7 social media trends

We all know by now that social media is here to stay.  New platforms frequently emerge and features are constantly being added, so it’s worth taking a look at the social media trends for the first half of 2015.

Let’s start with some current statistics for the most popular platforms:

  • Facebook receives over 145 million unique visitors per month with 1.44 billion monthly active users worldwide
  • Twitter has over 320 million active monthly users worldwide
  • There are over 2.1 million LinkedIn groups
  • 4 billion videos are viewed on YouTube every day
  • Pinterest has 73 million users, mostly women
  • There are 1,000 comments posted per second on Instagram

Now for the trends.  Did you predict any of these?

#1) Social sales on the rise:  Tracking sales through social media has caused wide frustration amongst marketers; however that is changing.  Along with Amazon.com, most major platforms are developing buy-type buttons and promotions to help track sales directly to the platform.  Pinterest is already gaining traction as an ad platform with its rollout of promoted pin native ads.

#2) Facebook is still the king: Not surprisingly, Facebook still dominates social media.  In fact, the company anticipated the switch from desktop to mobile very early on, planned accordingly, and left other platforms in the dust!  Additionally, Facebook is the provider of 61% of all social logins.

#3) LinkedIn will dominate B2B:  LinkedIn has been the top choice for B2B salespeople and marketers for years.  In fact, 89.7% of users find it moderately to extremely successful in growing their network and developing business.  There are 200 conversations occurring every minute in LinkedIn groups; and 41% of millionaires use LinkedIn. Many believe the gap between LinkedIn and other networks will continue to widen.

#4) Mobile friendly: Mobile access to the internet has quadrupled over the last 4 years.  No surprise, the predominant activity on mobile is social networking.  Mobile’s new domination of social media activity did not take away time spent on the desktop.  Instead, Americans added more time on digital in their off-hours, bringing smart phones and tablets to television time, waiting rooms, lines at Starbucks and bed.

#5) Pay to play:  You can no longer rely solely on organic reach to make a significant impact on engagement.  Networks are expanding their advertising programs and making it cost effective to put some money behind social media campaigns.  2015 has shown us that boosted ads are becoming the norm for marketers, especially since they may not be as noticeable to users, and paid media leads to more conversions than organic media.

#6) Video is on the rise: There have been dramatic increases in this tactic, as 57% of marketers say they use video and 72% say they plan on increasing their usage and want to learn more.  In fact, Facebook reports a 360% increase in video publishing.

#7) Integration: This year brands have finally realized that social media is a relationship builder, not a one-way bullhorn.  In 2015, we have seen that companies are finally embracing the “conversation,” knowing that in order to establish meaningful connections with consumers or other businesses, they must break down the social media silo they started.

Now ask yourself, what will be the 2016 trends?