Social Media

The Status Update, New Business Features for Instagram Stories

Instagram Features

This is a week post we do that features a round up of all the social media news that happened during the past week. We cover what happened and why it’s important for you and your business.

A lot happened this week so lets get started with Instagram.


Instagram Brings Business Insights and Ads to Stories

Today more than 150 million Instagram users use Stories. According to Instagram, Stories also have very high levels of engagement with one in five stories getting a direct message from its viewers.

Businesses have been using Stories a lot and one-third of the most viewed stories are from businesses.

Because of the success of Instagram Stories the platform is rolling out new tools such as Stories Insights and Ads in Stories.

Businesses that have converted to a business profile will be able to see reach, impressions, replies and exits for each individual story.

Soon you’ll also be able to run immersive, full screen advertisements in stories as well. These ads let you use targeting features to show your ads to only the revenant audience you want to reach.

Currently Instagram has partnered with 30+ clients around the world such as Netflix and Nike who will run the first ever ads on Instagram Stories.

The ads should be rolling out to everyone else soon.


New Tools and Features for Facebook Live

Facebook recently rolled out Facebook Live for desktops meaning that users will be able to go live from their PC or Laptop, not just the mobile app.

So far for a user to go live from a page they had to be an admin of the page. Now Facebook has added a new “Live Contributor” roll that you can assign to managers of your page.

Users with this roll will be able to go live on behalf of a page but the page admin still maintains security and full control over the page itself.

In terms of analytics over the coming weeks video metrics for public videos will be available for profiles with 5,000 or more followers.

Facebook Live Insights

These metrics will include things like:

  • Minutes viewed
  • Number of views
  • Total engagements (comments, reactions and shares)

Video insights will also be available in the Mentions app over the coming weeks.

Another new feature is the ability to pin comments to the bottom of a live broadcast.

Facebook now offers a video permalink for pages so you can easily direct your audience to your videos page.

The URL for your page will be:

Users who visit the page will see the live video if a broadcast is currently underway as well as a library of the page’s previous live and non-live videos.

The final new feature Facebook introduced is the ability to easily crosspost videos to multiple pages after a live broadcast.


New Retargeting Options on Facebook

Facebook is currently testing new retargeting options with a small group of U.S. brands.

These options will allow advertisers to target a broader audience, not just those who have already engaged with their website or page.

Advertisers will be able to “Hone in on folks who may be interested in a product but have not necessarily looked at it online.”

According to Adweek some of the companies testing out this new format have claimed that the new ads are 20% more effective than other types of acquisition advertising.


Twitter Dashboard Shuts Down

In a series of Tweets the Twitter Dashboard app announced it will be shutting down on February 3rd.

The Twitter dashboard let users manage their Twitter accounts with tweet scheduling, analytics and other features.

In one of their tweets they mention that they hope to bring the best features of dashboard to the broader Twitter community which could be very interesting and useful.

If you currently use Twitter Dashboard and still have tweets queued up they will be post as scheduled.


Snapchat Launches Universal Search

Snapchat has launched a universal search bar that’s always accessible at the top of the app. The search bar is designed for speed so users can locate what they’re looking for and keep on snapping.


Pinterest Applies Deep Learning to Related Pins

The Related Pins feature is one of the most popular ways that people find ideas on Pinterest.

Now Pinterest has announced that they are applying “Deep Learning” to the Related Pins algorithm. Apparently during testing this change has increased engagement with Related Pins by 5%.

On the Pinterest Engineering Blog they’ve written a giant post about the logic and programming behind the algorithm and how everything works.

Pinterest Related Pins

With the new algorithm Related Pins will show more accurate recommendations based on the “context of a Pin,” instead of just signals from the board it’s pinned to.

Hopefully this means that businesses will also see increased traffic and engagement on Twitter.

Remember however that everything these social networks do is to keep people on their sites and engaged with their content for as long as possible. This is so they can show as much advertising and make as much money as possible.


Google+ Uses Machine Learning to Save Bandwidth with Photos

Usually when viewing images at a high resolution on the Internet it requires a lot of bandwidth. The higher the resolution the higher the file size and this can be a problem with slow Internet connections.

To help with this Google+ has introduced a new technology called RAISR. RAISR uses machine earning to produce great quality versions of low-resolution images.


With RAISR Google claims they’ve been able to use up to 75% less bandwidth per image.

Currently Google is only using this for high resolution images when they appear in the streams of a subset of Android devices.

They hope to roll this technology out more broadly in the coming weeks.


YouTube Introduces Super Chat

YouTube recently introduced it’s latest tool to connect during livestreams, Super Chat.

Anyone watching a live stream can purchase a Super Chat which is a highlighted message in the chat stream that stands out from the rest. It’s very similar to donations on live streaming services such as

YouTube Super Chat

Users can use this to get more of their favourite creator’s attention.

Super Chats remain pinned to the top of the chat for up to 5 hours.

This feature helps creators make more money will also keeping conversations and connections with fans more meaningful.

Super Chat is currently in beta and is planned to launch broadly on January 31.

YouTube has also announce they will be discontinuing Fan Funding. This was a feature that let viewers make voluntary payments to support creators directly.

Apparently the feature never achieved widespread usage and will be discontinued on February 28.

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