Social Media News You Need to Know: February 2017 Roundup

This month, Twitter started testing custom profiles in DMs, Facebook rolled out job posting functionality, Pinterest introduced new visual search tools, and Snapchat began selling Spectacles online—and that’s not all. Custom profiles in DMs On February 22, Twitter launched the ability to create custom profiles in Direct Messages. With Community Help, posts can be viewed by category and location and users have the option to message others directly. Upcoming changes for marketers On February 10, Facebook announced some upcoming changes for marketers including: Plans to provide more impression-level data for ads on Facebook and Instagram, including milliseconds that an ad was on the screen, milliseconds that 50 percent of the ad was on the screen, and milliseconds that 100 percent of the ad was on the screen Three new choices for video buying, including completed-view buying, two-second buying, and sound-on buying Changes to video On February 14, Facebook made several changes to video, including: Sound on videos in the News Feed—now sound will fade in and out as users scroll through videos in News Feed (unless their device is set to silent or they have disabled the feature by switching off Videos in News Feed Start with Sound in Settings) Improvements to how vertical video displays on mobile devices for both iOS and Android The ability to minimize a video to picture-in-picture view to keep watching while scrolling through News Feed Launching a Facebook video app for TV via Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, and Samsung Smart TV Jobs bookmark On February 15, Facebook introduced the ability for businesses to post job openings in a new jobs tab on their Page. As with other posts, brands can boost job posts to reach a larger or more targeted audience. The feature is available as part of Instagram version 10.9 for iOS and Android. Pinterest explained: “Just point Lens at a pair of shoes, then tap to see related styles or even ideas for what else to wear them with. Shop the Look lets people track down (and buy) products they see inside fashion and home decor Pins. Ryan Holmes, Hootsuite CEO, explained: “With AdEspresso, we’re bringing our users a simple, powerful, battle-tested solution that delivers measurable ROI.” Today we raise our espresso cups to helping you reach your social marketing goals with our new teammates @AdEspresso https://t.co/EKK69xdaNe pic.twitter.com/X8NPy1TOBc — Hootsuite (@hootsuite) February 7, 2017 Acquired Liftmetrix On February 22, Hootsuite acquired LiftMetrix, to help customers more accurately measure and increase social media ROI. https://t.co/oxkqLDKbb7 pic.twitter.com/jE7Bi4Zpai — Hootsuite (@hootsuite) February 22, 2017 Updates to Enhance On February 24, Hootsuite rolled out a shiny new version of photo editing app Enhance.

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There were lots of new features, big announcements, and product updates to keep up with in February.

This month, Twitter started testing custom profiles in DMs, Facebook rolled out job posting functionality, Pinterest introduced new visual search tools, and Snapchat began selling Spectacles online—and that’s not all.

It can be hard to keep up with the rate of change on social media, but you don’t need to worry about missing something important. We’ve rounded up all the updates—big and small—from the major social platforms to ensure that you don’t miss a thing.

Table of contents

YouTube

Updates to prevent abuse

On February 7, Twitter announced new improvements to prevent abuse and harassment. Earlier in the month, Twitter introduced the ability for users to report Tweets that mention them, even if the author has blocked them. Now, Twitter has also taken steps to:

  1. Stop the creation of new abusive accounts by identifying people who have been permanently suspended in order to stop them from creating new accounts
  2. Introduce safer search results that remove Tweets that contain potentially sensitive content as well as Tweets from blocked or muted accounts
  3. Collapse potentially abusive or low-quality Tweets

These changes will roll out in the coming weeks.

Social Media News You Need to Know: February 2017 Roundup | Hootsuite Blog
Image via Twitter.

Custom profiles in DMs

On February 22, Twitter launched the ability to create custom profiles in Direct Messages. The feature is being tested by T-Mobile on their @TMobileHelp handle, where it allows them to add the profile image and name of an individual customer service agent helping someone via the handle.

Twitter explains that the feature is intended to allow “businesses to better emphasize that human element in private conversations, as well as more clearly indicate when a bot is speaking.”

The new versions of Twitter’s Direct Message APIs are currently in private beta. Businesses interested in creating custom profiles can contact Twitter about it.

Social Media News You Need to Know: February 2017 Roundup | Hootsuite Blog
Image via Twitter.

WordPress plugin update

On February 24, Twitter announced an update to the network’s official WordPress plugin to help site owners and authors easily embed and customize Twitter timelines in articles and widget areas.

Social Media News You Need to Know: February 2017 Roundup | Hootsuite Blog
Image via Twitter.

Facebook

Update to Safety Check

On February 8, Facebook announced an update to Safety Check called Community Help. The update will let people offer assistance—in the form of food, shelter, or transportation—following a crisis.

Social Media News You Need to Know: February 2017 Roundup | Hootsuite Blog
Image via Facebook.

With Community Help, posts can be viewed by category and location and users have the option to message others directly.

Community Help can be used in the event of a natural disaster or human-caused incident like a building fire. Initially, the tool will be available in the U.S., Canada, Australia, New Zealand, India, and Saudi Arabia.

Policies and tools to prevent discriminatory advertising

On February 8, Facebook announced changes to advertising policies and new tools to prevent discriminatory advertising, including:

  • Updates to the Advertising Policies to make it clear that Facebook prohibits discrimination in advertising
  • A new section linked from the Advertising Policies to provide additional information about Facebook’s anti-discrimination policy as well as educational resources
  • Stronger enforcement tools, such as testing new technology that leverages machine learning to help Facebook identify ads that offer housing, employment, or credit opportunities

Facebook consulted with policymakers and civil rights leaders in order to craft these updates and tools.

Upcoming changes for marketers

On February 10, Facebook announced some upcoming changes for marketers including:

  • Plans to provide more impression-level data for ads on Facebook and Instagram, including milliseconds that an ad was on the screen, milliseconds that 50 percent of the ad was on the screen, and milliseconds that 100 percent of the ad was on the screen
  • Three new choices for video buying, including completed-view buying, two-second buying, and sound-on buying
Social Media News You Need to Know: February 2017 Roundup | Hootsuite Blog
Image via Facebook.

Changes to video

On February 14, Facebook made several changes to video, including:

  • Sound on videos in the News Feed—now sound will fade in and out as users scroll through videos in News Feed (unless their device is set to silent or they have disabled the feature by switching off Videos in News Feed Start with Sound

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