Simply showing up in a user’s feed with a trendy piece of content is no longer enough. Brands experiencing sustained success on social media invest time and effort in cultivating a community.
While followers are passive, community members are active and engaged — creating mutual value. Brands that understand this dynamic have unlocked new results, proving that a community-centric strategy not only supercharges brand engagement but also drives conversions.
Formerly Dash Hudson's Global Digital Insights report, the Social Media Trends Report draws upon a wealth of social analytics data. Leveraging insights from top global brands, this report provides a data-driven analysis of the evolving trends from the past year. In the following report, we unpack those insights to help you put them to work.
Social Media TREND #1
As the act of following continues to lose its significance, building a social media community has become increasingly challenging. The brands successfully tapping into their communities are seeing meaningful benefits — from increased engagement to major upticks in positive sentiment.
Summer Fridays' focus on community engagement resulted in an Instagram Engagement Rate +100% higher than the Beauty industry benchmark.
UGC earns significantly higher Engagement Rates than content from brands.
Influencer collaboration, answering comments, sharing UGC and using content as a sounding board to encourage followers to have conversations.
Going viral is not a strategy; content optimization allows brands to tap into consumer behavior trends and consistently perform well in the algorithm.
Social Media TREND #2
To understand its key benefits, Dash Hudson analyzed nearly 1,000 creator partnerships using data from its Relationships tool. 97% of the time, creators experience a higher Engagement Rate when they post in collaboration with a brand, as opposed to the Engagement Rate a brand receives natively.
higher engagement when partnering with a creator
Brand Native Eng. Rate 0.3%
Creator Eng. Rate 4.8%
Engagement Rate by Follower Size
Under 10K followers
Partnering with creators of all follower sizes results in an increased Engagement Rate. Data from Dash Hudson also uncovered the unique benefit of partnering with each creator type.
Social Media TREND #3
Successful brands understand their audience and what will resonate. Dash Hudson partnered with NielsenIQ to assess how higher Entertainment Scores and Engagement Rates positively impact sales. The Entertainment Score, a proprietary Dash Hudson metric, measures user entertainment levels, while Engagement Rate quantifies user interactions with a video.
The brands that scored the highest Entertainment Scores and Engagement Rates in our recent Cross-Channel Benchmark Reports experienced an average of 100% growth in sales.
Top performing brands that all showed increased sales growth:
Social Media TREND #4
Social media has become a search engine, and brands that excel at discoverability are gaining traction and activating communities. Successful brands have reignited their content optimization strategies for the new era of social by reinforcing hashtags, keywords and captions. Dash Hudson analyzed more than 100,000 Instagram posts to understand the impact of hashtags and captions.
Reels with at least one hashtag obtained 30% higher Reach than Reels without a hashtag.
Data from Dash Hudson suggests 2-4 hashtags offer the highest Reach.
Images with more than 1,000 characters and videos with fewer than 100 characters showed the highest Reach.
Dash Hudson’s latest report connects the dots between community and social media performance, designed to help you propel your strategy forward.
The data utilized in this report was sourced from Dash Hudson's social media management platform. The dataset is comprised of content from global brands who are customers and non-customers across various social media platforms. The timeframe for data collection encompassed the years 2022 and 2023. This period was chosen to capture the most recent and current social media trends.