October Social Media Update 2018

This month’s Top 5 Social Media Updates revolve around mobile devices and how they are becoming the new norm for consumers. This is leading social media platforms to better understand how users prefer to use social media and it’s evident that they want to use it on their phones. This month we have updates from Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat and YouTube, so read on to find out more and specifically what it means for your mobile experience.

Facebook – Instant Experience Ads

In early 2016 Facebook launched a feature for brands and businesses called Facebook Canvas. The idea behind it was simple – people were increasingly spending more time on mobile devices and only switching between a small number of apps. Businesses and brands needed access to a fully customizable digital space that was optimised for mobile viewing. This is where Facebook Canvas comes in.

The feature experienced success, especially with advertisers who knew how to make the most out of the Canvas experience. Now Facebook is back to make a good thing even better, this month they have announced that Facebook canvas will ge getting a bit of a makeover, which includes a name change and the addition of Facebook Pixel functionality. The feature will now be referred to as ‘Instant Experience Ads’ and we think that name is very fitting. A main drawcard of this advertising feature is that creators can produce experiences that felt like websites but loaded 15 times faster than conventional websites on mobile devices, so you can see where the ‘instant’ part of the name comes from. As for the ‘experience’ part of the name, this really depends on how well users are able to use the ad feature, with some brands going above and beyond by making visually stunning, interactive and immersive ‘experiences’ for viewers. Have you used Facebook Canvas or Instant Experience Ads before? Let us know your experiences!

Instagram – Video Tag Testing

Video is becoming the new normal on social media and Instagram is no exception. We have been seeing a massive increase in the amount of video being shared on Instagram Stories, as well as the original Instagram feed.

In the next 12 months we anticipate many updates to videos features on all social media platforms and it looks as though Instagram is leading the charge with their newest feature trial.
Instagram has begun testing a way for users to be able to tag their friends in their videos. Previously, users could only be tagged within static images on Instagram – a feature that was introduced in 2013 and to tag a friend in a video, users would have to settle with mentioning their friend in the comment section.

We look forward to Instagram rolling this feature out globally for all users in the coming months should Instagram’s testing yield positive results.

Instagram – ‘Superzoom’ Feature Expansion

Instagram may get a bit of slack for essentially stealing the Stories idea from Snapchat, but you have to hand it to them for making it their own. It seems each month they are bringing new additions to Stories that make them more engaging and enjoyable for the creators and viewers. The newest update that fits into this category is an expansion on a well known and loved feature: Super Zoom.

If you’re new to the Super Zoom feature, allow us to enlighten you. Launching in October last year the original feature included only one option and it took the web by storm. It was a simple filter – dramatic music and dramatic camera close ups of a face or object almost as if you were in a movie. Naturally, Instagram built on this success and made more edits to the Super Zoom feature.

Fast-forward to now – Instagram Stories has brought in six new effects for you to play and engage with, including ‘Bummer’ which features sad music and falling leaves and ‘Paparazzi’ which features camera flashes and increasing close ups.
We had a whole lot of fun in our office testing these new additions which you can see a glimpse of in the Top 5 Social Media Updates Video.

Snapchat – ‘Bounce’ Feature

Now that we have discussed Instagram taking something of Snapchat’s and making it arguably better – Is Snapchat doing the same thing to Instagram’s Boomerang?
This month, Snapchat announced that they would be adding a feature called ‘Bounce’ to their repertoire. To shed light on Snapchat’s Bounce feature, we’ll first explain Instagram’s Boomerang feature.
Instagram launched Boomerang in 2015. Described as short, action-packed video loops, Boomerang edits video to create an a video that loops in a back and forth motion.
Although incredibly popular, Boomerangs had 2 issues: firstly, you can’t control how the video is looped. Secondly, the feature required a stand-alone app which linked with Instagram, however recently Boomerang has been built into the Stories options.
Snapchat has seemingly understood these issues and built their Bounce feature around it. Snapchat doesn’t require any external apps and when you have filmed your video, you have the option to make it into a creative looped video. Best yet, you can then control where exactly you want the looping to focus.

If you’re an avid user of Instagram’s Boomerang – Give Snapchat’s new feature a try and let us know what you think.

YouTube – Vertical Ads

Mobile is force to be reckoned with – and YouTube knows that very well, especially considering their data shows that 70% of YouTube content is viewed on mobile devices. So it’s no surprise that YouTube has implemented support for vertical ads. The social media giant’s vertical ads are optimised for mobile and take up the full space of the screen to ensure that advertisers can make the most of the space.
Recently, YouTube also implemented support for vertical video uploads from users, meaning that the dreaded black bars would no longer appear beside the video and when viewed on mobile, the video would once again take up the full screen, just as it did when it was created.

Mobile is evidently taking over and social media platforms are making the most of this trend- are you making the most of it in your marketing?

That’s it from us for the Top 5 Social Media Updates for October – let us know your thoughts!