Quick and Dirty Updates in the World of Social Media Marketing:
Facebook’s Creator App for Video Content
TL;DR: Facebook is currently offering a new app called “Facebook Creator,” which helps users create more visually appealing video that can be published to the live feed, stories, etc. Custom intros and outros are very professional for small biz folks.
Impact for Brands: For super scrappy SMBs, this app is a gold mine. The custom intro and outros alone are enough to make an amateur Etsy seller weep. Let’s face it, video is HARD when you don’t have a budget (or time… or talent). But even for the bigger wigs, this is the only way to get a custom intro / outro for livestreaming (as far as I know). The app also boasts a singular funnel for all your messages and comments across both Insta and FB, but the Facebook Pages app already has that function (as does the desktop site now).
Read more: The story according to The Verge
Brands May Become Less “Static” on Google
TL;DR: Google is still trying to enter the social media fray, despite it’s lack of momentum with Google+ (which does have its merits). However, new “Google Posts” will allow brands to have current, engaging, interactive content available to search users… but will it work?
Impact to Brand: If there’s one update from November to take seriously, it is this one. If Google’s “Posts” fails, c’est la vie, but missing the boat here could cost you. Google is the Goliath of search, and still the #1 way most brands are found by consumers. Imagine: you’re searching for a “fun” place to eat and you see your top two options after performing a Google search – 1) a typical link with static information and 2) a link that includes a dinner special posted that day alongside a GIF of the owner doing the funky chicken. What could be more fun? My far-fetched ideas of fun aside – if Google can get this right, brands are wise to use it for differentiation and possibly improved ranking.
Read More: The Story According to AdWeek
Facebook’s Potential “Explore” Tab
TL;DR: The Explore Feed, tested on both mobile and desktop, is an attempt by Facebook to separate content from pages users follow from those they do not (i.e. something a friend liked or commented on) – similar to Insta’s Explore feature. The concern is that brands won’t be as easily discovered by new customers who aren’t already following them because they’ll have to go to this other tab, away from the primary newsfeed – a new behavior that users will either adopt or… won’t.
Impact to Brands: If this takes off, marketers will need to get creative to reach target audiences. But fear not, we will figure it out. Remember when Facebook announced that reach was below 20% of a page’s following, and we thought the world as we knew it would end? Well, reach is now 0-1% and if anything, social media marketing is more effective than it’s ever been.
If changes like this keep you up at night, that’s a good thing – you care about making it work. If you’re resentful and bitter toward Facebook for doing things like this – that’s immature. I’ll share my new favorite marketing mantra and the words of my favorite podcasters, Scott and Allison of Unpodcast:
“When you make a living on borrowed land, you have to pay the rent.”
Facebook and others make changes like these to keep the end users happy – not necessarily their advertisers. That is what we as advertisers want. We do not want people abandoning Facebook – you’re not buying ads on MySpace, are you?
One other note: The Explore Feed was test launched in late October, but it’s such controversial news I wanted to talk about it. I have not heard much since that initial testing and it doesn’t appear on my account.
Read More: the story according to Jon Loomer
Twitter Doubles Your Opportunity to Shout into an Echo Chamber!
TL;DR: The hate-filled hellscape that is Twitter announced it has doubled it’s character limit for tweets (from 140 to 280) in early November 2017, nearly obliterating it’s initial value proposition.
Impact to Brands: As Twitter tries more and more counterproductive tactics such as this to slow its apparent hemorrhaging (and become more like Facebook), marketers should feel perfectly comfortable Tweeting less or stopping altogether and focusing on other opportunities – but don’t put too much stock in Snapchat, either. If you do find that Twitter works for you, I would test tweeting more characters and see if it helps or hurts your engagement or CRO.
Read more: The story according to Recode
No more secret FB ads (for Canada)
TL;DR: Facebook’s “view ads” icon is currently only available on business pages in Canada, but I suspect it’s is a response to the proliferation of fake news ads in the US during the 2016 election.
Impact to Brands: none – as long as you’re not promoting ads you wouldn’t want your customers to see, I wouldn’t worry about this. Most FB users don’t often visit the actual business pages of brands they follow anyway, and even fewer will see this new feature. I see this only being problematic for brands who use unethical (or at least unsavory) positioning and messaging.
Read more: The story according to Facebook
New (Supposed) Yelp-Killing App from Facebook
TL;DR: If Facebook’s new event / review app, “Facebook Local,” integrates seamlessly with its existing app, this could be the very early beginning of the end to Yelp and/or Foursquare…very early beginning, if anything at all. The question is will end users download a second Facebook app?
Impact to Brands: Yelp is the frontrunner among review apps that have successfully crossed channels. For example, when you pull up a business on Apple Maps, you’ll likely see its Yelp rating. With that in mind, I would not advocate pulling away resources your brand has dedicated to Yelp or Foursquare because they’ll be “killed” by this new FB app (despite what many sources are saying). The success of “Facebook Local” will rely on it’s ability to integrate with already viable (and native) event and review features. Thus, I’m hesitant to say users will download this extra app and use it regularly, since they can review businesses and check out events right there in the regular FB app. What’s more, who needs another app that does what existing ones already do (even if it’s better)? Yelp and Foursquare are already a regular part of some people’s mobile habits. Nonetheless, Facebook is part of nearly everyone’s mobile habits. So, if anyone can do it- I would bet my money on Facebook. “Facebook Local” does look promising and has many features that oustshine Yelp and Foursquare – the question is will people use it? My advice: check out how your brand looks on there and keep an eye on it regularly, but don’t expect Yelp and Foursquare to tank just yet.
Read more: The Story According to AdWeek
Other Social Media News to Check Out:
- FINALLY! Instagram Tests Regram Button (Business Insider)
- The Silent Rise of LinkedIn (Buffer)
- An Algorithm for Snapchat? (Mashable)
- Amazon Expands Influencer Program (Tubefilter)
- Chinese Startup to buy Musical.ly for $1 billion (Variety)
- Facebook Launches Collaborative Stories (TechCrunch)
- Pinterest Tries to Make QR Codes Happen (AdWeek)
- Instagram Tests Hashtag Following (Mashable)
- FB Tests Newsfeed 360 VR (engadget)
- Twitter Polices Offline Behavior – or at least tries (Recode)