It’s 2019. So what’s projected to change for marketers this year in social media? Advancements in digital customer support automation, snack ads alongside vertical, full-screen video, and Instagram e-commerce usage should all be watched closely.

One of the most significant assets social media offers a business is immediate customer support, and the efficiency and efficacy to provide such service will increase. Real-time support, 24-hours a day, from chatbots, will expand to social media. We’ll see more technology built around instant gratification for customers, solving problems and closing sales more easily. Brands will invest dollars in personalizing chatbots. The bots will have unique personalities, making them as authentic as possible and able to predict customer questions. They’ll also be able to capture lead information via scripted code.

Next up, long-form video transforms into both social media snack ads, as well as vertical, full-screen experiences. In a world where people’s attention spans are shorter than goldfish, “snack ads” give viewers a taste of your brand without wasting resources producing content that only a handful of people will actually finish. Snack ads typically finish in less than 15 seconds. We’ll see them most prevalent on Snapchat and Twitter, where capturing attention quicker than a next click or swipe down fuel the platforms. There will also be a focus on imagery over sound production due to the majority of social media videos being viewed without sound. Imagery production could come in the form of more full-screen, vertical video experiences for all social platforms, as we’ve already seen with the introduction of IGTV, as well as the recent, highly-anticipated Aladdin full-length movie trailer, which debuted on a vertical, full screen across the social sphere, unheard of for the majority of motion picture trailers.

Finally, e-commerce brands will invest more in Instagram. As companies recognize the purchase power of millennials in social circles and global followings, e-commerce advertising content will increasingly be pushed to Instagram. We’ll see a surge in usage of the shoppable ad, which pulls product information directly into the ad, foregoing the need to click to website to view a business’s product. The millennial-driven focus on individualism will result in brands promoting products in a more inclusive, personalized way via sound and imagery. Spoken advertising tone and verbiage will sound more like the audience being spoken to because we know people are more likely to interact with influencers who are more relatable to a potential consumer than a brand spokesperson. The media being pushed by brands will likely showcase a more vast range of people from different backgrounds and feature varying looks, making products more appealing to the global, millennial audience being delivered to on Instagram.

Increased chat automation, short video as well as full-screen, vertical experiences, and Instagram e-commerce are primed for growth in 2019, but know these platforms change quickly and unpredictably. Stay ready, stay engaged, and stay informed. It’s going to be a great year.