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Social Media is now a teenager! And like any teenager there are always changes that are happening.

Since video emerged, one social media channel in particular has rapidly grown and since then there has been a massive shift I’ve observed. It wasn’t when Facebook or Instagram first started their video posts. Or when Twitter (remember that?) purchased Vine (remember that too?) to create videos.

Tik Tok is the channel.

As you may now know video is now dominating most growth on social media. The big shift though isn’t that it’s video. Video has been around for a while. And the tech Goliath of Meta has beaten off all pretenders to it’s social media throne. They have basically replicated the new function/feature that the competition had developed as it’s market advantage and turned it into an advantage for Meta to slow the growth of the competition.

But with Tik Tok, it’s all changed. And here is the big shift churches need to be aware of. Somehow Tik Tok has kept it’s growth momentum and its new daily subscriber growth just keeps outpacing Meta, which in the last year or so has struggled to get much new growth. It’s gotten to the point now where Meta can’t just copy a feature and hope it slows the growth of Tik-Tok down. Meta has had to change it’s whole social strategy to try and slow the growth of Tik-Tok.

Meta (remember that’s both Facebook and Instagram) now has changed it’s strategy from a socially driven, community first strategy. Meaning they place all their growth around the human connections that are made on their platforms. And prioritising content that is focused around this idea of human social connection.

They have shifted to a ‘content referral’ strategy. Which means that their algorithm now is prioritising content that is that is more engaging/entertaining/viral in nature. So all of a sudden, it’s not just your friends you are seeing in your timeline, you are seeing random social media accounts with predominately video content in your timeline who you aren’t even following.

And this massive shift is all because of Tik-Tok. They have realised that the younger generation aren’t using the main social media feeds for social connection, but are using the main feeds for short-form-entertainment/information.

Meta has now lost this battle with that next generation using its services and is moving away from social connection being the only pathway to growth.

How is this relevant for churches? It’s very relevant.

#1 Content That Connects Is Still King

It actually means there is more of an opportunity for your church to reach more people social media. If you can create content that connects. And that means less social media bulletin announcements. Engagement types of content that connect can be your sermon, your devotional videos/graphics. As the algorithms see the engagement with the snackable short-form content they will share it with more people.

#2 Short Video is the No.1 Content type

You need to weight the type of content more around video, rather than static content. More video posts than pictures. Now if you’ve been a regular follower of my blog then you’ll know I’ve written about this before. And how to create the right kind of video content. Here are some tips I wrote about a while ago that are still as relevant today as they were when I first wrote them. ‘Seven Compelling Social Video Statistics That Will Make You Rethink Video’

#3 Staff or volunteers is the key

Building a content team that can create enough content is key. Otherwise you’ll stall and get frustrated. You’ll end up posting less frequently and eventually give up. I’ve seen this happen so often. Build up a team with a video editor, graphics person and social media person. And get a system going in terms of how your process works.

Your Turn

What trends are you seeing on social media? Have you seen any shifts you think we should be aware of? Comment below!