The world of social media is constantly changing – and with so many platforms and algorithms out there, it’s hard to keep up. That’s why we provide our clients and followers with This Month in Social – where we highlight the biggest changes in social media and how we prepare to tackle them.
Pokémon GO seems to have absolutely dominated the attention of everyone who has ever held a Gameboy. What’s crazier, is that it’s encouraging all these people (21 million of them as of Monday, just 5 days after its launch, to be exact) to get outside and do the unthinkable, walk around their town. This means that there are approximately 21 million people wandering around catching Pokémon, and many of them likely, passing by your door.
What this means for businesses: If you haven’t already – try downloading the free Pokémon GO app – there’s a good chance your business may be a Pokémon Gym or PokéStop. And if so – prepare for the influx of potential customers. Local businesses are already capitalizing on their locations – including signage to lure in Pokémon trainers and of course, sharing these images across social media. Note: you unfortunately cannot apply to be a PokéStop or Pokémon Gym – these locations are pre-determined by the game’s developer. Update 7/14: Or is there a way?
— Rick King (@RickKing16) July 9, 2016
Confused? Snapchat itself has only been around about 5 years, but it’s their audience that seems to be aging quickly. The Wall Street Journal recently published a report, showing that 14% of smartphone users in the United States over the age of 35 are now active snappers. This is up considerably from just 2% three years prior. In addition, 38% of users age 25-34 have also hopped on the Snapchat train.
What this means for businesses: While the core audience for Snapchat is still in the 18-24 age range, it’s important to note and keep track of the demographic shift. Snapchat is one of the fastest growing platforms in the social realm as of late, outpacing Twitter in terms of daily users — 150 million to 110 million. With such a tremendous pool of users that seems to be becoming more and more diverse each day, business owners shouldn’t be so quick to discount advertising and participating on this evolving platform!
Open up your business’s Instagram settings and turn this bad boy on! The new comment moderation tool will block comments that contain words or phrases that have been repeatedly reported as “offensive.” Wave goodbye to all of the comments left by Trolls or Spam Accounts.
What this means for businesses: For businesses that are inexperienced with social media, they can relax knowing that they won’t have to deal with foul-mouthed and abusive comments. Instagram will be viewed by businesses as a more safe and legitimate place to advertise their goods and services.
Surprise – Facebook has changed its algorithm, again. The latest change will favor friend and family posts over business and brand content. Although Facebook’s main goal is to improve user experience, many small to medium businesses can expect to see a decline in their reach and engagement.
What this means for businesses: If your business is on Facebook, chances are you’ll start seeing a few negative changes in your analytics. So what can you do? Facebook is pushing ads more and more, so if you’re not already paying to play, you can benefit from starting now. And no, we don’t just mean boosting posts. You can also keep up your reach and engagement by sharing content on your personal Facebook page and asking others to do so as well (friends, employees, influencers – you name it). Also, don’t forget about the Facebook Live feature – an easy way to reach your fans all at once.
Tired of only being able to see a 30-second clip of a video on Twitter? Well, those days are now behind us. Twitter unveiled a recent update where you now have the ability to post 140-second videos and vines – we see you cracking a smile! And if you’re the type of person who can spend hours watching viral videos, you’ll be happy to hear about the all-new “suggested videos” feature that comes along with the update. Video marketers and trending video junkies rejoice!
What this means for businesses: with video still taking precedent over a variety of other content types, you’re missing the boat if you’re not creating videos for your audience. Now that Twitter has introduced longer videos, you have more room to unleash your creativity with a better chance of it showing up in your followers’ newsfeeds.
On July 11, 2016, Facebook began testing a new “video download” feature for a small percentage of users in India. With video consistently making its way into the Facebook newsfeed, and considering that more than 500 million people watch a video each day on Facebook, the social network strives to make this content available to everyone – including those users who have poor WiFi connections and the inability to stream video in the moment. Through this feature, users can sync videos to their devices so that they can be viewed offline directly within the Facebook app at a later date/time.
What this means for businesses: It’s like the saying “if a tree falls in the forest and nobody’s around to hear it, does it make a sound?” – if your video is published on Facebook but users don’t have the chance to see it, is it really there? Of course the answer is yes, but for users with poor connections, it’s much more likely that your video isn’t going to the get the attention and viewership you hoped for. Though Facebook is currently only testing this with a small group of users in markets where mobile data and connectivity are limited, this update works to ensure that your video does have the chance of being viewed, despite external circumstances.
Think of Twitter’s #Stickers update as a visual hashtag. Users can now upload a photo, customize it with emojis, props, and more, and once published – the stickers become searchable. Clicking on a sticker from an image populates a page displaying real-time updates of images that have used the same #Sticker – much like a hashtag.
What this means for businesses: Businesses now have a new way to create original, searchable content. Millions of photos are uploaded to Twitter every day, and the #Stickers feature offers a new level of customization, as well as a unique way to share photos to an audience from all over the world.
Memories introduces a whole new way to share your favorite Snapchat pictures and videos with your friends – or save them for yourself. Your Memories can be tagged with keywords, such as “dog” or “vacation”, and searched at a later date to find them quickly. You can also use Memories to upload new stories from past moments, combine snaps from different days into a longer story, or save content in the cloud for “your eyes only”.
What this means for businesses: Previously, Snapchat was used exclusively to share pictures and videos that were happening in real time. Memories changed all this, allowing people and businesses alike the ability to share moments from the past. Companies can use this to their advantage by posting interesting content, such as throwback Thursdays, directly to their snapchat page – a task which was previously not possible.
Have any questions regarding the above changes and updates? Reach out to one of Ferocious Media’s Social Media Analysts today!