Social Media Updates: The May Roundup

Are you on top of the latest social media tools and features?! You should be! Here’s the May roundup…

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Facebook

Facebook Live Shopping Events

Beauty and apparel giants such as Clinique and Abercrombie & Fitch will take part in live-stream shopping events on Facebook, every Friday until July 16th 2021. Each event will see three different brands host a 30-minute live shopping stream, enabling them to showcase new products, demos, and feature special guests. Live shopping events provide a new level of brand awareness and consumer engagement which surpasses even that of the ‘in-person’ shopping experience, since they directly connect consumers with experts; according to Facebook, live shopping “combines the fun of live video with the convenience of online shopping”.

Moreover, they allow brands deeper insight into consumer behaviour, yielding more complex data than merely sales stats. Viewers can ask questions in real-time about the various products being showcased, facilitating a resemblance of the interactions within the retail space which have been lost to the pandemic. ‘Live Shopping Friday’s’ take Facebook’s eCommerce capabilities to new heights- users can purchase any product that takes their fancy without even leaving the app. 

Facebook

Clubhouse

Clubhouse Is Finally Coming To Android

With Facebook’s proposed Audio Rooms and Twitter’s Spaces feature posing a direct challenge to Clubhouse, it’s no secret that  making the move to Android had become more urgent than ever. The long-awaited Android availability will encourage more engagement between brands and creators, with a greater audience reach. Earlier this month it was announced that the Android version would be available in beta for US users, before eventually rolling out to other regions (who can pre-register in the Google Play store and receive notification of when the Android version is available to them). The invite-only exclusivity of the app remains, although it adds an alluring quality which will surely set it apart from rival audio-only channels.

Creator Incentives

Twitter: Tip Jar

At the start of May, Twitter introduced Tip Jar- a new feature which will allow users to show support for their favourite voices by sending them a cash ‘tip’. 

Esther Crawford, Senior Product Manager at Twitter announced on their blog that “everyone using Twitter in English can send tips to applicable accounts on Twitter for iOS and Android. For now, a limited group of people around the world who use Twitter in English can add Tip Jar to their profile and accept tips. This group includes creators, journalists, experts, and nonprofits. Soon, more people will be able to add Tip Jar to their profile and we’ll expand to more languages”. Twitter won’t be taking a cut from the tips, so standing out from the crowd will quite literally pay off!

Twitter

Twitter: Ticketed Audio Rooms

Twitter joins the likes of TikTok and Instagram in their bid to incentivise creators to remain active and engaging on the platform. Taking the Spaces feature up a notch, Twitter is introducing a ticketed option for those that wish to host a paid live audio room, so long as they have over 1k followers, are over 18 and have hosted three Spaces in the last month.

The option is only available to US users who submit an application to host, but in the future the feature is expected to roll out on a global scale. Twitter will get a share of the ticket sales, with Apple and Google taking in-app purchase fees, but that still leaves the creator with a sizable percentage of their ticket sales. The plans come alongside a host of other proposed features all aimed towards improving user experience and providing monetisation opportunities for creators. 

Back in February, Twitter announced plans for Super Follows, which would allow creators to charge a fee for their followers to access special content, such as bonus tweets and newsletters. More recently, whispers of a new subscription model called ‘Twitter Blue’ began to surface, supposedly giving users the chance to pay for a more premium experience on the app, including features such as the option to ‘undo tweets’. We don’t know when to expect these various features on the app, but they certainly have potential for creators to truly benefit.

Instagram: Bonuses For Reels

The unwavering popularity of short-form video has only increased since platforms like Snapchat, YouTube and Instagram jumped on the TikTok bandwagon. Spotlight, Shorts and Reels have undergone various transformations since their conceptions, in an attempt to lure users away from TikTok. Snap has been paying out to its top Spotlight creators, and YouTube set up a fund for its best Shorts creators. Inevitably Instagram will take a similar approach, and recent whisperings point to a bonus program for creators’ Reels contributions. Each platform is offering monetary motivation to incentivise creativity and loyalty for their respective short-form video offerings, all seeking to benefit from their shared goal: slowing the momentum of TikTok.

Instagram: Reels Insights

On the topic of Reels, the VP of Product at Instagram- Vishal Shah- tweeted on May 24th that creators would now be able to view insights for Reels and Insta Live. Shah said “we’re excited to continue to help Creators and Businesses understand trends in their performance with these features, and will continue to add to our Insights product over time”. Access to insights will give creators a more comprehensive, measurable grasp over the content which their audiences are consuming and engaging with the most.

Vishal Shah on Twitter

We’ll be back next month with more updates you should be aware of!

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