This week in social media news, TikTok increases its video length limit from 60 seconds to three minutes, Snapchat shares insight on how its Product Experience Lenses drive online purchases, Instagram announces new changes coming to its video experience and TikTok adds a ‘Shoutout’ feature that lets fans pay their favorite creators for a personalized video message.

TikTok Expands Its Three-Minute Video Format Globally

TikTok is expanding the option to create three-minute videos to its global user base, the company announced in a blog.

Why it matters: Up until now, TikTok users could only create videos up to 60 seconds.

The details: The update comes after TikTok ran a global test of the expanded format with select creators and hearing from them that they’d like a little more time to create tutorial-like content, such as cooking demos and educational lesson plans.  

YouTube Shorts, the platform’s TikTok copycat that launched in March, allows users to create videos up to 60 seconds in length. Comparatively, Instagram’s TikTok clone Reels also caps it at 60 seconds long.

Snapchat Shares Advertiser Best Practices For Leveraging Augmented Reality

With the rise of digital shopping, brands are increasingly leveraging augmented reality to recreate the in-store try-on shopping experience. To help marketers get the most out of AR, Snapchat shared new insight about how its Product Experience Lenses are contributing to users’ purchase journeys.  

Why it matters: According to Snapchat, 75 percent of its 265 million daily users engage with AR every day on average. In addition, Snapchat said campaigns that include its Product Experience Lenses, which enable users to experience a product or service, are twice as likely to drive significant lifts in Action Intent compared to norms.

The details: Snapchat analyzed 10 campaigns that incorporated a Product Experience Lens along with Snapchat ads to drive online purchases. It observed different combinations of ad product exposure pre-purchase and the extent to which a user’s exposure to a Lens was the final touchpoint before purchase. Snap then compared these to Snap ads exposures that led to a conversion.

Snap found that Lenses would’ve been credited with 45 percent more purchases on average when looking at any-touch compared to last-touch conversions. In comparison, Snap ads were much lower at 16 percent. 

Though more tests are required to see how Lenses drive incremental purchases, Snap’s findings show that under any-touch attribution, Lenses drive more purchases than they’re typically given credit for.

Instagram Announces Upcoming Video Features That Mimic The TikTok Experience

In a video posted to his Instagram and Twitter profiles, Instagram head Adam Mosseri said the company is no longer a photo-sharing app and that it’s testing a full-screen video viewing experience and recommended videos feature to keep up with the “stiff competition” from TikTok and YouTube.  

Why it matters: Instagram’s plan to lean into entertainment comes amid its larger push to support and woo creators. Recently, it announced a native affiliate program and the ability for creators to link their shops to their perusal profiles, not just their business profiles.

The details: Instagram is working on new experiences in four key areas—creators, video, shopping and messaging. Instagram’s internal research shows that people are heading to the app to be entertained, which is why Mosseri said in the next couple of months Instagram will test a feature that shows content in the feed people may not already be following. Next, Instagram will run a test that enables users to choose which topics they want to see more or less of in their feed.

In addition, Instagram has plans to embrace mobile-first video more broadly, though Mosseri didn’t share any specific details how Instagram plans to do that.

TikTok Adds ‘Shoutouts,’ Revenue-Generation Feature For Creators, Fans

According to Social Media Today, TikTok has rolled out a Cameo-like revenue-generation option called Shoutouts that lets fans pay creators in exchange for a personalized video message.

Why it matters: Shoutouts will be powered by the virtual currency TikTok launched last year, TikTok coins, which enables users to buy and send virtual gifts to creators during their TikTok live streams.

The details: As seen in this screenshot from Fabian Ouwehand, TikTok’s Shoutouts can pay a creator for a personalized message using TikTok coins. The creator has three days to either accept or decline the fan request, plus an additional week to create the video message, which gets sent to the paying user’s inbox.