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Instagram Live Video, New Status Composer, Snapchat Partnership

Instagram Live Video coming soon

Instagram Live VideoInstagram’s CEO confirmed that the platform will introduce Instagram Live Video in the near future. The feature debuted last month in Russia where an icon marked “Live” next to Instagram Stories.

The process of using Instagram Live Video appears to work similar to Facebook Live where a user’s camera will fire up to broadcast. No word just yet when this feature will roll out globally.

Facebook streamlines Status Composer

Status ComposerFacebook page managers are noticing something new this week: an updated Status Composer.

The change began rolling out this week and is designed to help page owners decide on what their goals for their posts are. Facebook says that this was previously “hidden”  behind a click on the “Produce, Offer, Job +” link when posting on their page. Read more

Trump Tourism and New Facebook App

Trump inspires travel searches

Donald TrumpLove him or hate him, President-elect Donald Trump victory on Tuesday has reportedly led to a surge in travel searches. People searching for one way flights to Canada jumped more than 1000% after Trump was announced as the winner.

You’ve probably seen people saying they would move to Canada with Trump as the president – which is why searches for Canada, Australia and New Zealand travel skyrocketed.

Of course, this doesn’t necessarily mean people will be moving out of the U.S. The increased interest in travel may actually lead to some vacations and travels that could benefit the tourism industry. Read more

A Facebook Halloween and Twitter’s Q3

A very Facebook Halloween

Facebook HalloweenFacebook is getting spooky for Halloween – but Snapchat may be the only one who should be scared. Facebook is allowing users to use animated masks – similar to Snapchat’s animated filters – in Facebook Live. The company says a number of Halloween-themed animated masks are planned for the next few days. However – you can expect to see the animated filters becoming a permanent fixture on Facebook Live videos. The new addition is clear shot at Snapchat, which is famous for animated filters users can play with. Facebook-owned Instagram also recently added its own version of Snapchat Stories.

In addition to the Facebook Halloween masks, the company will also launch Halloween reactions. Look for pumpkins, ghosts, witches and candy corn where your usual buttons normally are and have some spooky fun. Read more

Pinterest Promoted Video and Snapchat vs Instagram

Pinterest Adds Promoted Video

Pinterest Promoted VideoPinterest Promoted Video ads are now available to advertisers on the social network. The announcement came earlier this week as Pinterest appears to look to take a cut of the massive number of video views on social media.

However, these ads are more than simple video view ads. Pinterest Promoted Video ads allow for clickable Pins to be integrated directly into the video. Wondering how that looks? Check out the video below.

Pinterest claims that early results indicated Promoted Video ads were four times more memorable than non-video ads. These types of ads an even be saved and watched later.

Instagram Not Slowing Snapchat Down

Credit: SensorTower

Credit: SensorTower

We recently wrote about Instagram Stories and how they may impact Snapchat Stories and even platform usage. While it’s still early, a report by SensorTower indicates that there hasn’t been a noticeable decline in Snapchat’s usage.

While Instagram Stories have only been out for two weeks a surge of people trying Instagram Stories over Snapchat does not appear to be happening. This may lead credence to the view that the two platforms will be able to co-exist without cutting too much into one another’s user base.

Instagram Stories, Snapchat Olympic Filters

Instagram Throws Down Gauntlet, Introduces Instagram Stories

Instagram StoriesInstagram stepped things up quite a bit this week with the introduction of “Instagram Stories”, which allows users to catalogue and share a number of pictures or videos taken throughout the day to help avoid “overposting.”
Instagram Stories work similar to Snapchat Stories in that they will disappear after 24 hours and allow users to draw on and add fun images to your content.

Already, some outlets are claiming Instagram Stories are superior to Snapchat Stories, but it remains to be seen if the new tool will add a nail in Snapchat’s coffin – as it clearly is meant to do.

Snapchat Goes for the Gold

Snapchat Olympics FiltersSpeaking of Snapchat, the social network is getting into the spirit of the Olympics with special filters, lenses and stickers. The Rio Summer Olympics (which kick off today) are also getting a special NBC Olympics channel on its Discover section to help users keep up on all of the excitement no matter where they are.

Snapchat is even curating Live Stories from some countries (U.S. included) that will highlight some great moments from the games.

Another interesting (and very cool, in my opinion) function will include country-specific geofilters that will automatically display medal counts by country. Of course, if you aren’t in Rio you’ll only be able to look on from afar, but at least Snapchat is making it interesting for those in attendance for the games!

Twitter Unveils Dashboard, Facebook Debuts Slideshow

Twitter Dashboard

DashboardA new app from Twitter – called Dashboard – could change the way social media managers use the platform and be a Hootsuite killer. The new app, unveiled this week is a free tool designed to let community managers easily engage with audiences, schedule content and even get ideas for content.

Dashboard appears to be a hybrid between the Facebook Pages app and Hootsuite. While Twitter’s recent changes appear to signal a new direction for the company time will tell if Dashboard catches on. Read more

Snapchat Overtakes, Pinterest Saves and Iconosquare Changes

Snapchat Daily Users Surpass Twitter

Snapchat If you’re still thinking Snapchat is just a fad you may need to think again. The social network has more than 150 million daily active users – larger than the 136 million Twitter reportedly has. Since its creation in 2011 the Snapchat’s user growth has exploded with it being of particular interest to younger people.

One of the reasons cited for its popularity is the way Snapchat makes communication via short messages and texts more fun by allowing people to send annotated selfies and fun and silly edited photos and videos. Read more

Summer Travel Interest, Snapchat Video Views Rise

Summer Travel Opportunities Increase for Domestic Locations

While the threat of terrorism and disease are serious matters, fears over these two concerns may lead to an increase in domestic summer travel this year. According to the ADI Travel Survey 2016, interest in domestic summer travel and traveling within one’s own region rose 8% over the previous year.Domestic Travel

Lower gas prices are also being cited as helping to increase the interest in domestic summer travel, though survey respondents did say they planned on spending less on their trips this year. Still, this increased interest could lead to a better summer for U.S. DMO’s. Read more

Ad Blockers Big, Money for Snaps and a Dislike Button

Ad Blockers Big, Money for Snaps and a Dislike Button

mobile-ad-blockers

Credit: Apple

Ad blockers popular on App Store

Apple’s support of ad-blocking software in its latest iOS9 software appears to be paying off – for ad blocking apps. Three of the App Store’s top paid apps in the U.S. are ad blockers, causing concern for advertisers.

The adoption is reported to be even more popular in Europe. As of right now, the popularity of such apps appears to be on the rise but, like desktop ad blockers, it remains to be seen how popular the ad blocking software will be in the long term.

Snapchat cashing in?

Love that kitty Snap your sister sent you but bummed it disappeared before you could show a friend? For one dollar you can re-view up to three times. However, you can only use the paid review once per Snap.

Of course, this model marks a big change from a social network whose model is based upon the feature of a disappearing message.

Dawn of the Dislike button?

According to Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg a Dislike button is on its way. He made the comments earlier this week and said testing would roll out “soon.” Zuckerberg went on to say that Facebook has heard requests for a Dislike button for years and wanted users to know the company was listening to them. He mentioned that not every story or post is a happy one (like crises or tragedies) and that a Dislike button could actually be used positively for users and in a supporting way.

Profile Tags, Snapchat for Business and RIP Google+?

Profile Tags, Snapchat for Business and RIP Google+?

Google+ DecouplingNo Google+ Requirement

At this point, Google+ is a bit of a joke (much like the image to the right). Fortunately, for those who groan every time they realize a Google+ account is needed for Google accounts, the end of the dark times has come. Google has announced it will decouple Google+ profiles from its regular Google accounts.

The first service that will be affected is YouTube. This means that a Google+ account won’t be needed to upload videos or leave comments.

Google emphasized that the platform is not dead. While that may be true, it certainly isn’t helping Google+, which has struggled to attract users since it launched in 2011.

Facebook Profile Tags Coming?

Do your friends think you’re sassy? How about funny? They may soon be able to describe some of your qualities publicly on your Facebook profile through the use of profile tags, much as people do with certain skills on LinkedIn profiles.

Facebook is reportedly testing the feature out in New Zealand right now and is fully controlled by users, meaning any tags you don’t want to appear publicly will not. There’s no word just yet if the feature will be rolled out to the greater public.

Snapchat for Business Use

If you’re struggling to figure out how to use Snapchat for your business or CVB you certainly aren’t alone. Fortunately, there’s some great tips from Social Media Examiner you can check out here, but the five tips they provide boil down to:

  1. Give Access to Live Events
  2. Deliver Private Content
  3. Offer Contests, Perks or Promotions
  4. Take People Behind the Curtain
  5. Partner With Influencers

Of course, it’s important to first identify if a social network makes sense for your particular brand or business and to also ensure you can fully commit to using it so that in six months it’s become a ghost town account.