We start out on the 2nd May when Twitter released a major events calendar, this calendar highlighted all of the important dates to keep in mind for your marketing over the next 30 days. The major benefit of Twitter’s monthly calendars is that they indicate not only the events of most interest, but also their projected Twitter volume, this provides a great overview of where you should be paying attention in order to tap into trends.
Sticking with Twitter now, also on the 2nd May Twitter announced a new video content deal with Bloomberg to have Bloomberg broadcast content on their platform 24/7.
On the 3rd May Facebook came under scrutiny after a report suggested that Facebook gave a presentation to one of Australia’s top four banks in which they showed how advertisers could use the network’s targeting tools to hone in on young people when they are feeling stressed or anxious, and thereby use their emotional state to boost response to their ad content. Facebook has since posted an official response to the report's claims, saying that “the premise of the article is misleading.” What do you think? Let us know in the comments below.
We will now jump back across to Twitter when on May 3rd they launched a new, original live programming line-up. At their first ever digital content NewFronts presentation they made the bold statement that Twitter is no longer about 140 characters, Twitter is now about live video. Specifically, live premium video. We also saw Facebook roll out its messenger games to all users, so now everyone can play classic games such as Pacman, they also announced that they will be adding game bots which will be able to communicate with players about new levels or rewards via message.
Sticking with Facebook, we also saw them bring reactions to individual comments, thus giving you an all new way to respond to replies on a status. Reactions haven’t been as successful as Facebook previously thought they would have been with reactions being used 300 billion times since their release just over a year ago, to put this into perspective there are on average 5 billion likes each day, so do you think adding the ability to react to comments will lead to the being used more? Let us know!
We now press on to May 5th when Twitter announced they will be bringing full screen, vertical video ads to moments. Twitter’s confusing approach to moments continued, with the news that the microblogging giant will soon announce full-screen, vertical video ads within moments, their tool which originally was intended to make Twitter easier to understand for the masses.
Also, on May 5th Facebook tested a new “Topics to Follow” option to get more content on your news feed. In a recent session on Facebook’s News Feed algorithm and how it works, News Feed VP Adam Mosseri noted that one of their key areas of focus for News Feed moving forward will be discovery and helping users uncover more relevant information from pages they don’t follow.
Facebook has been experimenting with this for a while, a year ago, they tried out alternate, topic based News Feeds for some users in the app, while more recently they have been testing a new “rocket” tab which connects users to a listing of posts Facebook thinks you might like from sources you’re not following.
On the 9th May, we saw Facebook step up efforts to stamp out fake news ahead of the UK election with the social network cutting thousands of fake profiles ahead of the UK election next month, while also taking out newspaper ads to highlight questionable posts to users.
We will now jump across to Pinterest where on the 10th May they boosted the power of Lens Search, Added QR codes and new connection options. At this point, Pinterest isn’t realistically a social media platform, it is more of a discovery platform, a shopping mall of ideas. And with their new visual search elements, Pinterest is looking to take that to the next level.
We now jump forward to May 11th, where we once again start with Facebook, as they announce a new update that has taken place to combat “low quality” websites. Or to put it simply, if your website is covered in crappy ads, then don’t expect to gain any significant traffic from Facebook, if any. The main thinking behind this is to put off spammers who create click-bait content, which may help lessen the influence of fake news.
Also on the 11th May, we saw LinkedIn announce some new, powerful advertising tools which are worth taking into consideration. One of the major updates they announced was the ability to retarget on LinkedIn, this has been proven to be very profitable on Facebook already, this means you can now advertise to individuals who visit your website right on LinkedIn.
We now jump forward to the 15th May, where LinkedIn announced a new update that could help boost your exposure through the platform. If you stopped reading this post right now and went and Googled your own name, you will probably see your LinkedIn profile on the first page of results. Whether you want it or not, people are finding you via LinkedIn. How is your profile looking? A little dusty?
You should give this some serious thought, because LinkedIn’s adding some new features and enhancements to the user experience, meaning your profile will now be more visible than ever online.
Staying with LinkedIn on the 16th May as they added: “Suggested Skills” and “Expanded Audience Insights” (with Video Coming Soon?) LinkedIn has released a heap of updates in recent months – although some were re-introductions of old functionalities which they had previously removed. But either way, LinkedIn’s added a wide range of tools and features many of which have immediate, significant benefits, so it is important to keep up.
Continuing on this line, LinkedIn added access to their new, post-level audience insights via desktop.
We will jump forward to May 17th now where we saw Pinterest begin to add visually matched ad content to search results, therefore expanding opportunities. Once not much more other than a digital pin board, Pinterest has evolved massively since then, their latest trick comes in the form of their new focus on image recognition, led by the development of their image based search option Pinterest Lens. In developing the basis for Pinterest Lens, Pinterest has also built the backbone for a new range of image-based products, including new image recognition ads, which Pinterest began rolling out as of the 17th May.
Jumping over to Twitter, on the 18th May we saw them add advanced privacy controls, as well as new advanced data collection methods. Twitter has announced a new set of advanced privacy options which provide far more insight into how your data is being used by the platform, and more control over such information, while they are also boosting their capability to collect similar insights, based on your web usage.
Also on the 18th May, we saw Facebook update their news feed algorithm to further limit the reach of click bait. Facebook clearly hates clickbait (don’t we all) and with this new update to their news feed, they plan to wipe out what is still one of the most complained about elements of the social network.
On the 19th May, we saw Pinterest yet again getting very busy, when they introduced new pin level stats to help maximise pins. As part of their ongoing effort to improve the business value of the platform, Pinterest added pin specific stats to each pin, making the data easy to access and analyse – and action, in the case of switching to a promoted pin.
On the 23rd May, we saw Twitter take further steps towards integrating live video into their social media platform. Twitter held its annual shareholder meeting on the 23rd, and while most of the information provided wasn’t new, CEO Jack Dorsey did reveal one interesting detail, regarding live video. This was the ability to watch in progress live video at the top of your news feed, this shows that Twitter will very soon be the place to be for live video.
We will now jump forward to the 24th May which turned out to be a busy day for three giants of the social media world, with Facebook adding new features to Facebook Live, these included in stream chat and live guests. Facebook has added two new features to Live, including Live guests and private chat within a live stream. We also saw Twitter roll out new ads which promote engagement via DMS and bots. Twitter is clearly staying in touch with the bot trend by adding in new ads which promote bot engagement. And finally, we saw Pinterest introduce a new way to discover food and recipe related pins. Pinterest is adding in some new tools to help users better utilise their 15 billion plus food related pins.
We then saw Pinterest continue their updates on the 25th May, as they introduced autoplay video ads, this now presents advertisers and businesses with a new opportunity for video ad exposure. We also saw Facebook get in on the act of continuous updating after they expanded their personal fundraisers, therefore adding new fundraising categories. They also released a new update for trending news, the update in question is a new trending module within the news feed.
We then saw Twitter in the limelight on the 31st May after they added a secondary “requests” inbox for DMS, the reason being was to better filter incoming messages.
And with all said and done we had one last bit of news at the end of May, and that was that Facebook continued its dominant superiority at the top of the pile as the number one social media platform. Sparking claims that the “death of Facebook” have been greatly exaggerated.
Thank you for reading this blog on the updates that occurred throughout last month and we hope you enjoyed it.