Instagram Continues To Add New Features | Digital Scoop 029


 

As Instagram continues to grow, so does it’s increase in new tools and features. Instagram has rolled out a couple of official new additions, while other new tools coming soon.

First, Instagram has confirmed the launch of GIFs in Direct, including a new ‘Random’ GIF button, which could add an interesting element to your private chats. Usage of Instagram DMs has been rising, reflecting the broader trend towards private messaging, so it makes sense for the platform to give the option more focus, and more communication options to consider.

All of their marketing mentions this feature being in Direct, not DMs. This could be happening because of Instagram’s plan to launch it’s standalone messaging app, Direct.

The second officially announced feature from Instagram is video tagging, enabling you to make specific users aware of your posted video.

In addition to these confirmed features, several others have been highlighted.

Instagram’s also sorting out hashtag cramming. They are reportedly testing out separating hashtags from captions. The separation of hashtags from captions could be the solution to the annoying crop of hashtags some people include… cluttering their post. A separate button called “Add Hashtags” will appear on the New Post screen, which will allow users to use hashtags without including them in the caption. Thank the social gods!

Another one of Instagram’s in-development features include Quiz Stickers for Stories, which would enable users to share an interactive quiz question with their audience, and add multiple answer options. You would then be able to make one of the answers the correct one, which would be highlighted to the user when selected.

Instagram also continues to move forward with its test of limiting access to your Instagram Stories by location/region restriction. In that capacity could also be extended to individual posts, giving you more control over where your Instagram content can be seen. The option would be particularly beneficial for global brands with a multinational presence.

It’s smart for Instagram to maintain the momentum, and keep a hold on user interest while releasing all of these small features keeping users engaging on the app, which in turn, puts more pressure on competitors to try to keep up.

Will these new features change the way your brand will use Instagram? Comment below and let me know!

 

YouTube Launches Channel Memberships, Merchandise and Premieres | Digital Scoop 026

YouTube Goes After Instagram

YouTube creators are gaining three major new tools to generate revenue from their videos outside of traditional advertising, as well as those that will help them better engage their fans. This comes after Instagram’s launch of IGTV, so clearly this is a rebuttal since IGTV offers similar features.

This new features include rollout of channel memberships, merchandising, and the launch of Premieres. 

Memberships

Creators with 100,000 subscribers or more, are over 18 and members of the YouTube Partner Program qualify for this feature. For $4.99 per month, this feature will allow subscribers to gain access to members-only posts in the Community tab where creators can share custom perks, like access to an exclusive videos, news, announcements, and more. YouTube says it will vet these perks manually, to ensure they meet YouTube’s guidelines and are something the creator can actually deliver. The perks can be almost anything the creator wants to offer, within YouTube’s guidelines.

Merchandise

In addition to memberships, creators will also be able to sell to fans directly. The feature will show pictures of creators’ merchandise in a display under their videos. This tool is available to all channels in the U.S. with over 10,000 subscribers. This greatly increases the visibility of YouTubers’ branded gear on the platform. Previously, creators could only paste a link with no options to upload images of their merchandise in their video descriptions. This has the opportunity to increase sales by getting more clicks to products. Previously, people had to click “show more” to see the full description, creating an extra step in the process.

Premieres

Finally, YouTubers can use a new feature called “Premieres” that creates a landing page they can promote ahead of a video’s release. This page will also have a chat feature, like Live videos do, which means creators can use Super Chat and take advantage of Channel Membership perks even if they aren’t doing live content.

The videos are uploaded in the same interface on YouTube, so there’s no new workflow to learn beyond toggling the “Premiere” switch on. Creators can also join in the chats as the video goes live to engage with their fans around this pre-recorded content, as well as comment on the videos before they start. When the Premiere wraps, it’s posted as a regular video on the site (without the two-minute countdown video YouTube adds).

What’s next?

YouTube said its version of Stories will arrive for all eligible creators with more than 10,000 subscribers later this year as well. The announcements come at a critical time for YouTube, as Facebook and Instagram are trying to woo creators away to their platforms and video hubs with unique features of its own.

 

Facebook to Remove Trending Feature | Digital Scoop 024

 

Facebook to Remove Trending Feature.

Facebook says that it’s removing its “Trending” feature to make way for “future news experiences” on Facebook. Trending was introduced on the platform in 2014 as a way to help people discover news topics that were popular across the platform. It aggregated news topics based on what’s being shared on Facebook by users the most. It was also only available in five countries and accounted for less than 1.5% of clicks to news publishers on average.

Stated from Facebook’s press release, “From research we found that over time people found the product to be less and less useful. We will remove Trending from Facebook next week and we will also remove products and third-party partner integrations that rely on the Trends API.” 

Facebook also says that the way people consume news on Facebook is changing to be primarily on mobile, and increasingly through news video. So they are exploring, or trying out, new ways to help people stay informed about timely, breaking news that matters to them, while making sure the news they see on Facebook is from trustworthy sources.

Here are three new changes to replace Trending (so far):

  • Breaking News Label
    • This was a test they actually already have been running with about 80 publishers across North America, South America, Europe, India and Australia lets publishers put a “breaking news” indicator on their posts in News Feed, making it easier for readers to identify news while scrolling through their feed. They’ll also be testing breaking news notifications depending on the pages you follow.
  • Today In
    • Facebook is testing a whole new dedicated section on Facebook called Today In that connects people to the latest breaking and important news from local publishers in their city, as well as updates from local officials, businesses and organizations.
    • The test is running in just six cities for now: New Orleans, La.; Little Rock, Ark.; Billings, Mont.; Peoria, Ill.; Olympia, Wash.; and Binghamton, N.Y. Facebook users who self-identify as living in those areas will be able to visit the new section to see local information, like stories from local publishers or emergency updates from local authorities. Facebook is using machine-learning software to surface content in this new section.
    • This may change the newsfeed algorithm again for businesses. Stay tuned with Digital Scoop.
  • News Video in Watch:
    • Facebook will soon have a dedicated section on Facebook Watch in the US where people can view live coverage, daily news briefings and weekly deep dives that are only exclusive to Watch.

From the data breach to Fake News and content, Facebook needs to do something to keep users interested in the platform. What do you think of the changes? Comment below and let me know!

Facebook Video Monetization And Promotion Tools | Digital Scoop 023

Facebook has released a new set of monetization options and best practices for video creators as it seeks to build interest in its Watch platform.

 

The new monetization options include:

  1. Pre-Roll Ads
  2. Preview Trailer
  3. Ad Auto Break Insertions
  4. Pre-Publish Brand Safety Check

Facebook Tests Out New Video Format called Facebook Premieres | Digital Scoop 022

Facebook Premieres

Facebook is testing a new video format called Facebook Premieres that will let video creators, publishers and shows post prerecorded video as live footage. Facebook says its new video format is currently being tested among a group with a wider rollout happening soon.

The prerecorded videos will play similar to a livestream, allowing viewers the chance to interact with the video as it is broadcast on the site. Comments, reactions and interactions with the prerecorded Premieres video will happen in real time, as with Facebook’s Live videos.

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LinkedIn Adds New GIF Feature In Messaging | Digital Scoop 021

LinkedIn Adds New GIF Access Within its On-Platform Messaging

LinkedIn on a bender to tap into the trends of other social networks, even if those trends don’t necessarily seem like a perfect fit for the professional platform.

LinkedIn’s latest trending option is the addition of an immediately accessible GIF library within their message flow, powered by Tenor, a gif sharing platform, via a new partnership.

The functionality is pretty much the same as adding GIFs on Facebook. You will be able to tap the GIF icon on the toolbar and search for a gif to add to your chat.

Facebook Removing Powerful Ad Targeting Options | Digital Scoop 018

Facebook is removing powerful ad targeting options from third parties called Partner Categories. Here are three advertising tips you can use.

Instagram Algorithm Update | Digital Scoop 017

Instagram updates it’s newsfeed to be chronological… kind of.