It’s only March, but there’s already been significant developments from two of social media’s heavyweights in 2015.
As part of our Keeping You Posted series, we bring you an update on three changes from Twitter and Snapchat that arrived over the last few weeks.
Tweets will now feature in Google search results
Undoubtedly the biggest development to think long and hard about has been the news that Google and Twitter have struck a deal that will see tweets appear in search results.
The agreement gives Google access to Twitter’s firehose – the stream of data generated by Twitter’s 284 million users – ensuring even more content is swallowed up by the search engine behemoth. In return, Twitter gets to push its content towards a greater number of non-service users, generating greater advertising in the process.
What does this mean for marketers? While a full-blown redraft of your social media policy probably isn’t necessary, it would be wise to brush up on the sort of content that you are putting out there. Bearing in mind that Google will be picking up your tweets now, think about peppering Twitter content with the keywords you want associated with your specific sector.
There are also knock-on effects to consider for location-based marketing, tweet syntax and general SEO strategy.
Group messaging and embedded video functions added to Twitter
Sticking with Twitter, the micro-blogging site has now added group messaging and 30-second videos to its services.
Previously, the only way of communicating privately was through direct messages (DMs). Now though, multiple Twitter users can communicate away from followers’ timelines. This includes users that don’t follow each other, but have a friend in common that start a conversation.
The new video function allows mobile users to create 30-second clips while in the Twitter app. Videos can then be edited in-app, and embedded into tweets on their timeline, similar to how Vines have previously been featured.
The latter feature introduced a number of new opportunities for businesses looking to create engaging and innovative content. Just how Vine gave social media users a new medium to play with a couple of years ago, the new video functionality allows marketers to have even greater flexibility in the content they produce.
While brevity is still the key, the ability to use slightly longer videos provides new possibilities for engaging content.
Snapchat users can now Discover new content
Another new addition came from Snapchat, which introduced its Discovery function – a way of getting fleeting insights from some of the biggest names in content creation.
The feature allows users to access slimmed-down, mobile-friendly pages from the likes of the Daily Mail, Sky Sports and MTV, with built-in video and audio.
The development seems to have been a hit so far, with TechCrunch reporting that data consumption through the app has skyrocketed since the launch of Discover.
While Discovery channels aren’t open to everyone (yet), the significant growth in the platform, which has a largely youthful base of more than 30 million active users, means it should be considered as part of your marketing mix.