the digital landscape closely to see what changes the new year will bring.
At the end of 2022, we asked several members of the Sociality Squared team to share their predictions for the new year.
Of course, as we survey the road ahead from our perspective at S2, it isn’t just about predicting what’s likely to occur. It’s also about what we hope for and wish would happen in the future of social media marketing. After all, imagining the type of digital world in which we’d like to live can serve as a step to bringing it to fruition and as a guide in how we approach the work we do here in the real world.
So, in addition to making some predictions, we also asked ourselves: If we had a genie, what would we wish for? (Even if those wishes may not always seem so realistic!)
Whether likely to come true or simply pie-in-the-sky, here’s what several members of the S2 team would like to see in the year to come.
Social Media Marketing in 2023: What’s on the S2 Team’s Wish List?
Kristy Beagle – Account Executive
More Support for Local Independent Journalism
Today, local independent news organizations need more support than ever before — and their work remains essential, providing reporting on community-level issues and events that traditional news outlets and national media may overlook. By supporting independent local journalism, we ensure that communities stay informed and engaged in the issues that affect them most and that diverse voices and perspectives can be heard. Research has found that strong local journalism builds social cohesion, encourages political participation, and improves the efficiency and effectiveness of local governments. Meanwhile, where local journalism is lost or diminished, trust and credibility throughout the community suffer. In the new year, I hope that philanthropic and financial support from foundations and the public will help sustain local independent journalism in the digital age.
Edward Gibbons-Brown – Content Creator
Wider Adoption of Decentralized Social Media
At the beginning of the modern era of social media, my optimistic outlook on the technology’s potential could perhaps best be encapsulated by one-time leading platform MySpace’s slogan: “a place for friends.” That’s what social media used to feel like, even through the early years of Facebook — a true community space for you and the people in your life to share updates and stay connected.
You’d have a tough time saying any of the leading social media platforms feel that way today.
I don’t know if decentralized networks like Discord will prove to be the ultimate long-term solution. For one thing, I’m not sure a total lack of centralized regulation is exactly going to lessen our urgent societal issues with misinformation and fractionalization.
At the same time, massive centralized ads-and-algorithm-driven corporate platforms seem to have brought on a real-life tech dystopia, so I think it’s time we all get on board with trying a different approach.
Aside from decentralization in terms of individual platforms, it’s also worth considering that perhaps the internet doesn’t need a single “town square” in the first place. If I interact with friends on Discord, follow public figures on Mastodon, and get my news from WT Social, is that really the worst thing in the world?
Sure, for the people who want to monetize my attention with addictive dopamine loops, it’s not ideal. But I’m not sure that’s the worst thing in the world, either.
Suzanne Brick – Project Manager
More Focus on Collective Good, Not Winning
Too much of our society is structured and treated like a zero-sum game: one person’s gain is another person’s loss. But that concept is based on the assumption that there is only a finite amount of talent, ability, and resources. Therefore, if you want more of anything, you have to take it from someone else, and a win-win scenario is impossible. Of course, it’s hard to ignore that the concentration of wealth and power in the United States does seem inequitable. Nevertheless, economics is not a zero-sum game — and neither is digital media. We don’t need to think of social platforms, advertising, and content as winner-take-all competitions…there’s plenty of digital real estate, creativity, and attention to go around. That’s why I’d like to see everyone, from tech companies and platforms to individual users, think more about the greater, long-term good for society as a whole.
Helen Todd – Co-Founder and CEO
Web Accessibility Becomes the Industry Standard
At Sociality Squared, we are committed to web accessibility as a core value and fundamental tenet of our approach. (You can read a bit more about how we work to apply accessibility best practices here and here.) But as of 2022, only about 3% of the internet is accessible for people with disabilities. We can and must do better…and I hope that in 2023, the industry does!
Elon Musk Hands Off the Reins at Twitter
If Elon Musk’s tweets are to be believed, this is a wish that may actually come true sooner rather than later. Last month, Musk announced that he would step down as CEO of Twitter (while still running some key divisions of the company) once he finds, as he put it, “someone foolish enough to take the job.” That said, we don’t know when or if he will follow through on this, nor who would replace him, so for now we’ll just have to wait and see.
On the subject of Twitter, another wish list item that seems possible this year is increased regulation for social media platforms. Regulation is a tool to reflect society’s values, and however we want to be treated offline needs to be reflected online too. From national consumer data privacy standards to antitrust legislation, Congress has failed a number of times to take action on this front, and current regulations are patchwork at best. That said, there seems to be some bipartisan interest in continuing to pursue tech regulation in the new year.
Love and Social Trust Become More Profitable Than Fear
Since my first two wishes may actually come true, I’ll allow myself one that’s a little more idealistic, as well…so here’s hoping that in the days ahead, social media starts optimizing for love and social trust, and that hate, fear, and hyperpolarization become relics of days gone by. If that sounds like a far-off dream, just remember: It’s always up to all of us to collectively determine and create the kind of society we want to live in.
Reach Out to Discover More
No matter what your wishes are for the future of social media, it does feel like we’re on the edge of some big changes. If you want to discuss what you can do to make sure your brand is staying ahead of the curve, reach out today.