Major Changes to Your Favorite Social Media Platforms
Peter Panda | Director of Animal Stuff

Heading into Q1 of 2020, social media is experiencing changes. When one platform releases a new update, you know there’s another in the works for another. Over November and December, Pinterest, Facebook, and Instagram have all released new features or updates. It’s time for us to explore them:

Pinterest Launches “Pinterest Shop” For Small Businesses

What is it?

Just before Thanksgiving and Black Friday, Pinterest wanted to help small businesses (SMBs) gain exposure. The platform created “Pinterest Shops” where SMBs can upload their product catalog. 

Why does it matter? 

If your small business makes or sell products, you’ll be able to promote your inventory. This is a way for you to bring your shop to the customer. Because users are already here, it makes the shopping experience much easier and convenient. 

Facebook’s Meme Creation App “Whale”

What is it?

THE NPE Team at Facebook created an app called an app called “Whale”. Whale allows users to create their very own “memes” or stickers for free. It’s not available in the US yet…This could be on the way if it’s effective. 

Why does it matter? 

Facebook just like any other social networking site, likes the idea of different types of content. Visuals are always suggested when posting a status update. Although video performs the best, a little image or meme doesn’t hurt, it actually goes a long way. Having visuals can help your content when it goes through the algorithm. 

New options coming to Instagram Stories

What is it?

Instagram is testing a variety of features for stories. First, is a layout option for Stories’ frames. There’s new options for the Boomerang feature. Finally, shout-outs on IG are being taken to the next level. 

Why does it matter?

Before you post a new update, different grid styles will be available for you to choose from. Instead of something plain Jane, you can create an eye-catching story for your brand to stand out. For the time being, you’ll only be able to select still images. 

Boomerangs are another form of content becoming popular amongst the younger crowd. Instagram is trying to incorporate different types of boomerangs for users. They’re thinking of adding slowmo, loop pauses, wiggle distortion, and more. Those small snippets can be super powerful. 

Last but not least, you can shout-out someone the right way. When tagging someone in your Instagram Story, you’ll be able to draw a connection between the two of you. With this option, once you insert someone’s handle, IG will pull photos of you two together. This makes the shout-out more sincere and personal, which can be great for the relationship. 

You have made it to the end and can now say you’re caught up for next year. If IG releases their new upgrades, you’d better incorporate Stories into your marketing strategy. Feed posts are valuable but Stories are too. Just as feed posts, visuals are a must! With Facebook’s app “Whale” still in the works, there’s no doubt eye-popping images will be on the rise in 2020. And with “Pinterest Shop”, bring your business to your customers and increase your sales. These all may seem like small changes but just changing one piece of your strategy can make a huge impact. 

Peter Panda
Pioneering social media panda bear Tagawa “Peter” Panda was born on a Chinese game reserve in 1969. He emigrated to the United States in 1987 speaking no English, with only the fur on his back and $97 stored in a Jansport fanny-pack wrapped around his waist. In 2003 while searching for food on the campus of Washington University, he discovered a computer lab where he would ultimately teach himself web development, graphic design, and immerse himself into the growing digital media evolution that was erupting at the time. With his trademark surly demeanor developed during beatings on his boat ride from China to the U.S., as well as having a penchant for eating vast quantities of bamboo, and enjoying Scotch and cigars, Peter is broadly recognized for coining the phrase “social media” in 2004. He joined Elasticity in late 2009 as the agency’s director of social media strategy and wildlife relations. Friend him on Facebook here.
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