A History of Social Media (February 2017)

The last time we wrote an article like this was 2 months ago.

Since that time, this happened:

·         Facebook videos won’t automatically go to mute

·         Twitter users grew, but net loss almost doubled

·         Pinterest introduced a visual Shazam

·         Views on Facebook streams plummeted 94%

·         Carousel and Photo Albums were announced on Instagram

·         Influencers must now reveal sponsors

It’s hard to keep up with the fast flowing rapids of social media sometimes, so we are here to help.

Pump up the volume

With some rates reporting that 80% of videos played on Facebook are viewed with no sound, the social network has turned off the mute button.

No more will you be scrolling the News Feed to the sweet sound of silence, but instead volume will fade in and out as you go through the news of the day.

This will bring great joy to brands and advertisers on the platform (we’re pretty stoked about it) who will now have more ways to engage users within the crucial 3 second mark.

That being said, the mute button did make for some creative content, like this one from Hotels.com.

Has Twitter been Trumped?

It seems like not a day goes by where we don’t read a headline about the POTUS’ Twitter account, yet the channel still fails to capitalise their offering.

Despite adding 2.6 million active monthly users, the network’s net loss grew from $90 million to $167 million Year-on-Year.

This is not good news for the platform that has been struggling in recent times amid rumours of a stagnating user base and a business model that primarily runs on ads.

In the hope to reach profitability by 2017, Twitter has embarked on a mission to turn the business around and curb the level of abuse that takes place on the platform (a key deterrent of new users) through a host of new features – including ‘Safe Search’, a ‘Mute’ button and a 12-hour lock out feature.

It will be interesting to see how it all plays out for the old bird.

Now You See Me

Using new technologies, Pinterest has introduced a tool that “lets you use the camera in your Pinterest app to discover ideas inspired by objects you see out in the real world.”

Described as a Shazam for objects in the real world, ‘Lens’ brings a new dynamic to the platform in the hope to drive greater fan growth and brand interest.

The app is still in beta form, but with the right execution it will be a powerful advantage for the network.

Not only will it be able to record a host of juicy data (like what sorts of objects are being snapped the most), but it integrates the platform into the everyday and allows the user to instantly snap an outfit they love and hope to buy, creating a new channel to purchase for businesses.

Facebook may not actually be the video platform of choice

Here’s an update that most certainly would have caused some collar-pulling over at the Facebook offices, a recent Nielsen report has claimed that video streaming numbers have dropped by up to 94% after being forced to re calibrate the way video views are measured.

In short, Nielsen were forced to recalculate how they count Facebook streams after the platform admitted to only counting a video view if it went over 3 seconds in length leading to a skew in the results.

Over July, August and September of 2016, Nielsen measured an average of 10.3 billion streams. This recorded streams only watched for 3 seconds or greater. After the Facebook update, and measure streams of all lengths, numbers have dropped to 560 million in October and November and 580 million in December 2016.

It will be interesting to see the Q1 results from Nielsen this year – stay tuned.

Instagram, Facebook, what’s the difference?

In more news from the Instagram-becoming-Facebook camp, Instagram has now launched a new feature that allows users to share up to 10 photos and videos in one post. The album posts appear just like normal single photos or video in the feed, but you’ll see blue dots at the bottom of these posts to let you know you can swipe to see more.

This update will greatly benefit brands using Instagram, by allowing several images of the same story to be shared in one concise post, such as steps of a recipe, different items for sale or being spared from picking only a single lead image. 

We may all now be saved from clogged feeds – particularly from those friends who love to share 100 snaps of their recent holiday.

This feature is already widely available in Australia and will continue to roll out globally over the coming weeks on iOS and Android.

Spruiking a product on your Insta? It’s time to fess up

Hoping to become a rich and famous Instagram influencer from posting gym/food/fashion shots and raking in the product endorsements? Think again. New guidance from the Australian Association of National Advertisers now mandates any paid product placements or advertorial across social media must be disclosed on post.

The guidance also covers native advertising and traditional media, including product placement and advertorial, with enforcement by the Advertising Standards Bureau to kick in 1 March.

Brands that fail to disclose when money has changed hands may be in breach of a new provision in the AANA Code of Ethics.

Sounds like it might be a wet blanket for all the teeth whitening and weight-loss tea brands out there. #Ad

Posted on February 1, 2017 .