• Recap of 2017’s Social Media Innovations

A lthough social media has been around for over a decade, 2017 proved to be a huge year for new things in social media. Here’s a brief recap of 2017’s social media innovations.

“With social media, large enterprise companies

can build relationships and connect with people

on a more personal level.”


– D. Pizon

Virtual Reality (VR)

It’s been a few years coming, but VR is finally on the brink of driving a large portion of social media experiences across the globe. Facebook acquired Oculus back in 2014 and released the Spaces app in 2017; Snapchat released World Lenses in 2017; and Microsoft purchased AltSpace in 2017— just a couple of acquisitions and releases that are paving the way for more robust VR experiences across social media platforms. In 2017, VR social media experiences were further enhanced and developed, allowing users to design personalized avatars that are placed in real-time 360-degree simulated experiences with others across the globe. Users can meet with others in virtual rec rooms, socialize in virtual bars, play simulated video games, and more.

Digital Hangouts

Digital hangouts let users video chat with multiple people simultaneously, and their popularity and innovations exploded in 2017. With digital hangouts, users can engage in activities like watching movies or shopping together. They allow people in larger groups to be together digitally in real-time. Houseparty is a popular app that offers this feature. Snapchat, WhatsApp, Google, and other major social media apps are developing ways to integrate more robust digital hangouts too.

Influencer Marketing

Marketers are beginning to realize that influencer marketing is the best way to engage and delight their prospects on social media channels, while increasing business revenues. In fact, around 94% of marketers think it’s effective and planned to double their budgets for it in 2017. More businesses than ever are using social media celebrities and influencers who have millions of followers to help them market their products and services, and are including them in their advertisements and social media campaigns. Influencer marketing is expected to become a $5 to $10 billion market within the next five years, according to Mediakix.

Social E-Commerce

In 2017, there was an increase in e-commerce integrations with social media apps. For instance, Facebook and Pinterest now have “Buy Now” or “Shop Now” buttons that allow users to purchase items or shop for items directly inside their social media apps. And other social media apps like Instagram have shoppable photo-tags, where users can sort through and organize items they want to buy inside their feeds.


Chatbots became very important for social media apps in 2017, and will only grow in popularity over the coming years as their level of capabilities and sophistication increases. They’re able to imitate humanlike interactions, and serve as an automated intermediary between brands and customers. They’re desirable because they’re inexpensive and capable of keeping social media users satisfied when users have in-the-moment issues and concerns. They often take the place of human customer-service representatives, and field requests of mobile device users instantaneously.

Live Video

Platforms like Facebook Live boosted the popularity of live-streamed video in 2017, and that trend will only increase in coming years. More and more, businesses and social media influencers will use live video streaming to engage and interact with their audiences in real-time for years to come.

Technology and Governance to Keep Content Legitimate

After one of the most contentious elections in U.S. history in 2016, where users were bombarded with “fake news” stories, social media outlets like Facebook and Twitter have been working to perfect their algorithms and artificial intelligence, as well as data governance tools. They’re working to filter out fake or illegitimate forms of content across their user platforms.

Contact CrossLeaf today to learn more about how we can help you manage your social media platforms in 2018 and beyond.