Bonded Bitesize – Bringing you your midweek roundup of the latest in digital and media.
Stay connected with recent updates from Google, Meta, TikTok, Twitter & many more!
Following a dip in ad revenue, Instagram is debuting ads in the Explore tab as well as testing ads in users Profile feeds
As it struggles to compete with rival TikTok’s popularity, Instagram has reported its first quarterly dip in revenue in the platform’s history - as the company stock plummets to its lowest value since 2019. In an effort to recover its losses, Meta has announced that advertisers will soon be able to place ads on users' Explore home tab - appearing in the grid that people see when they first arrive on the tab. Meta also announced they are testing ads on profile feeds too, which will be visible when users scroll down an account's profile. As part of this test, Meta is experimenting with a monetisation model that will enable creators to cash in on ads that appear in their profiles - clearly trying to incentivise both brands and creators to stay on the app.
Our takeaway… Although these sound like interesting new ad spaces, users have already criticised the amount of sponsored and suggested posts they are seeing in their feeds, which could trigger a bad reaction with users. Whether it’s worth trying out these new ad spots, or fleeing the sinking ship (as many others are doing) it’s still too early to say.
TikTok has unveiled seven new editing features to help creators adjust their clips directly on the app, as well as a new photo mode allowing users to post a carousel of still images set to music
If you’ve made a TikTok recently, you’ll probably have noticed there’s a whole range of new editing features to enhance the content you create. These include…
In addition, TikTok have also added a new Photo Mode, allowing users to upload a carousel of still images set to users that other people can swipe through.
Our takeaway… These editing features will make it a lot easier to get the desired effect from your TikToks, as the initial offering was far less intuitive. The new Photo Mode however sounds a lot like the carousel posts on Instagram… normally it is Instagram imitating TikTok but it seems this week the tables have turned.
Reddit has announced major updates to its Ads Manager including new targeting and creation tools to help businesses get started with the platform
In its effort to develop its ad business, Reddit has announced a number of updates that will help make it easier for businesses to get started with their campaigns and to reach the right audiences. The first of which, its new live chat feature within ads manager will give businesses direct communication with Reddits support teams. The second, its new Pixel Helper Tool, will provide guidance on setting up data tracking on advertisers sites to measure campaign performance. And finally, the company also expanded its targeting options by adding over 1000 new targetable communities to help attract a diverse range of advertisers.
Facebook is allowing users to select content they want to see more of, and content that they want to see less off with its new ‘show more/show less’ buttons
Facebook’s new feed feature gives users more control over the content that the algorithm picks out for them, allowing them to select ‘Show more’ and ‘Show less’ on posts to gauge relevancy. Selecting ‘Show more’ will temporarily increase the ranking score for that post and similar posts, while selecting ‘Show less’ will temporarily decrease the ranking score. In their announcement, Facebook also claimed that they are continuing to explore ways to personalise how much content users see from friends and family, groups, pages and public figures.
Our takeaway… If you use Facebook as a way of promoting your business, make sure your posts are relevant, up-to-date and engaging for your followers to ensure your relavancy score stays high.
Spotify has acquired content moderation company, Kinzen, to better moderate dangerous misinformation and harmful content in its podcasts - creating safer spaces for branded ads
Earlier this year, Spotify ran into controversy after a series of Joe Rogan’s podcasts were criticised for spreading dangerous misinformation about the Covid 19 vaccine to listeners - leading to 270 physicians and scientists signing an open letter to Spotify, high profile artists pulling their music from the platform and #deletespotify trended on Twitter. Since this PR nightmare, Spotify have been looking for ways to improve the moderation of their content - having created the Safety Advisory Council in June, and now its acquisition with tech moderation company Kinzen.
Our takeaway… This is another positive step in the right direction, and not only will it help make Spotify a safe place for listeners, it will also make it a safe space for brands again - who understandably did not want to place themselves next to toxic content.
Youtube has announced it is rolling out @handles for all channels, making it easier for creators to promote their channels
Most social media platforms have always had @handles (think Instagram, Twitter, TikTok etc.) as a way of identifying and sharing accounts, whereas Youtubers only ever had channel names - until now. YouTube handles will be unique to users (unlike channel titles) and act as channel URLs, helping direct users to creators content. Channel handles will also make it easier and faster to mention channels in comments, community posts and video descriptions.
Our Takeaway… We think this will be a great way of promoting YouTube channels, especially when you only have a limited word count to do so.
Channel 4 has partnered with ViewersLogic to provide advertisers with a new, accurate way of measuring TV effectiveness and giving insight on the impact of their TV spend
Channel 4 has announced a “revolutionary partnership” with 4Sales and ViewersLogic that will allow brands to measure ad campaign effectiveness by tracking viewer data. This data is collected through the ViewersLogic app, which tracks relevant data on user activities across linear TV, mobiles and tablets as well as geographical location and offline purchases. Described as a “fresh take on viewer attribution for cross-media campaign optimisation that enables marketers to understand for the first time how each channel contributes to KPIs and delivered ROI.
Twitter has started encouraging users to share tweets when they attempt to take screenshots on the app, in a bid to attract more users to the platform
Millions of Tweets are shared from Twitter to other platforms everyday - and in an effort to clamp down on this, Twitter is prompting select users who try to screenshot Tweets to share them or to copy a shareable link. A twitter spokesperson stated “We want to make Tweets more accessible to everyone, even when they leave our platform, and allow others an easy way back to the full conversation on Twitter”. Whether this prompt is rolled out to all users, and if it makes users take any notice - we’ll just have to wait and see.
TikTok is looking for partners to launch its live shopping offering in the US, after project failed to meet company expectations in the UK
According to a report from the Financial Times, TikTok has been in discussions with Californian-based, TalkShopLive, to help outsource operations for live shopping in the US. The video-sharing platform initially tested its live shopping product in the UK, but after it was suggested that it failed to meet company's expectations it appears to be considering expansion to the US market instead. This technology will allow users to sell products via livestreams - TikTok is expected to take on the 10% commission that TalkShopLive receives from sellers in exchange for the technology, at least initially.
YouTube shares sneak peak of its Data Stories feature, which will provide creators with insights into their channels performance in a simple Stories-like format
YouTube’s Creator Insider account has shared a new peak of its latest Data Stories experimentations, which are currently being tested on a select group of creators. In the video, the YouTube representatives explain the Data Stories that are currently being displayed to provide insights into audience, content, monetisation and education about YouTube. The insights focus on helping creators plan future content as well as understand critical data points around their channels growth. Data Stories provide tips on how to improve channel performance, recommendations to improve thumbnails and highlighting key areas for potential.
Our takeaway… Knowledge is power - any information that helps to make sense of YouTube’s mysterious algorithm sounds good to us!
Google has announced 2 new updates regarding first-party data and machine learning: Optimised Targeting and Exchange Provided Identifiers (EPID’s)
Despite delaying the phasing out of third-party cookies until 2024, Google’s most recent updates to Display & Video 360 help publishers reach more audiences, deliver relevant ads and ensure private information is kept safe ready for a cookieless future. Optimised targeting will help advertisers find new relevant customers that are likely to convert on their campaign goals. This targeting uses machine learning to expand reach across other relevant groups without relying on third-party cookies. Exchange Provided Identifiers (EPI’s) expand on Publisher Provided Identifiers (PPI’s) making them available to more exchanges, publishers or vendors looking to share their first-party identifiers to improve the quality of programmatic ads. This update will ensure brands can continue avoiding ad repetition, whilst maximising reach efficiency - even after the demise of third party cookies.
Facebook is testing 2 new ad formats in Reels: image carousel ads as well as video ads that play after a Reel ends before looping back to replay the Reel
After sharing that the platform is seeing a 30% increase in the time spent engaging with Reel content, Meta has announced it is launching tests for 2 new ad formats for Reels. The first, image carousel ads, will be horizontally scrollable ads that can include between 2 to 10 image ads and will be shown at the bottom of Facebook Reels content. Meta also announced it has rolled out free, high quality songs to be used in the background of carousel ads. The second ad format they are testing are post-loop ads, specifically 4 to 10 second skippable and standalone ads that will play after a Reel has ended, before going back to replay the original Reel.
Twitter has updated its professional accounts with a new analytics display, providing an updated overview of overall account performance on one screen
Twitter has refreshed the dashboard on its professional accounts, allowing users to track performance, discover product offerings and tap into additional resources more easily. The new home display provides a quick overview of all the key performance statistics such as total tweet impressions, engagement rates, profile visits and link clicks. Of course all this information could be found in the analytics tool already, but this refreshed dashboard helps bring it all together in one screen, as well as opening the door for Twitter to roll out new display improvements and data insights over time.
YouTube is asking some users to purchase a premium subscription to watch in 4K resolution, a feature currently free for all users
After its controversial recent test of placing up to 11 unskippable ads in front of YouTube videos, it appears the platform is now testing restricting 4K resolution to members of its premium tier. Several users have reported the cap within their resolution settings, though it is not yet clear if this is part of a limited test, or whether this will be rolled out to all users. This, alongside YouTube’s other recent tests, indicate the platform is trying to push its premium tier (YouTube Premium) onto more users, which currently costs £11.99 per month.
Facebook is set to replace their in-app browser for Android, letting users open web pages within the Facebook app in a way that improves stability, security and performance
Facebook has announced it is replacing the standard Android System WebView with a new in-app browser that will be more stable, secure and have enhanced performance. Meta explained that as users were updating their Facebook apps more regularly than the Chrome and WebView apps that they used to host these in-app browser pages, the old method posed security risks and poor user experience. Instead, the separate Chromium-based WebView can update in sync with Facebook app updates.