We’ve rounded up the latest news from the digital marketing world to give you a snapshot of new functionality, upcoming trends and interesting finds.

We’re loving the new Instagram home screen

The introduction of the Reels and Shops tabs has made it even easier to explore their capabilities.

As the festive season is in full swing, amplifying Instagram Shops is great news for e-commerce brands – with easy access to view products within the app itself to keep their audiences immersed. We’re big fans of making the purchase journey as simple as possible for customers so this is a welcome addition!

Reels is eventually making its presence felt, bringing opportunities for brands to use a new medium within a platform that their target audiences are already using on a daily basis. The next big question is will we see the same levels of uptake that TikTok has?

Read the full announcement on Instagram.com.

Now you can create Guides on Instagram

Back in October, it was Instagram’s 10th birthday and back then grid posts were the highlight of our content. Now we also have options for Stories, IGTV, Reels & now Guides. Instagram Guides have been rolling out steadily for the past couple of months and are now available to all users. This is longer-form content than you might be used to seeing on Instagram, providing options to create a guide based on products, places or posts.

This is a great way for brands to bring together a collection of posts that, together, might form an education piece on a particular topic or a catalogue to promote a new product range for example.

Read the full announcement on Instagram.com.

What else is new on Instagram?

Instagram is adding branded content tags for Reels & Live to give creators more opportunities for revenue. It’s a good move from Instagram as they prepare to compete with TikTok as driving revenue from Reels gives creators an incentive to stick with Instagram.

Brands & creators will be able to work collaboratively on content to give brands an alternative to promote a pre-existing post. This removes the need for the creator to post organically on Instagram first. This gives the creators the ability to approve or pause ads should they need to and the brand an opportunity to handle the creation of the post.

You can now search by keywords on Instagram – you’re no longer limited to users, hashtags or locations. This makes content more widely accessible which is good news from a user perspective but also helps brands reach a wider audience as the search facility can pick up captions from posts. It’s still early days for this but it will be interesting the start testing the difference in search results between keywords and hashtags.

Read more about branded content or keyword search.

YouTube to begin showing ads on all videos

In a recent change to their terms of service, YouTube will begin to show ads on all videos – regardless of if you’re part of the YouTube Partner Programme (YPP) or not. For brands, this could be good news – opening up more advertising space on the platform. But there is a lot of discussion on the possible pitfalls of this change. Channels not yet meeting the requirements for the YPP programme won’t receive ad revenue driven by these ads and of course there are some channels that have remained ad-free so far which now won’t have that control.

Read more about the impact of these changes.

Snapchat launches its own TikTok like content

For Snapchat users, I’m sure this is the update they’ve all been waiting for. TikTok spurred Instagram into launching Reels and now Snapchat is aiming to compete with a new section on the app ‘Spotlight’. It has launched in 11 countries so far and the company is also offering a proportion of a $1 million dollar pot for videos that go viral.

Read the full announcement.


Twitter launches Fleets

As functionality gains popularity it’s not uncommon to see other platforms introduce their own versions of it – from TikTok we got Instagram Reels & Snapchat Spotlight. From Snapchat, we got Instagram & Facebook Stories.

Now Twitter is introducing their own story functionality named ‘Fleets’. It has received mixed reviews so far, many pointing out that it lacks the sophistication of Instagram. Twitter also made a statement to say the rollout was being slowed down due to performance and stability problems so it might be a while before we understand the true uptake of Fleets.

Read the full announcement.

Has social media changed the way we purchase products?

Quite simply, yes. As consumers it’s likely we haven’t noticed these changes in our own behaviour, but as digital marketers, it provides some integral points to ensure you’re considering the impact social media has on your bottom line.

A process that might once have taken days or weeks, has been condensed to just a few minutes. We’re influenced more by the opinions of our family and friends on social media and we have so many information sources in the palm of our hand that research looks a lot different these days. Have we sparked your interest?

Read the full report here.

If you’d like to chat with us about how any of these features can help support your business, get in touch to talk more about how we can help.

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