Here are all of the posts tagged ‘Instagram’.

We Are Social Asia Tuesday TuneUp #131

by Haiyi Tang in News

WeChat launched its advertising platform for official accounts
According to QQ Tech, WeChat launched a 10-day closed beta test earlier this year, and now the company has decided to launch the open beta version of its advertising platform for official accounts. WeChat pointed out that advertisers now are able to target audiences by gender, age and region, which provides more accurate targeting services for advertisers to narrow down its relevant target audiences. Meanwhile, advertisers can also get feedback about exposure, click through rate, number of clicks and KPIs from WeChat. However, these ads will only show up if users choose to click through the messages to read full-page posts from the official account. Although the new ad platform is still in beta version, there are nearly 400 million monthly active users who follow these ’subscription’ and service accounts. As such, it will be interesting to see the outcome when the ad platform officially launches.
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Luxury travellers in Asia-Pacific seek, share info online 
In June 2014, ILTM Asia and Brand Karma published a report called “The Luxury Traveller & Social Media 2014: Asia”. This report indicated that Asia is the region where social media matters most to luxury travel brands. According to the research, it is noteworthy that the social media health of a luxury travel brands is strong, as demonstrated by the positivity and large share-of-voice, which it attracts from two major sources: online review sites like TripAdvisor, and social networking sites like Facebook. Interestingly, the research also shows that Asian travellers are enthusiastic about writing reviews for luxury hotel brands, hence brands should be aware of the importance of managing their presence on popular Asian review sites as well as their social media presence.

Here are some key take aways from the report:
- Mobile messaging apps could displace traditional social networks
- Asian luxury hotel brands lead the way in social commerce
- Social guest satisfaction increases
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Indian Prime Minister becomes Twitter’s third most followed world leader 
The use of social media becomes a popular trend for world leaders, since Barack Obama (43.9 million twitter followers) used social media to leverage his influence during the US elections in 2008. As reported previously, Indonesian President SB Yudhoyono was the third influential world leader on Twitter with 5.09 million followers. However, now with over 5.1 million Twitter followers, Indian Prime Minister Modi has surpassed the Twitter fan base of Indonesian President SB Yudhoyono to become the third most followed world leader. It is not surprising that Facebook has also hit a milestone in India with 100 millions active users.

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Advertisers will increase social ad budgets
Most advertisers are planning to increase their ad budgets for social media, according to an Ad Age survey of 1,682 agency executives. Of those asked, 53% will modestly increase their Twitter budget, compared to 48% for Facebook and 43% for YouTube. ‘Significant increases’ are expected by roughly 10% of respondents for all platforms, while hardly anyone plans to ‘significantly decrease’ budgets on any of the three networks.

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Facebook buys LiveRail
Facebook is to further increase its video ad business with the purchase of LiveRail, one of the biggest video ad sellers, which automates the sale of video adverts for the likes of MLB, ABC and DailyMotion. According to Ad Age, a Facebook spokesperson declined to comment on the price of the deal. Facebook will use LiveRail’s data when serving ads on its own network, and vice versa. This should help to amplify Facebook’s ‘Audience Network’, which allows advertisers to extend campaigns beyond the social network.

Facebook creates ‘missed call’ ad unit for India
Facebook has produced a new ad unit, the ‘missed call’, exclusively for India. In a blog post, Facebook explained how it will work:

When a person sees an ad on Facebook they can place a ‘missed call’ by clicking the ad from their mobile device. In the return call, the person receives valuable content, such as music, cricket scores or celebrity messages, alongside a brand message from the advertiser — all without using airtime or data.

India has a culture of pre-paid phone contracts, which often include high costs for data and text messages; as such, the missed call is a common workaround. Facebook is hoping to take advantage of this behaviour in the country, which has its second-highest global user base.

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Twitter ups mobile ad offering
Twitter has made two moves to improve its mobile ad offering in the last week. First of all, it is now offering mobile app installation ads, which it has been testing since earlier this year, to all advertisers. Secondly, it has purchased TapCommerce, which helps mobile businesses to retarget ads, for a reported $100m. The two moves display a clear intent by Twitter to focus on mobile advertising.

Tweets appear with ‘buy now’ button
‘buy now’ button appeared on several tweets last week, all linked to the @fancy account. The button was only visible on mobile and didn’t actually do anything when clicked, inciting speculation that it was either a test or an accident. However, it looks likely that shopping on Twitter will be here soon enough.

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Vine adds loop count
Vine has added a ‘loop count’, a metric that displays how many times a particular Vine has been repeated. The idea is that this will show which videos are best engaging their audience, which could be big news for brands. We Are Social’s Luke Carrell talked to AgencySpy about the move:

For many marketers, Vine continues to be a bit of an enigma, with its younger audience and tendency to reward quick, quirky humor that can be difficult to get exactly right. While many brands have embraced the platform as an outlet for one-off creative exercises, more robust metrics such as the introduction of content impressions (e.g. Loops) opens the door for gathering insights that can help build smarter content plays over the long term.

Google kills Orkut
Google is bringing an end to Orkut, its original social network, which remains popular in Brazil and India. It released a blog post, which stated that “YouTube, Blogger and Google+ [had] outpaced Orkut’s growth”. September 30th will be the network’s final day.

The World Cup breaks records in social
The World Cup has been one of the most talked-about events of all time online, and there is now more evidence to support that. The total number of Facebook posts, comments and likes relating to the World Cup has reached the 1bn mark, with 11 posts from footballers competing in the tournament each receiving more than 1m likes. Of these, seven came from Neymar, three from Messi and one from Ronaldo. Meanwhile, Brazil’s penalty shootout victory over Chile elicited 389,000 tweets in one minute, thehighest figure of all time. The previous record was held by February’s Superbowl, in which a single touchdown caused 382,000 tweets in a minute.

adidas and We Are Social produce real-time World Cup content
Ad Age recently spent the day at adidas’s real-time marketing hub at the World Cup in Rio, a 40-strong delegation that includes some of the We Are Social gang. Their article about the experience highlights adidas and We Are Social’s extensive pre-World Cup preparation, while also discussing the way in which the team deals with reactive content on the ground. So far, adidas is the most talked-about brand of the entire tournament.

 


We Are Social and adidas celebrate Djokovic’s Wimbledon win
In the immediate aftermath of Novak Djokovic’s thrilling fifth set win over Roger Federer at Wimbledon, We Are Social and adidas Tennis posted a congratulatory tweet and image to celebrate the moment. It was the culmination of two weeks of support for its players, all under the umbrella of #smashthesilence. The tweet itself has received over 1,250 retweets, the hashtag being mentioned 10,700 times throughout the tournament.

We Are Social and evian create #LetsPlay
We Are Social created a campaign for water brand, evian, which encouraged people to live young during Wimbledon. Fans simply had to tweet @evianwater with #LetsPlay. Lucky winners received a personalised Vine, sung by Vive Vocals.

Monster puts job ads in Twitter cards
Monster, the recruitment company, has released a new Twitter card, which displays a full job advert within a tweet. Here it is in all its glory:

 

Barbie joins LinkedIn
Looking for a career as a plastic toy? Better connect with Barbie – she’s just joined LinkedIn. The move is promoting the doll’s latest incarnation, ‘Entrepreneur Barbie’, whose profile includes details on her long and illustrious career, as well as an explanation of her latest venture, ‘Dream Incubator’.

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Ikea creates Instagram ‘website’
Ikea has created an Instagram page that functions like a website. By featuring products from its Ikea PS collection, alongside a product description, it takes advantage of the network’s layout, as explained in the video below.

Vodafone is curating a Twitter play
Vodafone is teaming up with Spanish actor, Raúl Arévalo, to curate a play from tweets. Twitter users will be encouraged to send in suggestions for lines/directions using the hashtag #firstteatrotuits (first theatre tweets), after which the play will be performed to a live audience in Madrid’s Capitol Theatre. The audience, too, will be encouraged to send in their own suggestions.

AutoTrader.com and Overly Attached Girlfriend
AutoTrader.com has enlisted the help of Laina Morris, better known as ‘Overly Attached Girlfriend’, in its latest online campaign. The online star is featured in a video, in which she uses the site’s various features to help keep her search hidden from her partner. After watching, viewers are encouraged to take part in a similar online treasure hunt.

Transamerica launches on Reddit
Transamerica has launched a presence on Reddit, through which it hopes to answer personal finance questions. Reddit can prove difficult for brands, but llan Gungormez, director of social media strategy at Transamerica, has made clear that the company will be trying not to push sales too much:

What we’re really trying to work on doing is kind of filling in all the gaps. And at the end of the day, we obviously hope you end up picking Transamerica. But if you are at least able to walk away and make a better, informed decision, that’s really the win, because financial literacy is so low across the board.

CALM launches the Twitter #Mandictionary
Male suicide charity, CALM, has created a Twitter campaign, which asks users to tweet their suggestions for vocabulary to express male emotion, using #Mandictionary. The charity hopes the campaign will help promote discussion of male mental health, and intends to use the submissions in future ads.

Twitter trolls Robin Thicke
Music channel VH1 encouraged Twitter users to tweet questions to Robin Thicke last week, using #AskThicke. Naturally, for such a controversial figure, some of the questions weren’t quite what Thicke might have hoped. Many tweets, such as the below, highlighted Thicke’s questionable history and accusations of misogyny.

 

 

Ukrainian club creates social media bar
The Boom Boom Room, a night club in Kiev, has a set menu of eleven drinks in its newly-launched “Check-in bar”, each of which can be purchased in exchange for a different social media activity. A hashtagged Instagram selfie is worth one shot, a photo with four tagged friends earns you a bottle of Prosecco and there’s a special drink for a mayor’s badge on Foursquare.

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We Are Social Asia Tuesday TuneUp #128

by Suhaina Adam in News

World Cup hits Weibo
Weibo‘s recently launched World Cup page is live and a huge success so far – over 22 million Chinese users followed the news on Weibo on the first day of FIFA World Cup 2014! In fact, in the first two hours of the event, there were already 83 million published posts, with 3 million Weibo posts coming out of China. With the topic #world cup# exceeding a billion post views in just a day, this could potentially set a whole new Weibo record by the end of the tournament.

Hike crosses the 20 million user mark
In just 18 months since its launch, Indian messenger app Hike announced yesterday that it now has over 20 million registered users. To commemorate the special occasion, it introduced a few new features such as ‘hidden mode’ and ‘big file transfer’. The former protects private chats with a password, while the latter enables a transfer of up to 100 MB in any file format. This is a likely attempt to take on Whatsapp, which currently dominates the market with 50 million monthly active users.

Line to provide targeted ads
Japanese-based messenger app Line recently announced its partnership with US company Salesforce to offer a new service for companies to push targeted ads to the platform’s 450 million global users. In Japan alone, there are currently over a hundred companies with official Line accounts. Similar to Facebook, companies will now be able to filter Line users by age, gender and geographical location. Aside from that, users’ past purchases and browsing history can also be tracked to improve product recommendations.

Social ads are preferred by marketers
A survey of marketers by Millward Brown has found that most prefer social media ads to native and email ads. When asked which ad types met their company’s digital branding objectives, the top answer, given by 51% of respondents, was ‘social ads’, followed by native (46%) and e-mail (36%). Social ads are also more common – 77% responded that they had used them, compared to 73% for email and 68% native.

Facebook accidentally launches Slingshot
Facebook has had Slingshot, its second attempt at a Snapchat rival, in the pipeline for a little while now. Last week, it accidentally launched the app, before pulling it from the app store and admitting its mistake.

Facebook adds tap and hold video sharing to Messenger
So we have to wait for Slingshot. In the meantime, Facebook Messenger has added another Snapchat feature – tap and hold video sharing. The update is already here for iPhone and is incoming for Android.

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Facebook to target ads based on browsing history
Facebook has announced that it will use web browsing history for targeting ads on the platform. The platform will capture passive browsing information from various sites across the web, including, in future, those where its ‘like’ button is installed and, perhaps controversially, will not pay attention to the ‘do not track’ function in browsers. The network has also announced new privacy options, whereby users can click on an ad to see why it has been served to them.

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A new method for sharing video ads on Twitter
Twitter is experimenting with a new way of sharing video ads, starting with Visa and adidas. When a user types in a particular hashtag (#visa for Visa, #allin for adidas) followed by a space, they will see a paper clip prompt. Clicking on it allows the user to easily share the ad with their followers.

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Twitter to start showing weather-related adverts
Twitter has partnered with The Weather Company, so that advertisers can serve weather-specific ads on the platform. While this function has been available on The Weather Company’s website for a while, the move will now tie in with real-time social marketing, as Curt Hecht, The Weather Company’s chief global revenue officer, explained:

People experience the weather that don’t use our properties, so this enables us to connect with them elsewhere. Our clients keep asking us to go off-property.

Twitter launches website remarketing tag
Twitter has launched a tag for website remarketing, allowing advertisers to target Promoted Tweets or Promoted Accounts to internet users who have already visited their website. Any advertiser who already has a tag for conversion tracking can use the new system, while new users can create one using the Twitter ads UI.

Facebook and Twitter add World Cup features
Facebook and Twitter have added specific features for the World Cup. The former has created a World Cup hub, featuring live scores, highlights and real-time posts from friends as well as relevant players and teams. There’s also an interactive map showing the locations of top players’ fans, while users can use the ‘watching’ feature to share specific matches.

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Twitter is targeting users as soon as they sign up. New users will be able to choose which nation they’re supporting and select from a set of pre-made supporter profile pictures and cover photos. Its answer to the Facebook ‘World Cup hub’ is the #WorldCup timeline, which similarly shows relevant posts from your network alongside others deemed relevant. Hashflags are back, too: typing a specific country’s hashtag will bring up the national flag. Lovely stuff.

FIFA uses voting Twitter card
FIFA is using a Twitter card to display the results of its ‘Man of the Match’ votes after each game. It’s a pretty nifty little card, which you can click here to see, though for some reason the winner is always Qatar. How odd.

Visa looks to social for World Cup campaigns
Visa is looking to get the most out of its World Cup sponsorship with a variety of campaigns across social. It has created the ‘Teletransporter’, in which fans can add a picture of themselves to football characters to create a sharable video, as well as a number of videos, one of which is included below. The brand has also employed ambassadors to create social content on its behalf, and will be ensuring that it supports all this with strong targeting and mobile optimisation.

Coca Cola creates World Cup selfie montage
Coca Cola created a photomosaic flag for last week’s World Cup opening, made up of233,206 socially-sourced selfies from across the world, all draped across the field. Here’s James Sommerville, VP-global design at Coca-Cola, talking about the campaign.

Hyundai develops World Cup microsite
Another World Cup sponsor, Hyundai, has created a Tumblr-powered microsite dubbed #BecauseFutbol. The page is set to contain 120 pieces of original art, which site visitors can remix or use to create new artwork and share on social media. Hyundai is supporting the activity with the below Times Square billboard.

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We Are Social Asia Midweek Mashup #83

by Melissa Law in News
Weibo releases first earnings report since IPO
Chinese microblogging platform Weibo raked in a total of $67.5 million in revenues in Q1, which is a 161% increase from a year ago. Despite this, the social network made a net loss of $47.4 million in the same quarter. The company also reported a growth in users to 143.8 million monthly active users and an average of 66.6 million daily active users. Weibo made its debut on the NASDAQ stock market in April.

Kakao to merge with Daum
A merger has been announced between Kakao Corporation, the company behind South Korean messaging app KakaoTalk, and Daum Communications, the country’s second largest web portal. Through this merger, Kakao and Daum will be better equipped to compete with rivals. The reverse takeover with Daum, which is a listed company, will also allow Kakao Corporation to get on South Korea’s KOSDAQ stock market as early as October, without having to go through the usual IPO processes. The merged company will be called Daum Kakao and is valued at 3 trillion won (S$3.7 billion).

Twitter to hit nearly 400m users by 2018
Research done by eMarketer forecasts that the total number of Twitter users worldwide is set to hit nearly 400m by 2018. In addition, the marketing research firm forecasted that over 40% of those users would come from the Asia Pacific region. By the end of this year, eMarketer also expects India and Indonesia to see more than a 50% growth in users, making them the third and fourth largest Twitter populations in the world.

Facebook can automatically identify music and TV
For the last year, Facebook users have been able to share how they’re ‘feeling’, or what they’re ‘watching’ or ‘listening to’. The network has now expanded the feature, allowing iPhone, iPad or Android microphones to automatically identify music and TV programmes, which can be shared as updates using the normal ‘listening to’ or ‘watching’ format. Facebook has promised not to retain any data from the system, which is being rolled out to US users in the coming weeks.

Facebook looking to rival online dating sites
Facebook is testing an ‘Ask’ button, which allows one user to enquire into another’s relationship status. Mashable pointed out the button’s huge potential and its significance for the online dating world; with such a huge user base, Facebook could quite easily become a rival to the likes of eHarmony and match.com. The Guardian, however, was much less positive, discussing the likelihood of unnecessary pestering and oversharing.

Facebook rolls out ‘I’m a Voter’ button
During the Indian elections in May, over 4 million Facebook users clicked on a new ‘I’m a Voter’ button. As a result, Facebook is expanding the feature to the EU, Colombia, South Korea, Indonesia, New Zealand and Brazil. It’s already seen success in America, too, where its launch during the 2010 mid-term elections was credited with mobilising 340,000 extra voters.

Facebook changes privacy settings
Facebook has responded to pressure and changed its default privacy settings. Those joining from Thursday will now automatically share updates with only ‘friends and family’, rather than the whole public. The change won’t affect current users, who will be prompted to perform a ‘privacy check up’.

Nielsen Twitter TV Rating to provide demographics
Nielsen’s Twitter TV Rating service now includes demographic information on tweet authors. So far, the data collected varies hugely between programmes: sport skews 79% male, reality 65% female. The youngest audience counted 98% of its members under 35, while the oldest saw 85% over 35.

Pinterest adds third party analytics
Pinterest is launching a new analytics API that will allow select partners, such as Salesforce and Hootsuite, to offer a range of Pinterest business insights. The move will not affect Pinterest’s own in built analytics tool.

adidas allows customers to ‘Instagramize’ shoes
adidas is allowing buyers of its ZX Flux trainers to customise them with their favourite Instagram photos. The process, referred to as ‘Instagramizing’, is shown in the below update from the brand.

Budweiser’s social efforts for the World Cup
Budweiser is ramping up its social efforts as official beer to the 2014 World Cup. It’s launching a ‘Rise as One’ microsite to act as a hub for various video and photo content and will also ask fans to vote for their man of the match on Twitter after each game. On site in Rio, there will be a branded hotel, which is set to include an Instagram booth and Facebook studio.

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Save The Children launches #Vlog4Good
Save The Children is looking for a new face for its YouTube channel, and is planning to find them through social. Applicants will be given one minute to explain, on video, why they should win the 12 month paid position, in which they’ll be expected to ‘reinvent’ the charity’s editorial approach for the platform.

We Are Social create social viewer for STA Travel
We Are Social has created a campaign for STA Travel, encouraging young Australians to travel domestically. The brand will host a social version of a ’3d viewer’, allowing users to create their own reel from influencers’ Instagram photos and develop a personalised Australian experience.

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Asos upset Jodie Marsh with ‘man’ Twitter comment
Online fashion retailer, Asos, upset glamour star turned bodybuilder, Jodie Marsh last week, when they used her image to refer to models who ‘look like a man’.

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Marsh took to Twitter to voice her anger, referring to the company as ‘bullies’. As a result, Asos has donated £10,000 to an anti-bullying charity and apologised to Marsh. RetailWeek analysed what the ‘fail’ means for brands, including advice by We Are Social’s own Lisa Hardy to ensure that the person in charge of responding on Twitter is adequately experienced for the role.

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We Are Social Asia Tuesday TuneUp #124

by Haiyi Tang in News

KakaoTalk has 140 million registered users
KakaoTalk has recently announced its registered users and revenue for 2o13. As reported previously, Line has over 350 million registered users, and WeChat has grown to 355 million monthly active users. Clearly, these two chat apps are giants in the Asian market dominating the industry through its massive user base. However, KakaoTalk also revealed that the company hit $203 million revenue in 2013, which is a 4.6 times growth in comparison with 2012. The chat app’s total registered user is at 140 million with over 426 games on its gaming platform. Although the strong figures showed a good performance of KakaoTalk in 2013,  the company’s revenue and user base still falls behind Line and WeChat.

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Will Instagram replace Foursquare with Facebook places? 
Since Facebook acquired Instagram, we noticed that some users were talking about the small changes made on Instagram. For example, when they want to tag a photo to the location,  it appeared to have replaced with recommended Facebook Places “location names”, where users had access to the Foursquare list previously.  It can be seen as a test to experiment the result of migrating Instagram users to Facebook’s place database. However, some users pointed out that Facebook’s place data set is missing many popular places, and hence, some of users would still prefer to use foursquare instead of Facebook places. Apparently, this argument seems to be debatable, because Facebook still has quite strong database and it has been significantly improved over the last twelve months. Let’s keep our eyes on it.

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Brand posts receive more engagement on Instagram than other networks
Forrester recently conducted research into engagement rates across social networks. Analysis of 3m user interactions on 2,500 brand posts across seven different networks found that, for six of those networks examined, the rate came out at under 0.1%. Instagram was a clear outlier, with an average rate of 4.21%.

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There is undoubtedly a short-term opportunity on Instagram. However, this may well disappear as brands begin to crowd the platform.

Facebook launches mobile ad network
At last Wednesday’s f8 conference, Facebook launched a mobile ad network that allows advertisers to reach Facebook users in other mobile apps. Users can be targeted by interest, likes and demographic information, or retargeted through Facebook’s ‘Custom Audiences’. Ads take three forms: banners, native and interstitial, each of which is shown below.

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The social network discussed the benefits of its new product in a blog post:

Facebook ads work because they’re personal, relevant and easy to measure on both desktop and mobile. The Audience Network brings these same powerful features to additional app-based mobile experiences, giving marketers even more scale for their Facebook campaigns.

Adweek was quick to produce an overview of the ad network, which explains the available ad types, relevant publishers and targeting/retargeting capabilities. The piece also references how ads can include two types of link: a self-explanatory ‘app install’ or a deeper link, which can push users to any part of the app. For example, a retailer may target someone who abandoned their shopping cart and direct them to their app, showing their incomplete purchase.

Facebook improves video metrics
Facebook is looking to improve how page admins can monitor the success of videos. Previously, it was possible only to see how many users started to watch a video. Now, admins can establish not only the exact number of times a video was viewed, but also the duration of those views, the number of unique views and the level of audience retention.

Facebook launches AppLinks
In another f8 announcement, Facebook launched AppLinks, which allows users to move from one Facebook mobile-integrated app to another using Parse, which eliminates the need to log in via a mobile browser. Ilya Sukhar, CEO at Parse, said of the move:

This gives you everything you need to publish, discover and navigate to deep links on mobile on any platform. … I hope this is the direction that mobile takes for the future. This is how the web works, and it’s awesome. Let’s keep it awesome.

So awesome. How very Silicon Valley.

More detailed app permissions on Facebook
Facebook has announced that it’s giving users more options about what information they hand over during login or when providing app permissions. We’ve got a ‘before and after’ shot below, which displays some of the details. Users will also be able to log in anonymously, though this ability is still in beta. The new look is being rolled out over the coming weeks.

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Facebook updates Messenger app
Facebook has released the newest version of its standalone Messenger app, with two key updates. Users can now take and share photos using an in-app camera and share any videos from the camera roll. Here’s how it all looks.

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Facebook rolls out Business Manager
It’s time for some more Facebook news (we’re nearly done, promise). The network has launched Business Manager, a management tool for advertisers. It includes tools for ad accounts, pages, apps and permissions all in one place. So far, it’s only available to a few lucky partners in the US, but it’s expected to be rolled out further in the coming months.

Twitter’s stock price falls due to slow user growth
Twitter’s stock price experienced a slump last week, after the announcement of the network’s figures for Q1 2014. It actually outdid expectations for revenue ($250m vs. $241.47m), but monthly active users increased to 255 million from 241 million in the previous quarter, in contrast with an expected 257 million. We Are Social’s Leila Thabetspoke to Marketing Magazine about the results:

Despite a 119% increase in revenue, a user growth of just 6% over the previous quarter is clearly not the breakneck pace the market expects from a fast-growth social platform. Revenue is obviously important, but the big issues remain user growth, monthly active users and engagement, with a slow-growing user base making engagement even more critical.

Twitter permits one-click video ads for all
Twitter has rolled out its one-click video ads to all users, as opposed to just Amplify partners. Tweets like the below, part of Burger King’s ‘Subservient Chicken’ campaign, would previously have appeared as a link to YouTube.

 

Vine adds mobile features to desktop site
Vine has updated its desktop site to incorporate many of its mobile features. These include a ‘featured’ section, channels, trending tags and ‘popular’ Vines. This is all publicly accessible without logging in; TechCrunch has described it as a ‘Six-Second YouTube’.

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Promoted Pins can be purchased with keywords
Pinterest is allowing Promoted Pins to be purchased targeted against keywords, such that users see them when searching – a potential stray into Google’s search territory.

Snapchat introduces ‘Chat’ feature
Snapchat has announced a major update to its app – the ability to chat live with another user with either video or text. To begin a conversation, simply swipe right on a user’s name within the app. Naturally, all messages are deleted when the conversation ends, unless either party chooses to take a screenshot.

The move couldn’t come soon enough, according to We Are Social’s Amaury Tréguer in B&T:

The new features offered by Snapchat are pretty basic compared to the offerings of competitors such as WhatsApp and Skype. It was about time to bring the chatting option to Snapchat. However, I still believe that this update is a smart move as it will allow the platform to attract a new breed of users (probably more grown-ups and less into sexting).

School kids seem to be pretty excited about it, too. One teacher claimed that, during 16 years in the profession, nothing had ever distracted a classroom more. No wonderbrands are keen to get in on the act. Karmaloop, an e-commerce brand, is giving potential customers a behind-the-scenes look at their office, while a spokesperson for Taco Bell has expressed an interest in using the feature very soon.

Foursquare performs mitosis (sort of)
Foursquare has announced plans to split itself in two with the launch of a new app, Swarm, which focusses purely on check-ins. The main app will become the location for search, discovery and reviews, while Swarm (shown below) will host the social features. Users will no longer be able to check in on the main app.

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Amazon and Twitter partner for social commerce
Online retail giant Amazon has partnered with Twitter, allowing users to add items to their online carts by using the hashtag #AmazonCart when replying to a tweet that contains an item they’d like the purchase. The move, detailed in the below video, looks exciting. However, a couple of different problems have been highlighted. There is the issue that other brands may look to ‘hijack’ the hashtag by placing ads against it, a potential route for Amazon’s rivals. Moreover, Digiday has just produced a piece that suggests people aren’t in the mood to shop when on Twitter, pointing to campaigns like Starbucks’ ‘Tweet a Coffee’, which had only limited success.

Maker’s Mark hosts reddit competition
Bourbon brand Maker’s Mark has been using reddit in its marketing, with a competition themed around the Kentucky Derby. It asked reddit users to suggest whisky-themed horse names; the most inventive were used in a home page takeover last Friday.

Kenco’s eight-hour improvised Twitter singalong
Kenco is inviting its Twitter fans to an ‘improvised singalong’ on Wednesday 7th May (tomorrow). Improvisational comedy troupe ‘The Noise Next Door’ will respond to tweets that contain the hashtag #brightenmyday using improvised songs for a whole eight hours, from 9.30am to 5.30pm.

Birds Eye opens social pop-up
Ever thought there aren’t enough food snaps on Instagram? You’re in luck! Birds Eye is promoting its Inspirations range with a pop-up restaurant that only accepts Instagram photos as payment. Instagram users need simply post a picture, accompanied by the hashtag #BirdsEyeInspirations, to the mobile app in order to receive a free meal.

Coldplay host worldwide treasure hunt through Twitter
Coldplay have hidden hand-written lyrics sheets from their latest album, Ghost Stories, in libraries around the world. The band are posting clues to the lyrics’ whereabouts on Twitter, which is probably the most exciting thing they’ve ever done.

 

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We Are Social Asia Tuesday TuneUp #121

by Jolene Siow in News

CABCY video gets shorter as it’s shared
Singapore’s ‘Coalition Against Bullying for Children and Youth’ has created a social video with a real sharing incentive. The video, originally 100 seconds long, shows a child in distress. It gets shorter and shorter each time it is shared on Facebook, and is accompanied by the tagline ‘Share it to End it’.

Facebook passes 100m users in India
India is now Facebook’s second largest national market (after the US), as the network passed 100 million users there. It expects further rapid growth as it increases its mobile focus in a country where eight in 10 users are mobile.

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Yelp launches in Japan, its second market in Asia
Community-sourced restaurant review site Yelp has formally launched in Japan. This is its second entry into Asia, after Singapore in 2012, and the 26th country to receive Yelp. Opening in Japan comes with its own unique set of hurdles, such as the handling of the character set, as well as competing against popular review site Tabelog.

Yelp JapanJust 5% of users contribute to 90% of all Weibo posts
According to a study, Chinese microblogging platform Weibo was found to have a sizeable content gap between its users. Only 10 million users post original content, while the other two hundred million other users are made up of spam or empty accounts, or users who just repost others’ content. Reasons for the small percentage could be due to the large amount of spam accounts, or competitors such as WeChat  gaining popularity in China.

Xiaomi’s social media strategy drives fan loyalty
Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi has a fiercely loyal fanbase, and a lot of this lies in the way it engages its fans and customers with social media. Xiaomi uses social media in several ways – to drum up excitement about its flash sales, as well as engaging fans and customers in an informal and playful manner, much like how friends speak to each other. Its recent Mi Fan Festival saw 1.3 million handsets sold across China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Singapore, raking in CNY1.5 billion (SGD302 million).

Xiaomi Fans

Facebook and YouTube launch unique add-ons for India Elections 2014
For the 16th Lok Sabha Elections, Facebook has launched a ‘I’m a Voter’ button for its users in India, which allows users to post their voting stories on their timeline, sharing with friends that they are voting in this election. YouTube has also launched a India Elections 2014 page, which has garnered over a thousand subscribers. The page features a curated list of videos, aimed at providing a one-stop source of news on the elections.

Facebook voter button

Most social networks are predominantly mobile
The 2014 US Digital Future in Focus Report has been released, with interesting figures about the growth of mobile and social. Of major social networks, only two (Tumblr and LinkedIn) are predominantly desktop (among US users aged 18 and up).

Snapchat, Vine and Instagram are, as expected, the most ‘mobile-first’ social networks, each seeing almost all of their traffic from non-desktop devices. The three sites have grown their unique visitors figures significantly between February and December 2013 – Instagram by 43%, Vine by 515% and Snapchat by 234%.

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Most social content is shared from mobile
It’s not just user growth where mobile is steaming ahead, but also the volume of shared content. Of everything shared to social networks in Q1 2014, 52% came from a mobile device, compared with 48% from desktop. This resulted from much stronger volume growth on mobile: 28% against desktop’s 11%.

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Photos are most popular Facebook content for brands
Despite Facebook pushing brands to use links, it’s clear that photo posts remain the most popular content type for brands on the network. Analysis of over 30,000 brand posts found that 75% were photo posts, followed by just 10% including a link.

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This is perhaps no wonder, when we look at the most engaging content types: photo posts make up 87% of the top 10% of branded content.

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Facebook to remove messenger from mobile app
In an attempt to keep up with standalone messaging apps, Facebook is planning toremove the ‘Messenger’ function in its main mobile app, forcing users to either download the standalone app or lose the service entirely.

Facebook launches new ads as prices increase
As brand pages’ organic reach has dropped throughout Q1, Facebook ad prices have increased by 10%. This news comes as Facebook has announced a new format for ads in the right hand bar; the network has claimed that these will increase engagement and allow brands to use the same image for News Feed and right-hand bar ads.

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Facebook looks to reduce News Feed spam
Facebook is making some changes to its News Feed algorithm that will decrease the reach of certain types of content, each of which is considered ‘spammy’. The initial targets of these changes are:

1. Pages that repeatedly post images asking for likes, comments and shares
2. Frequently-circulated content that users have already seen
3. Spammy links that bring users to pages full of ads

Facebook has looked to reassure pages that this is unlikely to negatively affect their reach; it states that most publishers are not posting ‘spam’ and should instead expect to see their reach increase slightly.

Facebook is updating privacy settings
Facebook is attempting to make its privacy options clearer to users with a series of tests. As can be seen below, the iOS app will include details of who can see any post above the publishing box (left), while desktop users will notice a change to the drop down menu (right).

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There will also be pop-up messages for users who haven’t updated their preferences in a while, straight from the mouth of the privacy dinosaur.

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Twitter renovates profiles
It’s all change in the world of Twitter this week, as the platform announced a complete overhaul of users’ profiles on desktop. Changes include a larger profile picture, customisable header, and the ability to pin a particular tweet to the top of your profile (though it’s worth noting that this will only be available for free to certain high-profile users or paying accounts). A user’s more engaging tweets will now appear larger on their profile, too. The new style, which is in the process of being rolled out, can be seen here:

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Some brands have already begun using the new design. The below, for example, displays Skype’s videos – users can now filter tweets to see just photos or videos.

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The move is being seen as part of a larger attempt to make the network more accessible for the less tech-savvy among us; technical ‘jargon’ like RT and @replies may be at threat, while the network looks to concentrate more on video/images and add emoji functionality. Users are beginning to get notifications on Twitter.com, too, which are fully customisable; anyone can choose what actions they get notified about. All of this, along with the design of the above profiles, has led to a number of comparisons with Facebook and rumours of a ‘land grab’. Watch this space.

Twitter adds 15 new ad types
Twitter will also be ramping up their ad offering, with news that they’re planning 15 new types of ad, such an ‘app-install unit’. This news comes at a similar time to figures that suggest Twitter’s ads receive a higher click-through rate than Facebook’s. Advertisers still spend a lot more on Facebook advertising, as we can see here:

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Moreover, Facebook ads reach much further than their Twitter equivalents. Twitter may get higher click-through rates, but Facebook still earns a much higher volume of clicks and impressions.

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LinkedIn removes ‘Products & Services’ tab
LinkedIn has today removed the ‘Products & Services’ tab from company pages. The network has proposed two different ways around this for brands: they can discuss their offerings in either company updates or the ‘showcase’ pages that LinkedIn has designed for this purpose.

Disqus introduces ‘Sponsored Comments’
Disqus, the commenting platform used by many popular blogs (including this one), has this week launched a native ad product, known as ‘Sponsored Comments’. It launched the new unit in a blog post, in which it looked to reassure users that it would maintain the quality of their experience. The adverts will appear as follows:

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Unilever’s multi-brand YouTube channel
Unilever is launching a multi-brand YouTube channel, named ‘All Things Hair’. Brands including Toni & Guy, Dove and VO5 will all host content on the channel, which is taking much of its content from famous video bloggers.

Oreo brings Snack Hacks to online video
Oreo has launched a series of web videos dubbed ‘Snack Hacks’, which showcase unusual ways of eating the snack. After asking Twitter followers to discuss their favourite #OreoSnackHacks, the brand has since taken the campaign to the next level and produced content of its own. One example, featuring celebrity chef Roy Choi, is presented in this video.

Peter Griffin is now on Instagram
American cartoon, ‘Family Guy’, has created an Instagram account for its protagonist, Peter Griffin, to drive downloads of a new mobile game based on the series.

WWF creates Snapchat campaign
The World Wildlife Fund is using a Snapchat campaign to raise awareness about endangered species. Dubbed #LastSelfie, the campaign plays on the trend for a constant stream of self-taken photographs on the platform.

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