This week in social media news, Instagram rolls out ads in Instagram Shop tab to international markets, TikTok adds a new ‘Promote’ ad option to business profiles, YouTube opens a 6,000-seat live entertainment venue with Hollywood Park in Inglewood, California and more.
Instagram Launches Ads In The Shop Tab Globally
Instagram is rolling out ads in the Instagram Shop tab, the platform’s fully dedicated shopping surface, to countries globally where the tab is available. The move comes after Instagram tested the new format, which includes single images and a carousel option, with select US advertisers including Fenty Beauty, Away and Clare paint.
Why it matters: The expansion is part of Instagram’s larger effort to invest more in its e-commerce business, though not everyone was happy about the addition of the Instagram Shop tab. When it was introduced last summer, it replaced Instagram’s “Activity” tab at the bottom navigation row, much to the chagrin of users who said the move made Instagram feel more commercially driven.
The details: During the testing phase of ads in Instagram Shop, the company said the format would include an auction-based model. The number of ads a user sees will depend on how they use the app and how many people are shopping in the Instagram tab. Since Instagram Shop is a mobile-only feature, ads will only appear on mobile as tiles that are labeled ‘Sponsored.’
TikTok Adds New ‘Promote’ Ad Option For Business Profiles
TikTok has launched a new ‘Promote’ ad option that lets business accounts turn organic videos into an ad directly within the app.
Why it matters: The new feature will help brands drive one of three objectives—more video views, more website visits or more followers—that correspond to a specific call-to-action. One caveat is that the ad feature is available to public clips that don’t use copyright-protected music.
The details: Business profiles can access TikTok’s new Promote ad option in two ways–either by selecting the ‘Promote’ button in a video’s individual video settings or via ‘Settings and privacy’ > ‘Business suite’ where they’ll see the Promote button.
To set up a Promote ad, brands can choose the video they want to boost (TikTok suggests using your best-performing organic video) then choose a goal, duration and target audience for the campaign. After TikTok approves the promotion, you can get insights on the video’s performance.
YouTube Debuts 6,000-Seat Live Entertainment Venue In Inglewood, California
In collaboration with Inglewood, California’s Hollywood Park, YouTube has opened YouTube Theater. At the 6,000-seat venue, which has live-streaming capabilities built into the infrastructure, YouTube says it plans to host live events like concerts, theater performances, esports competitions, conferences and more, with the first event slated for September.
Why it matters: With the state of in-person events in limbo due to the Delta variant, YouTube Theater could play a part in shaping the next generation of hybrid or digital-only events. In addition to built-in live-streaming capabilities that let performers livestream their events to YouTuber viewers worldwide, the theater includes a large-scale digital YouTube icon outside the venue and a digital wall inside. According to YouTube, both utilize motion-sensor technology so fans can interact with the screens, and the screen can be programmed with content related to events.
The details: YouTube Theater is part of the platform’s 10-year partnership with Hollywood Park, a 300-acre sports and entertainment destination.
As per YouTube:
“In the future, they hope to use it to celebrate YouTube creators, extending content from the platform into the real world to help creators grow their businesses, and as a place to bring our company events to life.”
Emarketer: Pinterest US Shoppers Grew 30.5% In 2020 To 12 Million Total
According to eMarketer’s latest forecast, the number of US social buyers on Pinterest grew 30.5 percent in 2020 to a total of 12 million. The firm expects the figure to grow another 16.5 percent to reach 13.9. million by the end of 2021.
Why it matters: Pinterest has introduced a variety of social commerce tools in recent years, including Buyable Pins in 2015 which evolved into Product Pins in 2018, leading users directly from a post to a retailer’s checkout page. More recently, it launched Idea Pins, a replica of Instagram Stories that enables creators to create brand-sponsored content.
The details: Emarketer projects Pinterest buyers will reach 15.1 million in 2022 and 16 million by 2023, the latter figure which would represent 15.7 percent of US social buyers.
LinkedIn Makes its 20 Most Popular LinkedIn Learning Courses Freely Available Throughout August
Looking to up your skills for a job change or career advancement in the second half of the year?
This will help – today, LinkedIn has published its listing of the 20 most popular LinkedIn Learning courses over the first half of 2022. In addition to this, LinkedIn’s also making each of these courses free to access till the end of the month – so now may well be the best time to jump in and brush up on the latest, rising skills in your industry.
As per LinkedIn:
“As the Great Reshuffle slows and the job market cools, professionals are getting more serious about skill building. The pandemic accelerated change across industries, and as a result, skills to do a job today have changed even compared to a few years ago. Professionals are responding by learning new skills to future-proof their careers and meet the moment.”
LinkedIn says that over seven million people have undertaken these 20 courses this year, covering everything from improved communication, project management, coding, strategic thinking and more.
Here are the top 20 LinkedIn Learning courses right now, which you can access via the relevant links:
- Goal Setting: Objectives and Key Results (OKRs) with Jessie Withers
- Excel Essential Training (Office 365/Microsoft 365) with Dennis Taylor
- Interpersonal Communication with Dorie Clark
- Cultivating a Growth Mindset with Gemma Leigh Roberts
- Project Management Foundations with Bonnie Biafore
- Using Questions to Foster Critical Thinking and Curiosity with Joshua Miller
- Essentials of Team Collaboration with Dana Brownlee
- Unconscious Bias with Stacey Gordon
- Learning Python with Joe Marini
- Communicating with Confidence with Jeff Ansell
- Speaking Confidently and Effectively with Pete Mockaitis
- Learning the OWASP Top 10 with Caroline Wong
- Power BI Essential Training with Gini von Courter
- Strategic Thinking with Dorie Clark
- SQL Essential Training with Bill Weinman
- Developing Your Emotional Intelligence with Gemma Leigh Roberts
- Communication Foundations with Brenda Bailey-Hughes and Tatiana Kolovou
- Agile Foundations with Doug Rose
- Digital Marketing Foundations with Brad Batesole
- Critical Thinking with Mike Figliuolo
If you’ve been thinking about upskilling, now may be the time – or maybe it’s just worth taking some of the programming courses, for example, so that you have a better understanding of how to communicate between departments on projects.
Or you could take an Agile course. If, you know, you don’t trust your own management ability.
The courses are available for free till August 31st via the above links.
Instagram Is Rolling Out Reels Replies, And Will Be Testing A New Feature Which Informs …
Instagram has added a few more social features to the platform, with Reels Replies being rolled out. Along with the Replies, anew feature is being tested that shows when two users are active together in the same chat.
Reels has been performing much better than perhaps even Instagram ever anticipated. The TikTok-inspired new video format (which officially claims to have absolutely no relation to the former) had some trouble really finding its footing initially. However, Reels has grown massively and while it may not be a source of the most direct competition to TikTok, it is indeed a worthy alternative.
Reels has grown to the point that it has a massive creator program attached to it, and the video format has even been migrated to Facebook with the goal of generating further user interest there. Naturally, with such a successful virtual goldmine on its hands, Instagram has been hard at work developing new features and interface updates for Reels, integrating it more and more seamlessly into the rest of the social media platform. Features such as Reels Replies are a major part of such attempts at integration.
Reels Visual Replies are essentially just what they sound like: A Reel that is being used to reply to someone. It’s a feature that’s been seen frequently across TikTok as well. Reel Replies essentially take a user’s comments, and reply to them in video format. The comment will then show up within the Reel itself as a text-box, taking up some amount of space, and showing both the user who issued said comment along with the text. The text-box is apparently adjustable, with users having the ability to move it around and change its size depending on where it obstructs one’s Reel the least.
Overall, it’s a fun addition to the Reels format, even if the credit should be going to TikTok first. At any rate, it’s an example of Instagram really utilizing Reels’ social media capabilities, outside of just serving it up as a form of entertainment.
Speaking of social media capabilities, a new feature might help alleviate one of the most common frustrations encountered across all such platforms. Isn’t it annoying when you see that a friend’s online, but isn’t replying to your chat? Sure, they’ve probably just put their phone down to run a quick errand, but there’s no way for you to know, right? Well, there sort of is now! Instagram is beta testing a new feature via which if both users are active within a chat, the platform will display that accordingly. It’s a work-around, sure, and one that’s currently being tested for usefulness, but it’s still a very nice, and even fresh, addition to the social media game.
— Yash Joshi (@MeYashjoshi) December 10, 2021
5 apps for scheduling Instagram posts on iPhone and Android
Alright, we get it. You’re an Instagram Nostradamus.
You know exactly what you want to post and when you’re gonna want to post it. Maybe there’s a meme or comment you want to make that you know will be totally relevant for a future moment or event. Or it could be that you’re an influencer and you want to make sure you keep a steady stream of content coming, so you want to schedule posts for times when you know you won’t be active (or won’t have internet access).
You’ll be happy to know there are apps that are specialized for just such situations. So listen up, InstaNostradamuses…Instagrostra…Instadam…Insta…uh…you guys (we’ll workshop it. No we won’t. We’ll probably just abandon that effort completely. You’re welcome) — these are the Instagram-post-scheduling apps for you.
While all of the iPhone apps below are free to download, they all have some in-app purchases.
We’ll start with “official partner” of Instagram, itself, Planoly — an Instaplanner that uses a grid to let you plan, schedule, and publish posts (as well as Reels) on Instagram. The app also lets you see post metrics and analytics so you can make sure your post didn’t flop.
Credit: buffer / app store
Buffer is another Instagram post scheduler that helps you plan your posts and analyze feedback once they’re published. Use a calendar view to drag and drop posts into days/time slots for easy scheduling.
Credit: preview / app store
Preview offers typical post-scheduling tools and analytics along with a few helpful extras. Get caption ideas, recommendations for hashtags, and more.
Credit: content office / app store
An Instagram post scheduler with a visual boost, Content Office allows users to plan and schedule Instagram posts while learning “marketing and visual guides to grow your brand on Instagram.” Like aesthetics and using visuals to create cohesive themes? Maybe this is the Instaplanner for you.
Content Office is available for iOS on the Apple App Store.
Credit: plann / apple store
You’ll never guess what “Plann” lets you do…
Aside from scheduling posts, get content ideas and recommendations, as well as strategy tips to ensure you’re maximizing your Instagram engagement. Ever wonder when the best time to post something is? Plann can offer you some help with that.
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