Welcome to this week’s edition of the Social Media Marketing Talk Show, a news show for marketers who want to stay on the leading edge of social media.
On this week’s Social Media Marketing Talk Show, we explore Facebook F8 announcements, new Facebook Group features, Instagram video calling, Messenger updates, and other breaking social media marketing news of the week!
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Facebook Reopens App Review Process: Facebook recently paused all app reviews and new chatbot development on the platform to review its privacy and data policies. At the F8 Developer Conference this week, Facebook announced it’s reopening the app review process “after making some changes to make it more comprehensive and grounded on ensuring that each of [its] APIs creates value for people, is transparent, and builds trust.” Facebook also launched several new global programs and products and a redesigned Developer Site to help developers succeed. (6:36)
Facebook Releases Three New Products for Messenger: Facebook rolled out three new products for Messenger based on feedback received from businesses, developers, and active Messenger users. These include AR for the Messenger platform, the ability for developers to integrate built-in Natural Language Processing (NLP) with their page inbox, and M suggestions for English-Spanish translations in Marketplace conversations between buyers and sellers in the United States. Facebook plans to expand M translations to all Messenger users in the U.S. “in the coming weeks.” (9:36)
Businesses that are interested in incorporating AR effects into their Messenger experience can sign up for the waitlist and receive notifications when this feature becomes more broadly available.
Facebook Unveils Clear History: Facebook announced plans to build Clear History, an upcoming feature that will enable users to see and delete the data Facebook collected from websites and apps that use its ads and analytics tools. Clear History is currently in development and will roll out in the coming months. (14:26)
Facebook Announces Upcoming Dating Feature for Meeting “Non-Friends”: Facebook is building a new feature for dating and relationships within the Facebook app. According to Mark Zuckerberg, “people already use Facebook to meet new people” and once this new product is released, they’ll have the option “to discover others with similar interests through their Groups or Events.” Facebook plans to begin testing the dating feature “later this year.” (16:57)
Facebook Announces Upcoming Groups Tab and Plugin: Facebook announced plans to roll out a new Groups tab that will “make groups a more central part of the Facebook experience.” The new Groups tab will make it easier for users to manage their groups and will have a Watch Party feature for watching and discussing videos together within groups. In addition, Facebook is launching a new Groups plugin that admins and developers can add to their websites and emails to solicit people to join their Facebook group. (22:00)
Instagram and WhatsApp Will Soon Have Group Video Calling: Facebook announced that group video calling will be rolling out to Instagram and WhatsApp in a future update. Video chat will be available within Instagram Direct and will allow both one-on-one and group conversations on the platform. On WhatsApp, group calling will simply be added to the already-popular voice and video calling features in the app. In the same announcement, Facebook also promised that stickers will also be coming soon to WhatsApp. (24:15)
Instagram Experiments With Improved Explore Section: Instagram is currently testing a redesigned Explore tab that will make it easier for users to discover things they’re interested in and organize suggested content into relevant topic channels. This new tool will make it easier to browse your interests and go deeper into any area you’d like. According to Instagram, the new Explore will be rolling out over the coming weeks. (28:30)
Facebook and Instagram Allow Third-Party App Share to Stories: Facebook announced that select third-party apps can now enable the ability to share screenshots of their apps to Instagram and Facebook Stories with just a tap of a button within the app. The new Sharing to Stories feature initially launched with a handful of apps including Spotify, SoundCloud, GoPro, and others. More apps will be added soon. (30:02)
Facebook Unlocks Augmented Reality Camera Effects Platform for Instagram: Facebook unlocked the ability for third parties to design customized and interactive AR camera experiences for their Instagram followers. TechCrunch reports that “the filter platform will operate a little differently on Instagram, where people will be exposed to user-designed filters based on the accounts that they follow… [and] will also enable users to try out filters directly from their friends’ Stories.” (34:38)
Facebook Updates New Version of AR Studio: Facebook debuted AR Studio at last year’s F8 Conference. This year, Facebook released a revamped version of the platform with new tools like drag-and-drop elements, a new partnership with Sketchfab, and more. Facebook now allows anyone to create “more rich, relevant, and contextually aware AR experiences” and expand camera effects beyond the Facebook app to Instagram, Messenger, and Facebook Lite. (37:15)
Facebook Publicly Releases Oculus Go and Shares Future VR Initiatives: At F8, Facebook announced that stand-alone mobile VR headset Oculus Go is now available to the public and offers more than 1,000 games, experiences, and apps that were previously available for the Gear VR. Facebook added four new apps that provide “new ways to experience VR with friends and connect with your favorite entertainment” with this release. These include Oculus Venues, Oculus Rooms, Oculus TV, and Oculus Gallery. (38:50)
Facebook debuted new VR hardware currently being developed, including a major VR display upgrade with Oculus “Half Dome” and a partnership with camera maker RED to develop a professional-grade virtual reality camera system that can capture high-resolution imagery. Facebook also demonstrated a prototype of VR Memories. This experimental technology uses machine learning algorithms to turn 2D photos into immersive 3D environments you can explore in VR.
Facebook Rolls Out New Analytics App and Analytics Tools: Facebook released a new Facebook Analytics mobile app, where admins can review their “most important metrics on the go in a streamlined interface.” The new app keeps personalized overview tabs, features dashboards with reports saved via desktop, allows users to receive notifications about significant changes, and more. The app is available for both iOS and Android. (43:10)
Facebook introduced Journeys from Facebook Analytics, which anonymously aggregates data from websites, apps, Messenger bots, and Facebook pages and gives admins “a holistic view of the different interactions people have with [their] business before converting, making a purchase, or subscribing.” According to Facebook, this information enables businesses to understand the impact of different channels people use and identify patterns in behavior that lead to conversions.
Finally, Facebook added more automated insights to Facebook Analytics. This includes auto-detected funnels that use machine-learning algorithms to “identify the most frequent paths users take through their apps and websites and across multiple channels,” automatically generated funnel conversion insights tailored to businesses, and insights based on custom parameters.
Facebook Develops New Tool for Detecting Phishing Attacks: Facebook announced a new service for domain owners that will monitor new domains that are maliciously created to implement phishing attacks. These alerts allow website owners and admins to take action to protect their domain and the people who use their websites. Domain monitoring service and subscription management can be enabled for free on the Facebook for Developers site.
Facebook Announced Several New Integrations for Workplace: Facebook is expanding its premium tier of services with more than 50 new integrations for Workplace. These include many of the world’s leading enterprise cloud services like Jira, Sharepoint, and SurveyMonkey, chatbots, share extensions, and more. Facebook also announced that it’s taking applications for app developers who also want to integrate with the platform.
Facebook Expands Downvote Button Test to Include Upvoting: Facebook began testing a new downvote mechanism for comment moderation with “a small set of people in the U.S. only” in February. This week, Facebook expanded the test to include the option to also upvote comments. The upvoting and downvoting buttons are currently limited to New Zealand and Australia and are only found on public page posts.
LinkedIn Adds Three New Lead Gen Forms: LinkedIn announced three new enhancements to lead gen forms for sponsored content and InMail campaigns that are “designed to continue driving ROI for [its] lead gen marketers.” These tools include bid auto-optimization, which allows marketers to use automatic optimization in Campaign Manager to get more leads for a better price, an expansion to include desktop delivery for lead gen forms, and the ability to send lead data directly to two new partners, Salesforce Sales Cloud and Microsoft Dynamics 365.