Facebook – topic-related newsfeeds

Facebook recently announced that they will be rolling out their new topic-related newsfeed algorithm, which enables users to tailor the content that appears on their newsfeed by choosing topics that are of interest to them. These topics include – sports, TV & movies, music, politics, health and fitness and much more. This change to Facebook’s topic related newsfeed does have similarities to that of Twitter’s “moments” section, which focuses more on providing its users with real-time news content.

The new topic-related newsfeed function will stand aside from the user’s Facebook newsfeed. This allows users to have a section for their newsfeed, alongside the categories of interest to them.
This new update enables the user to consume more content that is relevant to them, therefore improving the user’s overall experience on Facebook. However this does not seem to have any chronological order; therefore Facebook will have to make changes to the timescale of their topic related content to provide users with real time news.

Instagram – Increased video length, business profiles and CTA photo advertisements

Instagram has revealed a vast amount of changes recently, from the big reveal of their new logo, to changes to videos, newsfeeds and photo ads; it’s safe to say Instagram has had a busy couple of months!
Let’s firstly start with Instagram’s change to its video length; users are now able to upload videos with a length of up to 60 seconds, as opposed to just 15. This encourages users to upload more video content through Instagram, thus increasing the amount of engagement that users’ posts will receive.

In addition to the change of length in video content, users can now also see the total amount of views their video posts receive, rather than showing the total number of likes. Users are still able to see the total number of likes their video post has by just tapping on the video, which will then show the number of likes and those who have liked the post.

This update to Instagram videos enables users to monitor the reach, engagement and interaction of their videos more effectively.For example if a video post has a high number of views, but a low number of likes, this suggests that the video has had a high reach but the content is not something that audiences are engaging with, hence the low number of interactions.

Instagram also announced the introduction of their business profiles, which are to be launched in the UK in the near future. The Instagram business profile will enable businesses to control how they would like their customers to get in contact with them. Whether this is contacting them via email, or redirecting customers to their website, or providing customers with directions to their business. This new function will enable businesses to communicate with their customers more efficiently and effectively through Instagram, improving businesses customer service management.
Businesses will now also be able to use Instagram’s new Insights tool, which will allow them to gain more of an insight into the behaviour and actions of their followers, as well as monitoring which posts performed the highest with their followers. Businesses are then able to use the posts that are performing well and turn them into ads to promote their service/products and target a wider audience.

Another recent change to Instagram is that CTA (call to action) is now embedded within photo advertisements. Once a user has tapped on the photo ad, they will then be presented with the option to click through to a website or app, thus enabling businesses to direct their audiences to their website or app, increasing CTR and potentially conversion rates.

However, the double tap CTA, does not apply to video advertisements, therefore this may be something to consider for businesses when choosing to advertise on Instagram.