Mark Zuckerberg announced that Facebook will soon allow users to express themselves through more than just the “Like” button. So we look at the other social media changes that will define 2016. Some of these are actual announcements from the networks themselves, some are mere conjecture, the rest are educated guesses. If you see something that doesn’t come to light before the end of 2016, don’t come complaining to us 😉
- Social Media At Work – Apps like Slack and Facebook at Work are becoming required for staff to keep in touch, rather than taboo at work…
- Social media as a form of Customer Service will make or break big brands – make sure you answer queries FAST!
- Livestreaming becomes mainstream – Twitter’s Periscope, Facebook Live. If you want to broadcast, here’s the way to do it.
- Social shopping – In-line buy buttons have been introduced on the major social networks and customers are getting used to be being able to buy without leaving their social feeds.
- Virtual reality – Oculus tech is already being used on Facebook with its 360 video featured. You can look at scenes in video from different angles. Disney, Vice and Star Wars have already rolled out 360 videos for brand/product promotion.
Facebook Gets Emotive
Facebook users have long been asking for a ‘dislike’ button… But now they could be blessed with even more ways of expressing themselves on the world’s favourite social media platform. The King of social networks is still basking in the light of success. What is it going to be rolling out to stay in that Number One spot?
Face The Facts
- 1.6bn users worldwide
- 150k messages are sent every minute
- $1.4m of revenue generated every hour
- 73% of ad revenue comes from mobile advertising
- 1.3m pieces of content are shared every minute
New for 2016?
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has at last revealed that six new emotions will be added to the network, globally. These are going to include “anger”, “sadness”, “wow”, “haha” and “love”! The idea behind the change is because, says Zuckerberg,
“We want people to be able to share all of the things that are meaningful to them, not just the things that are happy and that people are to like when they see it.”
The “Yay” button that got rejected because it wasn’t widely understood by Facebook’s global audience:
Snapchat Adds New Features
Snapchat may have started off as a derised idea of a student (no, really, when founder Evan Spiegel discussed the idea of a photo sharing app that deleted the image after 10 seconds, his fellow Stanford students laughed at him)… but it has grown into an incredibly popular connectivity app for young people.
- 71% of users are under 34 years old
- 100m daily users
- 9,000 images shared per second
- $110k – what the top Snapchat stars earn per week
- $750k earned a day by the network in advertising
- $15bn – value of the app
New for 2016?
Rumour has it, Snapchat could introduce chat messaging as well as better audio and video calling. Code within the app has hinted that this could be rolled out. Some keen-eyed users have also spotted stickers in the chat interface too.
It’s a serious upgrade to the app offering. Users can tap on new menu buttons to start calls (currently both people have to be logged into the app to do this), the recipient can join the call, ignore or listen. There are also presence indicators to show who’s listening/talking/watching.
Twitter For Longer
Twitter recently added ‘likes’ and ‘moments’. Likes are pretty self explanatory; Moments are the trending stories of the moment. That could be news, celebrity updates or popular tweets. But what else will be happening in 2016?
- 120m monthly unique visitors
- 208 – average number of followers per person
- 80% of world leaders use Twitter
- 24.6% of verified accounts are journalists
New For 2016?
Expanded text. No longer do you have the challenge of fitting your thoughts into 140 characters or less… Having already lifted the limit on direct messages, it’s thought it won’t be too long until we see much longer tweets (possibly at the end of Q1, March). Which could be good (there can be difficulty expressing oneself within a limited amount of words) but it will change the whole concept of Twitter. And many users have raised concerns:
— Alan K’necht (@aknecht) January 27, 2016
Increasing the Twitter character limit would reduce the user experience because you won’t be able to scan your feed fast. #semrushchat
— Ross Quintana (@Ross_Quintana) January 27, 2016
SEMRushChat (marketers around the world answering questions each week on Twitter – natch) posed the question – what is the future of Twitter Feed?Some predicted more multimedia content, more livestreams, images and videos integrated and more interactive adverts, customised by audience interest (not just brand bragging).
Instagram, the narcissist’s favourite social network. The Kardashian/Jenner clan seem to dominate, but don’t be put off, there’s a lot of opportunity for marketers on this channel. Almost 10% of small businesses in America use Instagram.
- 20-49 characters – the best instagram post length for brands
- 14m active users in the UK
- 3.31% post engagement for top 25 brand posts
- 11% of photos tagged with ‘#NoFilter’ actually used a filter
- $100k – the cost of sponsored posts by celebs
- Thursday – the most popular day for Fortune 500 companies to post
- The happiest State in the US, based on smilies used – St. Louis
New For 2016
Search on Instagram is changing as we speak. You can see the number of followers of people within a search, and see who’s following you back. These changes seem to still be in beta, as searches on iPhone and Android come up with different information. This isn’t ground-breaking stuff, it’s information that you’d find easily in a Facebook or Twitter search, for instance, but it’s a leap forward for Instagram – owned by Facebook.