Business Social Media Trends Expected To Skyrocket In 2016

Social Media. For something that’s been around for barely more than a decade at most, it certainly has made quite a difference in all of our lives. The numbers are hard to argue with. At the end of the first quarter of 2015, an estimated 1.67 billion people used Facebook.

That’s almost a quarter of the planet.

With social media being so pervasive, it’s a wonder that we’re so often late to the party when it comes to the changing social media landscape. Who saw Twitter coming before it was a thing? The importance of native videos? How about Periscope? The truth is, trends in social media change so quickly that it’s difficult to keep up — especially if you’re more concentrated on trying to run a business. To that end, here’s a few things in 2016 that you might want to keep an eye out for when it comes to social media.

Social Media for Business [Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images]First and foremost, there is going to be a spike in in-house social media managers. Social media marketing works. Social media for business works. There’s no debate on that front. Nine out of 10 of all U.S. businesses have some sort of social media platform. Now that everyone’s making the switch, (or, rather, those holdouts that have avoided to embrace social media for as long as possible) companies that can afford in-house social media managers won’t hesitate to employ them. What this will most likely mean is that employees that are already in the marketing, advertising, or even human resource departments will have an added social media element tagged onto their job description. Unfortunately, that may not be the best solution. Social media for business and social media marketing can be a tricky position, and thrusting inexperienced employees into the role could spell disaster. However, experts say that that won’t deter them from trying in 2016.

What else will happen in social media in 2016? Social media advertising is going to skyrocket. And guess what? You probably won’t even notice. What we mean by that is that unlike conventional advertising, social media ads are so well-placed and targeted towards their intended audience that when the consumer sees them, they don’t even treat them as advertising; rather, the viewer just sees the ad as another post in their feed. The amount of money spent on social media marketing went up 33-and-a-half percent in 2015, topping over $24 billion in the United States alone. The increase in social media marketing continues to climb year after year because companies have found that it works incredibly well.

Business Social Media Trends [Photo by Bethany Clarke/Getty Images]Another social media business trend that will be highly noticeable in 2016 is workplace social media. Facebook at Work is currently in its beta phase, but should be released in 2016 to the general public. Another program called Slack is already off the ground and seems to be catching on quickly wherever it’s used. For a while now, IT gurus have been diligently attempting to eliminate internal email from the workplace, and an internal social media site could do just that. Instead of all those forwarded and reply-to-all and “is this even relevant to me” emails we get at work, an in-house social media platform such as Facebook at Work could be checked by employees throughout the day to see the latest “goings-ons.” Of course, priority information for certain departments or the workplace at large could be prioritized through the system. Workplace social media is a sure bet in 2016, especially if Facebook at Work gets off the ground.

Lastly, video, video, video. YouTube, which was once synonymous with online video, is starting to feel the pressure. Facebook is rumored to have surpassed YouTube in 2015 for the number of videos watched. Native video on Twitter is at an all-time high, and each of these platforms will only be pushing for more in 2016. If 2015 was the year of the photo on social media, then 2016 will be the year of the video.

What trends do you see coming down the pipe for business social media in 2016?

[Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images]