TOOLKIT 2017 ‘DARK SOCIAL’ AND CHAT APPS
The time spent using social media is increasing but the platforms used are increasingly closed or private, rather than open or transparent to marketers. The rise of chat or mobile-focused messenger apps, such as WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Line and WeChat, is fuelling the rise of ‘dark social’. Effectively this refers to social conversations that are private and ‘invisible’ to the outside world – and hence have less potential for marketers to monitor, advertise or buy their way into conversations with potential customers. The rise of ‘dark social’ has two major implications for marketers. First, there may be an impact on social listening techniques, and the quality of information available from monitoring ‘open’ social platforms. Second, there is expected to be a move away from ‘real-time’ social strategies toward conversation-based approaches.