The Scoop: LinkedIn will soon be rolling out a new video feature worldwide, allowing users and businesses to upload videos within the app and gather analytics on their performance, such as likes, views, and shares. Additionally, those who upload these native videos will be able to see who has seen their video, where they work, and their job title. Even though LinkedIn is one of the last platforms to add native video, this feature could be better for business personalities and brands, more so than Instagram or Facebook.
The Scoop: In order to help advertisers convert their advertisements from the normal horizontal configuration into Snapchat’s vertical format, Snapchat has released Snap Publisher. Like the title suggests, it is a self-serve ad creation tool that will automatically convert a horizontal ad into a vertical ad for better optimization of ads on Snapchat’s platform. If the advertiser doesn’t like the way that the video is automatically reformatted, they can manually go in and adjust it, or start from scratch and make their own. Advertisers now have the ability to change what’s in view, adjust how things come into view, (like effects that fade in or out) and add timing to animations (slowly, linearly or staggered). For brands that don’t have any original content that would directly appeal to their chosen audience, there is a selection of 13 templates to use for a Snapchat advertisement. The templates have a wide range of features, with some having photo slideshows to videos that slide into call-to-action messages to ads that pan around or zoom in on a photo.
The Scoop: Facebook is making it easier for users to create GIFs natively within the mobile app. These GIFs can be a few seconds, and can be included in Facebook posts, posted to user’s profiles, or even saved to a user’s phone. At the moment this feature is only available select iOS users and will be rolled out to more users within the next few weeks.
The Scoop: Facebook will begin testing ads in the Marketplace section of the app. According to Facebook, during the test, it will choose “the retail variety of its dynamic ads that brands use to retarget online shoppers and slot them among the items that are listed for sale by regular people on Facebook, like clothes, toys, sports equipment, apartments and jobs.” The ads will specifically be designed to be formatted in the same way as organic posts that are listed by users, while still having a “Sponsored” label on the listing. This venture into Facebook’s Marketplace is essentially an extension of their current Ad program on homepages, and will give the brand more space to place the high volume of ads.
The Scoop: Facebook is rolling out a new feature that allows brands to create groups within their official pages. According to Facebook product manager Linda Xiong, “You can imagine having a support group for a product with a lot of technical back and forth…So, instead of having a support hotline that only is manned by the company, you can actually introduce a peer-to-peer support, or you can have another group that’s more about inspirational sharing stories that’s also relevant for people who are thinking about buying your product or services.” The ultimate goal of the update, according to Xiong, is to implement “external reinforcement or expansion of our mission to bring the world closer together.”
The Scoop: Ikea is pairing with the influencer duo, Superfruit, on Snapchat to promote a line of back-to-school gear. The duo’s interactive video, which will run as both a paid ad and as a story on the influencers’ personal Snapchat accounts, is set to function as a quiz asking users about their personal interior design style. Upon completing, users are then lead to recommended list of Ikea products, like dorm room supplies, to check out based on responses. While using Snapchat has been a challenge for other advertisers to use effectively, Noah Mallin, head of social at MEC Wavemaker, said they were up for it: “We like a challenge and Snap for a lot of marketers has been a challenge when it comes to working with influencers—we thought that there’s a better way to do this.” He also commented on marketing to this new generation of millennial consumers, saying, “This is the pickiest audience out there and they’re an audience that is getting so saturated by messaging…If we just did traditional ads—even at six seconds and vertical—[their] eyes start to glaze over. If we’re going to rely on that, it’s not really getting the most out of the platform.”
The Scoop: Chrysler and Sesame Street are pairing up to launch a new digital series called “Listen, Drive, Surprise!” – a game show that is posed as a driving contest between the shows’ characters. This show, slated for ten episodes, is meant to be an entertaining way to showcase Chrysler’s Pacifica and Pacifica Hybrid car models. In the videos, Sesame Street characters complete a “pre-drive checklist” featuring safety tips and then begin begin a race. As Tim Kuniskis, head of passenger cars for Dodge, SRT, Chrysler and Fiat, FCA North America explains, the partnership is strategic on both ends: “Talking about how a minivan is the best tool for a family… that’s not the most emotional, exciting thing…How do you make exciting, engaging, [content] for our consumer to learn about and want to learn about our minivan? Sesame Workshop has been doing engaging education better than anybody for the last 47 years.”
The Scoop: In an attempt to promote the upcoming 2017 Summer Universiade (a tournament for college athletes) subway cars in Taiwan have been revamped to look like athletic facilities. Featured train cars boast new floor designs that mimic swimming pools on the floor, a basketball court, the starting blocks for a track race, grass from a field, and more. The subway straps were also altered to have tags attached – listing interesting facts and anecdotes about sports to excite riders about the games which are only held every two years. This is driven to be a “selfie worthy” campaign, as many riders have had fun posing in the various cars. This has lead many marketers in the area to consider the floor of subways or other transportation as unique ad space.
The Scoop: Emphasis on online video streaming is on the rise. Facebook has just been nominated for an Emmy nomination for the livestream of an ACLU Telethon. The event boasted major stars, such as Jon Hamm, Tom Hanks, Amy Poehler, and more, while raising over half a million dollars for the ACLU non-profit organization. The livestream showed a great integration of using Facebook’s “donate button” for a good cause, and has been nominated for the “outstanding creative achievement in interactive media within an unscripted program” category.