If what you don’t know won’t hurt you, then what you know would always give you an extra edge.

Everyone knows that social media is the bomb.

Whether you want to become famous or make your business a brand, social media is key.

But the problem lies in managing the complexities of social media to strike the red hot spot. To understand that we need to know what social media trends are going to be followed in the future. 

While social media will and does change the face of your business, not a lot of small and mid-sized businesses know how to go about it. Unfortunately, a lot of trained ‘experts’ are clueless too.

Most people think that only posting content on social media will instantly make you an Instagram or a Twitter brand.

That’s not true, posting at the right time on your chosen social media platform when your audience is both more active and receptive, is what will get the traffic sliding in.

Here are 5 social media trends that you should look out for and mould your social media strategy around it in the upcoming year:

1. Facebook is shuffling things up

It would be no surprise actually since Facebook continues to dominate the social media world.

For small businesses, Facebook is turning out to be a boon with the one-click ‘Buy’ button feature where users can directly purchase anything on the sponsored post directly from their app.

Another important feature that will increase Facebook engagement is their Instant Articles feature where you can read content directly on the Facebook app without getting directed to the host website.

social-media-trends

So for instance you want to check out the current news on The Independent, and you click on their link on your Facebook app, the article would pop right up on your Facebook app.

Also, there’s been a shift in demography when it comes to Facebook users. As the younger users continually shift to platforms like Instagram and Tumblr, Facebook is being actively used by baby boomers now.

Next time you are launching a Facebook ad, scour through the data on their website to create targeted campaigns.

2. Live Streaming will get bigger

If you thought Snapchat stories were taking the world by storm, you should watch out for Periscope.

Getting acquired by Twitter is the first step towards changing just how real-time the world is about to get.

Now you can shoot a video and instantly post it for the world to see unlike earlier where you would shoot and later post it. It’s already become a rage with over 2 million Periscope viewers collectively watching somewhere around 40 years of video every day!

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Periscope would particularly work well for small businesses that are looking for inexpensive ways to advertise and reach out to their customers.

It doesn’t just provide a scope for creating quick product guides, sales pitch, and tutorials, but it also humanizes the brand and adds a fun interactive element to it.

3. App usage will become bigger

Google’s Mobilegeddon update that hashed rankings of top websites because it wasn’t mobile friendly is just one way to show just how important Google deems handhelds to be.

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Stone Temple Consulting agency’s report

Having a mobile version of your website just won’t cut it anymore. You need to put the same – if not more – focus on your business app as you do on your website.

And this goes not just for your apps but also how your apps are linked with various social media platforms.

Optimize your apps to rank better and make sure these function flawlessly and browsing and transactions are both quick and safe.

4. Rising privacy concerns

Whether it is the Ashley Madison aftermath where tons of personal data was hacked and released, or the fact that users are already turning to platforms like Snapchat that promises secure ways of sharing details, privacy and safety concerns are at an all-time high.

You need to ensure and assert your users that their data – personal and financial – are both safe and secure with your website.

5. E-commerce will keep inching up

Almost everyone shops online, and some people only shop online.

E-commerce will continue to be on a rise, so if you are a new e-commerce venture starting out, make sure you leverage your marketing and advertizing efforts right and reach the prospects because the prospects are increasing in number.

The ‘Buy’ button feature on social media is a great way to both reach out to customers and give them the option of directly purchasing.

We hope that equipped with these upcoming social media trends for 2016, you are now in a better position to take profitable decisions and create successful campaigns.