2016 word cloud

Social Marketing & Beyond:

Now that we are officially a few weeks into 2016, I wanted to share some interesting insights I learned about during a recent Emarketer webinar, “Social Marketing Trends in 2016.” The webinar was guest-hosted by Debra Aho Williamson, a principal analyst at Emarketer who is an expert in social media marketing. In her webinar, Williamson covered some interesting items of note that marketers should expect to see in the year ahead. During 2016, social networks are projected to take in 18% of all U.S. digital spending, and here’s how that is going to be used:

  • Money that was once used in television advertising will now be allocated toward more social media marketing. It is expected that as television advertising continues to lag, social attribution will only improve.
  • Ad blocking will continue to be a large issue regarding Internet user privacy. Social properties will need to respond to this issue, especially as ad blockers continue to become smarter and find loopholes to block ads in apps.
  • An approximate 96% of social media experts worldwide plan to use influencer marketing in 2016. For advertisers, this means they need to adjust their budgets and aim for authenticity in their advertisements.
  • The viewability debate will continue as Facebook and Twitter continue to differ on their definitions of a “view” and when or when not an advertisement should be chargeable. Additionally, guidelines for mobile viewability are expected to be released in 2016, but it is likely there will be no consensus.
  • There is still slow progress towards cross-platform targeting, but Facebook’s Atlas ad server is a new way of approaching targeting.
  • We see buy buttons everywhere, and guess what? Buy buttons are here to stay, but they require a behavior change in consumers. Though, this is a change that marketers will not expect to see in 2016.
  • The app Periscope lets users broadcast live videos to the world. This concept is catching on with marketers. There is also debate that Snapchat and Instagram video could get “real-time” over the next few months.
  • In 2016, messaging apps will be marketers’ new frontier. Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp are suggested to become global powerhouses. It has also been shown that mobile device users, especially millennials, are very receptive to this type of marketing.

Based on Williamsons’ views on 2016, it seems that a lot of the same issues from 2015 are here to stay, but there are also promising opportunities for new marketing frontiers. As we continue into the New Year, we at The Brandon Agency look forward to applying new social marketing trends to our advertising and welcome any viewpoints you have on what lies ahead. To share your thoughts, email me at kmccollum@thebrandonagency.com.