April 2019 Edition: The Social Media Updates You Need to Know

Another month, another round of updates…

For April, we’re taking a look at new features on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat. Plus, we’re saying a final goodbye to Google+ and saying hello to a Pinterest IPO.

See it all below.

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Twitter adds subtitles feature for videos

Finally!

According to AdWeek, “Video publishers on Twitter can now include .SRT subtitles that can be viewed via the web, iOS and Android.“ This is in addition to the CEA-style captions that were previously available for users who manually turned on their own accessibility settings.

Want to try this out yourself? Click on a video in your Media Studio library within Twitter, select the Subtitles tab in the pop-up window, choose the language of their subtitles, click the upload button and add an .SRT subtitle file from your computer. Check this Help Center article for more tips on using Media Center.

Need help creating an SRT file? Social Media Examiner has a nice walkthrough here.


Facebook rolls out new transparency features

There are a number of new features on Facebook that are meant to help users understand what’s happening behind the scenes on Pages and in the Newsfeed:

“Why Am I Seeing This?”

There has been a “Why am I seeing this Ad?” link next to promotions in th Newsfeed since 2014. But now, Facebook is giving users insight into why posts are showing up in the feed. (This could offer great insight to social media professionals, too.) The new “Why am I seeing this post?” link is found in the drop down menu in the right hand corner of a post and is meant to explain “how your past interactions impact the ranking of posts in your News Feed.”

Here’s an example of what you can find by clicking this link:

There’s also a video explaining this (below) and Help center article with more information.

Other Transparency Features New to Facebook:

  • Country locations of managers – People visiting Pages will start seeing the primary country locations where Pages are managed. You can check all of the people who manage your Page in the “Page Roles” section of your Page Settings on desktop. Learn more in the Help Center.

  • Political ad updates – New political ad labels for “issue ads.” Plus, a searchable Political Ads Archive coming in June.

  • New information on ads targeting – “Why am I seeing this ad?” links will now provide new details “such as when the advertiser uploaded the information or if the advertiser worked with another marketing partner to run the ad.”



New interactive ads on Instagram Stories

According to Instagram, interactivity helps ads stand out and can even improve performance: polling stickers (like the one seen below) increased 3-second video views in 9 out of 10 beta campaigns. In Dunkin’s case, there was also a 20% lower cost-per-view.

ig-ad-dunkin.jpg

To use polls in your ads: “choose Instagram Stories as your only ad placement. Then, where you upload your creative and edit your ad's text, check the box Add an interactive poll.”

If these ads catch on, we may see more interactivity coming to Instagram Stories ads soon!


Snap Games and other news from Snapchat

Snapchat has been busy! There was a whole slew of updates from the Snap team (check out the various videos below) but perhaps the most interesting was Snap Games. The announcement describes this new feature as “mobile games, made for friends” and is available in the Chat bar.

There are 6 games now available:

  • Bitmoji Party – “a series of quick, wacky mini-games“

  • Tiny Royale – “bite-sized Battle Royale action”

  • Snake Squad – “you and your squad work together to be the last ones standing!”

  • C.A.T.S. Drift Race – “drift around the track and speed past friends for the win!”

  • Zombie Rescue Squad – “rescue survivors in a zombie-infested city”

  • Alphabear Hustle – collaborate to form words — fast! — to build your village”

Check out all the recent Snap updates:


Google+ is officially gone

Yep. It had a good run, but the forgotten social media platform is officially shuttered.

pour-one-out.gif

Although you were supposed to have done so before now, Google says you may be able to download and save your remaining Google+ content and delete your Google+ profile. You may also be able to view and delete your remaining Google+ activity.

Check out the FAQ or Sprout Social’s great explainer article for more information.


Pinterest is going public

After much anticipation, Pinterest announced on March 22 that have filed for their public offering. Pinterest currently has 250 million active users and plans to expand internationally and to new advertising segments (such as auto companies and financial services firms, according to CBS) to help woo investors.



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Catch up on last month's social media updates (March 2019) →