Social Media Trends for 2016: 8% Still Avoid It

"2016 will be a host for a variety of new trends and changes in the social scene," JaysonåÊDeMers predicts in's "The Top 7 Social Media Marketing Trends That Will Dominate 2016." Here are seven landmark social media marketing trends he predicts we‰Ûªll see in 2016. Starting with privacy: User privacy concerns will hit an all-​time high.

1. User privacy concerns will hit an all-​time high.

After another year full of high-​profile security breaches (like the one with Ashley Madison), user concerns over privacy are going to hit an all-​time high. Snapchat‰Ûªs explosive popularity is, in part, due to user demand for a more private, secure method of communication and engagement. Facebook is introducing more privacy awareness tools for its users, and it‰Ûªs smart to do so, because as tension continues to rise, only platforms which offer a degree of privacy and security will continue to thrive. For advertisers, that might mean backing off of sometimes-​intrusive forms of advertising.

2. In-​the-​moment updates will dominate.

"Take Periscope, which was recently acquired by Twitter. Periscope users collectively watch 40 years of live video each and every day. Instagram and Snapchat also support on-​the-​go, in-​the-​moment updates, and could collectively herald in a new era of immediacy in social media. If it catches on, you can forget about scheduling all your company‰Ûªs social media posts in advance."

3. Buy buttons will take over.

"Facebook and Pinterest are just two of the platforms that gained attention this year by introducing new ‰ÛÏbuy‰Û features for their advertisers and users. Instagram isn‰Ûªt far behind on the trend, and I imagine more social platforms will follow. By the end of 2016, most major social media brands will feature some kind of buy button naturally as an element of their advertising campaigns."

4. In-​app functionality will diversify and spread.

"Facebook is the king of adding new functionality. Other platforms are working similarly, with Twitter, Instagram, and others trying to expand their platforms to a similar degree, preventing users from ever leaving the app."

5. New publication options will be available.

"Facebook‰Ûªs Instant Articles are only the beginning. As social platforms become more competitive and more aggressive about keeping users in-​app for as long as possible, I imagine they‰Ûªll dream up even more sophisticated forms of publishing for businesses and organizations. Twitter‰Ûªs upcoming Project Lightning puts publication in the hands of its users, but it still represents a dynamic way to present material to the public."

6. Competition for organic visibility will increase.

"Finally, as the ROI of social media marketing becomes more established and social marketing itself becomes more accessible for a wider range of businesses, there will be a greater level of competition for organic visibility. Already, Facebook is throttling organic visibility to force people to buy advertising, and as more businesses emerge in the market, that throttle will only increase, and among more social media channels. The cost of advertising, too, is set to rise over the course of the next year."

7. Fewer small platforms will emerge.

"Platforms have tended to skyrocket in popularity to stand on their own, get enough attention to be acquired by one of the big three (Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn), or die a quick death. In 2016, I expect we‰Ûªll see fewer small platforms as the big players race to gobble up the promising small fry, meaning you‰Ûªll have to worry about fewer up-​and-​coming opportunities."

Privacy concerns are real for 7.7% of Americans. This could be preventing them from participating on social media. Consider targeting this group, that AudienceSCAN reports does not participate in social networking, to bring them into the social fold with confidence and security. It could be worth your advertisers' time because 14% of Social Media Avoiders plan to spend at least $500 on women's clothing and 16% are planning trips to casinos. Social media could help them spend that money!

AudienceSCAN data is available as part of a subscription to AdMall for Agencies. Media companies can access AudienceSCAN data through the Audience Intelligence Reports inåÊAdMall.

Courtney Huckabay
Courtney is the Editor for SalesFuel Today. She analyzes secondary customer research and our primary AudienceSCAN research. Courtney is a graduate of Middle Tennessee State University.