[Ep78/11Oct21] - On Mobile, Google Search Result Will Scroll Continuously & Other Digital Marketing Updates from the Week of Oct 11, 2021

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1. Facebook Updates Measurement Process for Ads Reach - Facebook has announced that it will begin counting people who’ve not connected their Facebook and Instagram accounts in its Accounts Center as separate entities for ad purposes – i.e. if your accounts are not connected, Facebook will now assume that your Facebook and Instagram profiles are two different people.

Facebook’s Accounts Center, which is accessible via your settings in each of its apps (Facebook. Instagram and Messenger), enables you to connect your accounts on each, so that you can do things like cross-post content, log-in using your credentials from each app, use Facebook Pay and more.

“Previously, we counted someone with multiple accounts as one person for ads purposes if they linked their Facebook and Instagram accounts via those apps, or if we believed that the accounts were owned by the same person. For example, if someone used the same email address across their Facebook and Instagram accounts or accessed both platforms from the same device, we counted them as one person when they interacted with ads.”

So this will make Facebook’s ad reach numbers look a lot better, with much broader scope, based on variable accounting. This is interesting because recently Facebook broadened its campaign reach estimates, with its ‘Potential Reach’ data now being displayed in ranges instead of specific numbers.

You can read more about Facebook’s coming measurement update here.

2. Instagram Now Supports Live Scheduling for Instagram Live Videos - Starting immediately, Instagram has added a new option to schedule upcoming IG Live broadcasts in the app, with users then able to tap through to get a reminder notification on the day of the broadcast.

Broadcasters will now be able to schedule an upcoming stream, up to 90 days in advance, from the live composer, which can include a title description, as well as product tags, if you’re looking to promote such in your stream.

The option to schedule your streams provides even more potential on this front, with users, as noted, then able to register for reminders, which will be sent through to them the day before the broadcast, then 15 minutes before the stream begins.

3. Facebook Audio Rooms Now Available to Public Figures Globally & More - Facebook has announced an expansion of its audio social plans, with live audio rooms being made available to public figures globally, and a new, dedicated space within the Watch tab to help users connect to all of the platform’s various audio options.

Facebook’s Live Audio Rooms will be displayed at the top of the News Feed for those following each creator (even above Stories), while they’ll also be accessible via a feed post.

The playback format is very Clubhouse-esque, showing the speakers and listeners in separate sections, while Reactions icons will float up the screen as they’re applied, similar to video live-streams.

The new expansion will mean that many more people will now be able to tune in to Facebook audio broadcasts, though creation will remain restricted to only public figures and those with verified accounts at this stage.

Facebook will also now enable all groups to host live audio rooms, another way to boost interest in the option in a more confined, specific contextual environment.

4. Remove Your Twitter Followers Without Having To Block Them - The newest update released by Twitter as a part of its bracket of advanced privacy features includes the ability in the first and foremost to remove a user from following while not blocking them. This came around as a blessing as blocking sends a notification to the user of being blocked creating discomfort whereas removing a user as a follower would now not send a notification to the user of any such activity.

5. Twitter Launches Twitter Spaces 'Spark' Program to Fund and Support Audio Creators - Per Twitter, “The Twitter Spaces Spark Program is a three-month accelerator initiative that’s designed to discover and reward great Spaces on Twitter with financial, technical, and marketing support. We’re looking for emerging Creators who are passionate about the live social audio format and interested in creating recurring programming on Spaces.”

This is similar to Clubhouse’s Creator Accelerator program, while TikTok has also implemented its own Creator Fund, as has Pinterest, Snapchat, etc. So looks like the major social media platforms are now looking to provide more support and assistance for creators, in order to build their content eco-systems, and keep their best talent aligned to their apps.

Twitter’s Spark program will provide the chosen participants with $2500 per month, along with ad credits and custom Spaces swag. They’ll also be able to connect with the Spaces dev team, and get early access to new features, while Twitter may also promote their broadcasts via its brand handles.

From the program overview, it is evident that Twitter is particularly interested in applicants that ‘have an established show in social audio on other platforms’.

To be eligible for Phase 1 of the Twitter Spaces Spark program, you need to be US-based, and have over 5,000 followers in the app. You also need to commit to hosting a minimum of two Spaces per week – more info here.

6. Twitter Now Supports Multi-Destination URL’s for Carousel Ads - Twitter has announced an update to its Carousel Ad format where it gives you the option to add custom headlines and landing pages into each frame of your Carousel Ads, which will provide more options to build responsive ads for variable audiences within one campaign.

This will provide more capacity to utilize different ad creative within a single campaign, highlighting specific features or use-cases to help broaden appeal. It could also help in your targeting segmentation, with each click highlighting the specific elements of interest for each user, helping to categorize responses.

Twitter says that it’s been testing the new option for the past few months, with beta advertisers seeing a 25% lift in click-through rates, on average, for campaigns that optimize for site visit conversions (relative to single-asset ads).

7. Microsoft Updates Its Smart Pages Website Builder - This February, Microsoft launched Smart Pages, a free website builder service to help small businesses that may not have had websites.

“With Smart Pages standalone mode, you can create, edit, and publish your website for free — no payment information required. We know that not every business with a web presence is prepared to advertise online and want to give everyone the access to Smart Pages,” wrote Will Rivitz, Program Manager, and Cristiano Ventura Sr. Product Marketing Manager. If business owners choose to partake in Microsoft Advertising later, they can easily sign up when they’re ready.

The new Smart Pages reporting feature allows marketers to track pageviews, clicks, and more all within the platform. “By tracking these metrics over time, you’ll see how the improvements and edits you make affect your customers’ experiences,” said Rivitz and Ventura.

Marketers will be able to create a new Smart Pages website directly from their Bing Places account and integrate the two properties. “Customers viewing your business on Bing Places will be able to go directly to your Smart Page, where you can show even more information,” according to the announcement.

8. On Mobile, Google Search Result Will Scroll Continuously - Rolling out over the next two weeks starting October 14, Google’s mobile search results will offer infinite scroll, what Google is calling continuous scroll. That is, as you scroll, Google will not show you the “more results” button when you reach the bottom of the page, instead, Google will just load the next page of results automatically.

Per Google, it does affect the Google Search Ads a little. “As part of this change to how search results show, we’re redistributing the number of text ads that can show between the top and bottom of pages for US-English mobile queries. Now, text ads can show at the top of the second page and beyond, while fewer text ads will show at the bottom of each page. There is no change to how Shopping and Local ads show. “

And yes, you Ads can be shown more than once.

Finally, as a result of this change, expect to see more mobile impressions for Search, Shopping, and Local campaigns that serve ads on US-English queries, and potentially result in lower CTR. However, Google expects clicks, conversions, average CPC, and average CPA to remain flat.

This change to mobile search results is expected to roll out to additional countries and languages next year.

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