Bonded Bitesize – Your Midweek Roundup

Bonded Bitesize – Your Midweek Roundup

 

Bonded Bitesize – Bringing you your midweek roundup of the latest in digital and media.

Stay connected with recent updates from Microsoft, Google, Meta & many more!

 

Disney Shoppable Ad Products

Disney Announced New Products And Tech Partnerships To Increase Shopability 

Disney announced a range of new products and tech partnerships aimed at improving the interoperability of its products and increasing shopability. Infusing commerce into the streaming service was a prominent area of investment. Disney has evolved its first commerce-focused ad product GatewayGo, which was launched as a Hulu product in 2020, into Gateway Shop, which enables advertisers to send consumers personalised prompts for products via a QR code, a mobile push notification or an email without disrupting the viewing experience.

Bonded Bitesize – Your Midweek Roundup
Bonded Bitesize – Your Midweek Roundup
LinkedIn Lookalike Audiences

LinkedIn will remove its ‘lookalike’ audience targeting option by the end of February

LinkedIn has announced that it is discontinuing its Lookalike Audiences as an ad targeting option, prompting advertisers to utilise its other targeting options instead. This targeting option will be removed on February 29th, with LinkedIn explaining that “Existing lookalike audience data will no longer refresh, and a lookalike audience will become a static lookalike audience. Any active campaigns using lookalike audiences will continue to deliver using the static audience”. Alternatives to this targeting option include LinkedIn’s ‘Predictive Audiences’ option (that uses fewer data sources) or ‘Audience Expansion’ (to reach audiences with related interests).

Google's Performance Max Guide

Google Rolls Out New Performance Max Guide And Updates Several Others 

Google Ads now provides a new “Getting Started” Performance Max guide, assisting advertisers with step-by-step instructions for building more effective campaigns. This updated documentation gives advertisers extra help and guidance, making it easier for them to understand how to optimise, manage, and report on campaigns more effectively. The new guide outlines the asset requirements for each AssetGroup within a PMax campaign to achieve optimal campaign performance.

Bonded Bitesize – Your Midweek Roundup
Bonded Bitesize – Your Midweek Roundup
TikTok AI Songs

Tiktok Is Experimenting With A Feature That Uses AI To Create Songs Based On Prompts

 TikTok is testing a new ‘AI Song’ feature that utilises AI software to create songs based on prompts that users enter. This is an experimental feature and is currently only available to a select number of users. It is also designed to be used for fun, not to create the next viral TikTok sound. ‘AI Song’ uses ‘Bloom’ which is a large language model, to create lyrics based on text prompts, which are then paired with music from a pre-saved catalogue created within TikTok. It’s not yet clear how copyrighting will work with this new tool.

LinkedIn Sponsored Articles

LinkedIn users can now read sponsored posts without leaving the platform

LinkedIn has introduced sponsored articles, providing marketers with an additional tool that may contribute to enhancing brand awareness, increasing engagement, and helping drive lead generation. This means that LinkedIn users will not have the hassle or inconvenience of having to leave the platform to read sponsored content, resulting in higher engagement. So, how does it work? When a company account publishes an article on LinkedIn, admins now have the option to promote it. While this feature resembles LinkedIn lead generation ads, its direct connection to in-app engagement is both advantageous for LinkedIn (keeping users on the site for longer) and for businesses/brands.

Bonded Bitesize – Your Midweek Roundup
Bonded Bitesize – Your Midweek Roundup
Alexa Subscription Model Delayed

Amazon Alexa Subscription Model Could Be Delayed Due To Testing Issues

Amazon plans to launch a subscription model for its voice assistant Alexa later this year, but testing issues may push back the release date. Internal documents suggest that Amazon will call its new service ‘Alexa Plus’, which could be bundled with Prime. Around 15’000 customers have been testing this new version, and there have been reports that Alexa’s answers can be problematic, often sharing inaccurate information. While the initial launch had been scheduled for the end of June, these tests have found that it may not work as intended and therefore the rollout is likely to be delayed.

Google Shopping Test

Google Tests 5 Product Results Instead Of 4 In Shopping Grid

Google is currently experimenting with an expanded search product grid layout, contemplating the inclusion of an additional product in the display. This trial involves showcasing five products horizontally, deviating from the traditional four-product format. This alteration aims to enhance user experience by providing a more extensive array of options within search results, meaning users can quickly locate and compare products.



Bonded Bitesize – Your Midweek Roundup
Bonded Bitesize – Your Midweek Roundup
Microsoft’s AI Reading Tutor

Microsoft makes its AI-powered reading coach free for all users

Microsoft has recently launched its AI-powered tool that provides learners with personalised reading practice, available at no cost to anyone with a Microsoft account, called ‘Reading Coach’. This new tool is accessible on the web in preview – a Windows app is forthcoming, and soon Reading Coach will integrate with learning management systems such as Canva. Microsoft states, “It’s well known that reading is foundational to a student’s academic success. (…) With the latest AI technology, we have an opportunity to provide learners with personalised, engaging, and transformative reading experiences.”

Youtube Adblocker Crackdown

Youtube Denies Ad Blocker Crackdown Is Causing Browser Slowdowns For Premium Users 

YouTube has denied further intensifying loading speed issues as part of its efforts to discourage ad blocker use. However, both Premium users and those using ad blockers have reported problems with the platform, such as lagging, higher CPU usage and delayed load times. YouTube’s efforts against ad blockers, at the potential expense of positive user experience, could discourage platform use which would in turn impact the reach of said advertising campaigns. A spokesperson from YouTube told Android Central: “Recent reports of users experiencing loading delays on YouTube are unrelated to our ad blocker detection efforts” and ““Our help centre offers troubleshooting tips for users experiencing issues.”

Bonded Bitesize – Your Midweek Roundup
Bonded Bitesize – Your Midweek Roundup
Instagram’s ‘Nighttime Nudges’

Instagram's 'Nighttime Nudges' feature aims to help teens curb app use 

Instagram is introducing a new “nighttime nudges” feature that pops up on teens’ phone screens after they have spent more than 10 minutes on Reels or Direct Messages late at night, and cannot be turned off. This new feature will remind teens of the time and encourage them to shut the app down and go to sleep. Prompts will vary, for example, “Time for a break?” or “It’s getting late. Consider closing Instagram for the night.” This new update will build off of Meta’s “Take a Break” feature, as well as “Quiet Mode”, which mutes notifications for a set amount of time.



TikTok’s New Lawsuit

In a new lawsuit, Tiktok has been accused of misleading parents about the content available to kids 

The state of Iowa is suing TikTok alleging that the social media company misleads parents about the kinds of content available to young users. The lawsuit from Iowa Attorney General, Brenna Bird, accuses TikTok of hosting “sexual content, drugs, alcohol, intense profanity, self-harm messages, and other X-rated content,” making videos that aren’t age-appropriate easily accessible for children and teens in the state. TikTok describes their feature, ‘Restricted Mode’, as good for “limiting exposure to content that may not be suitable for everyone, for example, because it contains mature or complex themes. However, the lawsuit criticises TikTok’s age-restricted mode, alleging that the mode fails to adequately filter out mature content.

Bonded Bitesize – Your Midweek Roundup
Bonded Bitesize – Your Midweek Roundup
Amazon Downsizing Prime Video

Amazon Prime Video is discontinuing support for local originals in Africa and the Middle East

Amazon Prime Video is said to be downsizing its Africa and Middle East operations and will stop contracting originals in these regions. Additionally, the company plans to split the European team into two groups: the EU Established (to focus on the UK, Germany, Italy, France, and Spain markets) and the EU Emerging (overseeing operations in Benelux, Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg). Prime Video Europe VP, Barry Furlong, said in an email to staff: “I have carefully evaluated our structure in the region and decided to make some adjustments to our operating model to rebalance and pivot our resources to focus on the areas that drive the highest impact and long-term success".

LinkedIn Job Search Tools

LinkedIn rolls out new job search features to make it easier to find relevant opportunities

LinkedIn is rolling out a new ‘Job Collections’ feature which will allow users to expand their job options by exploring collections of relevant jobs across a variety of industries and companies that they may be unaware of. The platform is also launching a new ‘Preferences’ page that makes it easier to select and manage your preferences. Alongside this, the platform is introducing a new ‘I’m interested’ button that allows you to privately express interest in working for a company without having to apply for a specific role.

Bonded Bitesize – Your Midweek Roundup
Bonded Bitesize – Your Midweek Roundup
Whatsapp's Voice Updates

Whatsapp Launches Voice Updates And Polls For Channels

WhatsApp is upgrading its broadcasting feature Channels with new abilities such as voice updates, polls and additional admins. Channel owners can now update followers through voice, which could be great for engagement, especially for those with podcasts or other audio specialisms. WhatsApp also noted that its 2 billion user base sends 7 billion voice messages daily. Additionally, channel owners can post polls to the channels. Previously, the only way to engage with a post on a channel was by reacting with emojis. The company is also rolling out the ability to share Channel updates to personal WhatsApp Status – the chat app’s Stories feature.

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