Social media platform changes you might have missed in October

Facebook Stories, new Instagram Story features, Snapchat Context Cards and a potentially massive shift in how we consume content on Facebook… catch up with all the social platform changes you need to know from last month.

  1. A new feed, dubbed “Facebook Explore,” launched on desktop, after being tested on mobile devices. This feed showcases content from Pages, Groups, Events, and more. In a test, six countries have seen all Page posts exclusively in this feed and not in the main News Feed, leading to dramatic declines in both reach and engagement. Facebook has reassured publishers, advertisers and brands that they have no plans to roll this change out globally.
  2. Facebook announces that Stories will soon be open to Pages, allowing you to post your Instagram Stories directly to Facebook. It remains to be seen what best practices emerge and how they will differ from Instagram and Snapchat.
  3. New features for Instagram Stories: Polling stickers, which allow users to customize poll choices and see real-time results from voters; and SuperZoom, which adds a dramatic three-part zoom with music. Stop Motion is a third feature being tested on select phones, which takes a series of photos to be automatically assembled into a GIF.
  4. Facebook integrates with rights manager platforms Friend MTS, MarkMonitor and ZEFR to provide rights management for producers that upload original copyrighted video content.
  5. Twitter announces updated rules regarding hate groups, violence, and sexual harassment.
  6. Facebook launches a creative tool that automates the creation of different types of ads and analyzes which version will deliver the best results to different audiences across Instagram, Audience Network and News Feed.
  7. Facebook Live users can now share their screens directly with others. The option, which eliminates the need for other software, works with Google Chrome but not with Mozilla Firefox.
  8. Twitter releases ad unit “Video Website Card,” which combines video with a call to click through to a website. Twitter claims the new format doubles the click-through rate of mobile video industry averages.
  9. Nonprofit Facebook Pages can now go Live and add a Donate button to raise funds directly during the broadcast. Facebook also opens up the Donate button to photo posts.
  10. Facebook rolls out a button on link posts that gives users additional context on the publisher behind that link. The post includes an “i” button which surfaces an informational blurb about that publisher, based on Wikipedia. Note to publishers: Make sure your Wikipedia info is up to date.
  11. Instagram redesigns call-to-action bars on ads, which change color to match the palette in the post image.
  12. Snapchat opens up augmented reality feature World Lenses to brands as an advertising product; new sponsored World Lenses allow advertisers to create their own global filters.
  13. Twitter releases a feature called “Happening Now” that brings you to a dedicated timeline of tweets about live events and sports.
  14. LinkedIn adds location-based filters on native videos; this feature is intended to encourage LinkedIn users to post during events and conferences.
  15. As part of an effort to increase transparency, Facebook adds the ability to “view ads” on any Page to see all the ads that are being run across Facebook, Instagram and Messenger — whether or not the user is within the intended audience for the ad. This change has been announced but will not be available for US users until next summer.
  16. Twitter tests a bookmarking tool to save tweets for later reading.
  17. Snapchat unveils “Context Cards” which lets users access information about venues and locations tagged in posts. The first companies to launch context cards are Uber and Lyft, which are offering rides via the new features; Michelin, FourSquare, TripAdvisor and Goop for reviews and maps; and OpenTable, Resy and Bookatable for reservations.
  18. Facebook tests “Sets,” Pinterest-like themed collections that include status updates, photos, videos and links, and that can be shared with all friends or specific friends.
  19. LinkedIn connects its self-serve ad-buying tool with its Sales Navigator sales-management tool, allowing for companies to target ads to individual leads, companies and “lookalike” audiences from sales lists.
  20. A new Facebook post type called “3D posts” allow Facebook users to share 3D virtual objects from Facebook Spaces on their 2D news feeds. Facebook also enabled 360-degree live video streaming to Facebook Spaces.
  21. In Reddit’s first “editorial partnership,” the platform will flag content for reporting and publication by Time, Inc.
  22. Facebook launches an “Order Food” feature in the US, after partnering with EatStreet, Delivery.com and DoorDash.
  23. In a similar move, Facebook partners with SeatGeek as a way to directly sell tickets through Facebook Events.
  24. A new Twitter service called #Fuel helps brands produce 6-second advertisements and Twitter-optimized content.
  25. YouTube launches a “YouTube TV” app for Xbox One and Android TV, and will soon launch for Apple TV, Samsung and Sony smart TVs.
  26. Twitter will now label political ads including information from the source of the advertiser and the amount spent on the ad.
  27. Facebook adds new tools for Group administrators, including a new “Welcome post” feature, badges for group leaders and moderators, and group-specific member profiles.

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Article by: Tory Starr

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