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Social Media Round-Up 2018

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From the launch of Instagram’s “Close Friends” feature to LinkedIn testing stories and reactions, there have been A LOT of social media developments over the course of 2018.

Join us on a journey over this past year as we look back on some of the biggest social media highlights. We’ll be discussing new and exclusive social media features and 2018’s most newsworthy stories.

Snapchat Stocks

First up, let’s look at one of the bigger social media lessons of the year, showing us that influencers can both make and break a brand. In February 2018, T.V. personality Kylie Jenner Tweeted the following:

As a hugely influential Snapchat user, the negative press from Jenner had an almost immediate impact on Snapchat’s reputation and market value, causing the social media platform to lose over $1.3 BILLION in stock.

IGTV

In June 2018 Instagram launched its new long-form video sharing service “Instagram TV”. Previously users were only able to share video content for a maximum of 30 seconds but IGTV allows users to upload videos up to an hour in length. IGTV is available within the Instagram app, however Instagram has also launched a dedicated IGTV app.

IGTV launched as an ad free platform with the idea that anybody can become famous through IGTV. An Instagram spokesperson has confirmed that Instagram is “committed to helping [creators] build their careers and make a living doing this work” so there may be opportunities for creators to monetise IGTV content in future.

Instagram Music Stickers

Instagram’s parent company, Facebook, partnered with several major record labels (including Warner Music) throughout 2018. This enabled the launch of a brand-new Instagram feature: Instagram Music Stickers. The feature in question allows users to add audible stickers to their Instagram stories and to play background music when recording videos.

Facebook Fan Subscriptions

In July 2018 Facebook started testing a new way for creators to monetise their content with Facebook Fan Subscriptions. The new feature allows page administrators to create a paid tier option for their communities. This paid subscription can be used to give users exclusive access to content such as pictures and videos.

Paid subscription fees range from $4.99 to $29.99 and Facebook reports that it will not be taking a cut of fan subscriptions. At the moment this feature is only available to a small number of groups but, if properly executed, this feature could completely change the way creators interact with Facebook, making it more of a direct competitor to some of the bigger content creation platforms such as YouTube or Instagram.

Instagram Founders Resign

Instagram co-founders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger resigned this year amid reported tension with Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg. Systrom and Krieger’s official announcement cited them as resigning to explore their curiosity and creativity again and Zuckerberg released a public statement regarding the departure saying how much he enjoyed working with the co-founders. Instagram’s VP of Product, Adam Mosseri, was promoted to Head of Instagram following the resignations.

Influencer Backlash

Finally, one of the most viral influencer marketing campaigns of the year went viral for all the wrong reasons. London-based Blogger, Scarlett Dixon, posted a picture of herself mid “morning-routine” as part of a marketing campaign for mouthwash brand, Listerine. The sponsored advert received a heavy backlash online due to the staged nature of the photo.

Users were outraged with the photos unrealistic composition, from the bedside balloons to the fact the bathroom product was placed on the nightstand. However, the component that caused the most outrage was what appeared to be a pile of tortilla wraps disguised as a stack of pancakes.

It’s been a busy year for social media, and a busy year in particular for Instagram features. We’re looking forward to seeing what social media has in store for us in 2019. Reinvigorate your social strategy in the New Year with help from Platform81’s Digital Marketing Team. Contact us today!