Facebook’s New Report Suggests Brand Loyalty Is Under Threat

This week in social media news, Facebook’s new research suggests brand loyalty is under threat, Spotify launches a live audio mobile app called Spotify Greenroom, YouTube adds a new feature for creators and expands Shorts to 23 countries, Twitter is launching a ‘subscribe button’ for those with a Revue newsletter and more.

New Facebook Report Reveals Digital Media Evolution’s Impact On Shopper Journey

A new research study from Facebook and Kantar explores the implications of how the evolution of online shopping has impacted the shopper journey. Though the findings are specific to Hong Kong and Taiwan online shoppers, there are implications for marketers everywhere looking to continue driving brand love.  

Why it matters: As Facebook’s research shows, brand loyalty is under threat amid the growing variety of choices consumers have today. Citing a Nielsen Global Consumer Loyalty study, Facebook reports that only 8 percent of consumers consider themselves committed loyalists to their favorite brands.

The details: Starting with its brand loyalty findings, Facebook reports that 56 percent of global shoppers find it extremely important to experience novelty. Specifically, 80 percent of Taiwanese will continue trying new brands to find the ones that suit them best.

To inspire loyalty, brands must meet the six universal drivers of brand love. According to a study by Oath, those include: exceeding needs, building just, setting trends, sharing values, respecting consumers and elevating experiences.

Post-purchase, it’s important for brands to exceed consumers’ needs, namely keeping an open channel for shoppers to share feedback or ask questions. The reason being, 48 percent of Hong Kong online shoppers expect to receive proactive updates around issues related to their offers.

Like most shoppers, those in Facebook’s study are interested in receiving communications from brands, but many fear that their personal data will be leaked. Brands must not only protect consumer data but also create meaningful outcomes for shoppers, notes Facebook.

In the final leg of the shopper journey, Facebook notes, brands should analyze shoppers’ data to understand their current behaviors and predict future ones as a means to exceed shopper expectations.

Spotify Launches Live Audio Mobile App ‘Spotify Greenroom’

Spotify has entered the standalone audio app space with its own live audio mobile app called Spotify Greenroom. Powered by a Creator Fund, the app will enable Spotify users on iOS and Android worldwide to tune in or host live audio rooms, then create podcasts out of those conversations.

Why it matters: Spotify’s foray into the live audio space heats up the competition among standalone audio apps such as Clubhouse and audio-only features being developed by social media giants like Facebook. The news comes after Spotify in March acquired Betty Labs, the company responsible for Locker Room, a sports-focused audio app.

The details: For now, Spotify Greenroom can host up to 1,000 people. Hosts can rack up “gems” in the app, given to them by listeners as a form of applause. The number of gems a speaker receives will appear next to their profile image during a live session.

Spotify Greenroom includes a live text chat option and the option to request your audio file after a live session concludes, which as noted above, can turn into a podcast. Spotify said it will be recording the live audio sessions for moderation purposes.

In the coming months, Spotify plans to launch more features for Greenroom, as well as programmed content. The Creator Fund Spotify announced will aim to help audio creators based in the US earn money for their work. Interested creators can sign up through this form.

YouTube’s New Update Will Speed Up Creators’ Video Editing Process

In the latest episode of YouTube’s ‘Creator Insider’ series, ads policy lead Conor Kavanaugh announced an update that gives creators the ability to place midroll, end screens, info cards and manual captions while their video is uploading. In the same update, Kavanaugh confirmed that YouTube is extending the Shorts camera to 23 countries.

Why it matters: Albeit small, the update will speed up the video editing process for creators.

YouTube’s Shorts expansion to 23 countries signals the offering’s increased momentum. More creators are likely to test Shorts now that YouTube has announced its $100 million Shorts Fund, which will reward creators whose Shorts get the most engagement each month.

The details: The new editing feature for creators is now available in the YouTube Studio process. And among the regions Shorts is coming to are the UK, Canada and Latin America.

Twitter Adds Newsletter Subscription Button Via Revue

Twitter is getting ready to introduce a newsletter subscription button, which will be available to anyone with a Revue newsletter who chooses to enable the feature via Revue, reports Mashable.

Why it matters: The new addition follows Twitter’s acquisition of Revue, which writers use to generate free or paid subscription newsletters. Twitter claims a 5 percent cut of the latter, according to Mashable.

The details: As explained by a company spokesperson, those who have a Revue account can turn the subscribe button feature on. Those who visit the writer’s Twitter profile can subscribe directly via the button.

Twitter hasn’t announced an exact launch date for the button, but confirmed it’ll first be available on the web and Android and later to iOS.

Facebook Announces New Payment QR Codes, Branded Chat Themes For Messenger

Facebook has launched three new features for Messenger, including the ability for US users to utilize QR codes and payment links on Facebook Pay; sponsored chat themes; and a quick reply bar to the Messenger media viewer.

Why it matters: Facebook Messenger counts 136 million users and that figure is expected to grow to 138.1 million next year.

The details: Eliminating the need to download separate payment apps or add new contacts, Facebook’s new Messenger QR codes and payment links make it easy to send or request money via Facebook Pay. Users can access these new features in their Messenger settings under “Facebook Pay.”

Next, Facebook has rolled out three new sponsored chat themes, including one inspired by Gen Z actress and singer Olivia Rodrigo, World Oceans Day and the “F9” film.

Lastly, Messenger users will now see a quick reply bar, which will enable them to send a quick response without having to revisit the main chat thread.

Facebook Expands Its Messenger API For Instagram To Everyone

This week in social media news, Facebook expands its Messenger API for Instagram to all, TikTok may now collect “biometric data” such as images and audio, Instagram adds insights to Reels and Live, Twitter launches its inaugural subscription service, ‘Twitter Blue,’ and more.

Facebook Expands Its Messenger API For Instagram

At its annual F8 Refresh conference this year, Facebook expanded its Messenger API for Instagram, which will enable businesses to connect messaging to existing third-party tools like CRM applications and help turn inquiries into sales.

Why it matters: As TechCrunch notes, the main takeaway Facebook gleaned from the program’s closed beta, launched last October, is that businesses wanted a central place to manage customer communications and that many were investing more in software to efficiently manage messages and workflows.

The details: To start, all developers globally will be able to use the Messenger API to interact with Instagram users. After that businesses will gain access in a phased rollout, according to TechCrunch.

As part of Phase 1, Instagram accounts with an audience of over 10,000 followers and under 100,000 followers can connect to the API. In July, phase 2 will make it so accounts with 1,000 to 100,000 followers can use the API. The remainder of accounts will get access by Q3.

In a company blog, Instagram says that as a result of connecting to the API, Kiehl’s Malaysia is now driving 30 percent more qualified leads on Instagram messaging compared to other channels. The brand is also now converting 20 percent of consultations into sales.

Instagram also cites H&M’s success in partnering with Sprinklr to detect languages to automatically organize and send messages to the correct support team. In doing so, H&M increased customer satisfaction by over 9 points while increasing agent efficiency by 31 percent, according to Instagram.

TikTok May Now Collect Biometric Data As Part Of A New Privacy Update

TikTok recently added a new section to its privacy policy titled “Image and Audio Information” which notes that it may now “collect biometric identifiers” such as faceprints and voiceprints from users.

Why it matters: It seems TikTok’s goal with this latest privacy change is to deliver more personalized experiences for it notes that collecting such data will enable special video effects, demographic classification and content and ad moderation and recommendations.

The details: TikTok explains:

“We may collect information about the images and audio that are a part of your User Content, such as identifying the objects and scenery that appear, the existence and location within an image of face and body features and attributes, the nature of the audio, and the text of the words spoken in your User Content.”

Pinterest Expands Shopping Features To Four New International Markets

Pinterest is rolling out its shopping features to Australia, Canada, France and Germany, the company announced. The expansion will enable users to shop directly from Pins, boards, search and real-world inspiration captured via Pinterest’s Lens camera search.

In the same company announcement, Pinterest detailed the launch of ‘Shopping List,’ a new way for Pinners to save their product Pins in one place.

Why it matters: Pinterest’s research shows that people who visit Pinterest weekly outspent non-Pinners by 2x every month and have an 85 percent bigger cart.

In addition, advertisers that include shopping ads drive 3x the conversion and sale lift as well as twice the positive incremental return on ad spend.

The details: After research revealed that Pinners are over 7x more likely to buy products they’ve saved on the app, Pinterest is introducing a new feature called ‘Shopping List.’ This gives Pinners a way to have their products Pin automatically saved in one place and get notifications about deals for those products. The feature will first be available in the US and UK then come to Australia, Canada, France and Germany later this year.

Pinterest is also expanding its Verified Merchant Program in the UK, Australia, Canada, France and Germany. Plus, retailers in the latter four countries will see the shop tab on profile and be able to utilize product tagging.

Lastly, Pinterest announced a new two-week Shopping Spotlight called “The Goods by Pinterest” in the US, UK and Canada. The virtual event will let Pinners shop limited edition products exclusively sold through Pinterest from emerging brands like Outdoor Voices, Olive & June and Lucy and Yak.

Facebook Adds Insights To ‘Rights Manager’ For Images

After launching in September ‘Rights Manager’ for images—a feature that enables creators and publishers to protect and manage their image content on Facebook and Instagram—Facebook is adding new features to it including insights on protection activities, metrics and demographics.

Why it matters: Facebook first launched ‘Rights Manager’ in 2016 as a way to give users with a large amount of content more control on how and where their content is shared. Since then, it has added video insights, an ad earnings feature to claim in-stream ad earnings and ownership links.

The details: The first new insight Facebook is introducing for its images Rights Manager is protection insights, which gives users an overview of total blocks and monitors across Facebook and Instagram by territory.

Next, performance insights will provide metrics such as impressions, likes, comments and shares.

The third new insight covers a user’s audience location, language and their engagement behavior.

Instagram Adds Insights For Reels And Live

Instagram is rolling out insights for Reels and Live plus other new features for Insights such as more detailed information about Reach, new preset time frame options and desktop support.

Why it matters: These new updates will give creators and publishers alike the chance to improve their content, and for the former group, the ability to land more brand deals.

For those wondering how Reels and Live content impacts their overall account, Instagram says it will add these new metrics in Account Insights to paint a broader picture of their performance.

The details: For Reels, Instagram will be showing new metrics including Plays, Accounts Reached, Peak Concurrent Viewers, Comments and Shares. For Live, users will be able to check all the aforementioned except Plays.

Instagram is also enhancing information about Reach to show which types of accounts people are reaching and the content formats most effective at driving Reach.

Over the coming months, Instagram plans to support Insights on desktop and roll out new preset time frame options in Insights beyond the last 7 and 30 days.

Twitter Launches Inaugural Paid Subscription, ‘Twitter Blue’

Twitter has launched its first-ever subscription offering, ‘Twitter Blue’ that will provide access to exclusive features and perks, starting with users in Australia and Canada for the monthly fee of $4.49 AUD or $3.49 CAD.

Why it matters: As per Twitter:

“We’ve heard from the people that use Twitter a lot, and we mean a lot, that we don’t always build power features that meet their needs. Well, that’s about to change. We took this feedback to heart, and are developing and iterating upon a solution that will give the people who use Twitter the most what they are looking for: access to exclusive features and perks that will take their experience on Twitter to the next level.”

The details: The features Twitter Blue subscribers will have access to include BookMark Folders, an Undo Tweet feature, Reader Mode, customizable app icons for their device’s home screen and color themes for their Twitter app.

Additionally, the subscription includes access to dedicated customer support.

Twitter’s Batch Of New Product Updates Aims To Attract Creators, Publishers And Advertisers

This week in social media news, Twitter’s latest product offerings aim to attract advertisers and creators, Snapchat announces new public profiles for brands and the latest version of its AR-powered Spectacles, Facebook shares an overview of its ad policy, Pinterest details the evolution of its search system and more.

Twitter Launches Variety Of New Features For Advertisers And Consumers

In recent months, Twitter has debuted several new product updates to keep up with the likes of Snapchat, Facebook and LinkedIn. Among them include new preroll and sponsorship opportunities for Amplify, its video ad product, updates to its app installation and website click programs and consumer-facing features like ‘Tip Jar’ and ‘Spaces.’

Why it matters: As per Digiday, Twitter’s investments — which caused its research and development costs to increase 28 percent last year — are paying off as Q1 revenues surpassed $1 billion, a 29 percent increase year-over-year. Equally important, the changes are contributing to its brand refresh as well as attracting interest from publishers and advertisers alike.

The details: On the advertising side, Twitter just recently caught up to speed with competitors when it launched fleets and carousel ads last November.

Like other major platforms, it’s also expanding opportunities for creators to monetize their content. For example, giving users the chance to sell exclusive access to content through ‘Super Follows,’ allowing users to build complementary businesses with their audience through ‘Revue’ and offering the ability to accept direct donations through ‘Tip Jar.’

In addition, Digiday notes that according to Parse.ly, Twitter accounts for a single-digit percentage of referral traffic to publishers. This has inspired attention from publishers like USA Today, a beta tester of Twitter’s ‘Spaces.’ The publisher, reports Digiday, is using ‘Spaces’ as a way to put its reporters in front of users. Recently, USA Today hosted a ‘Spaces’ event with the reporters who covered the Derek Chauvin trial. Next, it’s eyeing how to use Twitter’s ‘Tip Jar’ feature to grow digital subscribers.

Snapchat Announces New Brand Profiles And AR-Powered Spectacles

During its second annual Partner Summit, Snapchat announced several new product updates, including public profiles for businesses and the next generation of its augmented reality-powered Spectacles.

Why it matters: As Snap chief executive Evan Spiegel noted during the summit, Snapchat’s latest features come as the platform now boasts 500 million monthly active users. Its new business profiles will give brands the ability to create an organic presence and share shoppable products, while the new AR glasses will enable creators and developers rapid testing and iteration of Lenses in real-time.

The details: First up, Snap’s new public profiles for businesses means brands will have a place for their content in one discoverable place, which users can subscribe to. Key features of a public Snap brand profile include: the ability to publish stories, AR Lenses and a highlight reel of public snaps plus the option to have a native store via Shopify.

As for its new lightweight Spectacles, Snap says they’re not for sale but that they’re going to change the way creators and publishers make Lenses as they’re fully integrated with its desktop app, Lens Studio.

According to Snap:

”Powered by our new Snap Spatial Engine that leverages six degrees of freedom and hand, marker, and surface tracking, Spectacles realistically overlay creators’ imaginations on the world in a new way.”

Spectacles feature two RGB cameras, four built-in microphones, two stereo speakers and a touchpad to create a multi-sensorial experience. So far, a group of seven creators worldwide have been able to try Snap’s new AR-enabled glasses.

Facebook Shares Overview Of Its Ad Review Process

In a new company blog post, Facebook vice president of business integrity, Jeff King, shared details around what constitutes an ad, how its ad review system works and how Facebook is evolving its ad systems.

Why it matters: Last summer, brands cut their Facebook ad spending amid criticisms over its content moderation policies. Nevertheless, in Q1 2021, Facebook brought in $24.5 billion in ad revenue, a 46 percent increase YoY.

The details: First, Facebook is clarifying which policies apply to ads. As King notes, Facebook requires brands follow both its ad policies and its community standards. In addition, ads that run on Instagram must also follow the community guidelines, while Marketplace listings are subject to its commerce policies.

As for how its ad review system works, Facebook relies mostly on automated technology to apply its policies, but in some cases says it manually reviews ads. The ad review shouldn’t take longer than 24 hours, but anyone who’s ever run ads on the platform knows that isn’t alway the case.

To process re-review requests for ads that were rejected, Facebook relies heavily on human reviewers but is, “continuously assessing ways to increase automation.”

Facebook says that ads about social issues, elections or politics have “an increased level of authenticity and transparency.” This means people can see demographic data about who saw an ad and where it ran for up to seven years after the ad stopped running via Facebook’s ad library.

Pinterest Now Sees More Than 5 Billion Searches Every Month

Pinterest’s senior vice president of products, Naveen Gavini, recently took to the Pinterest Engineering blog to explain how the platform’s search system has evolved to become more visual and yield more accurate results.

Why it matters: According to Gavini, there are now more than 5 billion searches on Pinterest every month. That growth comes as the platform continues to enhance its creator and ecommerce tools. 

For example, last summer it launched the ability to shop within Lens and the ability to try on lipstick via a new feature called AR Try on. More recently, Pinterest launched ‘Idea Pins,’ which evolved out of its tests with Story Pins that launched in beta last fall.

The details: Pinterest’s first search engine was called Guided Search, which would start with a generic search like ‘BBQ’ and lead to more actionable things like ‘vegan DIY BBQ,’ according to Gavini.

It was in 2015 when Pinterest started its work in object recognition within Pins. Later, it applied the technology to camera search to find recommendations for items on and offline.

Eventually, Pinterest combined text and visual search, training its systems to emulate the ways its users are categorizing images.

Pinterest says that it’s using machine learning for numerous updates including improvements to Related Pins, which have become the most common ways people refine their search.

Snapchat Reflects On Social, Environmental Efforts In 2021 ‘CitizenSnap’ Report

Snapchat has published its latest ‘CitizenSnap’ report, a 102-page update on the progress it’s made on social, environmental and governance (ESG) matters. Highlights include a three-part approach to reducing its carbon footprint and the expansion of its living wage program to international offices.

Why it matters: Snap’s ESG priorities are divided into four categories including society, planet, people and governance. As per Snap:

“Our ESG work reports into a Vice President-level company executive, and it receives regular visibility and oversight from senior leaders across the company, including the CEO. We are also incorporating ESG updates into semi-annual Board committee meetings and annually into full Board meetings.”

The details: Starting with society, Snapchat says it doubled down on its commitment to ethical product design and user privacy. It also helped users navigate the pandemic, reaching more than 197 million people with in-app tools aimed at educating people on COVID-19 safety guidelines. 

Helping its community’s emotional wellbeing, Snapchat also launched a feature called ‘Here For You’ to provide mental health tips. This work extended to its diversity efforts too, as Snap says at least 53 percent of Snap Originals featured leads or hosts who are BIPOC or LGBTQ+.

In regard to sustainability, Snap launched a three-part climate strategy, the first element of which includes Snap purchasing enough offsets to become carbon neutral going back to its founding in 2011. Part two involves mitigating climate change; Snap says it adopted science-based emissions reduction targets approved by the Science Based Targets initiative. And for the third element, Snap says it’s committed to purchasing 100 percent renewable electricity for its facilities globally.

Among Snap’s key culture initiatives include the roll-out of new diversity, equity and inclusion accountability mechanisms which apply to its employee performance measurement process. 

Snap also expanded the availability of therapy sessions, added child and family care resources and extended parental leave to 16 weeks globally for birthing and non-birthing parents.

Lastly, some of the work Snap did around governance includes increasing representation of women on its board to 50 percent; expanding its certification program for key non-financial metrics such as daily active users; and revamping its code of conduct to focus more broadly on ethical decision making principles.

Read Snap’s full report here.

TikTok Starts Testing In-App Shopping In Europe

This week in social media news, TikTok partners with brands to test in-app shopping in Europe, Reddit is developing an in-house agency to help with brand strategy, Pinterest will host a three-day livestream event with creators via its app, Twitter is reportedly working on new paid tweet options, Facebook Workplace shares a guide for hosting effective livestream company events and more.

TikTok Tests In-App Shopping In Europe

Gearing up for a broader global ecommerce service, ByteDance-owned TikTok has started to work with brands like Hype to test in-app shopping in Europe, reports Bloomberg.

Why it matters: As Bloomberg notes, TikTok’s goal is to replicate the success of its Chinese twin Douyin, on which ecommerce transactions brought in $26 million during its first year of operation.

With the online retail segment set to generate $5 trillion in sales this year as per eMarketer, platforms including Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest are all developing and testing ecommerce features. TikTok has been working on enhancing in-app shopping features since last year when it announced a partnership with Walmart and Shopify, respectively.

The details: According to Bloomberg, TikTok’s goal is to sell more ads to merchants, increase traffic and take a portion of business. As part of its collaboration with Hype, the streetwear label will run dedicated stores on TikTok, taking orders from and engaging with shoppers directly.

In December, ByteDance co-founder Zhang Yiming noted that their recipe for big opportunities outside of China includes a combination of ecommerce, live streaming and short videos, reports Bloomberg.

Reddit Is Developing An In-House Agency To Help With Brand Strategy

Reddit is creating an in-house creative agency called KarmaLab that will host regular workshops to help brands enhance their advertising strategy under the guidance of the agency’s global director, Will Cady. KarmaLab already names Samsung and Snickers as previous clients, according to Digiday.

Why it matters: The launch of an in-house agency marks Reddit’s larger efforts to bolster its ads business in response to the difficulties brands have faced in being perceived as authentic by Redditors. Last May, the platform hired Pinterest’s former vice president of growth, Harold Klaje, amid a restructuring of its ad sales team.

The details: As Digiday notes, KarmaLab’s aim is to eventually help with overall brand strategy but to start, it will offer brands regular workshops and tips on approaching sponsored Ask Me Anything events, plus ways to enter popular subreddits like gaming via paid and organic posts.

Pinterest App To Host Three-Day Livestream Event With Top Creators

Pinterest is running three days of livestream sessions hosted by top creators from May 24 to May 26 on the Pinterest app, reports TechCrunch. Each day, users can tune in to seven different virtual events covering a range of topics including beauty, fashion, food and DIY.

Why it matters: This marks Pinterest’s formalized approach to virtual events. Last fall, it tested a “class communities” feature enabling users to attend Zoom classes via Pinterest which included a group chat option and shopping features.

The details: TechCrunch says that during Pinterest’s three-day virtual event, users can interact with the creator and shop products that creators can tag via Pinterest’s Product Pins. Moderators will oversee the sessions and will have the ability to remove people from the chat if they violate Pinterest’s community guidelines.

Users will be able to view the virtual event schedule and join the livestreams on the Pinterest app through a new ‘Live’ tab that the platform is adding.

Twitter Tests New Paid Tweet Options Under Monthly Subscription Model

After surveying its users last July on what in-app functions they’d pay for, Twitter is developing a monthly subscription called ‘Twitter Blue,’ as spotted by app researcher Jane Manchun Wong and reported by Social Media Today. The plan would cost $2.99 a month and give users access to a range of new Twitter tools, such as a saved tweet folder, undo tweet option and more.

Why it matters: In preparation of launching its own subscription plans, earlier this month Twitter acquired Scroll, a subscription-based service that removes ads from news sites for $5 per month.

The details: As noted by Wong, Twitter Blue would give paying users access to a ‘Collections for Bookmarks’ tool as well as a feature for retracting tweets within a certain period.

Wong also says Twitter is developing a tiered subscription model, with the higher-priced tier offering premium tools such as clutter-free news reading experience, which is where Scroll would come in.

As per Twitter’s survey last year, some other potential subscription add-ons could be custom profile options, advanced video publishing tools, auto-replies, custom stickers and insights into other accounts.

Facebook Offers Playbook For Hosting Effective Live Company Events

With many companies adopting a hybrid work model this year, Facebook has published a six-step guide on using live video within Facebook Workplace to host effective company events, help build community and improve employee wellbeing.

Why it matters: Earlier this month, Facebook Workplace reached 7 million paid subscribers, up 40 percent from 2 million last May. Comparatively, in April Microsoft’s Teams reported 145 million daily active users, up more than 93 percent from 75 million in April 2020.

The details: First up, Facebook says to avoid overlooking employees who aren’t in the office, users can create polls that help teams build more inclusive agendas.

Next, Facebook suggests using Workplace as a central space to share details of an upcoming event including an agenda and how to join.

Preparing leaders to be more authentic is Facebook’s third tip for more effective use of live video. The platform recommends asking leaders to think of personal anecdotes to share during the event to build trust between team members.

Interactive polls during a Workplace Live are also another great option for engaging and monitoring your whole audience, notes Facebook. In addition, organizers can check the Live Producer’s Stream Health tab to view key metrics and event logs.

For improved accessibility, Workplace Live also gives you the option to enable captions before or after a Live post.

Lastly, Facebook suggests keeping track of unanswered Q&A questions via the Q&A functionality which allows organizers to track all employee questions that need following up.

Twitter May Soon Reopen Verified Profile Applications

Twitter could be reopening its application for profile verification, as spotted by researcher Jane Manchun Wong. This time, though, it’ll be a self-serve process.

Why it matters: Applications for Twitter verification have been on pause for some time now after in 2017, followers expressed confusion over the meaning of the blue tick. Since then, Twitter has provided more transparency on who would qualify for verification once it re-launched the applications.

The details: On May 13, Wong tweeted:

“I was told by multiple sources that Twitter plans to launch the new self-served Verification Request form next week.”

As you can see in these screenshots from Wong, the updated verification process will ask a series of questions to determine if the user qualifies for the blue tick. You must fall into one of these six categories to be considered: activist, organizer or influencer; company, brand or organization; entertainers or entertainment groups; government official or affiliate; journalist or news organization; or professional sports or esports entity.

TikTok Is Once Again The Most Downloaded Non-Gaming App Worldwide

This week in social media news, TikTok is the most downloaded non-gaming app worldwide in April, Snapchat adds 16 percent incremental reach to TV, YouTube expands Shorts to all US creators, Snapchat announces its Creator Marketplace and YouTube shares insight about the most popular vlog greetings.

TikTok Is The Most-Download App Worldwide In April

According to Sensor Tower’s latest data, TikTok was the most-downloaded non-gaming app worldwide in April 2021 with over 59 million installs, most of which came from Brazil and China. Second to TikTok were Facebook, followed by Instagram, WhatsApp and Messenger. The top five remain unchanged from March 2021.

Why it matters: In March, TikTok also topped Sensor Tower’s worldwide app list. It’s also worth noting that, on Google Play in particular, TikTok downloads overtook Instagram for second place in April; up from third place in March.

The details: Facebook, the second most downloaded app worldwide, bought in more than 53 million installs, mostly from India and the US.

On iOS, the top five list remains the same as March, with TikTok in first, followed by YouTube, Instagram, WhatsApp and Facebook.

Snapchat Shares Data On Its Reach Versus Television’s

Snapchat’s study analyzed how more than 30 cross-platform ad campaigns reached people on its app and on television using Nielsen Total Ad Ratings (TAR). The big takeaways are Snapchat added 16 percent incremental reach to TV and that it was able to reach Gen Z that TV didn’t.

Why it matters: Marketers have reason to scale back on TV and invest in short-form video apps as cord-cutting continues to surge. By 2024, eMarketer predicts non-pay TV households will surpass linear pay TV households.

The details: According to the study, 71 percent of Gen Z reached by Snapchat weren’t reached by TV.

Next, it found that Snapchat reached people who don’t watch much linear television. Nielsen analyzed the distribution of five cross-platform campaigns across light, medium and heavy TV viewers in the US. What they found is that 64 percent of the target audience Snapchat reached are light TV viewers, compared with 18 percent of the target audience TV reached. 

That’s in line with Snapchatter behavior, as nearly 60 percent of US users are considered light TV viewers by Nielsen. Members of this group, Snapchat says, are more likely to have over $100,000 income, have attended over four years of college, change brands for variety, be Spanish-language dominant and live in broadband-only households.

YouTube Expands Shorts To All US Users

During the latest video on YouTube’s Creator Insider channel, YouTube ads policy lead Conor Kavanagh said the platform is expanding its Shorts camera to all US creators and adding new features like 60-second videos and a new Shorts tab.

Why it matters: YouTube only introduced its Shorts Beta to the US in mid-March. The feature, which previously let people only create videos 15 seconds or less, was initially launched in India.

The details: The new Shorts features include being able to record up to 60 seconds. Next, YouTube is adding Shorts filters during the recording and editing screens that let users “color correct or change the vibe of your Short.” Over the next year Kavanagh says YouTube will release more filters and effects.

Shorts will also start generating captions automatically, by default, for videos unless users choose to turn the setting off.

Lastly, Youtube is adding a new Shorts tab to mobile.

Snapchat Is Launching A Creator Marketplace

Snapchat has announced nine new Snap Original shows that feature rising creators and touch on social issues, racial injustice, mental health and climate change. In addition, it’s launching a Creator Marketplace that makes it easy for brands to partner with its creator community.

Why it matters: To date, Snap has created more than 128 Original series and in H2 of last year 85 percent of the Gen Z population watched one of its shows, according to Snap.

Snap is following in TikTok’s footsteps with its new Creator Marketplace. What sets Snap apart from its competitor though is that upon launch the marketplace will enable brands to leverage the expertise of augmented reality (AR) creators in Snap’s Lens Network.

The details: Snap’s three new unscripted shows include Off Thee Leash with Megan Thee Stallion, Charli VS. Dixie and Coming Out. Its new docuseries include Lago Vista, Twinning Out and Meme Mom. Additionally, new to Snap’s scripted series are The Me and You Show and Breakwater.

Snap’s Creator Marketplace will open later this month for brands to partner with a select group of AR creators through 2021. It’ll expand the marketplace to include all Snap creators in 2022.

YouTube Study Highlights Most Popular Vlog Opening Lines

According to YouTube’s latest study, “Hey Guys” was the top vlog greeting in 2020, accounting for 36 percent of the top five greetings.

Why it matters: Pointing to the unique video openings that popular creators have created, YouTube says there’s “value in establishing your unique personality in your first impression.”

The details: To determine the most popular greetings, YouTube identified all the videos that could classify as vlogs using minimum thresholds of at least 20,000 views for the videos and at least 20,000 subscribers for the channels that posted them. This resulted in a data set of over 1 million videos from which YouTube scanned captions.

YouTube found that “Hey guys” has been the go-to vlog greeting for the last decade while “Good morning” and “Hi everyone” have grown in popularity.

Fitness channels specifically use “What’s up” a lot while travel channels lean toward ‘Good morning.”

Brand Ad Spend On Snapchat Increases 24 Percent YoY

During Q1, Snapchat saw its highest year-over-year revenue and daily active user growth rates in over three years. Based on MediaRadar’s latest analysis, it looks like the app is maintaining that momentum. It found that during April, brands’ ad spend on Snap increased 24 percent YoY.

Alongside new film releases, entertainment accounted for 42 percent of Snap’s ad spend so far in Q2. MediaRadar reports that HBO Max, Paramount+, BET+, Hulu and Amazon Prime spent over $2.8 million on Snap ads, representing 6 percent of all of Snap’s ad spend during April.

The top-spending advertisers were feature films including Without Remorse, Mortal Kombat and Fast & Furious 9, whose collective spend totaled over $5 million.

Other big Snap spenders in the entertainment category included streaming services (15 percent), mobile application (14 percent) and drama TV shows (13 percent).

After entertainment, the industries that spent the most on Snap ads were fashion, pharmaceutical and retail—each accounted for nearly 10 percent of ad spend on Snap in April. Zyrtec Allergy, Nike, Levi’s, Columbia, Lids and shopDisney were the top-spending brands, according to MediaRadar.

Highlights from Snap’s Q1 earnings report include reaching 280 million DAU, a 22 percent increase YoY, and generating $770 million in revenue, a 66 percent increase YoY.

The company also said that daily user engagement with its augmented reality (AR) Lenses grew more than 40 percent YoY. It outlined plans to capitalize on this trend via product innovation in ecommerce.

“One of the key verticals we are tailoring our solutions for is apparel and accessories, which is the largest shopping category by far among US teenagers. We believe that helping buyers find the right size, fit and styles will reduce friction in their online shopping experience, which in turn will improve revenue and margins for our business partners while reducing the waste generated from returns,” said Snap’s chief executive Evan Spiegel.

On the heels of a successful Q1, Snapchat is presenting at IAB’s 2021 NewFronts, “Living the Stream,” alongside competitors TikTok and YouTube.

Pinterest Says Searches For Outfits, Travel And Socializing Skyrocketed In Q1

This week in social media news, Pinterest shares data on search trends from Q1, Instagram Live gives hosts more flexibility with new features, Twitter is up 7 million daily active users and Facebook reports a 48 percent increase in revenue.

Pinterest Searches Containing “Outfit” and “Dream Vacation Destinations” Surge 

Pinterest shared new data showing that Q1 searches around post-pandemic plans to socialize and vacation are skyrocketing. According to the platform’s findings, Gen Z is leading the trends, with searches from the cohort up 96 percent year-over-year (YoY).

Why it matters: Two major events marketers should keep in mind in light of Pinterest’s research include milestone vacations for Gen Z, who missed out on in-person graduations. The other big one is weddings, searches for which have resumed pre-pandemic levels after seeing a dip last summer, says Pinterest.

The details: Historically, Pinterest searches that include the word “vacation” spiked in March (an average of 24 percent), but this year the same searches surged 75 percent.

Gen Z searches for “dream vacation destinations” increased 13 times while “luxury vacation” grew 6 times. The group is also ready to spend on travel apparel, as searches for “vacation fashion” are 3 times greater.

With some heading back to the office and getting together post-vaccination, there’s been a 26 percent increase in searches containing the word “outfit” in Q1 2021 compared to last year and an 85 percent increase in searches containing “outfit” in April to date.

In addition, searches related to “party” have increased 64 percent from November of last year to March 2021. For Gen Z specifically, searches for “party life” are three times greater and “Euphoria party ideas” are 43 times greater.

New Instagram Live Features Let Hosts Mute Their Microphone, Turn Video Off

In yet another attempt to compete against Clubhouse, Facebook is launching new features for Instagram Live that will enable hosts to mute their microphones and turn off their video during a livestream, confirms TechCrunch.

Why it matters: The new features are part of Instagram’s larger efforts to mimic a Clubhouse experience. In March, the platform launched a Live Rooms feature enabling creators to broadcast with up to four people at the same time. To help creators monetize their content, Instagram also debuted badges that fans can buy to support the hosts.

The details: Instagram says that for now, hosts can’t turn off the video or mute other users in the livestream but that it’s working on expanding these features soon.

Instagram’s new Live features are rolling out globally on iOS and Android starting today.

Twitter Posts 28 Percent Revenue Increase To $1.04 Billion In Q1

In its Q1 letter to shareholders, Twitter reported reaching 199 million monetizable daily active users (mDAU)—7 million more since Q4 2020—and a 28 percent increase YoY in revenue to $1.04 billion.

Why it matters: Comparatively, in Q4 2020 Twitter added 5 million DAUs and reported $1.29 billion in revenue.

The details: Twitter’s revenue YoY shows steady growth as it reached $808 million in Q1 2020 versus $1.04 billion in Q1 this year. Total US revenue was $556 million, a 19 percent increase, while total international revenue reached $480 million, a 41 percent increase.

Following new ad offerings, including its new Curated Categories, Twitter brought in $899 million in ad revenue in Q1, a 32 percent increase. That growth was also driven by “strength in brand advertising in March as well as accelerating year-over-year growth in Mobile App Promotion revenue.”

The platform grew its US mDAU by 13 percent to 38 million and international mDAU by 22 percent to 162 million.

In Q1, Twitter introduced a new feature that enables users to choose from more than 7,000 Topics and Interests to follow; this improvement led to 33 percent of new customers following Topics during sign-up in Q1. Twitter says it’s building on this feature with a personalized Topic picker and updates to its Topic landing pages.

Facebook Reports Revenue Of $26.17 Billion For Q1

According to Facebook’s Q1 earnings report, the platform grew to 2.85 billion monthly active users (MAU) and brought in $26.17 billion for the quarter, up 48 percent from a year prior.

Why it matters: As per Facebook, its big jump in revenue can be attributed to a 30 percent YoY increase in the average price per ad and a 12 percent increase in the number of ads.

The details: In addition to growing its MAU and revenue, Facebook also saw an eight percent YoY increase in DAU, with the figure reaching 1.88 billion. Still, Facebook’s US and Canada DAU stayed flat at 195 million for the second quarter in a row. Meanwhile, Europe DAU grew to 309 million, up from 308 million in Q4.

Across its family of apps, Facebook counts 3.45 billion monthly users, compared with 3.30 billion in Q4.

Facebook Tests Targeted In-Stream Video Ads

This week in social media news, Facebook launches a global test of a new ad format called In-Stream Video Topics, Snapchat’s new study shows how users are gearing up for the NFL Draft, TikTok shares Mother’s Day shopping trends, Clubhouse and the NFL announce a partnership and Snapchat reports an increase of 51 million daily active users in Q1.

Facebook Launches New Video Ad Formats

Facebook announced new topic targeting options within In-Stream video to help brands better engage with relevant customers. The company is also running Instagram Reels and Facebook Stories ad tests to help creators monetize their content.

Why it matters: Facebook says more than 2 billion people watch Facebook In-Stream eligible videos every month and that globally 70 percent of In-Stream standalone video ads views are completed. In addition, data from 10 studies found that including a Facebook In-Stream campaign to a Feed and Stories buy resulted in a median 1.5 times increase in ad recall and a median 20 percent drop in cost per incremental recaller.

The details: Facebook is launching a global test of In-Stream Video Topics, a machine learning-powered ad format that enables advertisers to place ads in certain video topics through Ads Manager. Brands can choose from over 20 video topics and more than 700 sub-topics.

With 90 percent of people now following a business on Instagram, Facebook is also testing Reels ads in India, Brazil, Germany and Australia. These ads can be up to 30 seconds like organic Reels videos and people will be able to comment, like, view, save, share and skip the ads.

In addition, Facebook will test custom Sticker Ads for Facebook Stories, which will let creators monetize their content and receive a portion of the resulting revenue through bespoke stickers that brands create.

Snapchat’s Study Highlights User Sentiment Regarding 2021-2022 NFL Season

Snapchat’s latest research shows that 93 percent of its users are looking forward to the upcoming 2021 NFL season with another 85 percent saying they plan to use the app during the Draft, which occurs on April 29. Snapchat’s partnership with the NFL includes official NFL shows and NFL Highlights, which the app says is updated in near real-time every game.

Why it matters: Between the two weeks leading up to the 2020 NFL Draft and the actual events, conversation on Snapchat about the Draft ballooned over 220 percent. Plus, 64 percent of users agree that using augmented reality (AR) or filters makes the Draft more enjoyable, giving brands an opportunity to reach the young consumers. During last year’s Draft, over 80 million Snapchatters in the US and Canada engaged with AR.

The details: According to Snapchat’s findings, its users are most looking forward to watching the Draft live and “hearing the early buzz around top picks.” The top two ways they’re preparing for the Draft include buying snacks and drinks and checking Draft predictions and updates.

Snapchat says it’s creating an AR experience that will feature all 32 official NFL teams with music by Machine Gun Kelly.

TikTok Shares Mother’s Day Shopping Trends And User Demographics

Ahead of Mother’s Day, TikTok is giving marketers a look at shopping trends and online activity around Mother’s Day. The app found that 27 percent of TikTok users are moms, 48 percent of TikTok moms are full-time employees and 34 percent of TikTok moms are in high-income brackets.

Why it matters: Highlighting moms’ purchase power, TikTok cites insight from a Weber Shandwick study that found millennial moms “like” or give unsolicited product recommendations 10.4 times every month. In that same study, 74 percent of millennial moms reported that they’re sought out more often than other friends as advisors on a wide range of topics.

The details: According to TikTok, 94 percent of TikTok moms use phones to get online, 88 percent spend more than one hour on their phone each day and 40 percent find brands through social media.

When analyzing activity around relevant Mother’s Day hashtags, such as #mothersday and #giftformom, TikTok found that content related to the holiday saw a big spike on the day of, compared to the day before.

The top gift TikTok moms are planning to buy, TikTok adds, is a vacation, followed by jewelry and a handbag.vTo make the most of Mother’s Day, TikTok suggests brands set up a special curated section of gifts on their homepage, throw in a discount code or run a For You feed ad.

Clubhouse And NFL Ink An Exclusive Content Deal

According to Social Media Today, Clubhouse took to Twitter over the weekend to announce its new content partnership with the NFL, which will include a series of Rooms leading up to the 2021 NFL Draft.

Why it matters: The partnership marks the first of its kind for Clubhouse, the invite-only, audio-focused platform that has surged in popularity since launching in April last year. For the NFL, it’s another way of growing its online presence, which has been bolstered the past year through its beloved TikTok account.

The details: Social Media Today reports that Clubhouse already hosts a variety of NFL-related rooms, but this new collaboration will open up opportunities to expand connections and reach.

Clubhouse explained:

“With Clubhouse’s highly interactive audio-based social platform, fans can drop in on the NFL’s rooms to follow the picks live as they’re announced, and listen in on discussions featuring key NFL figures – from athletes and coaches to network personalities. Fans also have the opportunity to join the conversation and be invited on stage by moderators to ask questions or share their reactions to the Draft.”

Snapchat Now Has 280 Million Daily Active Users

Snapchat saw 280 million DAUs in Q1, an increase of 51 million, or 22 percent year-over-year, as noted in its Q1 earnings report. The platform’s revenue increased 66 percent YoY to $770 million, with average revenue per user growing 36 percent YoY to $2.74.

Why it matters: It’s interesting to note that for the first time, Snapchat says the majority of its DAUs for Q1 came from the Android version of its app.

The details: Snapchat’s positive growth in users and revenue comes after the platform boosted its content offerings and invested in new markets. In March, over 125 million Snapchatters used Spotlight, the app’s newest platform that displays the most entertaining Snaps from the community. It launched Spotlight in three new countries including India, Mexico and Brazil, making it live in 14 countries.

Additionally, Snapchat debuted 321 new channels in Q1 with over 150 partners from 12 countries.

Other highlights include a 40 percent increase YoY in the number of Snapchatters engaging daily with the app’s AR Lenses. On average, Lenses created by the Snap community via Lens Studio accounted for more than 50 percent of daily Lens views.

Moviegoing Is The Top Post-Pandemic Activity Snapchatters Are Excited About

This week in social media news, Snapchat research highlights users’ excitement about returning to the movies, TikTok launches a creative hub to help guide business accounts, Twitter’s latest study reveals users’ financial optimism about the year and Facebook may soon launch campaign budget optimization across multiple platforms, not just ad sets. 

Snapchatters Plan Their Return To The Movie Theaters

As movie theaters start to reopen, the top activity Snapchatters are most excited about doing post-pandemic is going to the movies, shows the platform’s latest research. Another 81 percent say they’ll watch movies in theaters as much or more often than before the pandemic.

Why it matters: Snapchatters are 1.7 times more likely to see a movie on premiere weekend compared to non-Snapchatters, giving studio advertisers an opportunity to boost opening box office sales by running native Snapchat ads like AR Lenses, Story Ads and Filters leading up film releases.

Snapchat’s findings come as large movie chains including AMC and Regal Cinemas have reopened some of their locations nationwide in recent weeks.

The details: Nearly all of Snapchatters (96 percent) say they heard about a film they watched in theaters from an ad, usually weeks before they ended up seeing it. Among that group, 36 percent say they hear about a film more than one month before watching; 27 percent hear about it weeks before watching; 26 percent hear about it within a week of watching; and 11 percent hear about a film the same day they watch it.

Back in August last year, Snapchat teamed with Atom Tickets, the social movie ticketing app, to launch ‘Movie Tickets By Atom,’ a branded experience that enables Snapchatters to invite friends to the movies and buy tickets together directly in Snapchat.

TikTok Launches ‘Business Creative Hub’ To Provide Content Inspiration 

TikTok has introduced a new, free in-app resource, Business Creative Hub, where business accounts can access a stream of trending content, creative ideas and best practices to inspire their TikTok videos.

Why it matters: This new online resource center is one of TikTok’s many recent attempts at simplifying the road to success for brands. Recently, it launched a free video editor that enables brands to create native ads in their browser, plus it’s reportedly building four new ecommerce ad solutions so that brands can showcase their products and retarget audiences.

The details: TikTok’s new Business Creative Hub — which is located in the ‘Business suite’ section of a business account’s ‘Settings and privacy’ menu — comprises two sections: the Business Content Guide and the Video Showcase, the latter which is constantly updated, according to the app.

The Business Content Guide is a “cheat sheet” brands can follow for tips on content strategy, storyline ideation and video shooting. Additionally, it offers best posting times and showcases successful business account case studies.

The Video Showcase section includes three curated feeds of trending content that’s popular in your country over the past 30 days. The first feed, Trending: Business, displays videos from business accounts ranked by the total number of likes they’ve received. 

The second feed, Engaging: Business, shows videos from business accounts ranked by the level of engagement, measured by the ratio of comments to video views. 

Lastly, the third feed, Trending: Community, features videos from all account types, ranked by the total number of likes they received.

Twitter Study Shows Users Are Ready To Make Major Life Purchases In 2021

In a new Twitter study of more than 1,000 US users, people are ready to spend again on travel and clothes, as well as anticipate resuming major life moments including buying a new house and having a child.

Why it matters: Twitter reports that during 2020, the conversation about people’s financial future jumped more than 26 percent from 2019. With users now expressing a hopeful outlook on the future and saying they’re likely to reevaluate their financial service providers, banks and home and auto insurance lenders have an opportunity to reach this audience on Twitter.

The details: According to Twitter’s study, 46 percent of people surveyed say the pandemic negatively impacted their finances. Nevertheless, people who use Twitter are 2.4 times more likely to be optimistic about their finances heading into this year than those who don’t use Twitter.

Compared to non-Twitter users, Twitter users are 2.3 times more likely to get a new job, 2.3 times more likely to have a child, 2.3 times more likely to buy a house and 1.5 times more likely to buy a new car.

Facebook May Launch A Campaign Budget Optimization Tool Across Platforms 

Facebook is potentially working on a budget management solution that would optimize campaign delivery across multiple Facebook products, not just ad sets, reports Social Media Today.

Why it matters: As a new 20-page Facebook paper notes, the issue that brands face when running campaigns to users across different internal products, which in this case Facebook refers to as “platforms,” is the campaign must acquire impressions from a variety of platforms that serve different value, possibly due to a different user base and different prices.

The details: To find a better way for online advertisers to optimally spend budget for a campaign across Facebook platforms, Facebook set out to learn the valuation of bidding on each platform studied while “simultaneously maximizing their cumulative rewards.”

Currently, Facebook’s Campaign Budget Optimization (CBO) lets brands set a campaign budget with flexibility in how the budget is allocated across campaigns with at least two ad sets. Should the company introduce this new process, advertisers will have the ability to implement CBO across Facebook, Instagram, Messenger and WhatsApp from a single campaign.

Twitch Viewership Reaches An All-Time High In Q1

This week in social media news, Twitch represents 72.3 percent of streaming viewership, TikTok is testing four new ad formats and released insight about how users perceive its ads, a new Pew Research Center survey highlights key social media use trends and more.

Twitch Accounts For 72 Percent Of Market Share In Terms Of Viewership

Streamlabs and Stream Hatchets’ latest live streaming report shows that in Q1, Twitch viewership reached an all-time high—growing 16.5 percent since the last quarter—Facebook Gaming closed the gap on YouTube Gaming viewership for the first time and watch time on YouTube Gaming has almost doubled year-over-year (YoY).

Why it matters: Twitch’s new milestone means the platform now represents 72.3 percent of market share in terms of viewership, a 6.5 percent increase from the previous quarter. Comparatively, YouTube Gaming’s viewership dipped about 550 million hours from Q4 2020 to Q1 2021. Meanwhile, Facebook Gaming viewership grew by about 156 million hours.

The details: In Q1, Twitch saw the biggest increase in hours streamed since the start of the pandemic, much of which can be attributed to its ‘Just Chatting’ category, which now accounts for 12 percent of all content watched on Twitch.

Streamers broadcast 35 million more hours of content to Twitch in Q1 than in Q4, and compared to this time last year, the total hours of content streamed to Twitch grew by 119 percent—from 121 million to 265 million.

For YouTube Gaming, YoY viewership grew by 28 percent but hours streamed dipped nearly seven percent compared to Q4.

Facebook Gaming has reached all-time highs across all categories, reports Streamlabs. In fact, viewership figures surpassed 1 billion hours watched in one quarter for the first time, streamers broadcast 5 million hours of content to the platform and nearly 400,000 unique channels were streamed to the platform in Q1 than the previous quarter.

View the full report here.

TikTok Is Testing Four New Ecommerce Ad Formats

According to ad buyers and recent TikTok pitch decks leaked from sales presentations, TikTok is testing four new ad formats, reports Business Insider. Currently in testing and expected to launch this year, the solutions will enable brands to showcase their products, retarget audiences with products they’ve shown interest in and customize sales and promotions to in-feed ads.

Why it matters: In the past year, TikTok’s US advertising business surged more than 500 percent, Sandie Hawkins, US general manager of global business solutions at TikTok, confirmed to Business Insider.

The details: As per Business Insider, the four new ad formats TikTok is building are: Collection Ads, which would let brands combine product catalogs and branded videos to direct people to product landing pages; Dynamic Product Ads, which automatically retarget people with products based on their online actions; Promo Tiles, allowing marketers to add customizable promos to their in-feed ads; and Showcase Tiles, giving creators the ability to promote products in their video via a link to the products shown in tiles below.

A media executive at a holding company also told Business Insider that TikTok is offering media credits to ad agencies to test out the new formats if they spend at least $5,000 over a two-week period.

Kantar Research Shows How TikTok Ads Are Perceived

TikTok recently commissioned Kantar to conduct a study across 20 different countries among 25,000 participants from September 2020 to January 2021 to understand how ads on TikTok are being perceived versus ads on other apps.

Why it matters: Last year, Kantar’s research revealed that TikTok’s Branded Hashtag Challenge incorporates all the winning features of successful ads, and could surpass major TV moments in reach and engagement. For example, as per Kantar, a Branded Hashtag Challenge for a soft drink in Japan recorded 52 million unique user video views, nearly as many as the record TV audience—60 million—for the 2019 Rugby World Cup with Japan vs. Scotland.

The details: According to Kantar’s findings, 72 percent of those surveyed agreed that ads on TikTok are perceived as inspiring and 67 percent agreed that ads on TikTok hold their attention. The latter figure represents a 10 percent lead compared to other platforms.

In addition, compared to ads on other apps, TikTok ads are considered 21 percent more “trendsetting,” with nearly 70 percent holding this sentiment.

When asked to choose between ad formats on other platforms or TikTok’s TopView ad, 72 percent of all respondents preferred TopView, citing its “more natural placement within the platform,” in addition to its sound-on and full-screen features.

Lastly, Kantar found that TikTok ads showed a 10 percent better ad receptivity on average compared to other platforms tested.

Pew Research: YouTube Is The Most Used Social Platform Among US Adults

The most-used social media platform by US adults is YouTube (81 percent), followed by Facebook (69 percent), according to a new Pew Research Center survey conducted from January 25 to February 8 among 1,502 Americans. Among the platforms Pew measured, the only platform other than YouTube that experienced significant growth since 2019—up from 73 percent—is Reddit, which grew from 11 percent in 2019 to 18 percent today.

Why it matters: Facebook is still one of the most used social media platforms with 69 percent of respondents saying they use it, but Pew’s data show that its growth has leveled off over the last five years. In addition, the respective number of Americans who report using Snapchat, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter and WhatsApp is statistically unchanged since 2019.

The details: As for other platforms in Pew’s survey, 40 percent of adults say they use Instagram and 30 percent use Pinterest or LinkedIn. Twenty-five percent say they use Snapchat and a similar amount report using Twitter or WhatsApp. TikTok, despite its explosive growth in the past year, is used by 21 percent of Americans. Another 13 percent say they use the Nextdoor app.

Adults under 30 stand out for their use of TikTok, Instagram and Snapchat, while a vast majority of those 30 to 64 use YouTube. The latter share drops to 49 percent among Americans aged 65 and older.

Comparatively, age gaps between the youngest and oldest demographic narrow for Facebook, with 70 percent of those ages 18 to 29 saying they use the platform and 73 percent of ages 50 to 64 saying they use it.

Other apps that stand out for their demographic differences include Pinterest, where women continue to be far more likely to use it than men—46 percent versus 16 percent. In addition, Hispanic Americans (46 percent) are more likely to say they use WhatsApp than black (23 percent) or white Americans (16 percent).

See the full findings here.

Google Ads Launches YouTube Video Experiments Globally

To help advertisers find their creative sweet spot on YouTube, Google is launching video experiments worldwide in Google Ads. The company says that in global studies it conducted in 2019 and 2020, advertisers who successfully used video experiments to optimize for lower-funnel performance on YouTube saw a 30 percent lower media cost per acquisition from the higher-performing creative.

Why it matters: When sporting goods retailer Decathlon set out to test video creatives versus single standard creative for key audience segments using Google’s video experiments, it saw 175 percent more incremental online conversations at a 64 percent lower cost per conversion and greater return on ad spend by 51 percent.

The details: The Google Ads video experiments will enable brands to analyze the impact of different video ads on brand lift, conversions or CPAs by letting you show two distinctly different video ads to the same audience, with different visual language elements such as brightness, text and framing. To start, Google suggests testing supersize text and logo, tighter framing and placing a call to action at the beginning of the video.

Reddit Is Reportedly Building A Clubhouse-Like Voice Chat Feature

Reddit is exploring a new feature that would let people moderate voice chats, a source familiar with the company’s plan told Mashable.

Why it matters: Reddit hasn’t confirmed the feature, but it would come as no surprise if it were tapping into the popularity and rollout of new audio-only features and apps, including Clubhouse, Twitter’s Spaces, Facebook’s Rooms and Discord’s new ‘Stage Channels.’

The details: Mashable reports that voice chats on Reddit could be part of the company’s ‘Powerup’ program. Announced last year, the program involves the launch of additional features for subreddits whose members buy a minimum number of Power subscriptions, which costs $4.99 a month.