This week in social media news, Facebook clarifies guidelines surrounding the use of recorded music in videos and live streams on Facebook and Instagram, Pinterest rolls out a curated shopping tool, LinkedIn launches a new Glint integration to help managers lead more effectively during COVID, Facebook releases a report on COVID’s impact on small businesses and acquires GIPHY as part of Instagram, eMarketer predicts Instagram and Snapchat will outperform Facebook in terms of engagement growth and TikTok will present at the IAB NewFronts for the first time.
Facebook Updates Guidelines For Using Recorded Music In Videos
Facebook has clarified guidelines and product improvements around recorded music used in videos and live streams on Facebook and Instagram.
Why it matters: In respective company posts, Instagram and Facebook said that social distancing has “highlighted some confusion across the community — especially around the use of recorded music in Live on both Facebook and Instagram.”
The details: Facebook says there are no limits on things like music in Stories, or traditional musical performances and that the greater the number of full-length recorded tracks in a video, the more likely it may be limited; for that reason, it recommends shorter clips of music. It also notes, “There should always be a visual component to your video; recorded audio should not be the primary purpose of the video.”
To minimize stream interruptions caused by music, Facebook is improving in-product notifications that let a user know when a broadcast or uploaded video may include music that doesn’t adhere to its licensing agreements. If a video is muted or blocked, Facebook will share what actions the user can take to stop the interruption.
YouTube Announces New Ad Option To Reach Traditional Television Viewers
YouTube will replace its upfront offering Google Preferred, which launched in 2014, with YouTube Select, which will include the ability to buy inventory on traditional television.
Why it matters: With less people out and more stuck at home watching television, traditional television is becoming a lucrative investment for YouTube.
The details: Unlike Google Preferred, YouTube Select will be available worldwide and introduce “emerging lineups” which enable advertisers to show ads on emerging channels or niche ones. Advertisers will also be able to choose from customized packages for YouTube kids and YouTube Originals.
Facebook Launches Shops On Facebook And Instagram Business Profiles
The platform announced that its new Shops feature allows businesses to set up an online store for free, accessible to customers on a business’ Facebook page, Instagram profile and in stories and ads.
Why it matters: The social commerce feature comes after Facebook published a report outlining the ways COVID-19 has negatively impacted small businesses.
The details: Businesses control what products to feature and can customize the look and feel of their shop with a cover image and brand colors. Through a business’ shop, customers can browse items, save products and place an order either on the business’ website or within the app, if the business has enabled “checkout” in the US.
Via Shops, customers can also message a business through WhatsApp, Messenger or Instagram direct message to ask about deliveries and get support. Facebook also plans to enable shopping right within a chat in WhatsApp, Messenger or Instagram direct messages.
This summer, customers will also be able to discover and buy products from the Instagram Explore page through Instagram Shops. Facebook plans to add a new shop tab in the Instagram navigator bar later this year. It’s also testing a feature that would enable sellers, brands and influencers to tag products from their Facebook Shop before going live, with shoppable products appearing at the foot of the live video.
Facebook says it’s also working on a way to sync loyalty programs between local businesses and users’ Facebook accounts.
LinkedIn Launches New Glint Integration For Managers
LinkedIn’s Learning for Glint is a new integration that embeds over 100 expert-curated LinkedIn Learning videos directly into Glint, which LinkedIn acquired in November 2018, to help managers learn specific skills, support their teams and lead more effectively in the time of coronavirus.
Why it matters: Recent data from LinkedIn Learning reveals that since the pandemic started, managers have increased the time they spend watching online courses by 105 percent.
The details: LinkedIn Learning for Glint provides managers with bite-sized videos tailored to their individual survey results at the time they’re most receptive to learning more. Glint customers can access the new integration for free regardless of whether they have a LinkedIn Learning enterprise license.
Pinterest Rolls Out Curated Shopping Feature
Pinterest has launched a new feature called shopping spotlights that serves users recommendations of influencers and publishers based on current Pinterest trends.
Why it matters: In early April, Pinterest announced new ways to shop directly from pins, on boards and from the search bar after searches for “help small businesses” on the app tripled and searches for “care package ideas” doubled.
The details: Pinterest has partnered with former Teen Vogue editor-in-chief Elaine Welteroth, fashion influencer Blair Eadie and interior designer Sarah Sherman Samuel to launch the new shopping spotlights feature. Pinterest’s publishing partners include Refinery29, Domino, Who What Wear, InStyle, Nylon and Harper’s Bazaar.
Pinners will notice the shopping spotlights on the search tab with articles featuring product pins that directly link to a brand’s product pages, where Pinners can check out.
The shopping spotlights feature is available on Android and desktop now, and is coming to iOS soon.
Facebook Expands Mid-Roll Video Ads Test
Facebook is expanding its experiment with mid-roll ads in videos to all types of video content. In the new test, mid-roll ads will be non-skippable for the first five seconds, as reported by Adweek.
Why it matters: Last month, Search Engine Land reported that Facebook was testing three mid-roll ad formats in selected live-streams as a way to help streamers monetize their Facebook content.
The details: According to Adweek, Facebook’s new test includes ads of up to 15 seconds in length that users can skip after having played for five seconds.
Facebook Is Working On Artificial Intelligence-Powered Shopping Tools
Facebook is ramping up its artificial-intelligence efforts to create a shopping tool that recognizes various items in pictures.
Why it matters: Facebook’s new tool will identify clothing, which is generally challenging for AI given bodies have many shapes.
The details: Facebook says its research scientist Tamara Berg is prototyping an “intelligent digital closet” which lets people take photos of their outfits and instantly digitize each item. The closet would provide outfit suggestions based on planned activities or weather as well as recommended products to shop.
Meanwhile, research scientist Sean Bell is working on a new tool called GrokNet, which automatically suggests clothing attributes such as colors and materials, simplifying the process of posting a listing.
Facebook is also testing GrokNet with automatic product tagging suggestions on Facebook pages to make it easier for users to pinpoint exact items featured in content in their feed.
Lastly, Facebook is working on a 3D-like photo capability on Marketplace for iOS sellers called Rotating View, which lets people turn a regular 2D video into a 3D-like view using the camera on their phone.
Facebook Report Details COVID’s Impact On Small Businesses
In collaboration with Small Business Roundtable, Facebook released the first report of an ongoing series called “The State of Small Business Report,” which is based on a survey of 86,000 owners, managers and workers in US companies with fewer than 500 employees. The findings reveal that nearly a third of small businesses have shut down.
Why it matters: The report paints a dismal picture of the current scale of the crisis, which is particularly affecting female owners, who Facebook says lead the majority of these small businesses. 160 million businesses use Facebook’s apps every month.
The details: The series, which Facebook says were planned before the pandemic struck, suggests that the smallest businesses have been hit the hardest; more than half of those businesses run by the self-employed or for personal income are no longer operating.
The two primary concerns of small business owners are cash flow and lack of demand. Supply challenges are also a concern; 40 percent of owner-managers reported facing supply challenges, including 67 percent of small businesses, 65 percent of personal businesses and 50 percent of hotels, cafes and restaurants.
Just 45 percent of owners and managers of closed business said they’d rehire the same workers when their businesses reopened and 19 percent said they were keeping their workers and still paying part of their wages.
Facebook says that despite these challenges, 57 percent of small business owners and managers are optimistic about their future as 51 percent have increased online interactions with their clients and 36 percent report that they’re now conducting all of their sales online.
Fifty-nine percent of female-led businesses said at least half of their sales are digital compared to 54 percent of male-led businesses.
Facebook Acquires GIPHY For $400 Million
GIPHY is joining the Facebook company as part of the Instagram team following a deal reported to be worth nearly $400 million.
Why it matters: Facebook reports that 50 percent of GIPHY’s traffic comes from Facebook apps, half of that from Instagram alone.
The details: For Instagram and Facebook story users, the acquisition means an expanded pool of GIFs to choose from. In addition, people will still be able to upload GIFs to GIPHY and developers and API partners will have the same access to GIPHY’s APIs.
Instagram, Snapchat Will See Higher Growth Than Facebook This Year
Instagram and Snapchat will outpace Facebook in engagement growth in 2020, according to a forecast from eMarketer shared with Mobile Marketer.
Why it matters: eMarketer predicts that US adult users of social media will spend an average of one hour and 22 minutes a day on the apps this year, seven minutes more than they did in 2019. As the pandemic continues affecting marketing budgets, knowing where customers are right now is crucial to pivoting.
The details: Instagram will grow the fastest with a nearly 14 percent surge from 2019 to an average of 30 minutes a day; this is significantly higher than eMarketer’s November estimate, which predicted Instagram’s 2020 usage would grow by 24 seconds a day.
Snapchat will see a 12 percent increase to an average of 29.5 minutes a day—a dramatic lift compared to eMarketer’s previous forecast of a gain of 30 seconds a day.
Facebook will see a 4.3 percent increase to about 34 minutes daily.
TikTok Will Pitch At IAB NewFronts For The First Time
The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) will live-stream its yearly NewFronts this year, where, for the first time, TikTok will present.
Why it matters: TikTok’s appearance follows its recent milestone of 2 billion downloads.
The details: The NewFronts will be streamed between June 22-26, with programming set to cover streaming video, lifestyle, news, audio, eSports and gaming. TikTok will present on June 25, the same day Xandr, TiVo, Samsung Ads and YouTube are scheduled to appear.