2018 Social in Review

By Tessa Stockdale (Account Manager – Social)

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Narrowing down the many social media moments of 2018 to a list of its best (and worst) is an overwhelming task. But let’s start here: there’s nothing like kicking off the New Year with a complete algorithm overhaul on the world’s most popular social channel, Facebook. Sending most #influencers into melt down as they watched their engagement (and free product) diminish, the algorithm changed our feeds to “prioritise posts from friends and family over public content,” meaning content from business and brand pages saw a big ol’ dip in their organic (unpaid) traction.

Facebook dramas didn’t slow down as the year progressed, with the Cambridge Analytica scandal rolling out soon after the algorithm changed. The British data analytics firm was revealed to have acquired over 5,000 data points on over 230 million American voters during the 2016 Presidential election, enabling political campaigns to target voters susceptible to certain messages with precise accuracy. How did they acquire this user information? From Facebook, without user consent — and this allegedly aided Trump and his ‘Make America Great Again’ campaign to secure the presidency.

At the same time as the Cambridge Analytica scandal fuelled concerns about digital data collection, one of the most amusing moments of this scandal was the compiled snippets of lawyers who seem to be highly uneducated about the social media realm. Have a look for yourself – our favourite is, “How do you sustain a business model in which users don’t pay for your service?” Er, advertising?

On the more ridiculous things that graced our feeds in 2018:

► Trump continued to remind us that even the Presidency doesn’t make you immune from typos. One of his best Tweets was when he misnamed the First Lady Melania (aka. his wife), “Melanie”.

► Despite announcing that he had been misdiagnosed with bipolar disorder when he was actually merely sleep deprived, Kanye West finally tweeted something of value: what would the world look like if we no longer cared about the metrics of social media?

► Jacinda Arden and Clarke Gayford announced their pregnancy via Instagram with three fishing hooks. Neve Aroha Gayford was born in June and made headlines with her Winston Churchill-looking facials at the UN General Assembly in New York.

► Drake releasing his highly-anticipated album Scorpion, which, to-date, has received the highest number of streams on Spotify – 8.2 billion. This led to the Keke Challenge which dominated our Instagram feeds (and streets) in August.

► Coverage of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s Royal Wedding and Royal Tour, including their pregnancy announcement via Twitter.

► There’s been a lot of pregnancies this year, and Kylie Jenner hiding hers from the world despite immense speculation was uncovered in January with the release of a YouTube video titled “To Our Daughter”.

We look forward to seeing what 2019 brings!

FCB Social are a dedicated, award-winning social specialists’ team, delivering socially-led content across campaigns and bringing clients’ “brand personalities” to life with effective, two-way community engagement.

Date: December 14, 2018