Here are all of the posts in the ‘News’ category.
Mobile messaging apps used by 1.4 billion worldwide
eMarketer has released its first ever worldwide forecast for mobile messaging apps and the number of users is rapidly growing. More than 1.4 billion consumers will use mobile messaging apps this year according to the report – that’s a massive 31.6% increase on last year. eMarketer’s money is on the trend continuing; it predicts that by 2018, the number of chat app users worldwide will reach 2 billion – that’s 80% of smartphone users… which is heaps.
OMG! One Direction in emoji form
We’ve all tweeted something and thought ‘This could’ve been better conveyed with a Harry Styles emoji’, right? Well now you can tweet the face of any of the 1D dreamboats with a simple hashtag. Take your pick from the hashtags below. One of which may not be quite as it seems…
Rainbow vomit has a price
Have you ever dreamt of having something that money can’t buy? Something, for example, such as magical rainbow vomit? Well your dreams might just be coming true as rainbow chunder is now for sale and it could be yours for the princely sum of $1.49. While this sales pitch might sound convincing, anyone who has been on Snapchat in the last month or so will know that the almighty Snapchat rainbow vomit lens was once free. A free distraction for students (and We Are Social employees) everywhere. A free costume inspiration for Halloween parties. A free gift to the world. But sadly the best things in life are no longer free and Snapchat has opened up the Lens Store for all to try (and buy).
Tumblr gets instant messaging
Tumblr has granted its users the most requested feature to date – instant messaging. Before this, the only way they could communicate was reblogging with comments or by using Fan Mail and that wasn’t the most popular. Now, they’ve opted for a viral launch with only 1,500 people getting access for now but if they message you, you’ll then have it. Keep an eye out for that message!
Pinterest introduces visual search tool
While we all wish our homes looked like a Pinterest board, the reality is often quite different. To help you get a little bit closer to achieving that dream, Pinterest has introduced a search tool which means users can highlight something within a pin and get taken to that exact product. So highlight away and start hoping that everything is affordable.
Facebook’s first virtual reality ads revealed
Last week we talked about virtual reality being kind of a big deal and oh how we were right. Facebook has now entered the fold big time, with its first virtual reality-style video ads. This follows on from the roll out of its video creation tool in September, where brands could post 360-degree clips organically to their pages. In order to attract more brands to use the 360 vids (and therefore, make more $$$), Facebook has created a dedicated site to help get the low-down on creating 360-degree videos. You can see all of the ads from the brands who used the new format here, including Mondelez’s Ritz with a wonderful 360-degree holiday party and a tour of the “the most magical place on Earth” from Walt Disney World.
Snapchat reaches 6billion daily views
Snapchat is quickly growing to become the preferred social media platform of teenagers around the world, and it’s well on its way to social media dominance. Snapchat has now reached six billion daily views, which is triple the traffic it was getting in May 2015. In comparison, Facebook records 8 billion daily views, twice as many as they were recording in April 2015. Facebook’s video views, however, are across desktop AND mobile, so it’s pretty impressive that Snapchat is pulling in these kind of numbers solely on mobile.
Snapchat has, without a doubt, shaken up the way in which audiences are consuming content and what they are expecting from their content. The ephemeral nature of Snapchat content is what makes it so appealing, but it also makes it difficult to justify pouring big bucks into a video that is only going to be viewable for 24 hours. Similarly, Snapchat videos are viewed almost exclusively in portrait, an intentional decision by CEO Evan Spiegel, and they have a maximum length of 10 seconds.
eMarketer has predicted a 42% increase in digital video revenues this year (taking it to a whopping $7.5billion in the US alone), and with Snapchat becoming one of the big, if not the biggest, player in the sector, it looks like the game has well and truly been changed.
Facebook launches Music Stories
With the latest iOS app update, Facebook has integrated Music Stories into our Newsfeeds. Pulling in streams from Spotify and Apple Music users can sample 30 second clips of songs and albums without having to leave the app, with the end goal being for all users to be able to share entire playlists. Users don’t need to be subscribed to either service to be able to access the tunes, and there are capabilities to save favourite songs or purchase them directly from the iTunes store. With 900 million mobile users on Facebook every day, this is a definite win for the streaming industry. Unfortunately, it does mean that there is a chance you will be seeing significantly more of this guy…
Twitter shares the love
The stars are going out. Twitter has revamped the way users share positive sentiment towards one another, replacing the action of ‘favouriting’ a tweet with a star with ‘liking’ it with a little heart. The reason for the change, according to Product Manage Akarshan Kumar, is down to semantics:
“You might like a lot of things, but not everything can be your favourite. The heart, in contrast, is a universal symbol that resonates across languages, cultures, and time zones. The heart is more expressive, enabling you to convey a range of emotions and easily connect with people. And in our tests, we found that people loved it.”
With ‘likes’ already being used with great successes on Facebook and Pinterest, it’s pretty likely that this change will be a good thing for Twitter. The mechanic of liking will be exactly the same, the only real difference is the change of icon.
Finland immortalises National Pride in… Emojis?
Yep! That’s correct. The Finnish tourist board has just released a series of national emojis that they believe celebrate Finland and “reveal the weirdnesses and the strengths of the country and its people”.
Three of the eventual thirty have been released so far: a sauna, a headbanging rocker and a Nokia 3310. Guess that means the Finnish are hot, like to party, and are unbreakable.
Fortunately for Tourism Australia, we already have our national emoji:
YouTube moves into Virtual Reality
Say whaaaat? YouTube’s Android app now supports VR video, giving users realistic 360 degree perspectives of videos. To view, users simply have to get up a virtural reality app, enable VR mode and place their phone in Alphabet Inc’s “Cardboard” device. At the moment there are only a few VR compatible videos online, but the catalogue is slowly expanding as more and more people and companies experiment with the format – including the Hunger Games movies. A very exciting leap forward for technology – really exciting to see where this works and how it will change the way we currently consume media.
Facebook is dabbling in a ‘teleportation’ station set to launch by 2025
Well, kind of. Don’t go adding “Beam Me Up Siri” to your voice command centre just yet. After Facebook acquired Occulus Rift, they got straight to work on creating the technology to making a believable virtual world. The technology for beautiful virtual worlds already well and truly exists (hello Call of Duty), but making it believable is the struggle. Facebook is working on touch controllers that will trick your senses into believing that the virtual world you’re seeing is real. The aim is, according to Facebook CTO Mike Schroepfer, to: “build a device that allows you to be anywhere you want, with anyone, regardless of geographic boundaries”.
This kind of tech would allow users to ‘meet up’ in online communities, for example coffee shops, and interact, as if they were doing so in real time. So not teleportation per se, but simulated teleportation. Brain me up, Siri!
You can now buy your fantasy Pinterest life
Similar to the buyable pins that were released a few months ago, Pinterest has just released Pinterest Shop, a marketplace of curated items picked by Pinterest editors and available for purchase. At the moment it is only on the mobile platform, but there are plans to expand it into desktop as well. Weddings throughout the world just got considerably more elaborate and photogenic.
You may already have heard about Essena O’Neill.
The 19 year-old Australian model has launched a very public rejection of social media.
First she re-wrote the captions on many of her posts, to point out to her 612,000 followers occasions where she was being paid to promote products, or to reveal that she had snapped up to 100 selfies to get the right pose. She slammed Social for its “fakery” and superficiality. Then she deleted her profiles. Or rather, pointed them towards a new site, which promotes the benefits of positive living and a vegan diet.
I first became aware of this story over the weekend, when my teenage daughter, who has recently become vegan herself, told me about Essena and her plea to young people to abandon social media in pursuit of a more meaningful existence.
It had clearly touched my daughter, who is very active on and influenced by social media. As the mother of a teenage girl, and Managing Director of Australia’s largest social media specialist agency, We Are Social, this story has certainly got me thinking.
Thinking about the risks our children may be facing, by growing up in a world where identity is formed and validated on our social networks. And from a professional perspective, thinking about whether Essena’s move was a sign that we could be seeing the beginning of a significant shift: the marketing industry is only just beginning to wholeheartedly embrace people like Essena as brand ambassadors and social media influencers; an entire economy is springing up around people just like her. Is that now under threat? Too early to call, but definitely one to watch.
My take on Essena is that her behaviour is actually no different to that of many a teenager, flailing from one slightly extremist position to another – bikini-clad narcissist to crusading vegan. So far so normal for a teen, except she happens to be having her existential crisis on the world stage, which exponentially compounds it. (See Miley, Bieber, Britney et al).
The fact is, we’re all responsible for maintaining our own integrity – privately and publicly – and sadly, it seems Essena feels she had taken a wrong turn. I do hope she isn’t too hard on herself. Personally, I think she was too young to be able to make the astute assessments and judgements necessary in terms of where to draw the lines in this space. That’s where I think parents have responsibilities to help guide and protect our children as they shape their delicate characters. The story highlights to parents the need to have an honest and open dialogue with our teenagers.
That’s what I will be doing this evening.
Finally I have to say that I did find it a little ironic that she was publicly decrying social media… on social media.
David Jones flooded with abuse after announcing Ambassador, Adam Goodes
The racist, rude, and ridiculous stepped out to comment on the David Jones Facebook page after Adam Goodes was unveiled as the latest Brand Ambassador. The comments ranged from witty and racist, including “David Jones bootique” to users simply booing. The page has since seen an outpour of support as Australians support Adam Goodes and David Jones’ choice of ambassador.
Twitter offers advertisers better data to track campaign effectiveness
Advertisers will now have a new way to measure the effectiveness of their campaigns on Twitter. Conversion Lift Reports will measure how your Twitter ads lead to an improvement in the certain business metric you’re focused on. In a blog post, Twitter explained:
“As all performance marketers know, understanding the incremental contribution of the clicks and views on your ad campaign is critical — particularly when you’re running mobile or cross-device campaigns.”
Facebook will let you know if the Government is hacking your profile
Facebook has announced that it will now warn people when it detects a user’s account is being targeted by the Australian Government. When Facebook has strong evidence to support them, a warning will be sent out:
Instant Ads on Facebook
Today, Facebook rolled out Instant Ads across iOS and an Android beta. People will see a lightning bolt on the top right hand corner of some stories shared within the News Feed. Inside, Instant Ads can consist of animations, carousels, product catalogs, and tilt-to-view images. These data-heavy features might normally take so long to load in a browser that people would ‘x’ out before they appeared.
Netflix may revive Gilmore Girls for a limited time series
Someone revive my heart, this is the best. Netflix has closed a deal to continue the story of Lorelei and Rory Gilmore. The internet were quick to jump onboard, with #gilmoregirls trending worldwide. 🙌
LinkedIn’s App looks very similar to Facebook
A major redesign has left the LinkedIn app looking a lot like Facebook, including a central feed of updates. The new app features a simple design that divides into 5 sections; Home, Me, Messages, My Network and Search.
“There’s going to be an evolution from a little bit of everything to what matters most to you professionally,” CEO, Jeff Weiner.
Who Run the World?
The data is in, girls rule Instagram. The top 5 most followed accounts are females who are able to balance professional and personal on their Instagrams. This approach resinates well with their audience as they get a glimpse at their amazing lives. How many of the top 5 do you follow?
1. Taylor Swift
2. Kim Kardashian
A photo posted by Kim Kardashian West (@kimkardashian) on
4. Selena Gomez
A photo posted by Selena Gomez (@selenagomez) on
5. Ariana Grande
This year We Are Social Australia turned five, and like all five-year-olds, we wanted to have a party and invite all our friends: our clients, some of our platform partners, influencers, and media.
But the event wasn’t just about celebrating our little milestone; we also wanted to celebrate, and even interrogate, social media itself.
The keynote was delivered by We Are Social’s Mister Simon Kemp, Regional Managing Partner.
In his speech, Simon really brought home for our audience the importance of placing social thinking at the heart of marketing. Drawing on a huge reservoir of stats, and a large serving of common sense, Simon argued that many brands are too self absorbed, rather than tuned into the real value consumers derive from their products.
He suggested that through better listening, companies could learn to provide what consumers actually want, rather than merely advertising to them, and hence create real value and meaningful connections.
And it seems Simon struck a chord with our audience.
— Twitter Ads AU (@TwitterAdsAU) October 8, 2015
Simon also encouraged marketers to create brands and marketing that people want to talk about. Not to interrupt consumers, but to listen to them, then communicate and add value.
Also joining the conversation in a live Q&A we welcomed Tom Walter from tumblr, Vanessa Jones from Twitter, and Serena Leith from Spotify. The discussion ranged far and wide, from tumblr’s ‘sink fandom’ to how Spotify is identifying occasions where music adds value.
— We Are Social AU (@wearesocialau) October 8, 2015
Ness Jones from Twitter held up Maccas and ANZ as two of the marketers making best use of the platform in Australia. She also helped to relieve people’s stage fright around tweeting, announcing that only 40% actually tweet, with most people on the platform only there to listen and engage, rather than contribute.
As you can imagine, we had all the social stops pulled out – our Periscope session had viewers from all over the world showering us with hearts, Social Playground was there to provide up-to-the-minute gifs and real-life Instagram images for our guests to take away, and Twitter and tumblr provided the ‘swag bags’.
To cap off a splendid evening of laughter and learning, #SoGa2015 even went on to trend in the Sydney area. Not bad at all.
— Trendsmap Sydney (@TrendsSydney) October 8, 2015
So a massive Thank You to everyone who came, watched, shared and liked. We’ll leave the last word to Ness from Twitter, as it sums up everything we’re trying to achieve:
— We Are Social AU (@wearesocialau) October 8, 2015