This week in social media news, Facebook wants to be the next home shopping network, YouTube Mobile gets an autoplay option, Facebook makes holiday wishlists, tests keywords and entices video creators in India while Snapchat reveals the quick service restaurant dining habits of its users.
Facebook Tests Live Video Shopping
Facebook is testing a new feature that would allow merchants to describe wares in a live video and fulfill orders through chat.
Why it matters: Humans are visual creatures and as consumers turn to their smartphones for inspiration, Facebook wants to cash in. Should the feature be widely adopted, ecommerce would be expanded on Facebook and open the door for similar Instagram opportunities.
Details: A select number of Pages in Thailand are testing a live shopping feature, Facebook confirmed with TechCrunch. Retailers would demo and describe their products via a live feed, similar to a home shopping network. Interested viewers can screenshot an item they like and send it to the seller via Facebook chat, where they can be invoiced and complete the transaction.
YouTube Mobile Gets Autoplay Option
Soon when mobile users browse YouTube’s home page, videos will begin to play automatically, but with the sound off.
Why it matters: YouTube previously added this feature for Premium Android users so they could preview content before viewing, with “great results.” The company says that by previewing content beforehand, it allows viewers to make more informed decisions about what to watch, resulting in longer engagement times when they do.
Details: YouTube is beginning to roll out Autoplay on Home for Android and iOS devices. Users will see videos begin to autoplay with the sound off while browsing YouTube’s home page on their phones. The option can be turned off or allowed only when there is WiFi access.
Facebook Adds Inspiration Section For Brands
A best-of-class collection of successful ad campaigns is now available to marketers to peruse for inspiration on Facebook.
Why it matters: As the second-largest seller of advertising in the world, Facebook needs to keep marketers happy and inspired amid an agonizing stream of controversies. Proving that advertising works on the platform certainly doesn’t hurt.
Details: The new Inspiration section is a collection of top-performing ad content, curated by Facebook’s Creative Shop. Users can browse by month, vertical, region and success rate, as displayed on a leaderboard. The section currently features ads from Hershey’s, Amazon, Uber and more.
Facebook Makes Pinterest-Like Collections Shareable
Facebook users can now share their collections of posts with others as a kind of “wishlist” for the holidays.
Why it matters: Collaboration means more time spent on the platform—a statistic that has gone down for Facebook in recent months. Creating and sharing collections allows users to communicate ideas with others, which in turn inspires those friends and family to log in and check it out. Facebook says that “millions” use this feature each day, so (at least in theory) millions will begin sharing those collections like an Amazon wishlist.
Details: Facebook collections rolled out a year ago but were visible only to their creators. Now, users will be able to share them with others. The idea is that collections will inspire collaboration or gift ideas, hence the timing of this release.
Keyword Mentions Being Tested For Facebook Groups
Group admins may soon be able to set up notifications for specific keywords.
Why it matters: Brands would be able to identify intent-related keywords within a group and offer a timely reaction. While the intent is to allow admins to weed out offensive conversations, the opposite could also be true.
Details: A new feature in testing would allow Facebook group admins to set up alerts when certain keywords and phrases are mentioned. This feature could help moderate offensive content, alert to interesting topics or notify brands of a particular interest.
Facebook Watch Offers Monetization In India
Indian Facebook users with over 10,000 followers can now access monetization tools for video.
Why it matters: Facebook continues its video push by offering tools similar to YouTube, its biggest rival. India is proving a lucrative market for social media giants, as well. Facebook added Stories features for Diwali celebrations this year and Snapchat just partnered with several publishers to offer local Indian Discover content for the first time.
Details: During a creator event in Mumbai, Facebook announced that Indian content creators can access tools to monetize their videos. The features are limited to videos at least three minutes in length and for creators with at least 10,000 followers.
Snapchat Explores The Eating Habits Of Its Users
Snapchat found that its users visit quick service restaurants (QSR) at least two times per week and usually on the weekends.
Why it matters: Advertisers on Snapchat can use this information to plan campaigns around when and where users are eating. Likewise, QSR brands can use this information to time campaigns and drive visits during less popular times of the week.
Details: US Snapchatters grab a bite between shopping trips and most often on Saturdays while Canadians do so on Fridays, the social network revealed. Different restaurants vary in popularity depending on the day. Taco Bell appears to be the most popular choice for a quick bite, especially on Sundays at 16.05 percent. Time of day also effects QSR visitation, Snapchat found. For Starbucks, peak US Snapchatter visitation is at 3:00 p.m. while McDonald’s, Subway, Burger King and Taco Bell are busiest at 6 p.m.
Editor’s Note: Our weekly social media news post is updated daily. This installment will be updated until Friday, December 7. Have a news tip? We’re looking for changes to and news surrounding social media platforms as they relate to marketing. Let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.