Platform updates are fast and frequent, so it’s hard to keep track. In fact, Savvyaps suggests successful apps release 1-4 updates per month! This means noticeable changes to app UI’s, navigation and algorithms. A number of changes can be confusing, in what was a familiar setting. Therefore, we’ll get up to speed, rounding up the latest, noteworthy feature updates whilst highlighting their impact.
Facebook & Instagram
Facebook’s dating service finally arrives in the US, after international testing. It’s said to launch here in the UK early next year. We can assume access to new features. Including added Instagram integration, linking accounts to their profiles, letting users add followers to a ‘Secret Crush’ list. On the other hand, FB updates its News section, highlighting verified accounts to avoid fake stories. In addition, FB’s ad listing got a little easier. We can now boost Marketplace ads, similar to regular ads to show content to more users in the area. Furthermore, Instagram emphasise ‘Saves’ as the new quality metric. In a bid to overhaul ‘Likes’ as the primary metric. We will see Saves become the new indicator of trending content.
We’ve all noticed Twitter’s big redesign. The July overhaul is well received! An upgraded experience that simplifies navigation. However, TW’s hit with some controversy recently after launching their ‘Hide Replies’ feature. Whilst testing commences in the US and Japan, it allows users to hide unworthy replies to their tweets. Although, the reply hides behind an extra click, not a perma-delete.
LinkedIn launches ‘Skills Assessments’, tests that let users develop their professional credibility via the platform. A significant milestone, giving users the tools needed to improve their recruitment and selection process. These short, multiple-choice questions verify users’ knowledge in key areas. A successful global launch proves the feature quite popular.
Here we’ve rounded up the latest platform updates, touching on noteworthy features whilst highlighting their impact. We’ll be back again with the latest rollouts once they drop, so that’s all for now.
Stay tuned for #MomentousMondays, catch the latest platform news and feature updates right here with Momentum Social.
In a similar style to platform rival Snapchat, Instagram has launched QR Scannable Nametags (similar to Snapcodes) worldwide on IOS and Android. In addition, they’re testing School Communities in universities throughout the U.S. So let’s take a look at these two huge features and discuss what’s in store!
Scannable Nametags; what’s new?
When the feed and stories go a little dry, or followers start to dwindle, app usage reduces. Therefore Instagram combat this by rolling out two features, designed to connect and diversify peoples graph. You’re now able to add friends by scanning their name tags, with the ability to customise your own with colours, emojis and of course, selfies. Customisation is accessible via the three-line menu on your profile. Scanning is possible by tapping and holding codes through the Stories camera. Alternatively, follow instantly through the ‘Scan Name tag’ button on your nametag. It can be put on websites, other social platforms or even through SMS and app-messengers. We can see brands using this rather effectively, promoting their tags on ads online.
School Communities; in testing
Tryouts commence in universities across the U.S. The feature lets people join their universities network and add a line to their profile listing school credentials, class year, major, sports affiliations and societies. They’ll then be added to a directory of all school students who can directly follow or message each other. This is a positive step from Instagram, aiming to improve connectivity and communication. A small negative to note is the verification process. The feature relies on the info users publicly provide to determine if they belong to a school community, rather than official credentials. However, users can report suspicious accounts or misuse of the feature in the three-dot menu option. Also, rather than actively signing up, users will get a notification prompting to join the network, which is slightly easier.
The launch marks the first under new leader Adam Mosseri. The features improve connectivity, whilst Instagram look to expand its social graphs and user engagement, driving growth and monetisation for the platform.
Stay tuned for more app & feature updates. Any questions? Click here and get in touch with the Momentum Social team!
Facebook developments came flooding in last week. They added new A.I. to the Marketplace, improving price suggestions, categorisations and visual search. Additionally, they launched Premieres, live video polls and Top Fans. We delve into the tech giants’ latest developments, discussing news that’s newsworthy. Let’s get into it!
Celebrating its second anniversary, Facebook updated the Marketplace with A.I. features. Adding price range suggestions and auto-categorisation, which makes selling items easier. In addition, testing camera features; using A.I. to make product recommendations. The ‘autosuggest’ feature allows item categorisation based on the photo/description, with a suggested price range for sellers to pick. Moreover, veering from A.I. they note the new buyer and seller ratings, letting people rate and leave feedback. Also, ads can now be shared to users profiles.
It’s worth noting Facebook have additionally hinted at turning the Marketplace into a discovery tool. This works through ‘visual search’ by using a smartphone camera. Just snap the product for the Marketplace to then cross search similar images/ads for sale. Pretty cool, huh?
New features launched
Following suit of rivals Twitch and YouTube, Facebook launch Premieres, a new interactive video format. It allows creators to pre-record videos; launching them during a selected viewing window as more of a live event… Minus the live bit. Creating a Premiere involves the same video posting tools, including monetisation tools for ads/branded content. Premieres is a way to gain the thrill linked with a live event; boosting engagement. However, creators can edit and fine-tune their content to a more desirable outcome.
Delaying the launch of pre-recorded video content boosts community hype for a live viewing event. This leads to improved viewership and engagement, benefiting creators, platforms and advertisers alike. They’re also releasing interactive video polls to more pages and making the Top Fans feature available to all Facebook Pages globally. The Top Fans feature highlights the creator’s most loyal fans, showing a badge next to their name, similar to the Twitch feature. The badge can be earned through being active, watching videos, reacting, commenting and sharing; displaying loyalty.
Video is becoming increasingly important to Facebook as they endeavour to match the services of Twitch and YouTube. Facebook’s Gaming, Watch and now Premieres highlights just how far they’ve come in just a few months.
Stay ahead of the curve, tune into #MomentousMondays for more platform & feature updates. Get in touch, contact the Momentum Social team to learn more.
LinkedIn step into the business of A.I. They’re in the process of launching ‘Talent Insights’. The app’s globally renowned for helping professionals maintain a profile. Specifically for networking, recruitment, marketing and sharing professional ideas. In fact, the service has an active 575M users, with 20M firms and 15M active job listings. So, let’s discuss how the service is evolving.
Talent Insights; what you should know
Announced last year, but only launching last week. The endeavour is the first of many growth projects. Branching into enterprise analytics will help users make better, more informed decisions. Coupled with Microsoft’s ownership of the platform, the feature aims to be more of an IT productivity tool. With that in mind, Microsoft’s input means seamless integrations with their software. These include a résumé building assistant in Word, Outlook links, as well as adding more CRM tools to improve sales navigation. Also included is a way for users to plan commutes to potential job interviews/firms.
How it works
In the year between announcement and launch, Talent Insights has been tested in over 100 HR/Marketing departments. There are two main parts to the feature, the ‘Talent Pool’ and ‘Company Report’. The Talent pool lets firms search the LinkedIn database, matching ideal candidates to job/business requirements. In addition, it’ll allow them to figure out their location and business connections, as well as common skills and where they’re moving. The Company Report provides comparative analytics, letting firms compare data in areas such as relative education levels and schools of the respective workforces. Skills people have or don’t have can be highlighted.
LinkedIn are making headway in improving their service through targeted people placement and association. Reporting provides more accurate and advanced business analytics. Could Microsoft be targeting the younger, more ambitiously-minded market leaving Facebook and Instagram behind for brighter futures?
Stay tuned for the latest feature updates and platform news. You can contact the Momentum Social team for more information!
Instagram hints at new prototype features to fight ‘overhashing’. In addition, they’ve reacted to ‘regramming’ rumours. Additionally, Instagram’s Stories launch in-app shopping globally, whilst IGTV causes concern over its vetting processes; regarding sexual content. We delve into Instagram’s latest developments, discussing news that’s newsworthy!
Instagram’s testing prototype features: Geofenced Sharing, Quiz stickers and Stories Highlight stickers. Most importantly a separate interface for adding hashtags to posts, which aims to end the tagging madness; where users feel pressured to fill captions with jumbled tags to score extra views/ followers. Feature updates include:
Hashtag selector – In progress, offers an ‘Add Hashtags’ option under the caption composer. This’ll improve search results and reduce post ambiguity with better, less invasive tags.
Geofenced posts – Helping social media managers and pro creators reach their target market. A ‘Choose Locations’ option, with geographic visibility and a way to tailor posts for the targeted global audience.
Quiz stickers – Lets users give Q&A’s in their stories. An attempt to make stories more interactive, working similar to the new Poll and Question stickers.
Stories Highlight stickers – In testing, lets users turn other peoples stories highlights into stickers to overlay on their own story.
Instagram ended the ‘regramming’ rumours, where users can instantly repost someone else’s post to followers, much like a retweet. The ‘regram’ isn’t happening! The reasoning is that it would centrally shift how Instagram works, changing the norms of how and what to post. Additionally, it could cause trust and platform perspective issues.
Instagram Stories; in-app shopping
Instagram improves its in-app purchases, letting users seamlessly shop via its Stories service; which recently rolled out globally. Additionally, the Explore section features a personalised ‘shopping channel’, tuned to users tastes and interests. Moreover, Marks & Spencer will be one of the first brands to trial the new feature.
IGTV; sexual content
IGTV showed child abuse content; footage of a mutilated penis. The long-form video service that launched in June is now under scrutiny over its vetting process. IGTV’s algorithm’s accused of cycling sexual content; the videos are now removed. However, the damage is done as failing to quickly remove the video breached their own guidelines. Therefore in response, proactive measures are taken to uphold their zero tolerance policy on sexual content. Although, the sheer amount of content posted on IGTV makes it hard to police.
It seems Instagram are making headway to better their services as a whole. However, effectively policing content is of small concern.
Stay ahead of the curve, tune in for #MomentousMondays for more app updates. Have a query or need more info? Contact the Momentum Social team!
Last year Facebook (Fb) launched ‘Watch’ to rival YouTube and is exclusively available to U.S users. However, dubbed as the ‘home of original video content’, Watch will now be available to users worldwide, yippee!
Watch launched exclusively in the U.S last year and achieves over 50 mil monthly viewers, with at least 1 min viewing time. It features as an extra tab on your Facebook app, highlighting your watch list and pages you follow. Therefore, the content you see as ‘Top Videos For You’ depends on the videos you like and engage with the most.
Watch’s features expand to include ‘Watch Parties’, a channel allowing Facebook groups to host and engage videos together. All group members can watch and react to videos live! Just create the party and post the content, similarly to posting a status. Watch will also offer tools for discovery, allowing you to save videos for later viewing, in addition to customisable video feeds.
International availability comes with the introduction of Ad breaks to more publishers. These involve mid-roll or pre-roll ads and images under the video. Publishers can insert the ads themselves. Alternatively, they can publish through Facebook’s automated insertion feature. Their decision to include ad breaks stems from over 70% of mid-roll ads being viewed to completion.
Ad breaks are available to more publishers, however certain criteria must be met to determine eligibility. Publishers must conform to Facebook’s ‘Monetisation Eligibility Standards‘; creators must publish 3 min+ videos, generating over 30k 1 min views across 2 months. They must have 10k+ Fb followers in a supported country, such as the U.S., UK, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand. By the end of September, this will expand across Europe and SE Asia.
Programming content is now becoming easier with the introduction of ‘Creator Studio’. Therefore business pages on Facebook can more easily manage their content library. This is due to the ability to cross check the library and view post details and insights. Managing interactions across messages and comments is now easier, with the introduction of a new metric showing audience retention. YouTube launched ‘YouTube Studio’ earlier this year, offering similar analytics to Facebook’s recent endeavour.
With the worldwide introduction of ‘Watch’ and the recent developments in Fb.gg (Facebook Gaming), it seems Facebook is well underway in rivalling the services of competitor YouTube.
Stay tuned for app and feature updates. Want to learn more? Contact the Momentum Social team!
Twitter (Tw) has made some major moves recently. Cross-posting tweets from Tw to Facebook (Fb) caused a bit of a stir, whilst new policies and certification are introduced. Additionally, Tw hints at two new features; presence and threading, aimed at improving platform use and conversation. Therefore, we take a look at their latest updates, rounding up news that’s newsworthy.
Tweeting via Fb is a great way to continue discussion’s and target a wider audience. It improves overall engagement and social chatter. Tw deleted their app from Fb after they stopped cross-posting earlier this month. This is a result of Fb’s recent API change, stopping third-party apps publishing posts to Fb as the logged-in user. Twitter users are unhappy as their cross-post tweets, published as Fb updates were completely removed.
However since the initial outrage, Fb restored the removed cross-posts, although cross-posting will remain as an unsupported feature. This comes as hard news to those that rely on it to maintain their Fb presence. Sources say Twitter didn’t fully consider the consequences of deleting the app, so the error lies on their side. All impacted users should now be able to see their restored cross-posts.
Twitter policy and certification
Tw announce new policies on political advertising, aimed at improving transparency. Political ad guidelines will combat election interference and false information on social media. The policy surrounds ‘issue ads’, comprised of two categories: Ads referring to an election or elective candidates and ads advocating national legislative issues. Furthermore, the policy will come into effect in the US as of September 30th. Advertisers will need certification, verifying their identity and location in the US. In addition, the Tw timeline and Ads Transparency Centre will highlight issue ads, allowing users to learn more about the ads.
New features; presence and threading
Tw look to introduce new features regarding whose online and more accessible conversation threads. Currently in the testing stage, the ‘Presence’ feature will allow for easier engagement with people currently online. The ‘Threading’ feature will allow conversations to be followed easier; an upgrade from the current ’embed and click-through’ method. Don’t worry, it seems there will be a way to hide ‘online status’ to avoid those awkward DM’s.
Given Tw’s recent activity, the platform looks to be making positive moves to improve its performance, image and user satisfaction.
For more news that’s newsworthy, tune in for #MomentousMondays. Have a query? Why not contact the Momentum Social team!
Facebook and Instagram announced an ‘Activity Dashboard’. It helps users properly manage their time spent on Social Media. The dashboard will include daily reminders, notification limits and a time tracker. We take a look at these new features and see what the apps have in store.
Why time tracking is being introduced
Ahh time management, a myth amongst the ordinary; a seemingly easier concept for those nailing the whole adult thing. However for us mere mortals, time management can be rough. Falling into the vicious cycle that is procrastination can be common practice. Gone are the days of overdue submissions and endless scrolling into the abyss. We now graciously welcome the new dashboard feature that lets us know exactly how much time we’ve wasted; sorry, spent on the app. Furthermore, sources suggest the new features will be added as both Facebook and Instagram are criticised; for intervening in user productivity and quality of life. Yes Im thinking it too, income the productivity police. Ultimately, the goal is to encourage healthy engagement and reduce passive scrolling.
The time tracking feature; what’s new
Facebook launches ‘Your Time on Facebook’, whilst Instagram are going with ‘Your Activity’. Both features include tools letting you to manage your daily usage. In addition, tools include the ability to mute push notifications; basically a way of grounding yourself to focus up. Additionally, sources suggest the features will be available world wide within the next couple of weeks. A blessing from the procrastination Gods, surely? The three vertical lines at the bottom of your screen could be the difference between a giggle or getting fired. Simply tap in the bottom right and Facebook will give you your stats. Yay!
Instagram’s ‘Your Activity’ will be available in your settings/gear icon. Although thats not all the features do… Both apps will present you with a fancy bar graph, showing you exactly how much time you’ve spent in the week. In addition, theres an option to chose how much time you’re willing to spend in the next. Have they just invented organised procrastination? You’ll get reminders telling you how badly you messed up, as well as giving you an option to pass responsibility to the app so you behave… Sorry, mum.
Whether you see the difference or not. Personalised metrics sound cool, you get to see exactly when and why you’re going wrong; with a helping hand to set you on the straight and narrow. But will users really take notice?