1) Ads are on the way for Facebook Stories
Facebook Stories may be lagging behind Instagram Stories at only 150 million daily actives in comparison to the 400 million that Instagram Stories boasts but, executives believe the platform is on track to overtake the News Feed as the most popular social sharing option in 2018. Facebook has highlighted the potential of Stories for brands, and their capacity to help marketers connect with their audiences, noting that a third of the most viewed stories on Instagram are from businesses.
But ads in Stories are where Facebook suggests there’s the most brand potential.
“Businesses are already seeing results using ads in Instagram Stories. For example, Tropicana ran video ads in Instagram Stories for its summertime product promotion campaign, achieving an 18-point lift in ad recall and 15-point lift in purchase intent among males. OpenTable used ads in Instagram Stories to drive online restaurant reservations, resulting in a 33% lower cost per reservation compared to other ad formats. And Overstock ran video ads in Instagram Stories to acquire new customers and increase sales, and generated an 18% higher return on ad spend and a 20% decrease in cost per acquisition.”
As noted by Facebook:
“The rise of stories is clear: people want fast, immersive and fun ways to share photos, videos and text with their friends and family - and stories offer just that. People use stories to share and discover content they’re interested in for movements as big as Pride and moments as small as the coffee they’re drinking. We designed stories on our platforms to fulfill people’s need to interact and share in engaging and playful ways on the vertical screen.”
2) Pinterest adds new usage insights
Last week, Pinterest launched a collection of user profiles representative of its audience base. The short summaries outline who these people are, what they’re interested in, and why they use the platform, allowing you to click on any of the featured profiles and read the Pinterest story behind each, along with stats representative of that users’ demographic. The stories, which Pinterest will expand on over time, provide more context as to why people come to the platform, which is aiming to help businesses to better assess the potential fit within their strategic approach. But more than that, they also underline why Pinterest is growing, and the expanding array of opportunities within the app.
3) Instagram’s testing ‘Reactions’ Emojis on Instagram Stories
Instagram is currently testing emoji reactions as responses on Instagram Stories, creating new ways to engage with posts. Whilst this isn’t a significant update for the platform it could offer another way for brands to track performance and helps to ensure you’re delivering content which resonates with your audience and can also monitor audience sentiment.
4) You can now see when your connections are active on Instagram
Instagram has now added an active status to help fuel real-time connection after announcing its new ‘green dot’ indicator, showing when your connections are active. The idea of being able to know that someone will see your message immediately will prompt more engagement.
“When your friends are active on Instagram, you’ll see a green dot next to their profile picture in various spaces within the app, including the Direct inbox and your friend list when you share a post from feed. You will only see status for friends who follow you or people who you have talked to in Direct. You can easily hide your own status and turn off the ability to see when your friends are active in your settings.”
5) LinkedIn introduces voice messages
We’re not sure how we feel about this one! LinkedIn has announced it’s working to increase engagement by encouraging users to record voice messages.
Voice messages are already popular on platforms like Whatsapp and Facebook Messenger where a more informal approach is taken, so, put in a capacity where members are sending professional messages, we predict a lot of ‘re-records’ that could make for awkward hearing.