Our weekly social media news roundup helps marketers to stay on top of every social platform’s latest updates, insights, campaigns and more.

Twitter Clarifies The New App Prototype

Twitter added clarification to the announcement of a new prototype app.

Why it matters: A new prototype version promises potential changes to the service in the near future, including updates that could change engagement and interactions between accounts, such as hiding likes and retweets.

The details: “We’re experimenting in our prototype/testing app with placing engagements behind a tap for replies only. Engagements are not gone from all Tweets, just behind a tap for replies,” Twitter told Newsweek. 

Kroger Expands Marketing Relationship With Pinterest

Kroger announced a strategic integrated media and measurement relationship with Pinterest.

Why it matters: This relationship will enable millions of consumers to interact with their favorite brands on Pinterest and help advertisers to leverage Kroger’s first-party data for targeting on Pinterest.

The details: “Our intentions are simple; we want to enable brands to create engaging moments with consumers in an effective and efficient manner. We are excited to blend the inspiration delivered on Pinterest with our rich customer intelligence and connection to commerce, driving meaningful value for advertisers,” Cara Pratt, VP of Customer Communications Product Strategy & Innovation said in a statement. 

Twitter Releases Employee Inclusion And Diversity Report

Twitter recently published the company’s new “Inclusion and Diversity” report.

Why it matters: The report highlights the company’s efforts to be inclusive and reflect the people they serve around the world.

The details: In 2018, Twitter set some serious diversity targets, and this is how the company progressed in that direction in 2019, according to the report:

  • The Twitter team is now 40.2 percent female, 4.5 percent black and 3.9 percent Latinx
  • At the leadership level, Twitter’s representation of women, black and Latinx people improved from 2018 at 20 percent of women holding leadership roles, 2.9 percent of which are Black and 3.2 percent Latinx.
  • In all the attrition, women made up 39.6 percent of it, while black employees accounted for 3.9 percent and Latinx employees made up 4.2 percent.

LinkedIn Global Report: Powering Customer Decisions From Acquisition To Renewal

LinkedIn released “The Enlightened Tech Buyer: Powering Customer Decisions From Acquisition To Renewal” report.

Why it matters: Technology plays a vital role in driving business growth and the path to purchase is rapidly changing, marketers need to be on top of the tech buyer data to make rational technology investment decisions.

The details: Some of the report highlights included:

  • 79 percent of today’s employees are technology end users, with two in five 38 percent technology decision makers
  • 38 percent of business professionals are involved in a cyclical, community-driven buying process led by IT
  • The average technology purchase process takes just over 2 years

Snap Is Planning To Launch Gaming Platform In April

Cheddar reported that, similarly to Facebook, Snap plans to roll out its gaming platform for developers in April.

Why it matters: The new gaming platform will help the users to find games, as well as new content.

The details: According to Cheddar, a person familiar with the matter said that the new mobile game platform, codenamed “Project Cognac” will feature a number of games from outside developers that will be designed to work specifically in the Snapchat app. The new games addition is planned to be unveiled at Snap’s first-ever summit for content and developer partners in Los Angeles on April 4, along with an announcement about more original shows.

Facebook Outage Brings Telegram Three Million New Signups 

TechCrunch reported on Thursday that messaging platform Telegram claimed to gain millions of new users during Facebook’s messaging services downtime.

Why it matters: Although the platform founder, Pavel Durov, doesn’t explain the cause of Telegram’s sudden “explosion,” he does carefully troll Facebook about the recent news that Zuckerberg plans to switch to encrypted messaging to protect user privacy. “Good. We have true privacy and unlimited space for everyone,” Durov said on his channel.

The details: “These outages always drive new users,” a contact at Telegram told TechCrunch, confirming that the Facebook apps’ downtime is the likely cause of its latest explosion.

However, Telegram also credited the sudden spike to “the mainstream overall increasing understanding of Facebook’s abusive attention harvesting practices.”

Facebook’s Outage Tremendously Hurt Small Advertisers

The almost day-long Facebook and Instagram outage on Wednesday cost small advertisers thousands of dollars, The Verge reported.

Why it matters: The major problem with the recent Facebook and Instagram outage was that the promoted posts went up, but few people saw them, which for many small companies resulted in tangible losses.

The details: As an example, The Verge uses fake eyelash company, Wonghaus Ventures, which lost $10,000 in revenue due to the outage. The company owner, Jason Wong, said: “Looking at our prior revenue for the past seven or eight days and looking at what happened [on Wednsday], we can kind of estimate how much money we lost based on our past week’s history.” Wong said he wishes Facebook was more open about what’s happening in the company and added, “They should be a little bit more transparent with the advertisers, especially since we are the ones that are funding their platform.”

Snap’s Shift To Higher Quality Content Adds Value To Its Stock 

According to Variety, on Thursday, BTIG Research analyst, Rich Greenfield, upgraded Snap from “neutral” to “buy” in a note.

Why it matters: One of the main factors for Greenfield’s upgrade was the shift of the Snap’s content from a “low-quality, clickbait/T&A feel” to premium publisher content that should lead to more user time spent in “Discover” and attract more advertisers.

The details: Last year, Snap attempted to add professionally produced original and third-party content to “Discover” and separate personal messaging from media aimed at general consumption.

Greenfield revised estimates for 2019 revenues upward to $1.65 billion for the year (versus $1.4 billion previously). He predicts an adjusted loss of -$268 million (up from -$500 million) and a net loss of 71 cents per share (versus a net loss of 92 cents prior), basing this on Snap’s improving advertising-growth trends.

Facebook Adds Gaming Tab To Its Main Navigation 

Facebook launched a “Facebook Gaming” tab in the main navigation of Facebook’s app on Thursday.

Why it matters: The new addition aims to help the users discover games, streamers and gaming groups and discover new content, relevant to their interests.

The details: According to TechCrunch, clicking the new Gaming tab brings up a feed of content that points the user to instant games to play with Facebook friends, as well as videos to check out and updates from various gaming groups. The Gaming tab builds on the gaming video destination facebook rolled out in 2018, called Fb.gg.

Twitter Rolls Out A New Camera Feature

On Wednesday, Twitter announced in a tweet the launch of its updated camera.

Why it matters: Twitter is looking to engage and attract new and old users with visual content, but it also allows more opportunities for ads placement.

The details: When swiping left from the Twitter timeline users can access the new camera feature. After the media is captured, a location, hashtag or caption on a colored label can be added. The best part? Twitter will show the media in the feed in a larger, more engaging format and the picture will precede the appearance of the text. For now, though, the feature doesn’t support uploads.

Facebook Removes Ad Relevance Score

Facebook has announced in a blog post that it will soon remove its Ad Relevance Score.

Why it matters: According to Facebook, the single metric doesn’t provide enough actionable insight which is why the company is switching to a more detailed measurement option to help improve ad performance.

The details: Facebook launched its ad relevance score in 2015 but this April, it will remove seven ad metrics, including Offers Saved and Cost Per Offers Saved, Messaging Replies and Cost per Messaging Reply, Mobile App Purchase ROAS and Web Purchase ROAS. And replace them with more actionable ones, which include the following:

  • Quality ranking: How your ad’s perceived quality compared with ads competing for the same audience.
  • Conversion rate ranking: How your ad’s expected conversion rate compared with ads that had the same optimization goal and competed for the same audience.

Pinterest Attracts Buyers With Low CPMs 

According to Digiday, buyers are benefiting from lower CPMs on Pinterest.

Why it matters: The buyers are saying that it’s possible to land better rates for more impressions in 2019, compared to 2018 when there was less competition to drive up prices on Pinterest.

The details: For example, after running five campaigns already this year, Visit Florida, the marketing body for the state, is seeing the benefits of less competition for impressions. The CPM for two of those campaigns cost 34 percent less than they had been last year but were still able to secure 129 million additional impressions, the advertiser’s VP of the brand, Staci Mellman, told Digiday.

Twitter Offers New Stats On Video Content Performance

Twitter Business posted a blog post on Monday offering statistics, insights and advice on video content performance in digital advertising.

Why it matters: According to the blog post, video is Twitter’s fastest-growing advertising tool. The platform sees around 1.2 billion video views daily, which is 2x growth in 12 months.

The details: There are several ways to promote videos on Twitter, including the Promoted Video feature, Video Website Cards (which provide an option for call-to-action) and In-Stream Video Ads. In terms of the best performing video content, Twitter suggests making sure that it’s mobile-friendly (93 percent of video views happen on mobile, according to internal Twitter data); contains a call-to-action and is brief.

Twitter Improves Its Response To Personal Privacy Violations 

Twitter announced in a tweet that it’s planning to improve the company’s response to violations of personal privacy by adding a new option for users to specify the type of personal information being shared via tweet.

Why it matters: The new option promises to benefit both the users and the platform itself, as the users will be able to report any issue with more ease and convenience and the Twitter’s team will be able to understand the problem faster.

The details: The process of reporting a tweet which shares private information will now have an extra step, which will redirect the user to a special listing with an option to specify whether the tweet contains contact information, a home address or physical location, financial information or government issued ID details.

“We want to move faster in reviewing reported Tweets that share personal information. Starting today, you’ll be able to tell us more about the Tweet you are reporting,” the tweet said.

YouTube Stories Introduces Snapchat-Like AR effects

Google AI Blog informed the public in a press release that YouTube Stories and ARCore will now offer the Augmented Faces API.

Why it matters: The result of the efforts should enhance user experience with realistic AR effects on YouTube.

The details: YouTube Stories is a feature that allows the users to create short, mobile-only videos with text, stickers, filters and music, which expire after seven days. The effects added to the feature will include:

  • Simulating light reflections via environmental mapping for realistic rendering of glasses
  • Natural lighting by casting virtual object shadows onto the face mesh
  • Modeling face occlusions to hide virtual object parts behind a face, e.g., virtual glasses, as shown below.
  • Modeling Specular reflections applied on lips and
  • Face painting by using luminance-aware material