May 1, 2020
April 2020, if we’re being honest, didn’t even seem real. Are we really living through a pandemic? Do our roots actually look that bad? (The answer to this is yes). Is this all a fever dream we’ll wake up from? Unfortunately, no – but April is over! We got through it, and we’ll get through more. So why don’t we sit back, relax, and enjoy our success with a few little social media updates and the 411 on what happened for April and what’s to come in May.
Amidst the issue of brick and mortar shopping being unavailable to everyone, in addition to the global health crisis, both TikTok and Instagram have developed stickers that benefit eCommerce. First, Instagram has a new IG live donation feature that you can donate directly to a specific organization directly from someone’s story. Users can pick from a numerous list of organizations, and fundraise directly from their phone, sort of like boosterthon, but for Instagram.
Another one of Instagram’s updates includes their new batch of stickers that allow for buying gift cards and ordering from restaurants directly in-app. While the gift card, order food and send donation stickers were introduced at the beginning of the month, there’s reportedly a new “share professional” sticker being developed that will allow users to share a small portion of a business’s ‘gram on their story. The sticker will include the @, avatar, and three photos from the profile itself. This is in an effort to promote more sharing of smaller businesses that need more online traffic than what they might get if they’re a local brick and mortar, as well as creating new ways to share information other than just providing a handle.
Additionally, TikTok is testing out a new gift-giving feature within their platform, called “Small Gestures”. Users can pick from virtual gifts like free 90 day Pandora trial, 2-month DashPass, 2-month subscription to Skillshare, etc. Since this is virtually very new, the gifts don’t range in size, but we’re curious to see how this develops. “Small Gestures” is a move towards TikTok’s platform of “together while apart”, and can be accessed on the Discover page through the app.
Remember when you used to have to buy tickets to go to an event? Us too. Facebook has now graciously given us that experience back! In an attempt to help small businesses in the struggling economy, Facebook is now allowing users to charge for access to their Facebook live events. This tool will really come in handy if you’re an in-person brand or service and need to find new ways to offer your services and still get paid, just virtually.
And if there already weren’t enough group messaging services and platforms out there, Facebook has developed its own way of allowing group video calls. They call it “messaging rooms”. Unlike Zoom and other platforms, there is no time limit and no need to schedule a meeting beforehand. The idea behind the development was to encourage spontaneity between users and increase interaction. What we find fun about this idea is that whoever’s hosting the call will have a button on their friends’ homepage that says “Join ___ room”, and anyone can come in. Rooms are limited to 50 people, however, so don’t think all 400 of your friends can join, it’s not a co-working brunch session.
As if our online shopping addiction wasn’t bad enough. Pinterest has added a new “shop tab” that frankly, we’re way too excited about (but our wallets aren’t). Where before you needed to sift through regular pins and shoppable ones when you searched for inspiration or a specific item, now there’s a whole page dedicated to showing you pins with items that can be purchased directly from the platform.
They’ve also added “style guides”, which are curated boards with different products matching a theme or a style for users on the hunt for specific things. If you don’t have your store on this platform, we highly suggest you hop on it- “the number of users engaging with Shopping on Pinterest has grown by 44% year-over-year” according to TechCrunch.
Ah yes. Zoom, our favorite meeting platform since the beginning of Covid. With massively increased usage and lots of security problems being brought to their attention, it was only time before they rolled out a new update. The fun part about their update is it’s literally at the same level as the government. Yea, literally. Zoom’s new update includes “AES 256-bit” which is the encryption system used to ensure the safety of classified documents. Among other updates include increased security measures for more privacy to counterattack the “zoom-bombing” that’s been happening. So don’t worry, your after-work happy hours are even safer than before.
This news is good for all of us who use desktop versions of popular apps in the marketing industry. Instagram has finally included DM’s as a feature on desktop, which will probably help make answering customer service questions for big brands a lot easier than having to share the company password to everyone’s phones. This tool also provides better access for those who might have stricter mobile data usage in other countries.
TikTok’s update is really coming for those who are managing profiles and accounts on the app. Users can now login via desktop, as well as post videos and view analytics. This will become a great advantage for big brands or personal brands seeking to schedule content and not have to create it on the fly, as well as see what’s performing better, who their audience is, where they’re located, and how to better market to them.
Instagram is currently working on and testing out an option to broadcast a story to both Instagram and Facebook at the same time, which could be very useful in terms of reaching different audiences, especially in age range. It also would create the ability to expand live-stream reach. Live-streaming is becoming a very viable audience as that is quite literally the closest thing we have to real human interaction.
Don’t say Snapchat never did anything for you. In fact, it’s gathered data from three different industries- restaurant, eCommerce, and entertainment- and provide one sheet per industry of statistics and insights to help marketers with their current or potential Snapchat campaigns. You can check out the page here.
April really has seemed to be the month of eCommerce, not surprisingly. At this rate, we might never have to leave our couches to try on clothes. Until next time, stay safe and stay healthy, and we’ll keep you updated and anything social-related on our platforms.
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