Uncovering the Top Trends of 2016

For our analysis we looked back on the year’s most significant online conversations across four categories: Auto, Tech, Entertainment, and Sports. While political trends were some of the most talked about overall, we chose to focus on several other popular categories.
Here are a few insights we gathered from each industry:
Auto Enthusiasts talked most about the emergence of self-driving, autonomous auto technology. Sentiment around auto trends tends to be a mix of negative and positive, the negative typically driven by recall news. There were many technological advances made within the auto industry in 2016. Unlike past years, we saw that most of our top five trends had positive sentiment and were related to technology. When auto and technology are discussed together, the demographics for those who talk about auto shifts dramatically.
Millennial women lead the way in online conversation about entertainment. Trends about women in the media generate the most conversation volume, especially trends surrounding TV shows and reality TV star, Kim Kardashian. Top entertainment trends were more likely to be focused on negative or controversial news stories, typically driven by people taking to the internet to voice their opinions about celebrities.
Millennial men lead the online sports conversation. The conversation and trends tend to be very positive. Sports Enthusiasts talked most about Basketball and NBA related trends, which were some of our top stories of the year. We attribute this to Basketball season being one of the longest sports seasons and therefore generating the most conversation. While the Super Bowl resulted in the most volume when compared to other sports finals, the top trend was entertainment related. This year one of the biggest sports events was the Olympics, which drew online engagement from a different demographic than other sports.
Connected products, like Alexa, Fitbit, and Google Home dominated online conversation in a very positive manner. The top two trends of the year were the Pokémon Go effect and the rise of connected home appliances. The demographics for both of these trends skewed more towards a gender neutral, millennial audience. The rise of Pokémon Go also correlated with an increase in trends around virtual and augmented reality products and software.
To see the top 5 trends for each category, along with sentiment, volume, age demographics, and gender distribution download our complete Top Trends Analysis.