What’s the latest digital marketing news for November? Facebook continued to merge itself with Instagram while a new social media platform gained some steam.
Facebook continued to merge with Instagram
Over the last little while, you probably noticed a subtle change to Facebook Messenger. You likely picked up your phone, saw you had a notification, and went to open the app. That’s when you saw it. Facebook messenger… is purple now.
Of course, this is due to Facebook’s push to merge Facebook messenger with Instagram DMs so users can easily communicate between the two platforms without having to download both apps.
But the merge hasn’t stopped there.
Back in September, marketers probably noticed the quiet launch of Facebook Business Suite, which is a much-improved marketing dashboard that offers way more insights than the previous ad manager. It also provides a look into Instagram stats and campaigns so you can track all your data in one place.
Around the same time, Facebook started sharing stories from Instagram users to their Facebook feeds. For brands using Instagram, this allows a kill-two-birds-with-one-stone approach to video content. It also provides a path for Baby Boomers to get exposed to social media other than Facebook.
But according to Facebook, none of this is their intention. They’ve claimed this slow blend of platforms is all about user-benefit and the eventual promise of a fully encrypted ecosystem. For now, though, it’s easy to see where Facebook really wins.
By merging the two applications, Facebook and Instagram will also merge their user metadata. This will allow each platform to create a more complete view of its users by filling in gaps from the other application, which will in turn generate smarter ad targeting capabilities.
Parler stepped into the spotlight amid censorship wars
In the wake of the US election, social media platforms have seemingly turned their attention away from hate speech and privacy to focus on censorship. Specifically, in regards to misinformation.
The “red wave” that never really came through for Republicans has certainly come through for Parler, a fringe social media platform that has exploded in response to increased censorship happening on mainstream platforms. Marketing itself as “the world’s town square”, Parler calls for users to speak freely and express themselves openly without the fear of being “de-platformed”.
With 8 million members and counting, it will be interesting to see if and how companies navigate it as an ad channel or touchpoint given its controversial nature. For now, plans to monetize the platform are geared more towards influencers than paid ads.
We’ll be blogging about Parler over the next week, so check back here for a more thorough deep-dive.