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Digital Marketing

The Social Slice: August Innovations

In the world of social media, nothing stays the same for very long. From emerging trends to new technologies and platform innovations, it can be hard to keep up with all of the latest information.

But we are here to solve that! In collaboration with Social Circle, we are starting a series of monthly blogs to make sure that your digital strategy is positioning your business at the forefront of the digital industry!

Here are our top 10 new innovations that happened during August:

1. The chat feature is being removed from Facebook groups.

Do you use Facebook Groups as a part of your social media strategy? You may have noticed that the chat feature has recently been removed from these pages and that you are no longer able to initiate group chats via Groups. 

It is suspected that the decision to remove this feature has been in an effort to limit spammers and those that used the feature as a way to “chat blast” group members with a particular sales message.

Facebook removed this feature on August 22nd. However, this does not affect regular Messenger Group Chats with friends via personal accounts.

2. Facebook is reportedly developing a new messaging app called ‘Threads’

A new stand-alone app is being developed by Facebook which is designed to help people communicate with their close friends. 

Unlike other apps, ‘Threads’ will allow users to share more information, more often, with their closet friends. The app is being designed to act as a companion to Instagram and is intended to be used alongside your Instagram ‘close friends’ list, allowing you to share intimate details such as location, speed and battery life. 

3. The direct message functionality is being removed from YouTube

After initially rolling out direct messaging in August 2017, Youtube will be removing this function from September 18 to shift their focus towards creating public conversations instead.

Originally designed as a way for users to share videos directly within its mobile app, users will now have to share videos by clicking the option “share” on a video and then clicking on the “social network icon” to choose which platform you want to share a video on.

4. Facebook introduces a  ‘clear history’ update.

As a way to increase transparency on their platform and give users more control over their data, Facebook is introducing a new ‘Clear History’ tool which will allow you to see the off-Facebook browsing data that the site has stored for you, and will allow you to clear this Facebook history.

Once this tool is available you’ll be able to view the sites and apps that you’ve interacted with, block them from sending the tracking data they collect on you to Facebook, and dissociate all of your off-Facebook browsing data from your profile. 

This doesn’t mean that Facebook will remove your history from its servers, just that your data will be unidentifiable and not associated with you.

5. Facebook update their ads to allow for placements in search results and back-to-back Instagram stories.

Facebook has been updating its ad capabilities and has recently introduced two new significant changes for social media advertisers. 

The first big change is that you are now able to place ads in Facebook’s search results when setting up ad campaigns. Businesses that want to select this placement will not be able to do so without also placing ads in the newsfeed. Similar to newsfeed ads, search ads will be clearly labelled with a sponsored tag, and can appear as either a static image or in a carousel format. 

The second change comes from Instagram, as it is reported that the platform is currently experimenting with running back-to-back Story ads for advertisers. Although only a small number of users are currently being tested, it indicated that Instagram is making way for more ads in Stories and that marketers should take full advantage of this increased ad inventory. 

6. Instagram is testing a built-in AR background

As Instagram Stories continue to grow in popularity, the platform is looking to increase activity on this feature and are introducing something called “background” which will give users the ability to choose an image from their camera roll and use this as the background for their Stories camera.

Following this development, Facebook has also introduced Spark AR, a new tool which gives anyone the ability to create AR experiences that they can then share on their Stories.

7. Instagram is working on a Stories ‘About You’ section

Instagram is looking to boost engagement among users around stories with the introduction of a new ‘Stories About You’ activity section. This new feature will show users when they are @mentioned or tagged by another Story creator, and simply means that Story notifications will be separate from other notifications on the app.

8. Snapchat introduces an instant create tool 

Snapchat has announced ‘Instant Create’ which will allow advertisers to easily create ads on the platform via Snapchat Ads Manager. All you have to do is sign up for an ad account, select an objective, enter the business website and then choose the targeting for the campaign.

The platform is also making it easier for smaller advertisers to create their assets, the instant create tool pulls images from the destination URL and the snap text can be overlaid on top. 

9. LinkedIn is expanding its success hub for marketers

LinkedIn has recently announced a new Insights and Research feature which will be a new centralised hub to help marketers enhance their paid social advertising strategies with LinkedIn insights.

This new hub will help marketers enhance their social media marketing strategies with insights such as new data on their audiences, industries and the advertising landscape on LinkedIn.

10. Instagram scheduling is now available using Creator Studio 

Marketers and Facebook admins are now able to now schedule Instagram feed posts and IGTV videos from their desktop using the Facebook business manager Creator Studio

This new feature gives you the options to add image ad video posts (not multiple images), captions, location tagging and hashtags. You can’t yet tag people or products in the posts, and while you can publish or schedule you can not yet not save posts as drafts.

Check out our latest YouTube video to find out more about the key innovations highlighted above, and let us know what you think! Will you be using any of these new social features within your online marketing?

Chris Thomas

Author

Chris Thomas

CEO & Founder

Chris has been at the forefront of eCommerce and a pioneer of online retailing since the early 00s. A 5-time Drapers Award winner, Chris has extensive experience in developing fashion brands online.

Chris founded Cake in 2016. Based in Birmingham, with offices nationwide, Cake specialises in helping fashion brands understand their market online and then helps to develop appropriate strategical direction to achieve their plan, all backed by his 20 years of operating in the retail market.