A Social Media Wish List for 2016

By Evan LePage

Social

Hey Santa,

When you’re done bringing all those gifts to people on the 25th, I was hoping you might put in an extra week of work. I wouldn’t ask this from you if it wasn’t important. The happiness and sanity of social media professionals across the world depend on it.

Social media has come a long way in the last few years. Major social networks are knocking off feature request after feature request, responding to the wants and needs of their users at a remarkable pace. But that old adage “you can’t please everyone” is particularly relevant as, you know, everyone is on social media, and not everyone is pleased. Not yet anyways.

Below is a quick social media wishlist that would really go a long way in appeasing the workhorse social media managers in 2016. Do your best.

PS: Accept my Facebook friend request already.

Thanks,

Evan

Multiple Instagram Accounts

For many of us, the ability to manage multiple Instagram accounts without signing in and out seemed like a pipe dream. But then last month, we found out Instagram was actually testing this functionality on Android.

This feature would be so, so helpful. Social media managers with multiple accounts would save valuable time spent in the sign in process. More brands could create campaign or product specific accounts to really make the most of the app. And regular people who want to maintain personal and professional accounts could manage both with ease. So if you could make sure they roll this out to all of us, that would be just dandy.

No more Ellos

Ello

Facebook. Google+. LinkedIn. Instagram. Twitter. Pinterest. Tumblr. YouTube. Vine. Snapchat.

Listen, there are already so many great social networks. We’re not necessarily opposed to seeing a new one emerge and totally change the industry in 2016. That would be cool. But what really bothers us are the huge stories that don’t live up to the hype. I’m talking about you Ello.

For social media professionals, it’s vital that we adopt new technologies early. When Ello emerged, many of us hopped on board only to be let down when it never really had much to offer. We don’t have this time to waste. So if you could get the word out: only really revolutionizing new social networks please. Thanks.

More money for social media advertising

I mean, most businesses are going to be doing this anyways, but I just wanted to make sure.

And the emergence of more powerful buy buttons

blog-buyit-hero_5.jpg

Buy buttons were all the rage among social networks this year. But how many of us have actually purchased something through one of these buttons? There was a whole lot of hype, but very little actual buying.

In 2016, it would be nice to see that change. Consumers wouldn’t have to jump through hoops to get the products they seen in streams, and social media managers would have an extremely easy time tying their efforts to their business’ bottom line. More powerful buy buttons, and more widespread use of them, would be great for everyone involved.

For people to stop saying Pinterest is a “woman’s social network”

pinterest-visual-search
Men like lamps too

Listen, Pinterest is a B2C company’s dream. According to a study conducted by Millward Brown Digital and Pinterest, 93 percent of users reported using Pinterest to plan for purchases. Pinterest is a natural fit for brands, providing the opportunity to market products and services before purchases occur, to an audience who is actively looking for information that will help guide their decisions.

So why are so few businesses really taking advantage of Pinterest? A rumor.

See, when Pinterest emerged, a lot of clothing stores, wedding companies and foodies were quick to see its potential. They hopped on the social network with enthusiasm, and their audiences followed. Much of their audiences happened to be female, and suddenly a rumor started: Pinterest is a “woman’s social network.”

Nonsense.

Pinterest is a social network for everyone who enjoys visuals, enjoys “stuff” and enjoys making lists. In other words, Pinterest is a social network for everyone. Period.

I absolutely wish my friends and family were on Pinterest, so they would check out my “Things I Want” board for gift inspiration. I wish more readers would follow along as I post every new article I write to a dedicated Pinterest board. I wish more businesses would realize the clear link between Pinterest and purchasing behavior. But if we could just start by shutting down that dumb rumor, that would be awesome.

Less bae, less fleek

As Hootsuite’s own Ashley Jane Brookes’ explained in depth here, “Audiences decide what’s cool, not brands. When brands try to co-opt what’s cool and exciting (especially to millennials) and miss the mark, they risk distancing themselves from their audiences.”

In less technical terms, nobody likes a brand that talks about “Netflix and chill” without actually knowing what it means. 

In the new year, it would be great if brands acknowledged that they were brands, and focused on sticking to their own style and voice, rather than awkwardly attempting to co-opt slang. If they really want to resonate with a young audience, they have both user-generated content and influencer marketing as options.

Help us out and send them the memo. Thanks!

Less ninja, less guru

It turns out you’re actually an “expert” a “specialist,” or a “professional” and not someone who wears black and disappears into the night after an epic battle sequence. Let’s let the weird titles die, shall we.

More social media training

Hootsuite-training-people-boardroom-presentation-1200x550

So how do you become that social media specialist, expert or professional? You work at it. A lot of businesses expect their staff members to take on social media responsibilities without actually teaching them how, or giving them the tools to learn on their own.

Thankfully, there are social media education programs out there—including Hootsuite’s free education platform Hootsuite Academy. Trained employees mean more effective social media marketing which means better business. Plus, it probably means a better reputation for our industry as a whole. No dad, I don’t just play on Facebook all day.

Again, social media training is free, so you can give this one out to all the social media professionals on your nice list, and take all the credit for it. That one’s on us.

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