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Social Media Rundown: Instagram Hits 1 Billion Users, Lunches IGTV; Facebook Subscription Groups; LinkedIn Kudos

The new IGTV from Instagram in use.

Brands and individual creators jumped right into IGTV.

Big news coming from Instagramland: Not only has the photo-sharing platform surpassed 1 billion monthly active users, but it also just announced IGTV. Despite the unspectacular name, IGTV puts Instagram in direct competition with YouTube and further establishes the mobile platform as the ultimate social media platform for creatives.

Looking beyond the major Instagram news, Facebook ponders ‘subscription groups’ and rolls out an initiative to combat the opioid crisis. Meanwhile, LinkedIn is rolling out a new ‘kudos’ feature.

Be sure to check out the Learn section for social media success tips from National Geographic and all you could possibly want to know about IGTV.

Social Media News:

  • With IGTV, Instagram Takes Aim at YouTube (Wired). On IGTV, long-form vertical videos can go as long as 10 minutes (in-feed videos are still limited to one minute). Some creators with large audiences can post up to 60 minutes of video — National Geographic, for example, used its first episode of “One Strange Rock” for its first video on IGTV, all 47 minutes of it. IGTV videos are all prerecorded, but live video could come later. By the way, the app now has more than 1 billion monthly active users. Read all about IGTV and its user growth in the official announcement on the Instagram info center.
  • Facebook Tests ‘Subscription Groups’ That Charge for Exclusive Content (TechCrunch). I don’t know about you, but I can’t imagine ever paying to access a special Facebook sub-group — especially $30 bucks a month. But Facebook has apparently already started to letting Group admins charge $4.99 to $29.99 per month for access to special sub-Groups full of exclusive posts.
  • Facebook to Redirect Users Searching for Opioids to Federal Crisis Help Line (STAT). Facebook users attempting to purchase opioids or seeking out addiction treatment will be instead redirected to info about a federal crisis help line.
  • LinkedIn Adds new ‘Kudos’ Feature to Acknowledge the Contributions of Connections (Social Media Today). Despite the negativity from the article’s author, this seems like a nice new feature for giving public praise to a colleague. LinkedIn Kudos is rolling out now globally in the LinkedIn iOS app, and coming soon to Android and desktop.

Learn:

  • The 4 Lessons Any Brand Can Learn from Nat Geo’s Social Media Success (Hootsuite). As it turns out, National Geographic is the largest non-celebrity brand on Instagram so they’re clearly doing something right. National Geographic’s social strategy is based on four core guiding principles: Stay true to your brand, go immediate (or live), harness the power of “wow,” and embrace new technology.
  • IGTV: The Ultimate Guide to Instagram’s New Video Platform (Later). This article from Later (the company that provides NEJM’s Instagram landing page) has the main points you need to know about IGTV. If you need to go deeper and enjoy a tidy list, Hootsuite has a nice roundup of the technical aspects and more.

What do you think of IGTV? Seen any good ‘shows’ yet?

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Social Media Rundown: Social as a News Source Falls; Facebook Demands Consent for Email/Phone Ad Targeting; IHOP Pulls a Social Media Stunt

It’s been an exciting week in the world of social media, from IHOP flipping the ‘P’ in its name to a ‘B’ in the name of burgers to the harrowing trip of a brave little raccoon to the top of a 23-story building in St. Paul, Minn.

The MPRraccoon scales the 23-story UBS building.

The MPRraccoon was the hero no one expected.

Besides all that, there’s a new report out that says people are turning to social media — specifically Facebook — as a news source considerably less than in the past. Read on for more news in this week’s Rundown.

Social Media News:

  • After Years of Growth, the Use of Social Media for News Is Falling across the World (NiemanLab). People are turning away from Facebook for news. In the U.S., 39 percent of people said they used Facebook as a source of news in 2018, down 9 percentage points from 2017. But messaging apps are picking up the slack. This article is a nice breakdown of a new Digital News Report from the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism.
  • Facebook Demands Advertisers Have Consent for Email/Phone-Based Targeting (TechCrunch). “Starting July 2nd, advertisers will have to declare whether contact info uploaded for ad targeting was collected with proper user consent by them, one of their partners or both. Users will be able to see this info if they opt to block future ads from that business. Facebook had always technically required consent, but it hadn’t previously done much to enforce those rules.”
  • Twitter Wants to Send You Personalized News Notifications (The Next Web). The mobile notifications will be personalized based on user interests. You know, just in case you’re not currently getting enough notifications on your phone.
  • LinkedIn Improves the Relevance of Its Feed with Hashtags (We Are Social Media). You can now personalize your LinkedIn feed with the hashtags you’re most interested in following. This small change should make hashtags more important to include in LinkedIn updates. Hopefully people — and brands — don’t go overboard.

Learn:

  • Internet Flips out after IHOP Turns the Letter ‘P’ to a ‘B’ for Burgers (ABC News). IHOP officially announced the limited-time name change Monday morning after teasing it on social media asking users to guess what they thought the name would “b”-come. IHOP’s peers were quick to poke fun at the stunt with perhaps the best zinger, of course, coming from Wendy’. As with any social media or PR stunt such as this, there are always lessons to be learned.
  • How to Create a Social Media Marketing Strategy in 8 Easy Steps (Hootsuite). This Hootsuite post takes you through an eight-step plan to create a social media strategy. From setting goals to running a social media audit, this is a pretty comprehensive blog post, but without being overwhelming.

What social media news caught your eye this week?


Social Media Rundown: Facebook to Launch Dating Service; LinkedIn Turns 15; Make Better Cover Photos

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announces Facebook dating service.

Facebook announced its new dating service at its F8 conference. Photo via Mashable.

Despite the privacy concerns hanging over Facebook, the social networking company has announced its plan to launch a new dating service. But it won’t just be a hook-up site. No, no, this will be all about finding serious relationships. Meanwhile, its Instagram product just keeps getting better and is definitely drawing folks away from Snapchat (see below). And happy birthday, LinkedIn!

Don’t forget to check out the learn section for tips on creating a Facebook cover photo and how you can use lookalike audiences to better target your Facebook ads.

Social Media News:

  • Facebook to launch dating service as Zuckerberg takes aim at Tinder (The Telegraph). It was only a matter of time; Facebook has come full circle. You’ll soon be able to create a dating profile that is separate from your Facebook profile with potential matches recommended based on dating preferences, common interests, and mutual friends. The idea is already being ripped for catering to the older demographic.
  • Instagram debuts video chat, opens Stories up to developers (Mashable). Instagram seems to just keep rolling out more and more exciting features and beating Snapchat in its own game. Users will soon be able to share content from third-party apps directly to Stories. Plus, video chat, augmented-reality camera effects, and a redesigned Explore tab are all rolling out soon.
  • LinkedIn Turns 15 (LinkedIn Blog). Happy birthday, LinkedIn! View a ‘then and now’ infographic to see what’s changed in the past 15 years.

Learn:

  • How to Create Great Facebook Cover Photos: Sizes, Styles, Examples (Hootsuite Blog). The cover photo (or video) is the first thing people see when visiting a Facebook Page so it’s important to not only have an on-brand image, but to also change it up from time-to-time. This post gives you everything you need to know to create a new cover photo and some examples to get your creative juices flowing.
  • 3 Overlooked Facebook Lookalike Audiences That Will Improve Your Ad Results (Social Media Examiner). This post takes a thorough look at targeting people who spend time on your website, who spend money on your site, and people who’ve watched 75% of a video.

What big news did I miss this week? Please let me know.

 


The Social Media Rundown: Facebook Adds Info Button to Articles; Reddit Gets a Redesign

It’s been another busy week for Facebook as the Cambridge Analytica saga carries on and it continues to fight ‘fake news.’ Meanwhile, Twitter has purged more terrorist-related accounts, and Hell has frozen over, er, Reddit gets a redesign (coming soon).

All this and more in this week’s Social Media Rundown. Plus, I bring you not one, but two worthwhile learnings. Check it all out below:

Social Media News:

  • Facebook: ‘Malicious actors’ used its tools to discover identities and collect data on a massive global scale (source). Facebook admits that Cambridge Analytica obtained user data from 87 million users and that most of its 2 billion users likely have had their personal information scraped and shared by third-party developers without their explicit permission. Meanwhile, Facebook has shared an update on its plans to restrict data access to its platform.
  • Facebook will give all US users helpful context about articles shared in News Feed (The Verge). In a bid to make it easier to determine if something is legitimate news, Facebook has added a little ‘about this article’ icon to shared links. Once clicked, users are presented with information about the publisher (pulled in from Wikipedia), a map of where the article is being shared, and which of your friends shared the article.
Example of Facebook's new 'About This Article' function.

Facebook recently added an ‘About This Article’ button to shared news stories so users can better tell the legitimacy of a source.

  • Twitter says it removed 274,000 terrorist-related accounts in the second half of 2017 (Fast Company). The company suspended over 1.2 million accounts for terrorist-related content in the last five years – including 274,460 that were removed in the last six months 2017.
  • The Inside Story of Reddit’s Redesign (Wired). This one’s for all the web designers out there. It’s the first visual refresh of Reddit in over a decade. A welcome update if you ask me.

Learn:

  • How to Ignite Your LinkedIn Marketing Strategy [Infographic] (Marketing Profs). This handy infographic has tips on writing attention-getting headlines, the ideal post length (keep it short), and a few ideas on running LinkedIn ads and sending InMails.
  • How to Optimize Facebook Ad Bidding: Clicks or Impressions? (Social Media Examiner). Here’s a nice article on how choosing bids for ads affects your Facebook ad campaigns. Choosing between link clicks or impressions is not always easy; this article has a list of the pros and cons of each.
  • 5 Reasons Why Nobody is Engaging With Your Social Posts (and How to Fix it) (Kissmetrics). If your social media strategy isn’t getting the kind of engagement you want, the author (Neil Patel) suggests you may be committing one of these five self-sabotaging social media sins:
    • Denying what people want
    • Forgetting to make room for new (older) users
    • Skipping movie day
    • Letting little errors cripple credibility
    • Talking without listening

Introducing: The Weekly Social Media Rundown

It’s been a long, unnecessary hiatus from writing in my blog. And well, I guess I got tired of seeing Puppymonkeybaby as my most recent blog post. So here I present you with a few social media news items worthy of your precious time.

I share the following as part of a weekly social media newsletter I send out internally at NEJM Group, as part of my role as Content Engagement Manager. My goal with the newsletter is to share a few of the most important news items of the past week (the ‘Social Media News’ section) and to also provide a few educational items (the ‘Learn’ section) so we can all be better social media marketers. If you have thoughts on the listed items or if you know of some big news I may have missed, please let me know in the comments.

Read the full blog post on Buffer.

A practical quote from the Buffer App blog post, “The New Facebook Algorithm: Secrets Behind How It Works and What You Can Do To Succeed.”

Social Media News:

  • Twitter Is Experimenting With A Way To Show You Even More Breaking News Tweets (Buzzfeed News). A new, algorithmically curated timeline of news tweets may soon be shown at the top of your feed.
  • Snapchat Launches ‘True Crime/Uncovered’ Series From Condé Nast Entertainment (Variety). As much as I love Snapchat, I have my doubts that a five-minute long TV show in a vertical, mobile-only presentation will be successful. But then again, Snapchat’s numbers continue to surprise me. For example, NBC News’ “Stay Tuned” is apparently getting 33 million viewers per month.
  • After Facebook news-feed changes, publishers look hopefully to Pinterest (Digiday). The online scrapbooking platform represented nearly 8 percent of publishers’ social traffic in the second half of 2017, up from 4.5 percent in the first half of 2016.

Learn:

  • The New Facebook Algorithm: Secrets Behind How It Works and What You Can Do To Succeed (Buffer App). This blog post breaks down the recent news feed changes as explained in a recent webinar hosted by Facebook. The news feed algorithm is broken down into four main components: inventory, signals, predictions, and overall score.
  • How to Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile for Better Visibility (Social Media Examiner). If you need to spruce up your personal LinkedIn profile, this is a great rundown of everything you need to know to make it happen.

Social Media Changes Everything

Personal Branding

Build your personal brand with social media.

I came across the video “A Day in the Life of Social Media” last night and it reminded me as to why I started a blog: Social media changes everything. I have one semester left before I earn a Master of Science degree in Mass Communications with a focus on PR and Advertising. This is definitely an exciting reality and I am very much looking forward to once again feeling that sense of accomplishment of earning a degree from an accredited university. It is scary because … wait for it … the job market is tough. Not only is the job market tough, but I still am not quite sure what career I want to pursue. Public relations has always interested me and I hope that I can get into that field, but I am also well aware of the potential new (possibly sub) field of social media.

Social media jobs are definitely out there and if you still don’t believe in the phenomenon or if you think it’s just a fad, think again. Some of the key stats that jumped out at me in this video is that 700 million people join Facebook everyday and over 1 billion pieces of information are shared on Facebook in that same 24 hours. Wow. I have had several of in-class discussions on whether or not Facebook will be around forever. You can easily make an argument for or against the case of Facebook, but the fact is, it is here now and as another video has so eloquently summed up, “social media isn’t a fad, it’s a fundamental way in which we communicate.”

I have not exactly began a job search yet, but what I have done is start to brand myself (hence the blog). Call me a social media geek, but 80 percent of companies now use social media for recruitment. Thus, it is imperative that I maintain up-to-date, clean-cut social media sites to market myself as an aspiring PR professional and social media specialist. I have talked with other PR students who have said they have landed interviews via Twitter and that employers in the PR field won’t even look at a candidate if he/she is not on Twitter. Job candidates are even including their Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn sites under their contact section on resumes.

Social media is a reality and I must follow the trend or be left in the dust.

Photo credit: http://rockablepress.com/


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