Category: The Voice of Social Media Blog

Facebook Reaches 2.38 Billion Users, Beats Revenue Estimates in Latest Update

Facebook has posted its Q1 2019 results, showing yet another increase in total users, and a 26% jump in year-over-year revenue.

5 Proven Tips to Enhance the Effectiveness of Your Visual Content [Infographic]

Improving your visuals can have a significant impact on the overall performance of your digital marketing efforts.

Facebook is Killing Off its Messenger Codes Option

Facebook has announced that it will roll back support for Messenger codes, which will have impacts for some marketers.

Twitter Q1 Earnings: Users and Revenue Both Increase, Reflecting Improved Focus

Twitter has released its first revenue and performance update for 2019, showing stable increases in both revenue and usage.

Snap Inc. Reports Improved Usage and Revenue in Q1 ’19 Update

Snap Inc. has posted its Q1 2019 report, showing increases in both revenue and usage.

What Does $1 in Facebook Advertising Generate for a Business?

Should you spend money on Facebook trying to get Likes or website visits? A look at what your Facebook ad spend can actually achieve for your business.

Instagram Officially Launches Quiz Stickers for Instagram Stories

Instagram is rolling out its new Quiz Sticker option for Instagram Stories, which was first spotted in testing earlier in the year.

4 Tools to Help Boost Your Social Media Marketing Productivity

The right tools can have a major impact on your social media marketing workflow – here are four that can help, each in different ways.

4 Gifts Gmail Gave Us For Its 15th Birthday

Fifteen years ago this month, Gmail made its debut online. And despite making its first appearance on April Fools’ Day, its dominance has been far from a joke. It made its arrival on the scene with unparalleled dominance in its search capability, tools to fight spam, and especially its storage capacity – 1GB? Could you believe it (in 2004)?

This month marks its fifteenth anniversary, and in honor of the milestone Google opted to give its users several gifts. Here, we share four of the latest updates to the platform that will change the way you communicate.

Smart Compose Learns New Tongues

Smart Compose, an AI-assisted feature designed to expedite your email sending, is now available in Spanish, French, Italian and Portuguese, in addition to English. This feature has reportedly saved Gmail users from typing over a billion characters each week – and now it’ll be able to do so for more users all over the world.

Smart Compose is also coming to mobile in a big way – once only available for the Pixel 3, the feature is now making its debut across all Android devices. In the coming months, the feature will also be available for iOS users. Given that Google estimates over 72 percent of the US workforce will be mobilized in some capacity by next year, strong mobile support is a logical shift toward the present and future of how business is conducted.

Smart Compose Has Gotten to Know You

Smart Compose has learned more than new languages in the last few years; now, it knows even more about you…and will be using that information to speed up your composition process. Have a custom greeting or closing you’re partial to in your emails? Smart Compose knows, and will be using it more frequently. Stumped about an email subject? Once you start writing your message, it’ll be able to suggest appropriate subject lines for what you’ve filled the email body with.

The tool admittedly still has some room to grow, but these additions to Smart Compose will continue to cement Gmail’s dominance in the AI-assisted email segment.

Inside Job: More Activity from Inside Your Inbox

Finally, you can do more from within the “confines” of your inbox than ever before. According to product manager Tom Holman, users “can respond to a comment thread in Google Docs, browse hotel recommendations and more, directly within emails.

This way,” he says in the birthday blog post, “you don’t have to open a new tab or app to get things done.”

Press ‘Pause’ with Scheduled Emails

Perhaps the biggest news of our gift haul from Google, is the ability to schedule emails without the use of a third-party tool. While this capacity existed in the now-defunct Inbox app, desktop users couldn’t delay or set the sending of their messages. Now, Gmail users will be able to send messages anywhere from two minutes in the future…to fifty years from now.

Whether you’re scheduling emails later to be respectful of someone’s time away from their desk, to facilitate easy work across time zones, or simply to avoid hitting “send” on that email you’re nervous about, Scheduled Emails stand to make a massive impact on users’ ability to work hard and work smart.

This collection of updates, given to us as Gmail is poised toward a new frontier, shows a lot of promise for the future of G Suite: more ways to support international use, stronger use of AI, and minimal movement from inboxes to the wider internet. We’re excited to play with the many gifts that Google has provided in this announcement – and yet we’re already looking ahead to the additional upgrades to Gmail for the next fifteen years and beyond.

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PODCAST: Is Innovation a Dirty Word? w/ Dan Bennett, Worldwide Chief Innovation Officer at Grey

This week’s episode of Social Media Week’s Leads2Scale podcast features Dan Bennett, Worldwide Chief Innovation Officer at Grey.

During the conversation, Dan discussed:

  • His early career at and his time at TBWA\Chiat\Day, JWT, and McCann
  • Why he joined Grey and what he’s focused on today in regards to how he is driving change from within his organization and also more broadly in the industry.
  • Why innovation is an overused term and what it really means from an execution standpoint.
  • He also spent some time discussing the unique partnership between Social Media Week and Grey.

Listen to the full episode below:

Subscribe to Leads2Scale on Anchor, Apple Podcasts, Breaker, Google Podcasts, Pocket Casts, RadioPublic, Spotify, Castbox, Overcast, or Stitcher.

If you have suggestions for who we should interview or what topics you would like us to cover, please reach out to us at

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Swoot Has Arrived to Make Podcast Sharing Social

Podcasts have exploded in popularity over the last several years, with listenership, creation of new shows, and support on platforms at an all-time high. And yet, there is a weak point in the experience: discovery. Swoot is aiming to address that problem– an app that allows you to “connect with friends, discover shows you’ll love, and never miss an awesome podcast again.”

While other forms of entertainment can be shared with relative ease via social, audio has always been notoriously difficult to share in these spaces. You don’t always know what platform your friends listen to shows on, so direct links are cumbersome to share. You’re not always aware of what someone already listens to, so some recommendations might end up being redundant. And once you do connect with a show, most players will then commit you to a full series…rather than allowing you to hear the one episode your friend loved. Swoot’s approach combats all of those challenges, and does so by ditching the tech-enabled recommendation engine in favor of a human-powered one.

Co-founders Pete Curley and Garret Heaton, formerly of HipChat (since bought by Atlassian), originally devised the app as a tool for team collaboration, but a chance injury Curley sustained meant he spent more time listening to podcasts than he ever had before…and he noticed the dearth of compelling ways to share content with others.

Now, the app they developed provides two ways to do this. One, there is a main feed that shows what friends are listening to and recommending to one another. Two, there is a list of trending episodes based on your connections within the app. Trending episodes is an important distinction, because the app leans more on driving users to popular episodes of podcasts, than whole shows themselves. “In the 700,000 shows that exist, if you’re the 690,000 worst-ranked show, but you have one great episode that should be able to go viral, that’s basically impossible to do right now, because audio is crazy hard to share,” Curley said. Framing recommendations in this way allows exceptional episodes to rise to the top of listener feeds.

The Verge’s Ashley Carman likened the tool to, a musical social network that displayed what friends on the platform were listening to and enjoying. Similarly, this book nerd loves that element of Goodreads. Swoot aims to serve that role for avid podcast listeners; “the big idea is to let listeners see what shows their friends follow, as well as the shows and episodes they recommend, all in the name of getting people to discover new content.” And this big idea stands to close a major gap. Social sharing is a part of “literally everything,” including your bathroom scale, except “the one thing that I actually wanted it for,” Curley noted. With Swoot, we may soon be able to check that one thing off the list.

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The post Swoot Has Arrived to Make Podcast Sharing Social appeared first on Social Media Week.

Announcing Grey Worldwide as our Exclusive Creative Intelligence Partner for 2019

Social Media Week has been bringing leaders in the industry together for 10 years and with each of our flagship conferences, we seek to redefine what it means to be a major authority and source for new insights that fundamentally shape how we do marketing.

Spanning fireside chats, interviews, Summits, workshops, keynotes, and mainstage sessions, content is always in surplus. As we’ve continued to expand our programs, however, we’ve encountered an integral question that has yet to be answered: how do we ensure that the insights that are shared are captured, distilled and shared in the most effective way possible?

To help us address this issue, we’ve teamed up with Grey to ensure our community members can use and learn from our resources whether they can attend our events in-person or not. Through the partnership, the company has become the global marquee sponsor of SMW New York, Los Angeles, and London.

“We have huge synergy with Grey around a problem we recognize: How do we capture and synthesize this data and insights and capture this content – from the build-up to event to real-time to the recap – and reach people on the platforms they’re engaging in, like Instagram and LinkedIn.” – Toby Daniels, Social Media Week Founder

In the spirit of Grey’s 75 percent commitment to creativity, meaning 75 percent of every dollar earned goes toward the creative product or work for its clients, Chief Innovation Officer Dan Bennett reiterated the excitement to help take our content to the next level and use it as a “super power” in a statement to Campaign US.

Aside from serving as our sponsor and creative intelligence partner, Grey will hold sessions at SMW New York and Los Angeles including “The Evolution of Creativity: Reinventing Communities,” where Bennett and 368 Founder, Casey Neistat, will engage in an important conversation exploring the role of storytelling and creativity.

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Testing Reveals Twitter and Instagram’s Efforts to “Reduce Herd Mentality” on Their Platforms

“All of social media is at a crossroads, having built platforms that cater to engagement over health and safety; they’re now trying to backpedal furiously ahead of increased regulation.”

With this quote, TechCrunch’s Sarah Perez nailed the crux of the many announced changes we’re seeing on social media platforms. For a long time, engagement was the buzzword of choice; site founders and developers pushed for new features (and ignored problems) in dogged pursuit of this metric at the highest levels. But now that its consequences are coming into sharp focus, a new direction is being pursued. In the past few weeks, we’ve gotten more clarity on how Twitter and Instagram plan to address parts of this large and complex challenge.

Instagram: “Exploring Ways to Reduce Pressure”

Developer and app detective Jane Manchun Wong uncovered a feature hidden in the code of Instagram: an option to hide “likes” on a photo. Engadget reports that Wong shared news of “a version [of Instagram] that doesn’t let the audience see how many likes a post gets.” They go on:

The person who posted it still does, but as the app describes it, “we want your followers to focus on what you share, not how many likes your posts get. During this test, only the person who share [sic] a post will see the total number of likes it gets.”

For the average user, this could be a beneficial way to reduce some of the competitiveness that seems to arise around using Instagram. As Josh Constine points out for TechCrunch, it will likely reduce the temptation to “like” something because everyone else is liking it (and phenomena like World Record Egg will likely be a thing of the past), and the temptation to delete posts with low like numbers will abate. However, it could present a challenge for influencers; while likes are becoming a less valuable metric when assessing their value and impact, the invisibility of this measure could make identifying bankable partners more difficult.

An Instagram spokesperson has confirmed that these tests are happening, but there’s no target for a release of the feature, or even if it’ll be released officially at all. But previous features uncovered by Wong in this fashion have gone on to be released. So now we wait.

Twitter: New Control Over Conversations

Meanwhile, over on Twitter, a well-received test feature in their prototype twttr app appears to be coming to life in the full version this summer.

“Hide Replies” will allow the original poster on a thread to alter the visibility of replies on the timeline. Unlike Facebook or Instagram, which allow the original poster to delete replies outright, Twitter will instead permit them to “hide” them, requiring an additional click to be viewed as part of the conversation.

This is a pro for those who find themselves attracting any sort of distracting response: at best, extraneous or off-topic responses; at worst, abuse or trolling responses. However, a need for an original poster to sift through replies that fall into the “worst” category is among the potential cons for the feature. Another possible downside? This feature allows for the silencing (or, at the very least, temporary obstruction) of dissenting opinions—or even factual additions to a conversation.

The “hide replies” measure is among several Twitter shared as part of an update on their pursuit of the ever-elusive and ill-defined metric of “platform health.” Other changes include clearer explanations for tweets designated to stay on the feed despite their violation of the rules, and more ease in sharing specifics when flagging tweets that threaten user safety. In all of this, the goal seems to be twofold: to reduce the burden of those most vulnerable on Twitter for keeping themselves safe, and to distance themselves as a company from their reputation for being negligent toward these users.

Will These Measures Work?

It’s hard to know whether the measures each platform is taking will make a dent in a culture that has already shifted so dramatically as a result of these apps. And it’ll take far more than this to cure the ills that each site suffers from. Instagram, thanks to its parent company Facebook, was part of a major news dump for its vulnerable password storage system. And even as these changes were being reported and progress was being shared, Twitter’s Jack Dorsey found himself under fire at TED 2019 for the site’s glacial pace of change.

But for the time being, the focus is on how to make these sites better for those who have made them part of their daily lives. And what these measures seem to have in common, is returning some control over the experience to the user. It’ll be interesting to see how, when given some power in these spaces that often make many feel powerless, the experience starts to change for all involved.

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10 Statistics you Need to Know About Weibo for Influencer Marketing [Infographic]

If you're looking to reach Chinese internet users, you need to understand the local social landscape. Here are some stats and tips on Weibo for influencer marketing.

Vine Returns as ‘Byte’ – But is it Too Late for a Comeback?

Vine's creator is back with Vine V2.0, now called Byte – but with TikTok taking Vine's place, it may face a tough road ahead.

Sri Lanka’s Decision to Block Social Media Highlights Rising Concerns from Governments

In the wake of a recent terror attack, Sri Lanka opted to block social media completely, underlining the rising concern as to how such platforms are being used.

Facebook Publishes New Infographic on Digital Banking Trends [Infographic]

Facebook has published a new infographic which looks at changing approaches to money management in the digital age.

LinkedIn Outlines Improvements to Recruitment Recommendations and Job Tools

LinkedIn, which now hosts 20 million job ads, has outlined its ongoing improvements to its recommendation and connection tools.

Twitter, Snapchat and YouTube Outline New Data and Provide New Tools for Earth Day

Several social platforms have released new tools and data to mark Earth Day.

Q&A with Dan Gingiss

Social Media Today: How (and when) did you get started working in social media/digital marketing? Dan Gingiss: I got started in 2014, and I was the head of Digital Customer Experience at Discover. That was a role that was actually in the marketing area, but my job was to be responsible for th…