- The Scoop: Facebook is now allowing users to take 360-degree photos right in its mobile app. With the Facebook camera, users can capture these 360-degree photos and can even use them as a cover photo on their profiles. These images can be added to a timeline, albums, and/or group. Available on iOS and Android phones, this feature also allows users to zoom in and tag friends in these 360 photos.
- The Scoop: Facebook launches Watch, a new platform for shows, to allow users to enjoy long-form content with one another. Watch is available to Facebook users via the Facebook TV App, desktop and mobile platforms, and features personalized watchlists with tailored news and shows. Sections like “Most Talked About”, “What’s Making People Laugh”, and “What Friends Are Watching” will include videos relevant to surrounding friends and communities. Users can even see friends’ comments, connect with other viewers, and join related groups all while watching videos. With Watch, Facebook will continue to air live streams, like Major League Baseball games, cooking shows, news, and more.
- The Scoop: YouTube has unveiled a new logo, updated design layout, and a dark mode. The first major change is a re-vamp to the brand’s signature logo. In addition to a more bolded font, the red square that used to emphasize “Tube” has now been moved in front of the word “YouTube” and features the triangle “play” icon. The second change is a cleaner aesthetic to the site’s page. There is less red, and more white space, with videos more spaced out. Lastly, YouTube now offers a dark mode that aims to cut down the glare on computer screens and allow videos’ colors to appear more vibrant. These new changes are available now and have been implemented to both the desktop and mobile versions. YouTube is also said to be developing its mobile app to allow users to view videos vertically on mobile devices more easily and seamlessly.
- The Scoop: Snapchat now offers expanded options for advertisers to market on the app. Through the self-serve ad-buying tool, marketers can choose whether to have their ads run in between ordinary stories or in between curated stories and shows produced by Snapchat and other partnered companies. Additionally, brands can now choose to exclude their ads from appearing with specific types of content like – news, entertainment, science and technology, beauty and fashion, men’s lifestyle, women’s lifestyle, and general lifestyle. This development allows advertisers to target audiences more effectively and have more control over what they associate with.
- The Scoop: To publicly emphasize that children are taking in too much sugar with the snacks they eat, Kind created statues of children made out of simulated sugar. Drew Nannis, head of integrated communications at Kind, explains that this installation symbolizes 45,000 pounds of sugar – “the amount that U.S. kids eat every five minutes.” The life size advertisement, is temporarily on display in Times Square and promotes the brand’s Pressed by Kind bars and Kind Fruit Bites, which like all of its products, are made primarily from fruit, nuts, and seeds.
- The Scoop: To promote some of its new series, Netflix opened a weekend pop-up dispensary to offer fans a strand of weed to reflect the feeling of the shows. While the streaming service did not technically sell weed, it partnered with the local Alternative Herbal Health Services to open a dispensary in West Hollywood that distributed 27 pounds of the branded marijuana. After a six month selection period, Netflix and the Alternative Herbal Health Services developed 12 strains of marijuana to support 10 different shows. Netflix is promoting Disjointed, Lady Dynamite, BoJack Horeseman, Orange Is the New Black, Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later, Mystery Science 3000: The Return, Arrested Development, Grace and Frankie, Chelsea, and Santa Clarita Diet – and is hoping the curated weed will get fans excited for these newly released series and new seasons of some established fan favorites.
- The Scoop: Burger King has launched its Whopper Severance plan to offer free food to people who have recently been fired by their jobs. The fast-food chain will give away a free Whopper sandwich to the first 2,500 people who publicly admit they have been fired via LinkedIn. Additionally, the first 100 people who come forward will get a 30-minute session with The Muse – an online career resource. This campaign runs from August 29 to September 1 and is only available for users with a public LinkedIn page.
- The Scoop: In response to Hurricane Harvey, many brands have been taking to social to donate to the disaster relief in Houston. Airbnb has opened up its available homes to the community for shelter and emergency evacuation, free of charge; Amazon-Whole Foods plans to match all donations made through Amazon’s website to the American Red Cross; AT&T will credit customers who excede monthly data or text charges in the affected communities; and Walmart has dispatched 795 truckloads of supplies and water. Majority of these brands have announced their relief efforts as a means to inspire followers to aid the Hurricane victims in any way possible.
- The Scoop: Ford has partnered with Domino’s Pizza to test self driving delivery cars. Domino’s customers in Michigan will soon have the option to have their food delivered in the Ford Fusion Hybrid research vehicles. There will be a Ford Safety Engineer and researchers on board each car to help facilitate the experiments and study the last 50 feet of the customer’s experience. There will also be an accompanying app available for customers to download that provides an order tracker and a unique code to unlock the car’s pizza compartment. Ford is looking to bring self driving cars to market by 2021 and Domino’s is striving to provide the most advanced delivery technology possible.