The State of Social Marketing in 2016 from Simply Measured

state of social marketing

Seattle based digital agency, Simply Measured released their ‘2016 State of Social Marketing Report‘ last week.

I found the 2015 version very helpful, so I was delighted to see the report out again this year.

After the first pass of the 46 page report a number of things jumped out at me.




The State of Social Marketing: Social Network League


Facebook continues to be the social media powerhouse. If you could only pick one channel, this is probably it. Due to the massive numbers it would be hard to imagine your audience aren’t on there somewhere.

The State of Social Marketing report states there are more than 2.2 billion social media users globally. This means Facebook has approximately 75% penetration in the social world.

youtubeIs YouTube a social network or a search engine? Regardless, it commands the attention of 1 billion MAU’s. Not all of your video belongs on YouTube; but as a business you should certainly consider having some videos on there.

In absolute terms, Facebook was only behind Tumblr in Monthly Active Users (MAU’s). The social giant added 190,000,000 million users versus 320,000,000 for Tumblr. Google+ was a 3rd with 240,000,000.

Tumble and Google+ would have fallen down the popularity pecking order in recent years. These latest MAU numbers prove they could be a worth a little effort.

Equally, if others are discounting them there could be an opportunity. With less noise there could greater chance of getting heard and create some traction for your message.

Instagram continues its phenomenal growth adding another 100 million MAU’s.


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* Estimated 2015 MAU | ‘% of Total’ column = 2016 MAU / reported 2.2 billion social media population


The State of Social Marketing: Tumblr – Don’t call it a comeback


tumblr_2One of the most surprising piece of data in The State of Social Marketing 2016  was the MAU numbers for Tumblr.

In previous years the blog had been eclipsed my young pretender networks like Snapchat, Pinterest and Instagram.  However, in 2015 and into 2016 Tumblr has jumped up to the 3rd most used network.

Tumblr has embraced rich media of late and it seems, as a result, brands have embraced Tumblr. Using the Interbrand 100 as their yardstick, Tumblr posted the biggest increase in adoption by brands. It was also the only network to post double-digit growth figure in this regard.


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The State of Social Marketing: Has Ghostbusting hit Snapchat?


Snapchat was THE hot network in 2015. The Ghost dominated younger demographics. Its clever use of video put it at the forefront of the live stream revolution.

At his Leading Social #AskGaryVeeDublin appearance, Gary Vaynerchuk lauded Snapchat for its ability to generate engagement. Vaynerchuk said he could create more engagement with a Snapchat post that was a multiple of his Twitter engagement even though his Twitter following was a multiple of his Snapchat followers.

The addition of Snapchat’s Discover feature has made the channel relevant for for news, trends, and entertainment from brands.

Have we reached ‘peak Ghost’?

MAU’s on Snapchat have grown to over 200 million; Tumblr, Google+, Pinterest and Instagram all grew by more in the period measured.

Snapchat’s backbone was the younger demographic… partly because ‘real adults’ were on other social networks and partly because the adoption of video before other channels.

The plateau in MAU growth may be down to the invasion of brands, marketers and their parents and because the other social networks have upped their video game.

The 2017 report will make for interesting reading.


The State of Social Marketing: Reports of Twitter’s demise have been greatly exaggerated.


Whether its their share price getting hammered or the constant comparison to Facebook’s success, Twitter has come in for a hard time of late.

But just like the reports of Mark Twain’s death… I believe the demise of Twitter has been greatly exaggerated.

“Twitter is a premiere social hub for news, entertainment, and conversation, 140 characters at a time. This year, Twitter changed its iOS classification from “social network” to “news app” to solidify that position. Twitter is the first place for many users to turn – often on their mobile devices – for up-to-the-second updates on current events, sports, and entertainment. Twitter’s success is largely due to mobile usage, and the global nature of its brand. Eighty-three percent (83%) of active Twitter users are on mobile, and 79% of accounts are outside the U.S.”

I don’t feel Twitter’s reclassification is raising the white flag in the social media battle for MAU’s. I think it reflects how users view and use the platform.

It is the go-to network for breaking news and ongoing developments. The ‘live tweeting’ phenomenon means Twitter very much owns ‘the now’ in social media.

Even though other networks like Google+, Tumblr and Instagram have overtaken Twitter in MAU’s it still is incredibly relevant tool for marketing. Based on the numbers below, maybe the most relevant.

Twitter is the only social network that all Interbrand 100 companies are active on.


twitter for brands


Twitter have been improving functionality to keep up with the times; for example Periscope is becoming more integrated, GIF’s were added and there are now a few ways to hack the 140 character limit.

Email has been eulogised on more than one occasion. You can write off Twitter at your peril.


Show the good folks at Simply Measured some ♥love♥ and download the full report
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Simply Measured The State of Social Marketing 2016 Report


What did you think?



Have you read the report? Did anything surprise you? Drop a comment below and let me know what you think.

It’d be great to  connect on social media if you like… I’m probably on Twitter the most @GusRyan100

Thanks for reading.