The Biggest Social Media Updates Of 2017 You Need To Know

Not a week passes by without a new feature or update being released on one of the social media platforms you use. It can be challenging to keep up with them so we have compiled the ones most likely to impact your marketing and provided tips on how you can make the most of them just in time for the holiday season.

Twitter doubled its character limit from 140 to 280

You have honed your skills to express yourself in 140 characters which could make you wonder what to make of this new character limit.

Our recommendation? Use it when you need to. Short and high impacts tweets are still a thing and won’t vanish anytime soon on Twitter, but if a few additional characters allow you to clear up a thought or claim then use it. There is not a day that goes by without a controversy taking place about a tweet that could have been formulated better or been more nuanced so don’t miss on the benefits longer tweets could provide. This is also a good opportunity to explore the use of more hashtags on your tweets and see if there is any impact on your engagement or followers.

A cross-posting feature now allows users to post their Instagram stories straight on Facebook as well.

Previously if you wanted to post your Instagram story across Facebook too, it would have been time consuming and would often lead to reduced image quality as you saved it on your device and re-uploaded it again. This could also take your attention away from what you were covering. Now you can simply choose to share on Facebook at the same time at a click of a button, allowing you to keep on filming and taking pictures without having to break the flow or losing any of the image quality.

Facebook rolled out new features to engage with your offline customers

facebook custom audiencesNumerous features were rolled out in October 2017 such as the improved canvas templates, but some of the more interesting ones are those which allow you to target ads at customers that interacted with your brand offline.

Facebook will now let you create a custom audience made of people who previously have made a booking, visited your store or made a purchase offline – provided they had their geo-location on at the time or gave you some of their personal info such as name, age, phone number, email address through a contact form or upon checkout.

This has a lot of potential in terms of hyper-targeted remarketing but it also allows you to figure out whether your previous campaigns drove traffic to your store. By providing information on your clients, Facebook can match it with the people you previously targeted and who interacted with your ads.

Ad campaigns on YouTube can reach a whole new level of customisation

Google introduced new tools on AdWords to tailor your video ads to your same audience on YouTube.

If your business marketing strategy heavily relies on videos then these updates will be of high interest to you.

Creating ultra-targeted video ads can be very tedious and time-consuming depending on how many segments you want to reach. However, these are also typically the ones which perform the best. Having this in mind, Google released the Director Mix tool that will do the heavy lifting for you. Using only one creative asset, the Director Mix will allow you to create thousands of video ads. Upload as many copy variations, voiceovers and backgrounds as you want and let the system create different versions to match the audience segments you want to target.

Finally, let’s talk about Video Ad Sequencing, another recently launched tool that allows you to bring your audience on an optimised ad experience that unfolds over time. If you have a set of video ads you wish to show to your target audience, then using this tool will allow you to set the order they will appear for an optimum result. The journey can be linear (e.g.: they will watch ad 1 then 2 they 3) or pivot to different directions depending on the audience’s previous reaction (e.g. if they passed on ad A then the next shown will be ad C, should they watch ad A entirely then the next will be ad B).

Be proactive and be ready for future features

social media agency perthThere are always features being beta-tested on social media and it won’t be long until we write about them but it can be worth your time to think ahead about how you would utilise some of them.

One of the most interesting features currently being tested on Instagram is the ability to follow hashtags the same way you would follow accounts. This could end up being a great alleyway for a business to organically reach a new and fitting audience –  if the way you use hashtags is done well. Now is the time to have a look at your current hashtag use and to think about how your business could best embrace this future feature.

If you need help with your social media strategy and discovering which platforms will help you reach your business goals whether it be leads, subscribers or sales, contact the Digital Marketing Consultants at Living Online – we have extensive experience helping clients across a number of industries improve their business through their social media.

It’s never too late to transform your social media, so contact us today!