Facebook Creator App, Instagram Changes, YouTube Stories Function
Join us live for the Social Media Marketing Talk Show with Michael Stelzner as we explore the Facebook Creator app with Mari Smith, Instagram changes with Sue B. Zimmerman, YouTube Stories function with Amy Schmittauer, and more breaking social media marketing news of the week!
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For this week’s top stories, you’ll find timestamps below that allow you to fast-forward in the replay above.
Facebook Debuts Creator App and Other Creator Community Tools: Facebook announced two new initiatives “to help creators unleash their creativity.” The first is the Facebook Creator app, which offers a wide range of tools and features to help creators manage their Facebook presence. It’s available globally for both iOS and Android. (1:45)
Facebook also launched a central online destination where creators can access a variety of resources to help them improve, grow, and connect with fans. It includes best practices for growing fan bases, examples of what other successful influencers are doing, and answers to frequently asked questions. Creators are invited to join the Facebook for Creators community by filling out this form.
Instagram Allows Viewers to Request to Join a Live Video Broadcast: Instagram rolled out a new live video feature that enables viewers to request to join a live broadcast with the tap of a button. This new feature is available to all users with the updated version of the Instagram app in iOS and Android. (18:44)
Instagram Allows Photo Remixes and More Control Over Replays in Direct: Instagram users with the latest version of the app on iOS and Android can now reply to friends’ photo messages in Direct messages with an image featuring a sticker of the exact photo to which they are responding. Users can “move and resize it, and add your own twist with stickers, text, and drawings” as they continue to send photos back and forth. (22:30)
Instagram also announced that users will now have more control over the number of replays they want their friends to see of their Direct messages. Users have the option to choose “One View” to allow friends to see messages only once or “Allow Replay” to enable multiple views in an automatic loop.
Instagram Tests Wide Range of New Features: The Next Web reports that Instagram is currently testing a range of new features. These possible new features and tools include a native Regram button, which allows users to easily reshare images and videos from other accounts, the ability to search for and add GIFs to stories, a new archive feature for saving stories, and much more. (24:41)
YouTube Introduces New Stories Feature: YouTube debuted Reels, the platform’s experimental spin on the popular Stories format found on other social media networks. YouTube notes that Reels is “designed specifically for YouTube creators” in mind. For example, a creator’s reels will be featured in a separate tab on the creator’s channel and these posts won’t expire. YouTube is currently testing a beta version of Reels with a handful of creators but plans to expand it to more creators over time. (31:25)
Facebook Prototypes Messenger Broadcasts for Businesses: Facebook is privately testing a new Messenger product that will allow businesses to send automated mass-marketing messages to users who have contacted them in the past. Facebook confirms that it’s currently experimenting with this possible new feature internally, but hasn’t yet tested it with the public or any businesses “as of late last month.”
Facebook Officially Introduces Mentorship and Support Program and Other Community Tools and Initiatives: At Facebook’s second annual Social Good Forum, the company officially introduced a new Mentorship and Support program that “connects people who may need support and advice to achieve their goals with people who have the expertise and experience to help” and guides them through a step-by-step program developed by two nonprofit organizations, iMentor for education and the International Rescue Committee for crisis recovery.
In addition, Facebook announced a number of other charitable tools and programs. For instance, all fees for non-profits have been eliminated, which means that 100% of donations collected via Facebook payments will go directly to those organizations, and an annual Facebook Donation Fund has been created to help communities recover from disasters. Facebook also expanded its charitable giving tools to more people globally, released a new Fundraiser API, and more.
Facebook Introduces Trust Indicators for Published Content in the News Feed: Earlier this year, Facebook began testing a new feature that offers additional context for articles shared in the news feed. These include a description of the publisher, trending or related articles about the topic, and how the article is being shared by other users. Last week, Facebook announced that it will also begin displaying new publisher Trust Indicators such as information on their ethics policy, corrections policy, fact-checking policy, ownership structure, and masthead through this module. Facebook is initially testing Trust Indicators with a small group of publishers and plans to expand more broadly “over the coming months.”
Facebook Introduces New Discovery Tools for Auto Buying on Mobile: Facebook rolled out “a brand new set of mobile features specifically designed to help auto companies expand their customer base.” The first of these updates are dynamic ads for autos that allow manufacturers and dealers to upload their vehicle catalog with relevant details such as make, model, and year, and then automatically generates ads that show the most compelling inventory to the right audiences. Facebook also rolled out new lead ads for autos that make it easy for people to sign up for information such as offers and quotes from a specific dealership.
Facebook Adjusts Dimensions for Group Cover Images: Facebook appears to have adjusted the dimensions for group cover photos to 1640 x 856 pixels or a 1.91:1 ratio. This update was reported by Andrea Vahl and has been confirmed by the Facebook Help Center.
Facebook Messenger and PayPal Launch Extension for Invoicing: Facebook and PayPal deepened their integrations with the launch of a new Messenger extension that allows PayPal sellers to invoice buyers directly through private messaging. This new built-in feature offers a simple and easy way to request and receive payments for Facebook’s numerous Buy and Sell groups and Facebook Marketplace, which recently expanded to include housing rental and auto purchases. It also works for all small business PayPal invoicing in general and can include details like item name, description, price, and quantity, as well as a photo.
Facebook Debuts First Game for Spaces: Facebook released its first game for Spaces, the company’s social VR platform that debuted in April. The new mini-game, called “Bait! Arctic Open,” allows people to casually play and interact with one another at the same time. It’s considered a “milestone in a much larger effort to not only get more people using the social VR space but to keep them there” and shows off the potential for developing third-party tools for VR. Facebook’s social VR team is currently developing traditional table games like cards and dice for the future, too.
Facebook Experiments With Instagram-Style Collections Feature for Saved Posts: The Next Web reports that Facebook appears to be testing a new Collections feature “that should make it easier to rifle through your saved posts and find the ones you actually want to revisit.” Similar to the Instagram feature with the same name, Collections on Facebook allows users to save and neatly organize posts into easy-to-find folders that can be accessed later. This update was initially spotted by Mari Smith.
Facebook Brings 4K Resolution to Photos in Messenger: Facebook announced that Messenger users in select countries can now send and receive photos at 4K resolution or up to 4,096 x 4,096 pixels per image, which is the highest photo quality many smartphones support. Facebook is currently rolling out the 4K resolution for Messenger photos on both iPhone and Android to people in the U.S., Canada, France, Australia, UK, Singapore, Hong Kong, Japan, and South Korea and plans to expand it to additional countries “in the coming week.”
Twitter Tests How Many People Are “Talking About” Tweets: Twitter is experimenting with a new feature that quantifies how many people are “talking about” individual popular tweets. This new metric appears to replace the retweet and replies totals with “one, cumulative total” that has been spotted beneath a handful of tweets when they’re embedded elsewhere on the web. Twitter confirms that this is “just a small experiment” and is simply “part of Twitter’s ongoing attempts to explore new ways of providing more social context around tweets.”
Facebook Tests “Find Players” and Team Feature for Video Games: The Next Web reports that “Facebook is quietly testing a new feature that lets users find other people to play video games with” and organize teams. Some users report spotting a new Find Players icon in the status field that allows individuals to create a team name, description, a hashtag, and a photo.
Instagram Suggests Accounts to Follow in the Feed: Instagram now suggests other accounts that have been “picked for you” and presents them mid-feed in a carousel format.
Facebook Groups Highlight Members “Active This Week”: In October, Facebook released a bunch of new tools and features for Groups, including Group Profiles that are “based on publicly-available [sic] information like things they may share in common and a feed of that person’s activity in the group.” It appears that Facebook is taking this feature a step further and highlighting which members have been the most “active this week” in the group. Their group profiles and posts are now showcased in a box at the top of the group page for group admins to view.
Twitter Confirms Dedicated Tweetstorm Feature: Earlier this year, developers discovered a hidden Tweetstorm feature in Twitter’s Android app. Twitter has only now confirmed that it’s testing this new feature with users who are part of its Experiments Program. It also added a Tweet All button in place of a user’s avatar and a + icon next to the character counter that links the multiple tweets into a single thread. At this time, this new feature is only available to a handful of test users.
Facebook Experiments With New Way to Tag Friends in Comments: A new option to “Mention a Friend” has been spotted within Facebook’s commenting field. With the new feature, users will no longer need to type “@” followed by a person’s name to tag them in a comment. Instead, users can click this new button and Facebook will bring up a scrollable version of their friends list. Facebook has neither confirmed nor shared any details about this possible new feature.
Facebook Launches Video Link Covers for Instant Articles on iOS: Facebook rolled out video link covers for Instant Articles to “enhance the storytelling experience.” Facebook announced that video link covers are now available within the header of an instant article, as well as in the news feed, timeline, and anywhere else there’s an Instant Articles unit. This new feature is currently only available on iOS.
December 2, 2017 at 05:07AM