Also in social media news July 2018: Instagram publishes a creator handbook with tips and tricks, YouTube features searchable hashtags, and Facebook debuts funded news shows.

Summer is half over and big box stores are already stocking their shelves with back to school supplies. While families are trying to sneak in their last trips before school, social media platforms are doing anything but going on a vacation.

LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are increasing updates and adding new features to keep their users happy while posting videos and pictures from their travels. But these updates and new features don’t just benefit personal users. Businesses are being positively impacted as well.

Social media platforms are continuing to add content kits, and even detailed guides, to help advertisers increase brand awareness and user reach. From paid spotlight ads to new creative tools, it’s becoming easier for companies to create interactive and engaging content with a few clicks on a computer.

From paid spotlight ads to new creative tools, it’s becoming easier for companies to create interactive and engaging content with a few clicks on a computer. Click To Tweet

Here’s what’s been happening in July with your favorite social media platforms and how business are gaining more and more options for reaching new audiences.

Here’s your social media news for July 2018.

LinkedIn introduces new updates to LinkedIn Messenger

Along with some new updates to its news feed, LinkedIn made improvements this month to its messenger features. These features now include the ability to send attachments, incorporate images from screenshots, and start a group chat on the mobile version of LinkedIn messaging. LinkedIn says these updates will help professional conversations take on new formats — either more professional or more chat-like, depending on the needs of the user.

Facebook adds new creative tools for advertisers

Facebook introduced a new suite of creative tools for advertisers in its Ads Manager app that will make it easier for creators to build content from their mobile devices. Facebook writes, “These new creative tools allow you to create and edit ad images directly from the Ads Manager app, saving time and effort.” The suite also allows creators to fully customize ad templates and color filters to further branding opportunities for companies and improve the quality of ads within the app.

YouTube introduces searchable hashtags above video titles

YouTube has introduced a new way of displaying hashtags on its app — directly above the title of a video. Android Police states these hashtags are “clickable and will bring up a results page with other videos tagged with the same hashtag.” This new feature is currently only available in the U.S. but will give users greater access to video content by having hashtags prominently displayed above video titles.

Facebook debuts funded news shows

Anderson Cooper is headed to Facebook. On July 16, the social media platform debuted its first funded news show, including programming from ABC News, CNN, Fox News, and Univision. These programs will appear in a section of the Facebook Watch tab. “This section will feature news videos from national and local news Pages, and just like other sections in Watch, will be personalized based on the publishers you follow and what friends are watching,” writes Facebook’s blog.

Twitter testing promoted spotlight ads

Twitter is testing a new paid advertising option, Promoted Trend Spotlight Ads. These ads will allow advertisers to create a display banner at the top of the Explore feed for the first two times a user visits that day, before settling back into the Trends list. If approved, the new ad option will actually demote organic content pushing paid spotlight ads to the top of users’ feeds. Be on the lookout for the first trial ads coming from Disney in the new few weeks.

Facebook adds archive ability to Stories

Back in May, TechCrunch reported that Facebook was testing the ability to archive Stories, allowing users to save video clips after they expire to watch later or re-share on social media. Now other sources are reporting this update is becoming available to new users. Brands using Facebook Stories are particularly interested in this new feature, which would allow potential customers the ability to reference their content when making purchasing decisions.

Instagram publishes creator handbook

Questions about how to best promote your content on Instagram? Now we all have the answers. Instagram just published a 50-page Creator Handbook that covers tutorials, tips and tricks, suggested apps, and tools for creating and editing video. The guidebook, originally shared by Matt Navarra from the Next Web, will be extremely useful to brands looking to take their content to the next level, adding new features and editing capabilities.

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