Category: Social Media Blog

TikTok Adds More Duet Formats to Facilitate New Collaboration Opportunities

TikTok has added three new options to its popular Duets video interaction option.

LinkedIn Reports That It’s Helped 10 Million People Gain New Skills in 2020

LinkedIn has provided an update on its effort to re-train and re-skill 25 million people impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Google Expands Free Google Shopping Listings, Adds New Tools to Assist SMBs

Google is making its Google Shopping product listings available for free in Europe, while it's also expanding its tools for SMBs to assist in their recovery from COVID-19.

Twitter Expands Access to Voice Tweets, Re-Affirms Plans for Auto-Captions of Voice Messages

Twitter has expanded the availability of audio tweets, while it continues to work on improving accessibility of the option.

Facebook Announces Integration of Messenger and Instagram Direct, Adds New Messaging Features

Facebook has taken the next step in its messaging integration process by announcing new cross-messaging capacity between Instagram and Messenger.

LinkedIn Campaign Checklist [Infographic]

Ensure you're covering all bases in your LinkedIn campaigns with this handy checklist.

Navigating the Hidden Psychology of Social Networks

In this wonderful, yet complex world of social media, understanding how we can create better content, deliver more meaningful engagement, and strategize campaigns is an ongoing conversation. It not only involves understanding behaviors and decisions when users are actively engaging on the platforms but deeply understanding the values embedded that compel them to participate in the first place.

In the newly published Hidden Psychology of Social Networks, Joe Federer, former head of Brand Strategy at Reddit uses evolutionary science and psychology to help marketers grasp the ways our ideas and behaviors shift and our sense of self evolves as we use different social platforms. The notion that who we play online is not a full representation of ourselves is a theme Federer unpacks across the three sections of the book.

He starts to tackle this theme in a deep dive of meme culture and evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins’ “The Selfish Gene.” Through an elaborate comparison to how genes make up the building blocks of living organisms, Feder explains how memes set the foundation for the broader ideas that make up our society and culture and that few understand meme culture from the inside. He adds, “like any culture, it’s extremely difficult to fool the natives into thinking we’re locals…More often, we compare ourselves to our competitors, and they’re usually no more native to the environment than we are.” Meme culture isn’t for everyone and consumers are quick and easy to decipher when an effort is too forced — but this shouldn’t deter you from testing the waters and seeing where white spaces may exist to deliver value.

Beyond utilizing success stories from campaigns of leading brands including Heinz, Dove, and Ziploc, Federer takes the insights a next level deeper — layering in context from Freud’s models of the Id, Ego, and Superego and how these manifest online through the “ideal self” the “managed self” and the “true self.” In this way, he leaves readers with not only a theoretical groundwork from which to evolve in their careers but with tactical lessons to employ immediately.

Here are a few important takeaways to note:

  • Create with a specific, desired action in mind and be deliberate, efficient, and frictionless in your delivery
  • Be fearless when it comes to adding to the user experience — break out of the advertiser comfort zone
  • The format of your content is just as important as the subject of your content — choose a channel and format that allows people to derive the value of your message directly in their feeds without interruption or distraction
  • Create synergy between right and left brain strategies when possible. In the left brain, for instance, we create representations of ourselves via the Ego and Superego to define ourselves to the world — our offline selves that define us socially. This results in us engaging with radically different kinds of content compared to a network organized around ideas and common interests allowing us to be anonymous
  • The best-in-class campaigns utilize social listening and maximize efficiency by having a clear and specific goal for each component but that also has some bearing on the overall outcome
  • In an age where brands are quickly called out for not acting in accordance with their purpose, transparency isn’t enough. Take the time to carefully establish what this mission is, then find a way to convey this story in a way that consumers can use to help brand themselves across social channels

While Hidden Psychology provides a helpful compass for navigating the current social media landscape, it is also a powerful reminder for marketers to, amidst the trends and shiny new objects, get back to the basics. What does highly successful marketing look like? It takes into account what people value, it interprets why it has value, and then uses that information to create stories that will genuinely be enjoyable and organically spread.

To connect with Joe about the book, check out his Twitter and LinkedIn:

  • @joefederer

The post Navigating the Hidden Psychology of Social Networks appeared first on Social Media Week.

How to Run an Effective Giveaway Campaign on Instagram

Giveaways can be a great way to boost brand awareness on Instagram, but to generate real benefits, you need to map out an effective approach.

The Complete Guide to IGTV Dimensions, Best Practices and Creation Apps

As IGTV continues to gain traction, more businesses and creators are considering how they can leverage the platform. Here's an overview of all you need to know.

How Reddit’s Tiered Ads are Promoting Brand Safety

In recent years, privacy has extended beyond the topic of risk management. It is vital to a company’s reputation and a central component of brand building and strategy. More than ever, especially in the wake of these past several months, advertisers are making this a top priority as they navigate critical decisions around which platforms to advertise on and where their campaigns are showing up. Context matters.

From the platform standpoint, addressing these needs is easier said than done. No two advertisers are the same when it comes to their brand message and campaign objectives and platforms that recognize this and respond with flexibility will see the most success. Facebook, for example, recently unveiled new brand safety controls for video advertisers, with topic exclusions, based on machine learning, and ‘publisher allow’ lists for more control campaign displays.

More recently, Reddit announced the expansion of its Ads platform with new tiers allotting for greater control and choices over the type of content brands appear adjacent to and the audiences they reach.

Here’s a peek at what’s new.

Inventory types

In the Expanded Inventory option, brands have access to Reddit’s maximum inventory pool as well as visibility next to the broadest range of content. Per the announcement, this tier will open up to over 20 percent of communities for targeting, resulting in the ability to tap into a significantly greater user base, while still meeting the platform’s content standards already in place.

A next level down, Reddit’s recommended tier, the Standard Inventory option provides “balanced reach and protection” to fit the needs of most advertisers. Ultimately, you’ll have less reach compared to Expanded, but greater protection in regards to where ads are shown. More specifically, the more controversial subreddits are not included.

Finally, Limited Inventory, much like its name alludes, gives brands the least amount of reach but the most optimal brand safety standards. This is due to Reddit’s partnership with Oracle Data Cloud’s Contextual Intelligence to offer third-party verification to ensure extra protection against questionable or harmful content.

“Our contextual intelligence technology provides up-to-the-minute content review and classification across industry-standard brand safety categories to give advertisers greater control over where their campaigns run,” stated Oracle Data Cloud Senior Director of Product Management, Chris Stark.

Moderation protocols

A big question mark with the introduction of these new tiers is what does this mean for the current platform, community and campaign moderation system in place. Primarily, Reddit notes that as always ads are eligible to appear in communities or in hand-curated allow lists. Advertisers will also still be in the driver seat when it comes to enabling or disabling comments on their ads. They’re also able to exclude particular keywords and communities depending on their preferences.

“Brand Safety has become a broader and more ubiquitous issue in recent months, and with good reason. With the sheer volume of content that appears across UGC platforms, it’s understandable that some advertisers desire enhanced control, while others are more comfortable with this environment,” explained Jen Wong, Reddit’s Chief Operating Officer, in the official announcement.

By maintaining these existing protocols with the added new tiers, brands that want maximum engagement will be able to have the reach to ascertain those goals while those seeking to double down on protecting their reputation will also have options to fit their needs.

Protecting a growing community

A recent Pinterest study found that over half (60%) of consumers are more likely to remember brands they encounter online when they feel positive, feel more positive when they are engaging with a brand in a positive environment, trust the brands they see in a positive space, and are more inclined to follow through with a purchase.

With its user base now up to 430 million users and its platform home to over 130,000 active communities and 12 million daily interactions — efforts like these are important for Reddit to continue growing its community. While just how successful this push will be remains to be seen — but one thing is clear: 2020 has exacerbated the need for brands to take a hard look at where their content appears and platforms that fail to address these concerns will have much more difficulty earning a permanent spot in an advertisers’ marketing mix.

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The post How Reddit’s Tiered Ads are Promoting Brand Safety appeared first on Social Media Week.

How Pinterest is Fueling Inspirational Ideas with Story Pins

On the heels of breaking its daily download record and earning a top spot on the App Store rankings due to the release of iOS 14 and flurry of home screen design ideas, Pinterest is taking major steps to connect creators and Pinners around inspirational content.

Following over a year of work, the platform is launching Story Pins in beta and a new creator profile with analytics tools for improved performance tracking. Pinterest is the latest platform to hop on the Stories bandwagon following Snapchat’s lead in 2013 and Facebook and Instagram putting their own twists on the format in 2016. More recently, Twitter introduced “Fleets,” and LinkedIn began testing its own version of Stories earlier this year.

Here’s a breakdown of the latest Pinterest updates and how you can start to build them into your marketing mix.

Turning ideas into Stories

A key difference between Story features on other platforms and Pinterest’s approach to the format is that Pin Stories are very much tilted towards utility, discovery, and inspiration. “Story Pins are designed to show you how people are trying new ideas and new products. That means the features and intent are dramatically different, David Temple, Head of Content, Creator and Homefeed Product said in a statement to reporters.

This new content format blends videos, voiceover and image and text overlay will make it possible to create step-by-step stories, such as tutorials for recipes or DIY projects. Early users of the feature include Coco Bassey, Camille Styles, Shiquita from Unconventional Southern Belle, and Jazmine Ford of Finding Uphoria. An added bonus? Detail pages can be added so materials and ingredients can be revisited later and fuel action on the ideas and tips.

Pin Stories are also not ephemeral, meaning that won’t disappear after a set period of time as is the case on Instagram or Facebook Stories. Much like a standard Pin, Stories can be saved to boards for later use and distributed across the home feed, search results, and relevant tabs including “Today.” Creators will also have the ability to tag their Story Pins or videos with topics or interests which the visual discovery engine can use to match ideas to Pinners who have similar taste.

“We want to be deliberate and thoughtful with the growth that we have here, to ensure that the tone for the content and the community remains positive,” Temple added. In other words, creating a space in which you can be inspired but inspire others in meaningful and actionable ways through content.

Creator profiles

As part of the push, Pinterest is also introducing creator profiles — making the platform a more seamless option for sharing creator content directly as opposed to distributing it once its shared elsewhere.

A big emphasis with the profiles is interaction between Pinners and creators. Specifically, a new display format and updated contact options make it easy to stay connected. Pinterest also unveiled a range of positive reactions like “Great idea,” “Love,” “Wow,” and “Thanks” to provide feedback to creators via a Message or Contact card. This is a subtle but significant update that nods to the current environment — one in which digital empathy is more important than ever and it is harder to express how we feel in the absence of face-to-face interactions.

Maximizing engagement and measuring reach

Finally, in order to ensure creators and brands can easily track how their audiences are responding to this format, Pinterest is revealing an engagement tab, where users can solicit and respond to feedback, and an updated Analytics hub outlining the performance of their Pin Story content. Impressions and engagement are two core metrics, but the re-designed dashboard will also provide a sense into how categories and interests are shifting over time and which audiences are engaging with the most.

With its community growing, searches up 50 percent year-over-year and board creates up 40 percent year over year as of this past July, it makes a lot of sense for Pinterest to want to lean into the Stories format to help people better connect amidst the current global pandemic. It also represents an opportunity for Pinterest to learn more about its community, align with trends and behaviors, and identify the white spaces that exist to drive creativity.

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The post How Pinterest is Fueling Inspirational Ideas with Story Pins appeared first on Social Media Week.

7 Reasons To Invest In Video Content In 2020

Video content can combine information and entertainment more easily than ever before. The challenges in creating video content that seemed insurmountable less than a dozen years ago have been overcome with developments in technology. The following are seven reasons to invest in video content in 2020.

Make percentages work for you

As of this writing fully two-thirds of employees are working remotely for a portion of the week. 44% are working from home five days a week. The jump in percentages is approximately 17% greater than the numbers pre-pandemic. 

The pandemic has shifted the way people think about work. A majority appreciate gaining the time and money normally spent on travel to and from a shared office work site. The leap in the numbers of remote workers has led to changes in the way a company develops a marketing strategy. Online commerce is secured by content and the content that gains customers quickest is in video form. 

For example, if you’re producing content for a property management company, you might consider shooting videos about your new virtual tour tools to attract customers in a visual manner. 

Optimize Employee Training

Video content saves money. Comprehensive training programs for new hires or re-training are costly. Space, snacks, meals, beverages, and speakers or trainers for even a moderately sized group can cost thousands of dollars and take days to accomplish. 

The return on investment (ROI) for training videos is significant and in many cases, the videos can be used, with slight modifications, many times over. As a training tool, you can incorporate visual, aural, verbal, and logical learning styles. You can build in capabilities to monitor the individual achievements of trainees.

To increase the absorption of information, video training can be interactive with the addition of quizzes, multiple-choice questions, and review options. The incorporation of various activities throughout a training video will help employees retain more information.

Enhance Short-form Content

Marketing technologies have come a long way from Burma Shave signs, but the premise remains the same — capture someone’s attention. The growth of media technologies has proven that the world is a small place. Our connectivity has increased but our attention spans have decreased from an average 12 seconds to a mere eight. 

This is a small amount of time to work in. Video content is perhaps the most engaging method to convey a product or idea to another person. Over 500 million hours of video are watched daily on YouTube alone. Before you choose the type of video content you will produce, decide what your goal is. 

Short-form video content is a way to capture the viewer’s attention quickly. In the space of 15-60 seconds, you can engage the viewer and provide information about where more material, in longer form, can be attained. Think of it like snapping your fingers to get a kid’s attention.

Improve Long-form Content

The speed at which short-form video works to engage a viewer, raise brand awareness, and encourage further exploration is well documented by the marketing industry. Long-form content allows you to become more fully engaged with your target market. 

A four-to-ten-minute video gives you time to explain your brand, history, company intentions and generally allows the viewer a more intimate narrative. Long-form video content can be interviews, how-to videos, educational videos, demonstrations, and documentaries. 

The platform on which you choose to share long-form video content should be considered with your target audience in mind. You do not have to choose between short or long-form video content; for a comprehensive marketing strategy, consider using both.

Repurpose Written Content

Turn your written content into video content and the percentage of what the viewer remembers increases to 80% as opposed to the 20% remembered after reading. The staggering difference in these numbers is clearly a good reason to commit to video content as a marketing strategy. Do not burn all of your pencils yet. 

Quality video content begins with a well-written script. Research competitors and decide what you will be adding to the conversation in your industry. Write an outline of the key items or ideas you want to convey. Keep them in a chronological order and then flesh out the points with a combination of information and anecdotes or reflections.

The goal is to connect the viewer to you or your company on a more personal level — to engage on a human scale. If you are doing a live broadcast or interview, make an outline to allow the conversation to flow naturally and to keep it on point. 

Reach the right person

Just like Microsoft’s mail merge program allows you to create a document and personalize it for each recipient, there are platforms like Data Creative that allow you to create personalized videos. The ability to target specific individuals, companies, or groups helps assure that you reach those you intended to share information with. By sending video content through an email system you can track your marketing campaign and utilize the data to further refine your video content.

Find Your Brand Purpose

The purpose of a successful marketing campaign using video content is the same as any other strategy, to become the market leader in your industry. Well over two million searches a day can make content difficult to optimize, let alone stand out as unique. Investing time and money in video content will bring your customers to you, help them feel you value them, and increase awareness of your brand. 

A marketing campaign crafted with well-planned video content will help your search engine optimization (SEO) move to the top of the list in organic searches. As Neil Patel says, “If you ever need to hide a dead body, you should place it on the second page of Google search results.”

Optimize, experiment, use collected data, and adapt, and you will have a marketing program that can set you above others in your industry.

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The post 7 Reasons To Invest In Video Content In 2020 appeared first on Social Media Week.

Facebook Announces New Publisher Partnerships to Bring More Content to Messenger’s ‘Watch Together’ Feature

Facebook has announced a new set of partnerships to bring more video content to its new Watch Together option on Messenger.

Facebook’s Removing its 28-Day Attribution Model for Conversions from Ads

Facebook is removing its 28-day attribution window option for Facebook ads, which will limit advertiser capacity to track campaign performance.

LinkedIn Adds New Warnings on Potentially Inappropriate Messages, Updates Guidelines on Behavior

LinkedIn has added some new prompts to alert users to potentially inappropriate behavior, while it's also updated its Professional Community Policies to address member concerns.

TikTok Launches ‘Elections Guide’ in the US to Provide Users with Accurate, Timely Voting Information

TikTok has launched a new Elections Guide to provide its users with accurate, timely voting information ahead of the US election.

Facebook Launches Accounts Center to Better Connect its Cross-Data and Payment Systems

Facebook is testing out a new Accounts Center, which will enable users to link their Facebook, Instagram and Messenger accounts via a single authentication process.

Pinterest Adds New Ad Slots, More Insights for Marketers, Ahead of the Holiday Shopping Push

Pinterest is adding some new product discovery and showcase features ahead of the holiday shopping rush.

A Checklist of Great SEO Tools for 2020 [Infographic]

Get your SEO process on the right track with this listing of helpful, powerful SEO tools.

The 5 Most Important Stages in the Content Marketing Process [Infographic]

Content marketing doesn't have to be complex – here's a basic outline of the key elements you need in your content marketing strategy.

Reevaluating Screen Time For Kids in the Age of Social Distancing [Infographic]

With kids spending more time online during the COVID-19 pandemic, what are the implications, and limits that parents should keep in mind?

With More People Turning to YouTube for News Content, That Could Fuel the Rise of Fringe Beliefs

New research shows that YouTube has become a key source of news for many Americans, which could also be fueling fring theories and beliefs.

With More People Turning to YouTube for News Content, That Fuel See the Rise of Fringe Beliefs

New research shows that YouTube has become a key source of news for many Americans, which could also be fueling fring theories and beliefs.

Instagram Publishes New Guides on How to Set-Up and Maximize Instagram Shops

As we head into the holiday shopping period, Instagram has launched a new set of guides on how to utilize Instagram shops.

Court Allows TikTok to Remain Available for Download in the US, Despite White House Executive Order

With negotiations over a buyout continuing, a US court has ruled that TikTok can remain in US app stores for the time being.