Snapchat search bar
With the addition of a new Search Bar, Snapchat has fixed one of its biggest issues—discoverability. Prior to this new development, it had been difficult for users to simply find other people or brands. Snapchat’s interface and functionality is notoriously clunky, with commands and navigations that are far from intuitive.
"Improved search could be a huge boon to brands, businesses and influencers hoping to build their Snapchat audience. Previously, Snapchat only offered a fractured search interface, with boxes for finding specific conversations, accounts to follow and Stories or Discover channels scattered in three different places." -Josh Constine, TechCrunch
As Snap’s $3 billion IPO approaches, it’s easy to imagine Snapchat offering paid placements in the search bar sooner rather than later.
It's time to stop thinking about chatbots as some weird social media/AI gimmick. While they are still a relatively new bit of technology, AdAge has gone so far as to predict that they will eventually replace websites and brand apps. The linked article offers a simple explanation of their appeal and speaks to some of the best ways to leverage them. Here are some key excerpts to take note of:
- Three ways brands are using chatbots: to provide content, facilitate a purchase and connect with consumers
- Facebook went from having zero bots in February to 18,000 by July
- Consumers spend 88% of their time in just five downloaded apps
- 37% of people are willing to make a purchase through a chatbot and would spend an average of about $56 per purchase
- Bots offer plenty of analytics for a brand to assess, such as engagement levels, conversation length, sentiment analysis, response rates, bot mentions and click-through rates. This can allow marketers to close the loop on engagement and sales.
Looking for a bit of inspiration? Here are some examples of brands that are doing it really well. The common thread here seems to be offering a personality and making it a “delight” for users to engage with.
Tweet like there's no delete
Every once in awhile we need a reminder that the internet never truly forgets. All it takes is one screenshot to immortalize a piece of content—and, sometimes, that means losing control of a narrative. With that said, let’s discuss Badlands National Park. In defiance of an apparent presidential gag order, they began tweeting climate change facts. And while the posts were deleted after a few hours, the damage was already done. The story became even bigger once the tweets were deleted and other parks even began following suit. Hard to say if this is just the beginning of Twitter feuds between federal agencies, but we’re certainly along for the ride regardless.
Vine crawls into 2017
Remember when Vine died? Well as of January 17 it lives on as Vine Camera, with a much thinner feature offering. Users will still be able to create and post vines to Twitter (or download them to your camera roll), but the Vine network itself will be no more. Cue sad trombone.
What's (maybe) NOT happening in 2017
People are making a lot of predictions for the year ahead. Well, this is the “anti-prediction” list. Of note: VR will decline, enthusiasm in Snapchat will fade, and a lot of other buzzkills. There are certainly a few hot takes here, but it’s always good to keep expectations in check.