The Weekly Social Media Marketing RoundUp- 17th October

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Facebook

#NEWS: Facebook Tests Ads in Facebook Groups

Though Facebook’s Groups primarily exist as a way for users to discuss, plan, and collaborate, spammers have long recognized the advertising opportunities the feature presents. You’d be hard-pressed to find a popular Group that isn’t plastered with posts advertising the latest fad to make 10 pounds “disappear overnight”, or an “amazing job opportunity” where you can make a thousand dollars a day from home. Now, Facebook is taking the advertising potential of Groups into its own hands.

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Facebook Releases New Data on Holiday Season Trends and Usage Patterns [Infographic]

tis-the-season-info

Christmas is now only 71 days away, so if you haven’t got your holiday marketing plan in place, it’s time to get moving.

To help map out when, exactly, you need to get active, Facebook has analyzed Facebook and Instagram usage data from the 2015 Holiday season (November 1 through January 1) to get an understanding of when the related conversation spikes, and at what points within the period you need to ensure you’re reaching your target consumers. And given Facebook sees a 26% increase in posts, photos and videos uploaded over the period – and more than a billion people use The Social Network every day – it’s a fair bet their data is a solid indicator of wider trends.

They’ve collected the full results of their study into a new, interactive infographic which you can view here, but there’s also a condensed version of their key findings in the infographic below.

There’s a heap of great insights here, worth noting in your marketing plan.

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Twitter

Twitter Moments: A Failure or a Another Demonstration of Unrealized Potential?

However you look at it, Twitter’s ‘Moments’ has failed to live up to expectation.

The highly touted addition – originally called ‘Project Lightning’ – was seen as a way for the platform to solve one of its core issues: the perception that Twitter is too difficult to understand for non-users, the people they most need to appeal to in order to boost their stalled user growth.

“This is a bold change, not evolutionary,” Kevin Weil – the then Twitter SVP of Product – told BuzzFeed ahead of Moments’ launch (Weil is now Head of Product at Instagram).

Twitter had bet big on Moments being a success, giving it prominent placement within the app and running their first ever TV ad to support it. But now, a year after its launch, it seems the that Twitter’s been forced to concede that the option isn’t going to deliver like they’d hoped.

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NEWS: Twitter Tests New Explore Page Possibly to Replace Moments

Twitter continues to make changes in what seems like an existential journey to define itself. The service confirmed that it has begun testing a new “Explore” page — a feature designed to promote content discovery on the platform.

Explore curates and highlights Twitter activity linked to trending events, topics, and search terms. The feature builds upon the existing “Moments” tab, so if Explore proves to be popular in testing, it could permanently replace Moments.

The addition of the Explore page falls in line with Twitter’s current push to brand itself as the “people’s news network” for live events and commentary. In the wake of the company’s growth stagnation and falling stock, the introduction of Explore appears to be part of a plan to make Twitter more appealing to potential buyers.

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Instagram

8 Tools to Help You Maximize Your Instagram Marketing Efforts

The recent explosion of Instagram has captured the attention of marketers everywhere – especially those keeping tabs on trends in visual storytelling and social media-based audience building.

As of June this year, the platform has over 500 million monthly active users, 300 million of which are logging on daily, making it more popular than Snapchat, Twitter, LinkedIn or Pinterest.

And Instagram’s looking to cash in on that interest, announcing new marketer tools like the ability to switch between accounts and providing new analytics options like view counts on videos. And those efforts are clearly paying off – latest reports suggest that there are now more than 500,000 businesses utilizing the paid reach options on the app.

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4 Ways To Incorporate Instagram Stories into Your Social Marketing Efforts

By now you’ve probably noticed the not-so-new feature at the top of your Instagram feed with the latest app update that’s generating quite a buzz. That new option is called Instagram Stories.

Undeniably similar to Snapchat Stories, this bold move calls on users to share even more visual content to Instagram’s already 95 million daily image uploads. And with this added feature comes incredible opportunities for marketers to leverage Instagram in new ways to promote their content, boost follower engagement, and create transparent experiences that further humanizes their brand.

But before sharing some ways you can use Instagram Stories in your social media marketing, we’ll explore exactly what Instagram Stories are and the function’s intended purpose.

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LinkedIn

5 Ways to Use LinkedIn to Get More Local Business

You see the way Fortune 500 companies are getting publicity and visibility on social platforms, but what about you? There’s a difference, right? I mean, your business is on Main Street, not on Wall Street.

It’s just as important to build credibility and trust when working locally – maybe even more important if you want to stay in business.

Here are five tips on how you can use LinkedIn to boost exposure for your local business.

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LinkedIn Adds Tools to Help Personalize Your Feed, Save Links for Later

After launching their re-vamped mobile app in December last year, LinkedIn has seen a major uptick in usage and adoption of the tool – in fact the majority of LinkedIn’s overall traffic now comes via mobile device. Among the key stats relating to mobile use, specifically, LinkedIn has reported:

  • A 30% lift in daily active users via mobile
  • A 40% lift in engaged feed sessions
  • A massive 240% growth in messages sent on the platform overall

Given this, it makes sense to see LinkedIn putting more emphasis on mobile with their latest tools and features. They recently unveiled their improved search functionality – including hashtags – via the app (coming to desktop soon) and announced the pending implementation of their “@inbot” automated scheduling system, which will enable users to quickly and easily manage their calendar on the go.

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General

4 Tips to Help Boost Your Social Media Engagement

Social is all about sharing and the aim of that sharing is to boost engagement.

Sure, it’s carried out differently on different platforms – on Facebook, for example, conversations are usually more drawn-out, while on Twitter, short answers are preferred. On Instagram, on the other hand, it’s a good practice to pose a question/CTA in the first line of the photo caption itself, as well as comment on the feeds/images of those you want to follow you back.

If you’re looking to generate more engagement with your social media content, here are some tips that can help stimulate audience response.

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How to Create a Social Media Style Guide for Your Business

Many people think that a writer’s best friend is the dictionary, but I respectfully disagree. The true holy grail is the style guide—and the same is true for anyone working in social media.

For new employees, a social media style guide offers the answer to almost any question imaginable. It also offers guidelines that can help speed up the on-boarding process, ensuring a smooth transition between team members. But it’s not only helpful for new hires. A thorough social media style guide can act as a cornerstone for your entire social media strategy—a foundational document that ensures there’s clarity and consistency in how your business uses social media.

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SnapChat

Snapchat’s Latest Update – A Step Back in Order to Move Forward?

Late last week, Snapchat announced two functional updates that both seem somewhat at odds with the app’s wider monetization strategy. And those changes come at a particularly strange time, with Snap Inc. reportedly on the brink of a $25 billion IPO. But despite this, and despite the slow introduction of new advertising tools and revenue generating options to boost the app’s bottom-line potential, Snapchat’s latest updates have the potential to actively reduce their revenue opportunities.

The first change relates to how content within Snapchat is displayed. Up until now, Snapchat has had their Discover content – paid channels from publishers – featured prominently along the top of the Stories screen.

Snapchat’s Latest Update – A Step Back in Order to Move Forward? | Social Media TodayThis gives Discover content increased exposure, boosting the chances of users clicking through – and that’s important given that some 43% of Snapchat’s revenue currently comes via Discover content and the majority of Discover clicks come from the Stories screen, as opposed to the separate Discover tab.

But despite this, Snapchat’s actually demoted Discover content – this is how Discover material is presented in the new and improved Stories screen.

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NEWS: Snapchat Removes Auto Advance Feature

Perhaps in an effort to take back the reins from its growing competition, Snapchat announced last Friday that it will be reversing previous changes to the app that have been unpopular with its users.

Auto Advance Out, Story Playlist In

The notorious Auto Advance feature, which automatically directed users to the next set of Snap stories on their chronological feed, will be removed. It will be replaced by the new Story Playlist feature, which allows users to select the Stories they would like to watch in a seamless playlist.

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Periscope

Periscope Releases New Tools to Enable Broadcast Quality Streams

Live-streaming is a core pillar of Twitter’s rejuvenation strategy, with the platform putting big bets on live TV deals and the appeal of an integrated Twitter/live event presentation to attract more users to the platform and re-build it as the place to go to stay in touch with “what’s happening right now”. That approach has been built on the back of the popularity of “second screening” – previous Twitter research has shown that TV-related discussion is one of the most popular uses of the app, with 85% of Twitter users who are active on the platform in prime-time indicating that they tweet about the TV content they’re watching.

Given this, and the advances in modern connectivity and networking, why not combine the two?

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Pinterest

Pinterest Reaches 150 Million Monthly Active Users

Last September, Pinterest reported that it had reached the milestone of 100 million monthly active users. And while, comparatively, that may not seem like much – Facebook has 1.71 billion MAU – as highlighted by Pew Research, Pinterest usage is actually increasing at a significantly higher rate than most other platforms.

Pinterest Reaches 150 Million Monthly Active Users | Social Media TodayWhile the bigger platforms get more hype, Pinterest has slowly, but surely, been establishing their place in the social sphere, with ambitions to be generating $2.8 billion in annual revenue by 2018. And today, Pinterest has reported its latest growth achievement, reaching 150 million active Pinners – a 50% expansion in audience from 12 months ago.

 

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Anurag Mehra

Anurag Mehra is a Social Media Expert & a Growth Hacker who believes learning never stops. His "Social Media Marketing RoundUp" series is featured in "10 Best Social Media Roundup Blogs of 2016".

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