Social Media Trends and Innovations 2021-22

October 19, 2021 Mihaela Lica Butler

We live in uncertain times that shape the future of most industries, and social media is no exception. As a result, brands no longer communicate on social media the way they used to before the COVID-19 pandemic: they must pay more attention to data privacy and change the conversation to include more thoughtful content that values social issues in the real world. These and several other interesting trends dominate 2021-2022.

Data Privacy

Data privacy is not a new trend, but many companies seem to prioritize it this year more than ever. A survey commissioned by Privacera shows that more than 70% of Fortune 500 companies find it challenging to ensure the privacy and security of sensitive data. This happens partly because companies find compliance to GDPR, CCPA, and other privacy regulations to impact their cloud migration and analytics efforts, making the process very difficult. Services like Privacera now make data migration across multiple cloud services more accessible.

Data Privacy - Increasing Privacy Regulations

Invisibly puts back control of personal data in the hands of the customers. They created a people-first system where consumers are in complete control of their personal information.

Jumbo is a free app that enables users to control their online privacy and personal data. It has several features that achieve these goals. For example, users can avoid third parties - including Google and Facebook for ads and advertisers - from collecting and selling their data without their consent. Jumbo also monitors the dark web for data breaches and much more.

Audio Social Networks and Apps

Multitasking is in - big time, and audio-only apps, social networks, or just features empower consumers to listen to their favorite content while taking care of other tasks. However, multitasking is not the only reason consumers favor audio social networks and apps: zoom fatigue influences trends too.

Clubhouse became popular during the long periods of lockdown in the past year. People use the network for all kinds of conversations, from simply sharing thoughts to reading news and even making music together.

Amplivoice is another audio-only social network where people can share short audio clips - less than one minute long - to talk about anything that matters to them.

Facebook now has Live Audio Rooms and Podcasts to bring social audio experiences to the network. Twitter brought audio messages to its app in 2020. Even Netflix has an audio-only mode on Android devices for users who still want to listen to their favorite shows while on the go or when performing other tasks. So audio-social networks are gaining momentum and are likely to remain a trend beyond 2021.

Digital Fatigue

Because of the COVID-19 lockdown, many people must work online from home or access online learning platforms. As a result, they may experience tech or digital fatigue. In fact, according to statistics, 72% of B2B marketers have experienced digital fatigue since the pandemic outbreak.

Social media networks already have controls in place to prevent this side-effect. For example, you can use the Facebook Quiet Mode feature to stop notifications from the social network on your phone to enjoy as much time as you can without checking the network at every sound you hear.

Social Fever aims to help users stop smartphone addiction by tracking and limiting users’ social media activities. In addition, the app allows users to set goals and interests and records time spent with specific apps. It offers detailed statistics and even has a water reminder for those who forget to keep hydrated.

Off the Grid aims to offer users “digital detox” by locking the phones for the time frame specified by the users. Once set up, Off the Grid will prevent the phones from distracting users automatically.

TimeChi is a timeboxing platform with an integrated tracker, analytics, and the possibility for users to schedule regular breaks automatically.

Social Media Shopping on the Rise

According to Inmar, 52% of socially engaged shoppers have purchased through a social platform in the past year. Additionally, the social media networks - like Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat -  matter with some 30% of online shoppers.

In June 2020, eMarketer found that 18.3% of US adults bought something through Facebook, 11.1% from Instagram, 2.9% from Pinterest, 1.4% from TikTok, and 1.0% from Snapchat. Also, according to eMarketer, US social commerce will rise to 34.8% to $36.09 billion this year. The trends are in but are likely to plummet once the lockdown measures ease and people can return to in-shop experiences.

Social Media Purchases

Facebook, for example, has the Facebook Marketplace and its new Facebook Shops to offer users enough shopping experiences. Instagram has an in-app checkout option, Twitter and Pinterest have partnered with Shopify, and the list of innovations to encourage social media shopping can go on. This is a trend users like because it is fun and convenient. For merchants, solutions like these offer more channels to reach buyers. The ROI advantages are obvious, but so are the branding and word-of-mouth effects for sellers.

Virtual Rooms

Virtual meeting rooms are usually co-working spaces where people can meet and work as a team. They are extremely useful for people who must work remotely. Facebook’s Horizon Workrooms are available for free on Oculus Quest 2 in all the countries where Oculus Quest is supported. The innovation “works across both virtual reality and the web and is designed to improve your team’s ability to collaborate, communicate, and connect remotely, through the power of VR—whether that’s getting together to brainstorm or whiteboard an idea, work on a document, hear updates from your team, hang out and socialize, or simply have better conversations that flow more naturally,” according to its developers.

meetingRoom is another innovation that allows teams to work remotely like they were in the same office. Users can access the virtual meetings room with virtual reality headsets or from non-VR platforms.

Virtual Room is a platform for users to have fun or VR adventures with teams of like-minded peers in the virtual world while staying safe in the real world.

These are just some examples of current use of VR for work, collaborations, team building, and fun.


Both users and businesses must embrace change and new technologies to take advantage of the social media trends and innovations of 2021-2022. Some of these trends will continue their momentum in the years to come, evolving to better the safety and health of all their users. Other innovations will appear to bring even more convenience to consumers and businesses alike.