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Download on Digital Marketing

Download on Digital Marketing: February 2017

What’s new in digital marketing? The answer is always “everything”. In a world that is constantly changing, we’re making it easy to stay on top of the latest updates.

This Month in Digital Marketing…

Giphy launched library of more than 2,000 GIFs to teach sign language
GIFs can do more than add a sassy quip to the end of your tweet. Now, they can even help you learn a new language.

WhatsApp was the latest Facebook product to clone Snapchat stories
WhatsApp has cloned Snapchat’s popular stories format and is using it to replace its old text-based status messages.

Instagram launched photo albums
The app formally introduced a new feature that allows users to attach up to 10 photos and videos to a single post.

PlayStation VR blasted past sales expectations
It’s a good sign for the adoption of VR, but we still have a ways to go.

VR headsets may get a facelift
Google has been experimenting with adding your face to the outside of a VR headset. This could make the technology more ‘human’.

Facebook is reportedly working on a new app for streaming show
In a bid to increase its earnings from advertising, Facebook is gearing up to put itself against streaming services like Netflix and AppleTV.

Hootsuite acquired AdEspresso to move into paid content and social ads
Hootsuite made a big stride towards paid ads by acquiring AdEspresso, a company that has built a set of tools to create, A-B test, and post advertisements on Facebook and Instagram.

Snap begins selling Spectacles online
You can be the proud owner of Snap’s video-recording sunglasses for $129.99 USD.

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Download on Digital Marketing

Download on Digital Marketing: January 2017

What’s new in digital marketing? The answer is always “everything”. In a world that is constantly changing, we’re making it easy to stay on top of the latest updates.

This Month in Digital Marketing…

Google refused to give up on Google+
The search giant announced a handful of changes for the service, including hiding “low-quality” comments, adding zoom functionality, bringing back its events feature, and killing the classic design.

Facebook launched the Journalism Project
The project will create deeper relationships with publishers, including giving early access to new tools and features.

Snapchat launched universal search to simplify navigation
Snapchat just made it much easier to find friends, groups, and brands with a universal search bar that’s always accessible at the top of the app.

Google Voice got its first big update in five years, adds new UI and features
Google Voice – their call and text app for the US – got a modern UI, Direct Reply support, and MMS photo support.

Instagram turned up the heat on Snapchat with video ads in ‘stories’
Instagram rolled out full-screen, auto-playing video ads to the stories feature. Brands are excited.

Snapchat’s cracked down on content
Snapchat doubled down on its efforts as a media platform by cracking down on clickbait and banning explicit images. Facebook did it. Will Twitter follow?

Google introduced search data into its YouTube targeting model
Google announced big changes to its targeting model, allowing advertisers to target YouTube ads based on people’s search histories.

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Download on Digital Marketing

Download on Digital Marketing: November 2016

What’s new in digital marketing? The answer is always “everything”. In a world that is constantly changing, we’re making it easy to stay on top of the latest updates.

This Month in Digital Marketing…

Mobile and tablet internet usage surpassed desktop for the first time ever
The new worldwide study reports that mobile devices have finally taken over. You better make your site responsive real soon.

Microsoft launched its Slack competitor, Teams
Right after Facebook Workplace? The battle of the office-communication tools is raging!

Instagram has tested ways to tag products in photos & looked at live streaming
We’ll see more tools for brands and influencers to push messages out to their followers, which should boost engagement even further.

Elon Musk said that governments need to start planning for the robot takeover
With all of the jobs that AI will replace, he suggests that governments will need to provide a basic living income to all citizens.

Facebook started testing a job posting feature
This is a great thing for brands, but what will LinkedIn do? Like Workplace, this feature shows that Facebook wants to take over the business market.

Macbook Pros lost their SD card slots
Say goodbye to yet another port on your laptops. We’ve seen disc drives and ethernet ports fall away. Now it’s the card reader’s turn.

Google launched its mobile VR headset
These lower-cost (sorta) virtual reality experiences should get the market rolling. More proof that you really can’t ignore it.

Trump may try to take away net neutrality and privacy protection
As a way of deregulating industries, this could allow Internet companies to regulate speeds and release personal browsing data.

Facebook found errors in the data it shows marketers
Video views were exaggerated and some click and engagement data was also found to be flawed. Expect fixes and apologies.

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Download on Digital Marketing

Download on Digital Marketing: October 2016

What’s new in digital marketing? The answer is always “everything”. In a world that is constantly changing, we’re making it easy to stay on top of the latest updates.

This Month in Digital Marketing…

LinkedIn made it safer to look for a new job while you still have one
The new feature lets you signal to recruiters that you’re looking, while hiding this info from your current company.

Facebook made Workplace available to all businesses
It will be interesting to see how well Workplace does against already strong competitors like Slack.

PlayStation VR hit shelves
Virtual reality tech is still in its infancy, so while there are great things to say about PlayStation VR, there are some areas of improvement.

Microsoft got voice recognition to the same level as human accuracy
A new research paper shows that their AI can transcribe a normal-speed conversation just as well as an actual human.

Modular hardware broke into the video game world
With Nintendo’s announcement of the Switch, we’re seeing a bigger shift to modular tech.

The Internet got completely demolished
The biggest hack in history hit a DNS service and affected huge websites like Amazon and Reddit.

Reddit will have more options for ad targeting
The announcement states that advertisers will be able to target audiences based on interests instead of just subreddits.

Twitter announced that will be shutting down Vine
Here we have another example of a social media fad that burned bright and then burned out.

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Download on Digital Marketing: August 2016

What’s new in digital marketing? The answer is always “everything”. In a world that is constantly changing, we’re making it easy to stay on top of the latest updates.

This Month in Digital Marketing…

Instagram launched “Stories”, a Snapchat-like feature
Even though the concept isn’t fresh, it broadens the type of content a brand can post to their Instagram. Start making some stories!

Researchers asked robots which jobs robots will take over
Which jobs or skills will be obsolete in 2030? Humans are making predictions, but an alogrithm will filter out the human bias.

Facebook decided to crackdown on clickbait content
You’ll be seeing less clickbait on your feed, so make sure your posts aren’t misleading. Worried you’ll get busted? Here are some tips to avoid the crackdown.

Google announced it will be punishing sites with pop-ups
Adjust your website if need be. This is another part of the push to give search priority to websites that deliver good content and user experience.

Meanwhile, Twitter launched a new ad type that seems a lot like clickbait
Want to see this video or the rest of this content? Users have to tweet a hashtag to unlock the content.

A rumour was started that Twitter was shutting down in 2017
The #SaveTwitter campaign started as a protest against their inaction towards online bullies. But Twitter says they aren’t going anywhere.

Bloomberg analysts said Twitter better watch its back
Snapchat is taking ad revenues away from Twitter but not Facebook and Instagram. Are you moving away from Twitter ads as well?

YouTube made plans to expand beyond just video
They’re calling the new feature ‘Backstage’ and it may start rolling out to select users this year.

A study found that good grades were correlated with playing video games. Bad grades were correlated with social media usage.
The results aren’t causal in nature, but it is interesting to see the relation between grades and different forms of digital media.

The first website ever made turned 25 years old
It wasn’t much to look at, but it is crazy to think how far websites have come in a quarter of a century.

BONUS! Get $50 off registration to InboundCon with the promo code ‘socialmediacanada’
Billed as Toronto’s #1 Digital Marketing Conference, you won’t want to miss this.

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Clickbait (3)

Surviving the Post-Clickbait Era

Facebook has tweaked its News Feed algorithm countless times in an attempt to deliver a better user experience. Sometimes we pay attention, but most of the time we skim an article and wait for the next algorithm change to be announced. But when Facebook announced a full on war against clickbait, you won’t believe what happened next (see what we did there).

Marketers freaked out. But because we’re believers that an internet without clickbait is a better world wide web, we’re breaking down three best practices you can follow to make sure your content survives the post-clickbait era.

Write useful content already

For those who can remember when Google rolled out its Panda update (and marketers collectively lost their sh*t), Facebook’s war on clickbait seems oddly familiar. Similar to Facebook’s update, Google Panda was a search filter meant to stop sites with poor quality content (i.e. spam) from working their way into Google’s search results. How did marketers avoid being penalized by Panda? They wrote useful content.

Our advice here is simple: to not be impacted by Facebook’s war on clickbait, write useful, compelling, unique content. Bonus points if it’s highly relevant to your target market and shareworthy among your Facebook fans.

Be transparent

In their announcement Facebook made it clear: headlines that withhold information or mislead users (think headlines like: “Apples Are Actually Bad for You”), will not be distributed as often as transparent headlines. Our mantra here: think long term.

Writing honest and transparent headlines will not only positively impact your News Feed distribution in the short term, but will also deliver a better user experience that could result in more traffic and higher engagement down the road.

And please, avoid these phrases

Listen, we get it. Sometimes you just can’t help writing a “viral” piece that may skew on the side of clickbait. At the bare minimum, do not use common clickbait language, and if you do, don’t say we didn’t warn you. Here are some common headline styles to avoid:

  • You won’t believe ___
  • This ___ will change your life
  • ___ with this one weird trick
  • ___ you won’t believe what happens next (and of course, what happens next will surprise you)
  • 17 secrets ___ doesn’t want you to know

Now what?

Go forth and prosper. Guilty as charged, we’ve all clicked a headline that we’re not proud of. But clickbait sucks. Join Facebook in making the world wide web a better place and putting an end to clickbait.

social-media-today-contributor

Download on Digital Marketing

Download on Digital Marketing: July 2016

What’s new in digital marketing? The answer is always “everything”. In a world that is constantly changing, we’re making it easy to stay on top of the latest updates.

This Month in Digital Marketing…

Snapchat Introduced Memories, a Way to Save Your Snaps
Don’t want that to disappear? Add it to your Memory collage. Meanwhile…

Facebook Tried to Make Disappearing Messages a Thing Again
They’re testing out secret conversations that even Facebook doesn’t see. We won’t be getting handy data for ad targeting with this end-to-end encryption.

A Man Was Convicted for Sharing His Password
An oversimplification, yes, but it points to the evolving nature of digital rights management. Be vigilant with your business’ licenses and user access.

Buffer Got in on the (Subpar) Instagram Scheduling
Like Hootsuite before it, Buffer now lets you plan your Instagram posts ahead of time. You still have to manually post it at that time though. C’mon Instagram API!

LinkedIn Bought a Startup That Helps Sales People Seal the Deal
PointDrive makes it easy to share links, videos, presentations, and documents during a sales pitch. Stronger connections to social networks can only mean good things for digital marketers.

Facebook is Paying Internet Celebs the Big Bucks to Use Facebook Live
They hope to keep young audiences engaged with the platform so that we can keep serving ads on their Newsfeeds.

Twitter Opened Up Verified Accounts to Everybody
Apply to get your personal and business accounts verified now. It will boost your credibility and could be extremely important to the future of the Twittersphere.

Pokémon Go has already spawned Marketing Opportunities
We talked about the potential before it hit Canada, and there are already businesses starting up to provide marketing opportunities through the augmented reality game.

Verizon spent $4.83B on Yahoo!
The main reason they’ve cited is to strengthen their push into mobile advertising. There’s further proof that the future is digital.

Facebook Improved its Mobile App Targeting
You can now target users who won’t just download your app, but those who are more likely to engage with it after download.

BONUS! Get $50 off registration to InboundCon with the promo code ‘socialmediacanada’
Billed as Toronto’s #1 Digital Marketing Conference, you won’t want to miss this.

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Download on Digital Marketing

Download on Digital Marketing: June 2016

What’s new in digital marketing? The answer is always “everything”. In a world that is constantly changing, we’re making it easy to stay on top of the latest updates.

This Month in Digital Marketing…

Microsoft Bought LinkedIn for $26.2 Billion
The brand and CEO are staying in place, but you can bet that we’ll see Microsoft leverage the social network in interesting ways.

Facebook Changed Their Algorithm to Give Brands Less Feed-Time
“Overall, we anticipate that this update may cause reach and referral traffic to decline for some pages,” wrote Facebook’s vice president for newsfeed product management, Adam Mosseri.

Twitter Launched ‘Dashboard’ to Help Social Media Managers
The web and iOS app gives you tools for scheduling tweets, creating custom feeds, and tracking hashtags. Oh and it’s free.

Instagram Started Rolling Out an Algorithm-Based Feed
Surprise, people aren’t liking the change. But, with popular posts being placed first, this gives brands an opportunity to share great content and get more eyeballs.

FastCompany Predicted a Post-Device Era
This writer thinks we’re headed for simpler, more purpose-built devices. What would this do to mobile marketing?

Facebook Launched 360 Photos
This is a step into our VR-friendly future. If you have a 360 app or camera, you can upload your videos to Facebook and your fans can explore the environment.

We Got Tips on What Exactly a “Digital Native” Is
The Pew Research Centre’s Director of Internet (yup, that’s her title) takes some stats and helps us make sense of these crazy kids.

AI and Machine Learning Have Started Growing Up
Google’s head of machine learning points out that AI is improving, especially in areas of speech recognition and image understanding.

Forbes Reminded Us That the Ways of the Past are Dead
Sorry Don Draper, your antics just don’t cut it in 2016. A new-school CMO needs to be one with technology and analytics.

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gang-of-four

The Gang of Four: Apple, Amazon, Google and Facebook

Google, Facebook, Apple and Amazon have come to dominate the world. They are not only growing at a crazy rate, they are displacing entire industries. The Gang of Four, as Scott Galloway calls them, have collectively passed a trillion dollar valuation.

This video is mind-blowing, introspective, visionary and funny all at the same time.  Galloway, a fast-talking professor from NYU, explains in 16 minutes how the world has come to be dominated by the four tech giants; Google, Facebook, Apple and Amazon. It’s invigorating and terrifying all at the same time.

A few interesting highlights from the video:

  1. 92% of all mobile device profits go to one brand; Apple.
  2. Amazon is responsible for 24% of all of the growth in retail.
  3. The market cap of Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon is equal to the GDP of Canada.
  4. Facebook is spending more in R&D than other tech company in history.

 

facebook-ftw-coverphoto

3 reasons why Facebook’s Dominance Will Continue

Facebook’s dominance in the social media space is clear. With 1.5 billion users, it remains the top social media network in the world. In the developed world we’re hard-pressed to find anyone without a Facebook account, so the total user stat is not shocking. However, what many people do not know is that Facebook will likely continue to grow as a company for reasons beyond social media. Here are 3 reasons why Facebook will continue to dominate:

#1: Facebook’s ambition is to bring internet to the entire world

This is how Facebook is doing it:

Facebook is investing aggressively in drone technology that can fly over and beam internet connectivity to remote and rural areas of the world. The ambitious plan, internet.org, is aiming to bring internet connectivity to 750 million people in the world. The plan prioritizes getting internet access in African, Asian and Latin American countries where web connectivity can be non-existent or problematic.

This is how it will help Facebook to continue to dominate:

Increasing the amount of people connected to the internet can increase the amount of Facebook users. The more users Facebook has, the stronger the revenue potential will be for Facebook’s targeted advertising and sponsored content model.

#2: Facebook is involved with artificial intelligence

facebook-m

 

This is how Facebook is doing it:

In 2013, Facebook began the process of launching two important initiatives, the Facebook Artificial Intelligence Research (FAIR) and Facebook M.

FAIR is Facebook’s artificial intelligence (AI) research lab.  Staffed with world renowned AI experts at the New York, California and Paris Facebook offices, this lab works to figure out how machine intelligence can give people better ways to communicate.

Facebook M is an artificially intelligent “personal assistant” that exists within Facebook messenger. In the near future we’ll be able speak into our mobile devices and verbally tell M to manage tasks like cancelling a cable subscription or ordering flowers for a special occasion.

This is how it will help Facebook to continue to dominate:

FAIR and M will help Facebook continue its market dominance because they will encourage users have deeper in engagement with the Facebook Messenger app. Deeper engagement with a particular app on our smartphone creates more usage statistics. With more usage statistics, Facebook could better target ads which ultimately increases Facebook’s revenue.

#3: Facebook is involved with virtual reality

Oculus

This is how Facebook is doing it

In July 2014, Facebook acquired Oculus VR (Virtual Reality), signalling its intention to be among the front runners in the virtual reality industry. Furthermore, Facebook is heavily investing in the development and launch of Occulus Rift virtual reality headset.

It may be tough for us to conceptualize how virtual reality could fit into our everyday lives so here’s an example: let’s say you’re member of the media that covers the politics. Instead of watching the conference in-person or live streaming it on a tablet or smartphone, you’ll be able to put on a headset or “glasses” that will virtually give you seat at the press conference as if you’re there in-person.

Virtual reality is one of the next great frontiers in technology. Marketing research firm Tractica indicates consumer spending on VR hardware and software could reach over $21 billion dollars by 2020.

This is how it will help Facebook to continue to dominate:

The business applications of virtual reality are virtually endless (no pun intended). Imagine, instead of using a smartphone to Facetime or call a friend in Brazil you put on headset and you virtually sit down at a café with them and virtually have a coffee with them. Something like this could dramatically change the telecommunications industry. Imagine you’re a factory equipment sales person: instead of telling a customer about how your equipment works they can put a VR headset on and you can show them how your equipment works on a virtual factory floor. Something like this could dramatically change the sales and marketing industry. Technology like this would be as revolutionary as the internet was to world in the 90’s; it will change everything.

Beaming internet to the world, artificial intelligence, virtual reality, it’s evident that Facebook is becoming bigger than a social media company and it’s exciting to see.