A lot has gone down since our last social media update. So much, in fact, that we’re breaking out the bullet points to list it all. So take a deep breath and prepare to dive into the biggest changes and how they’ll impact marketers.
The friendly giant had a rough couple of weeks lately. For starters, the trending news algorithm has been really struggling without human oversight and it’s amplifying fake news stories. Also, the Facebook Marketplace launch was a short-lived fail that didn’t work out, but brands and pages couldn’t use it anyway. But Facebook also released some new features and apps that could have a lot more potential, especially for marketers and advertisers.
- The recently-launched Campaign Planner tool for Facebook and Instagram serves as “a standalone tool for media planners to draft, compare and share media plans using reach and frequency buying across Facebook and Instagram.” Currently it’s only available to those with Business Manager accounts, so it’ll be interesting to see how many advertisers adopt it within the next few months.
- A standalone “Events from Facebook” app offers a space where users can build social calendars based on events their friends are attending and what’s taking place around their town. Users can also browse events and see recommendations based on time, location and their interests. If you’re marketing events, here’s another platform where users can discover and express interest in them.
- In the wake of the video metrics inflate-gate, Facebook said it would stop measuring 3-second views. But the new metrics for measuring average watch time are somewhat…confusing. For a broader look at how the top social platforms measure video, check out this article by AdWeek.
Messenger received lots of updates lately, an indication that Facebook believes the future of social media lies in private messaging and businesses chatting directly with customers. Speaking of which, how are your customer service chatbots coming along?
- With Shopify + Messenger, customers can browse and buy products in Messenger while they chat with brands, making it one step easier to turn “conversations into sales.” The Messenger sales channel is free for all Shopify merchants, and you can add it here.
- Messenger Lite is the no-frills alternative for Messenger users who want the core features but struggle with slower internet speeds (or older Android phones). Lite is 95 percent smaller than the OG Messenger, but doesn’t allow users to place outgoing calls.
- And finally, we have a new option to save links and content from Messenger. Now we can finally pin all those Tasty recipe videos we’ve been sending each other!
Despite ongoing chatter about a buyout, it looks like no one wants to own Twitter.
- Twitter is toying with the idea of replacing Moments with an Explore tab to help users discover new content by highlighting trending topics and tweets and suggesting new users to follow. Moments had a moment recently when we all gained the ability to create them, but it looks as though Twitter isn’t married to the idea.
- Users can add a Periscope display option to their profiles, making it easier for followers to watch their live videos.
- Improvements to web click metrics split Twitter’s “Website Click or Conversions” ad objective into two categories: Website Visits (driving traffic) and Website Conversions, which offers more advanced targeting in order to reach users more likely to act.
The professional platform is amping up its efforts to be as big as Facebook and Twitter, even if it’s taking a little while to catch up to their basic features and advertising capabilities.
- Just like Facebook and Twitter, LinkedIn’s mobile app uses an algorithm to determine what content is served to users’ feeds, and they’ve been making tweaks that will allow users to further customize that feed. Now, when you scroll through your mobile feed on LinkedIn, you can tap the three dots to the right of any update to see your options “Hide this update”, “Unfollow this user” and a new tool called “Improve my feed,” which lets you indicate which topics interest you. In the words of Social Media Today, “Expect to see more data utilization and refinement from the platform in future.” LinkedIn also made improvements to the app’s search function and added a new option to let userssave linksfor later, which stores these bookmarks under the “Me” tab.
- The new Open Candidates option on the Recruiter platform gives users a private way to notify recruiters that they want to find work without tipping off their boss.
- On the flip side, companies with low brand awareness who want to hire great talent can get a visibility boost with Career Pages. LinkedIn believes that how companies present their employer brand can impact how job seekers engage with them, and Career Pages are designed to give visitors more insight while providing the employer with better data on their results.
We’re counting down the days as the social platform, currently valued at $25 billion, prepares to go public in (probably) March. The last update gave us Spectacles, but these recent changes kinda shake up the basis of what made Snapchat appealing to brands in the first place.
- Snapchat removed the auto-advance feature that rolled users into the next set of Stories in their feed. Instead, users have the power to curate their own playlists of Stories they want to follow, like a DVR. The ads that Snapchat previously played between the auto-played Stories are now played within the user-generated Story Playlist. Snapchat also pushed brands to the bottom of the Stories page, which means they’ll probably see a decrease in impressions. The jury’s still out on whether this move to demote brands is a step back for Snapchat’s advertising.
- Also, advertising on Snapchat is awfully expensive for small businesses.
The self-proclaimed “digital catalog of ideas” has been busy expanding its features, ad offerings and membership base.
- Pinterest recently introduced enhanced ad targeting for campaigns, which enables advertisers to retarget “five specific actions: clicks, comments, saves, likes and closeups.”
- Pinterest reached its 150 million user milestone, and is attracting more men than ever – about 40 percent of new sign-ups are men. Keep an eye on this platform as it keeps looking more and more promising 👀