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Content Radar: July 12, 2017

If you are a busy content marketer, we’re willing to bet that you don’t have the time to keep up with all of the news you need to know about to stay at the top of your game. That’s why we hunt through the web each week for the news and relevant information that you need to keep on your radar.

A quick look at where the social giants stand

Every few months it makes sense for all of us to take a step back from the hype about new features, updated tools, and the latest and greatest social channels and instead just let the numbers speak for themselves. This chart that Avinash Kaushik tweeted out this week is a good reminder of where things really stand.

  • So, is Facebook dead? Two billion monthly active users would say no.
  • Is Snapchat or Instagram more effective? Well, Snapchat’s total of 255 million active users looks a little paltry compared to Instagram’s 700 million.
  • Where are there big opportunities that most marketers are missing? We’re going to say that it might be time to start considering using Messenger (especially bots) — since there are now 1.2 billion active users.

Marketers rejoice — you can now add links to your snaps

In an effort to keep up with what seems like a weekly war of updates between Instagram and Snapchat, Snapchat just announced that it is now allowing all users to add links to snaps — a feature that once was available only for advertisers.

For content marketers, this seemingly simple update is a game-changer. Not only can you now add links to blog posts, but you can also link directly to product pages. You may consider using some sort of tracking code on the links you share, since it still isn’t clear if Snapchat will provide much (if any) data regarding how many of your Snapchat followers are clicking on your links.

Snapchat also announced a couple other new features: backdrops and voice filters.

Facebook enhances brands’ ability to understand customer interactions

Facebook recently announced a number of small updates designed to help brands better understand how their followers and others are interacting with them. Some of the most compelling new features include:

  • Landing page views: This feature will allow marketers to choose to optimize for landing page views while using the traffic objective. This will help get more users on your landing page after they click on one of your ads.
  • Follows: Rather than only showing the number of followers gained, you also can use this tool to see the number of followers gained or lost over a period of time, follower demographics, and information of where your page follows occur.
  • Previews: Sometimes people come across your page information without even clicking on your page. This new feature shows page managers who saw your page’s information when they hover over your account name while on desktop.

Small Facebook change results in significant unintended consequence for content marketers

Facebook has made no secret of the fact that it will continue to aggressively seek ways to minimize the reach of those who share clickbait, spam, and fake news. However, in undertaking this noble task, the social giant made a change that has resulted in a major problem for content marketers.

Facebook now no longer allows users to customize the headlines and descriptions of the links they share. Though Facebook’s intentions are good, the unintended consequence is that marketers are no longer able change the headline and post text for different groups that they might target a post to. This means that even if your link is totally legit, you may no longer alter how you package it on Facebook to appeal to different audiences.

Microsoft releases new email marketing tools

Microsoft announced this week three new email tools that will soon be available to use. While each of these tools may have some relevance to your email efforts, perhaps the most pertinent is Microsoft Connections, which is an email marketing tool (a la MailChimp) that allows users to monitor open rates, redemptions, new customers, clicks, etc.

The tool also allows account owners to manage subscribers and create campaigns. Those who use Microsoft Connections also will have access to a number of pre-designed templates for email newsletters. Perhaps most importantly, this tool will be free for Office 365 Business Premium users and may be accessed on iOS, Android, and on the web.

Chad Buleen

About Chad

Chad Buleen is an award-winning journalist, the manager of social messaging for a large international nonprofit, a digital media enthusiast and father of four. Follow him on Twitter .

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