Socialbakers, the leading social media marketing platform, today released its “Q1 2021 State of Social Media and CX” report, offering an in-depth look at the social media trends that had the biggest impact on customer experience during the first quarter of 2021. Socialbakers’ data showed Facebook and Instagram ad spend was up 60% year-over-year — an impressive growth rate after a record-setting year for social media ad spend. Facebook’s ad reach grew around the world, up 8% globally and 23% in North America. Advertising costs on the social platforms also grew more than 30% as ad space became more competitive.
“From what we’ve seen already this year, we predict 2021 will be another big year for social media marketing teams, with social commerce and in-app purchasing capabilities becoming even more important as brands look for new ways to streamline the customer journey,” said Socialbakers President Yuval Ben-Itzhak. “Advertisers doubled-down on their social media ad investments during the first quarter of this year, continuing the same patterns we saw throughout the second half of 2020.
For particular industries, social media ad spend skyrocketed. The auto sector increased ad spend by 102% YoY, the alcohol industry by as much as 81%, and e-commerce by 66%.
Instagram audience sizes also saw major gains, with Instagram audiences up 10.3% for the top 50 brands on the platform. Instagram audiences belonging to the top brands are now 40% larger than their audiences on Facebook.
“The growth we’re seeing across Facebook and Instagram is a clear indicator that brands are experiencing big wins when they rely on social media platforms to help close the customer experience gap that widened during the disruptions of 2020,” said Ben-Itzhak.
The biggest takeaways from the report: The increase in ad costs signals a more competitive environment for brands in the months ahead, with the role of social media becoming an integral part of the pre- and post-purchase customer journey. Socialbakers’ Q1 data underscores the need for brands to maintain CX strategies across social channels to meet customer expectations and close the CX gap.
Socialbakers’ full Q1 2021 State of Social Media and CX report can be downloaded here.