Facebook Updates News Feed, Instagram Allows User to Send Live Videos, and More Social Media News

Facebook Updates News Feed, Instagram Allows User to Send Live Videos, and More Social Media News

Also in social media news January 2018: SnapChat is considering 3-second unskippable ads; Twitter will now display a video count on all video tweets; and Facebook is rolling out custom audiences for users that linger on ads.

The new year has brought lots of new changes, especially to the Facebook community. I’m sure by now you have heard about the updates to Facebook’s News Feed that are having major impacts on business page’s organic reach. But the changes don’t stop there. Twitter, Snapchat and Instagram are trying to follow Facebook’s lead and enhance their user experience. Through updates that include video counts, enhanced data collection, and recommended posts, social media is working overtime to make sure it’s active users are staying active.

Here’s your social media news for January 2018.

Facebook’s News Feed tweak penalizes pages soliciting likes and shares.

Facebook continues to make changes to News Feed — including limiting the amount of content users will see from Pages. See our full update here. Facebook also is tightening the reigns on Pages and individuals that use engagement bait to attract new followers. The site will now penalize posts that ask people to like, share, comment on, or otherwise engage with the post to boost engagement. Posts “that systematically and repeatedly use engagement bait to artificially gain reach in News Feed … will now be shown less,” the company announced in early January.

Twitter rolls out account activity API for powering customer service and chatbots

Twitter introduced a new API that will offer developers access to real-time activities, like tweets, mentions and replies, to help update their customer service tools and chatbots. The latest version of Twitter’s data collecting software is designed for those who need data for a large number of accounts, multiple URLs, or managed support.

Instagram allows users to send live video in direct messages

Instagram announced that users can now send live videos through direct messaging. By tapping on the Direct icon, users can send live video to a friend or group to encourage them to view the content. “Today’s change makes it easy to invite people to watch your live videos and send exciting live videos you’re viewing to your friends in real time,” says the announcement.

SnapChat contemplating 3-second unskippable ads

AdAge reports that Snap Inc. is giving “serious consideration” to adding 3 seconds of commercial breaks before offering a skip option on ads on SnapChat. This new ad format was created to attract more ad dollars from brands. “Advertisers are not spending as much as they have previously with SnapChat,” says the top advertiser from a brand that works closely with the messaging service. “They have to do something that draws more interest from advertisers, and they are getting more aggressive to address the market’s needs.” If implemented, the postponed skip option would be similar to YouTube’s ad experience.

Facebook testing custom audiences for users lingering on ads

Matt Navarra, director of social media for @TheNextWeb, reported a new option for targeting a list of people who have “spent more time than usual viewing your display ads on Facebook and Instagram.” The new custom audience option, called Dwell, is an expanded version of Dwell Time, which targeted people who spent any time viewing an ad. In theory, this new custom-audience option will give advertisers the ability to re-target users who viewed your ads but didn’t take any action.

Twitter displays video count on all video tweets

Twitter is adding a video count to all organic and video ads. In compliance with the Media Rating Council’s video viewability standard, Twitter will count a view once the video has been played for at least 2 seconds and with at least 50% of the video in view. This new update is a minor change to support the company’s mission to make the platform more attractive to users. “View counts are a subtle way to encourage people to share more video to the service if they feel their content is being widely seen,” writes Garrett Sloane for Adage.

Instagram rolls out recommended pages

Instagram has officially started recommending posts to users based on posts that have been liked by other accounts the user follows. The new feature is being compared to Facebook’s Explore Feed, where users can view content from a wider network, not just people and pages they follow directly. But don’t worry, the update isn’t meant to replace a user’s preferred content. The section will appear after a user has viewed all the posts in their feed, an Instagram spokesperson explains, while confirming the feature’s public launch to TechCrunch.

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