This Week’s Top Stories
Will Facebook Pose A Threat To Amazon and Google With Shoppable Pages?
PNConnect Insight – This move falls within Facebook’s larger strategy to be the entire Internet experience for its users, rather than just their first destination. Still, Facebook isn’t about to go directly head-to-head against Amazon, managing inventories and offering products from multiple retailers. Instead, this is an opportunity for brands to acquire new customers and paths to them — aided by Facebook, which wants to incentivize users to stay within the Facebook network for as long as possible.
YouTube Growing Fast: Viewing Time Is Up 60% Since Last Year
(Fast Company, 7/16/15)
PNConnect Insight – Before anyone writes YouTube off in the face of Facebook’s aggressive moves in video, consider this: More people now watch YouTube on mobile devices than watch video on any U.S. cable network. YouTube is still the granddaddy of digital video, so don’t put all your video eggs in the Facebook basket.
And The Winner Of Social Media Is… Victoria’s Secret
PNConnect Insight – It may seem unfair to compete against a brand like Victoria’s Secret, which can offer particularly entertaining content. But they — and the other brands in this survey — go above and beyond to leverage the unique strengths of each particular platform. IBM and GE are excelling at B2B Instagram, Pepsi is excelling at YouTube, Ford and Verizon are excelling at Tumblr, and more. Take a look at the programs of each of the companies in this report, and see what you can learn about reaching audiences on specific platforms.
Facebook Testing Watch Later Option For Video Viewing
(Marketing Land, 7/17/15)
PNConnect Insight – Facebook is hoping this feature will keep users on the site longer and viewing more content. It’s a smart move in Facebook’s ongoing video battle with Google and YouTube.
Instagram Finally Brings Search To The Web
(The Verge, 7/20/15)
PNConnect Insight – This makes life easier for anyone accessing Instagram through its desktop site. The new feature will allow you to search for usernames, hashtags or locations — not as robust as Instagram’s in-app search function, but certainly an improvement.
Facebook’s Off To A Great Start In Video, But Still Has Weaknesses
PNConnect Insight – This article offers valuable insight into where Facebook might move next in video. It’s worth considering how current and future weaknesses in Facebook’s video offerings will affect your own publishing.
Twitter Unveils New Dashboard To Help Users Monitor Their Data
(Twitter Blog, 7/15/15)
PNConnect Insight – This will be a useful tool in helping track account hacks as they happen, or in confirming a suspected hack. Check in with this dashboard periodically to make sure everything looks as it should.
This Is Your Last Month To Still Use Google+ Photos
PNConnect Insight – The nails keep going into the Google+ coffin as the de-branding of its features continues. That said, Google Photos is a powerful and promising service that could compete with Flickr or other photo-sharing tools. It’s more tailored to individual users than brands, but could have potential as a place for brands to house their images.
Marketers, Stop Hesitating And Start Embracing Instagram
PNConnect Insight – It is truly amazing that only 23% of brands report having an Instagram presence. The community you can cultivate and the stories you can tell make Instagram a desirable platform for any visually oriented brand. If your brand isn’t on Instagram yet, it may well be time to take the plunge.
Twitter Killing Your Custom Background Says You’re Dust In A Galaxy Of Ads
(The Next Web, 7/21/15)
PNConnect Insight – The most interesting question about this change: What is Twitter’s motive? Is Twitter considering placing ads within a user’s homepage? If so, would that benefit advertisers, or would users find it intrusive and revolt? As Twitter tries desperately to boost profits and reassure shareholders, the balance between advertiser-friendly features and positive user experience continues to evolve.
Top 100 Brands Report: Insight Into Brand Content on YouTube
PNConnect Insight – The most successful brands on YouTube are the ones treating it as a destination for compelling and relevant content, rather than just a place to post commercials. YouTube is a unique media channel with users looking for entertainment and information, and recognizing that is the first step in making your online video strategy more effective.
How B2B Content Marketers Are Missing The Mark
PNConnect Insight – B2B audiences on social networks want information and insight. Help a B2B contact or prospect look smarter or get better at their job, and they’ll always come back for more — including, often, a business relationship. People want to work with smart people who will make them look smarter, yet so much of B2B marketing still focuses on promoting products and services — the opposite of what audiences are looking for.
Messenger Is Being Downloaded More Than Facebook’s Flagship App
PNConnect Insight – The popularity of chat apps is a strong driver of Facebook’s current push to add features and third-party integrated apps to Messenger. These numbers are somewhat inflated, however: Since Facebook forces users to download Messenger separately to exchange messages on the platform, many of these new downloads come from users who already had Facebook installed on their phones.
Meerkat Map Uses App’s API To Show Streams Around The World
(The Next Web, 7/20/15)
PNConnect Insight – While this app isn’t particularly applicable to brands, it could be an interesting tool to determine where, geographically, people tend to use Meerkat. If you’re looking to target a specific geographic area with a live-stream, check Meerkat Map to learn more about whether the area you’re targeting is a hotbed of Meerkat activity.
Survey: 90 Percent of Retail Shoppers Use Smartphones In Stores
(Marketing Land, 7/20/15)
PNConnect Insight – Interestingly, “get coupons or deals” did not rank in the top three reasons shoppers use their phones in stores. Still, it should be eye-opening to retail companies that such a high proportion of shoppers use their smartphones while shopping even in brick-and-mortar locations.
Not Just A Boon For Amazon: Prime Day Effect Felt Across The Web
(Marketing Land, 7/17/15)
PNConnect Insight – While Prime Day was heartily mocked on social media, Amazon — and even some other online retailers — laughed all the way to the bank. This proves two things: 1) Amazon has a disproportionate impact on online retail and can drive business even to competitors, and 2) The Twitterati are not always a good indicator of what’s successful with the general populace.
Number Of Mobile Retail Websites Using Responsive Design More Than Doubles Since 2014
(Marketing Land, 7/21/15)
PNConnect Insight – This is likely partly due to Google’s recent “Mobile-geddon.” Responsive design is more important than ever. The drop in mobile-specific websites is notable, too.
India Will Have 500 Million Internet Users By 2017
PNConnect Insight – It seems unfathomable that a country with an Internet population of close to 350 million can have an online penetration rate of only 19%, but India is poised on the brink of spectacular growth and opportunity. Most of this growth is going to come through mobile access, so if your brand does business in India, you need a solid foundation in mobile to make it work. Social networks will also benefit from this growth.
Instagram To Open Platform To All Advertisers This Fall
PNConnect Insight – The key takeaway in this interview is that Instagram is going to start letting advertisers benefit from its relationship with Facebook, with a targeting functionality similar to the detailed levels of targeting currently available on Facebook. Instagram will also use an algorithm assessing responses to advertisements that may filter out some of the worst or poorly crafted ads.
GoPro Unveils Plan To Allow Users To License Their Videos
PNConnect Insight – User-generated content has been a popular mine for brands for years. But GoPro may be the first digital content sharing brand to try and get a cut of the action as brands try to leverage material created by fans. This licensing move is likely to create an even deeper fan community for GoPro and could create a significant source of content, especially for “adrenaline” brands like Red Bull.
These Digital Stats Show Exactly Why Google Fears Facebook Ads
PNConnect Insight – It looks like, at least from one report, Facebook is more effective than Google in placing ads that are actually relevant to audiences. Whether you’re talking about paid content, shared content, or owned content, the key to success in digital spaces is making your content relevant to the audiences you’re trying to reach.