Social in Short

Social in Short: August 2020

Each month, our team of social experts dig through the trenches of the internet to find the biggest, best and most important news coming out of the social platforms we and our clients use daily.

Is Instagram Reels a Total Dud?

Despite the hype, Instagram Reels’ first month after release didn’t live up to it. This article from The Verge says it best: “Instagram Reels’ biggest problem is replicating what TikTok does best: Instagram makes you go to content, but TikTok brings content to you.” TikTok’s algorithm curates content for individual users, prioritizing the user’s exposure to accounts they don’t (necessarily) already follow. Your “For You” page can change from week to week, depending on what you’re engaging with–making the entire experience hyper-personalized, with no two For You pages alike.

What it means for brands: Last month we teased the launch of Instagram Reels and while initial reviews aren’t enthusiastic, we are starting to see consumer and creator adoption across the platform.

Microsoft Considering Purchase of U.S. TiKTok

Drama between the U.S. government and TikTok continues with the signing of an executive order for TikTok to sell to an American-owned business by September 15. Microsoft is in ongoing talks to purchase the U.S. portion of the app that is used by more 100 million Americans. Netflix and Twitter are also rumored to be interested in the purchase. On Monday, August 24 TikTok sued the U.S. government over the ban.

What it means for brands: TikTok does not seem to be going down without a fight and with a number of major U.S. players in consideration for purchase, it doesn’t look like TikTok will be going away anytime soon.

Snapchat to Let Users Share More off Platform

Snapchat is testing a new feature that will allow users to share “Snap Originals,” “Shows” and Publisher Stories” with people off the platform. This feature is currently only available for users sharing their own content. The expansion in capability is an effort to expand Snapchat’s audience. 

What it means for brands: Snapchat’s audience continues to grow, with 17% growth year-over-year. The popularity of “Shows” is growing at an even faster rate (45% YOY) since the start of nationwide stay-at-home orders.

Facebook Launches Voting Information Center

Ahead of 2020 presidential elections, Facebook announced earlier this month that it was launching its long anticipated Voting Information Center. The tool is meant as an authoritative guide to help Americans cast their votes in the upcoming election. Some are skeptical

What it means for brands: This is seen as Facebook’s attempt to counterbalance accusations of Facebook not doing enough to fact check politicians sharing misinformation on their platform.

Other updates of note

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