Social Media

15 Social Media Updates for Merchants

By following updates on social media platforms, brands can discover new features to run all aspects of a business.

Here is a list of recent updates from social media platforms. Brands can find new features for advertising, visual shopping and enhanced ecommerce, content tools, small team management, customer service, and more.


Facebook Newsroom.

Expanding measurement to more advertisers. Businesses of all sizes are searching for tools that offer clearer insight into how many people they’ve reached and which publishers deserve credit for the brand or sales outcomes generated from their ads. Facebook is beginning a test of new advanced measurement tools focused on reach and attribution. These tools will soon be available through Facebook Business Manager. Advanced measurement will make it easier to compare the effectiveness of Facebook, Instagram, and Audience Network alongside other publishers.

Facebook launches Marketplace to buy and sell items locally. Facebook has introduced Marketplace for people to discover, buy, and sell items within a community. Marketplace makes it easy to find new items, and find a new home for the things you’re ready to part with. Marketplace is a response to buying and selling within groups. More than 450 million people visit buy and sell groups each month. To visit Marketplace, just tap on the shop icon at the bottom of the Facebook app and start exploring.

Introducing Workplace by Facebook. Workplace by Facebook is an internal version of Facebook — for a company or organization. In addition to standard Facebook features, Workplace also includes unique features and a Workplace Partner Program for approved and trained partners.


Instagram Business Blog.

Instagram Stories ads now available for all businesses globally. Businesses of every size worldwide can start running ads in Instagram Stories through the marketing API, Power Editor, and Ads Manager. By optimizing for reach, show your ads to the maximum number of people in your audience and control how often they see your ads. See the reach, impressions, replies, and exits for each individual story within Business Tools.

Instagram enhances link ads. Instagram has rolled out enhancements to link ads. The call-to-action button is highlighted when people show interest on or around an ad, like resting on the ad for four seconds or tapping on the profile name. When Instagrammers open up an ad’s comments, a call to action appears. And for video link ads, when people unmute a video they’re be taken to the destination URL while the video continues to play at the top of the screen.

Improved shopping experience. Instagram is soon to roll out shopping features to thousands of businesses that sell apparel, jewelry, or beauty products. Instagrammers in the U.S. will be able shop and browse products from these businesses from posts in feed, profile, and in explore. Businesses will have the power to create and tag a post with products directly from their iOS mobile phone. Businesses will also soon be able to get insights around the metrics that matter to them, like how many people tapped to see more product details or clicked on “shop now.”


Pinterest Business Blog.

Pinterest launches visual search tools for shopping. Giving users more tools to shop on the platform, Pinterest has launched a feature called “Shop the Look.” Users can click on items in photos to buy them or see similar items for sale through the network. Pinterest also launched Lens, which lets users search based on an image.

Pinterest launches search ads for keywords and shopping campaigns. Pinterest allows retailers and advertisers to present search ads to consumers searching its platform. Retailers can run shopping campaigns and keywords campaigns. Shopping campaigns use a product feed to create product pins on Pinterest. Keyword campaigns target search with relevant keywords. Both campaigns use a cost-per-click auction-pricing model.

Ad Groups provide more control over Pinterest campaigns. Pinterest has introduced Ad Groups to ad campaigns on its platform. An ad group works as a container for your Promoted Pins and gives more control over how you budget for, target, and run your campaigns. Since each ad group can contain multiple pins, this allows for better control when testing your performance against various targets and objectives.


Snap Inc. News.

Snapchat debuts TV-style ratings with Nielsen. Snapchat has entered into a partnership with Nielsen, enabling brands to connect with age and gender groups. The offering is an optional way for brands to buy Snapchat ads, as an alternative to the in-house advertising API it introduced last year.

Snapchat introduces Lifestyle Categories and audience match and lookalikes. Snapchat has debuted new targeting options for marketers. Snapchat Lifestyle Categories lets brands direct acts to people who consume various types of video. Snap Audience Match enables marketers to take existing lists of email addresses and mobile device IDs, and match the data with Snapchat’s pool of consumer data. Lookalikes help to target ads to consumers who are similar to an advertiser’s existing customers or exhibit a specific set of characteristics.

Snapchat enables ad targeting using offline purchases. Through a deal signed with Oracle Data Cloud (previously Datalogix), Snapchat now lets marketers use data from offline purchases to target consumers on Snapchat. Marketers will also be able to measure the effectiveness of Snapchat campaigns. The third-party data addition follows Snapchat’s Audience Match, which lets marketers target their own emails lists.

Snap Ads debuts deep-linking and autofill. Snapchat is testing deep-linking and autofill in an effort to expand the penetration of Snap Ads. Deep-linking allows consumers to swipe and tap links in Snap ads to be taken out of Snapchat and directly into a new app. After seeing an ad, autofill allows viewers to fill out lead-generation forms with a single tap.

Snapchat introduces group chat, along with new creative tools. Snapchat has introduced Groups to communicate with up to 16 people at once. Groups can be created while sending a snap, or when making a new chat. Also, take advantage of new creative tools to enhance your content. Use Scissors to cut part of a snap on the preview screen to turn it into a sticker. The Paintbrush tool can be applied to snaps in Memories.


The Twitter Developer Blog.

Personalize customer experiences in direct messages. Twitter recently launched custom profiles in Direct Messages, allowing businesses to emphasize the human element in private conversations, as well as more clearly indicate when a bot is speaking. The new version of the direct message APIs, currently in private beta, includes support for custom profiles.

Sig Ueland
Sig Ueland
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