Facebook is making several changes to their platform, from advertisement placement to post timing options, as well as timely change to the way news is organized and shared. Additionally, Snapchat is seeking to reduce barriers to entry for advertisers and partnering with Reddit on content- sharing possibilities.
Facebook Updates Ad Availability and Options
Facebook has updated defaults and availabilities for advertisers on its platforms. Ad campaigns using Automatic Placement settings will now also appear in Search Results, including in Marketplace Search Results. Ads will utilize design features to fit in with other search results and include the same transparency and control options as News Feed ads, which includes a “Sponsored” label, and will also follow the same audience targeting as other Facebook ads. However, Search Results is not a placement that can run on its own, advertisers must also run on the News Feed at the same time. All advertisers on Facebook are now able to access these options.
What this means for brands: Audiences who see targeted ads across Facebook’s connected platforms are more likely to lead to conversions. Search results give advertisers another area of the platform to be seen in, and potentially avoid areas with competitor advertising present. This can be very useful for advertising products in highly- competitive industries, such as consumer healthcare. Also, it’s important to note that the introduction of inventory in Facebook Search is not coming with keyword targeting.
Facebook Pilots “Suggested Time” Feature for Scheduling Posts
Page admins scheduling a post will now have a new feature for determining when to post – a “Suggested Time” button, which schedules the post for times a Page’s audience have previously been most active. Facebook takes into account when a Page audience has been active for the last seven days and recommends options according to that. The tool is being tested in select audience, and full roll-out has not been announced.
What this means for brands: This tool takes some guesswork out of scheduling a post. You’ll know when your audience is online and sending out posts during that time-window should lead to greater organic reach. This tool makes reaching a highly-specified audience, from a disease space to a unique demographic, more efficient and effective.
Snapchat Introduces Ad Creation Feature – “Dynamic Ads”
Snapchat has announced a new creative feature, dubbed “Dynamic Ads”, which will begin rolling out in the U.S. in the coming weeks. Dynamic Ads allows brands to create ads on Snapchat by uploading batches of relevant photos, video and copy; choosing from a series of optimized templates provided by Snapchat. Copy and media are then dynamically combined in multiple combinations and tested against one another within the same campaign and against the same audiences.
What this means for brands: Snapchat remains an incredibly popular platform for younger audiences, and an important opportunity to reach audiences with exciting content. Dynamic Ads represents a new way for brands to test effectiveness of ads on the platform and hand over additional control to the platform for real-time creative optimization. This can be particularly useful for consumer health brands who may often find their target audiences on the platform. Snapchat hopes that advertisers using Dynamic Ads will see greater efficiency with less work.
Reddit Introduces Snapchat Content Sharing Integration
Reddit has launched their first native content sharing capabilities with another social platform; partnering with Snapchat to allow content to be shared directly in the platform through a sticker which links an image back to the original post. Users who tap the sticker will be directed to the original post in Reddit, or to download the app if they haven’t already. Sharable posts will be limited to “Safe for Work” communities, who have good standing on the platform. Reddit hopes this will lead to greater content sharing opportunities for users and expose new audiences to Reddit content.
What this means for brands: Reddit has shown to be key in getting a pulse on upcoming trends and provides a platform for brands to converse authentically with highly-engaged, niche audiences.This new integration with Snapchat increases the potential reach and viability of any Reddit activation, and allows those niche audiences to more easily find brands to connect with.
Facebook Announces “Facebook News”
Facebook is approaching news sharing in a new way, announcing a new “Facebook News” tab, separate from a user’s main feed. The focus is on delivering reliable news information, combating issues of viral fake news sharing on the site. It will be curated by both machine learning and human editors, drawing from a curated list of news organizations that will be subject to certain quality control standards. The tab will also show users news from local outlets.
What this means for brands: Facebook has had a strong hand in the success or demise of many publishers, particularly the downfall of small, local outlets. This new organization of news shows potential for repairing this relationship, as well as the promotion of more accurate, rather than sensationalized, news stories. This is useful to keep in mind when planning an earned media strategy integrated with other social media plans.