6 Social Media Trends for 2016

December 10th, 2015 by Viviane Carter
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With the end of 2015 fast approaching, we wanted to follow up our 2015 Social Media Trends post with our predictions for what will trend in the social media world in 2016. Digital marketing is ever changing and social media is no exception.

Make sure to check out last week’s post on PPC trends for 2016 as well.

Buy button

It’s been over a year since Twitter started offering the Buy button and since then Facebook and Pinterest have followed suit. Instagram’s Shop Now button was introduced in mid-2015 and no doubt other social media networks will follow. Being able to buy products directly through social media channel makes the shopping process easier and quicker, without the need for leaving the app. In the course of 2016, the buy button will become a normal element of social media advertising across most social media channels.

Real-time social media updates

Real-time, in-the-moment updates to social media are growing – with the live-streaming app Periscope having been acquired by Twitter before it even launched publicly. Other examples are Instagram and Snapchat which allow users and advertisers to share moments near-instantaneously. For businesses this can mean to show their human face by showing the team at work, showing short tutorials and how-to videos or offering exclusive discounts or sneak peeks of new products.

Data privacy concerns

High-profile security breaches such as the hack of Ashley Madison and other websites have caused concerns among social media users regarding the safety of their data on social media. Snapchat, which offers a more secure environment has thrived and Facebook has introduced new privacy awareness tools. For your business this means you need to respect your customers’ privacy by using private messaging for confirming personal information and asking for any personal details.

Innovative publishing platforms

Facebook has introduced its new feature Instant Articles which allows users to access news stories from select publications like The New York Times and Buzzfeed that are saved directly on Facebook’s servers. This means the content is optimised for Facebook and loads much faster as no external website has to be accessed. Whether news publications like to admit it or not, page load speeds matter more than ever in the age of mobile internet. No doubt more publications will be added to Instant Articles and other social media platforms may come up with similar options for keeping users in-app for as long as possible.

Social video

Social video has already been trending in social media this year and will continue to play a big role in 2016. Video is great for audio and visual storytelling and it has made its way into more and more marketing strategies. Social video is no longer just YouTube – Facebook, Snapchat, Vine and Instagram all give businesses the opportunity to create compelling content that will speak to their target group. We are expecting video to grow in 2016 and become an even more important component of social media marketing.

Fewer new social media platforms

The past few years saw the rise and fall of many new small social media platforms. Many died as quickly as they came about, while some stayed around but never really got popular. Over the past year, this has changed, with new platforms either becoming extremely popular very quickly and being able to stand on its own, being promising enough to be bought up by Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn or dying just as quickly as they came. We are not expecting to see a lot of new smaller social media platforms being able to make it independently.

What do you think will be rocking the social media world in 2016? Share your thoughts in the comments.

If you would like help with your social media strategy in 2016, please feel free to get in touch.


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