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Social Media Trends 2021

Social Media is relatively new in the grand scheme of things, but we’ve seen it grow exponentially over the past decade, becoming one of the most important tools for businesses to reach and engage their audiences. So the question is, are you ready to shine on social? We hope the answer is yes because we’ve pulled together all the social media trends we’re expecting to see in 2021 to make this happen.

1. Muted Colour Palettes

Muted colour palettes took the graphic design world by storm last year, and they show no sign of stopping anytime soon. We’re expecting to see even more during 2021. But what are muted colours exactly?

‘Muted’ is basically another word for greyed, dulled or desaturated. It refers to colours which have a low saturation as opposed to vivid colour.

To mute a colour, you can just mix it with any of the following:

  • Black (this will also darken the colour)
  • White (this will also lighten the colour)
  • Gray
  • The complement of the colour (for example, you can desaturate blue by mixing it with orange) or
  • An earthy colour such as raw umber or burnt sienna.

Each of these methods will produce slightly different results, but the saturation of the colour will decrease. 

We’re starting to see more washed out pastel colours being used more frequently not too, something to key an eye on as these soft colour schemes see a rise in 2021.  

2. Nostalgic Content

Mentions to nostalgic content increase by a huge 88% during lockdown with engagements amongst brands posting such content see a huge spike in engagements. This is a trend that resurfaces every so often and is extremely powerful. Nostalgia is a sentimental longing for the past, typically for a period or place with happy personal associations. Brands are starting to use this to take users back to happier times, while also using it as a forum to showcase how their brand has changed and adapted over the years.

5. Humanising Content

Sharing content that humanises your brand has never been so important given the year of 2020. We’re expecting 2021 to see this type of content boom in 2021 with more brands sharing humanising content that really resonate with audiences.

It’s likely like we will see businesses continue to be transparent and authentic when it comes to their 2021 social media strategy. As always, people connect with people, regardless if you’re a start-up company with one employee or a multi-national corporation. This means the brand should be personified in a way that reveals who they stand for and what they stand for at the core. Don’t be afraid to hold your hands up if you make a mistake, this is something that should be added to your social strategy going forward.

4. Memes and Memic Messaging

Memes have begun taking Instagram by storm, and this is a trend that is only set to grow as we head into 2021. From comical to cultural, memes are a great way to resonate with your audience base, and what’s better is that they don’t always have to relate to your industry. However, where possible make sure memes either relate to your industry or to your customer’s interests at a minimum. Take ASOS and MissSelfrige for example:

5. Data Visualisations

We’re seeing carousel posts being used as a way of storytelling and explaining somewhat complex topics as a way to display data and information. We’ve seen so many infographics being created in 2019 and 2020 in particular, whereas 202 is going to be the year where carousel posts will be dominating the social media landscape. 

SEMrush is a great example. They have started using data visualisations is to communicate information clearly, making it easier for readers to understand and digest it. It demonstrates your knowledge and expertise in a fun way, making them a really engaging piece of content. 

6. Warped and Wavy Text

2021 is going to be the year where social media users begin moving away from the norm, mixing out how they present text, giving it an appealing and unique angle. 

From distorted lettering to wavy text on images, 2021 will be unpredictable and playful. Take the example above, it’s so simple, yet impactful by the unique way the text is presented. Keeping in line with the muted colours and minimalistic design this example still managed to stand out from the crowd. 


What will your social media accounts look like next year? Will you be having a complete social media overhaul? We’d love to hear your plans, follow us on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter to let us know.

Social Media and Content Executive, tea enthusiast & music lover, who’s also unable to pass a dog in the street without giving it a fuss…