The Nike advertising campaign stole the limelight this month and proved beyond doubt the power of social media advertising.
Protesters took to the streets, sales dipped and then bounced back and share prices followed.
Also, in the news, Instagram introduced a number of new features, LinkedIn rolled out its new group features and Pinterest grew its following.
On top of that, Facebook’s video portal and Shopify’s augmented reality are exciting new developments set to change the way we purchase and engage with brands.
Nike Stirs up Controversy
Nike’s anniversary campaign celebrating 30 years of ‘Just do(ing) it’ was all over the news this month.
It started with the controversial social media advertisement featuring Colin Kaepernick, the first NFL player to kneel during the US national anthem.
The reaction from the public was swift.
Protesters threatened to boycott Nike.
Many destroyed their own Nike products.
Nike share prices initially dropped but then rebounded to an all-time high with sales increasing by 31%.
Nike has a long history of stirring up controversy in their advertising campaigns, and this one was certainly no exception.
A Busy Month for Instagram
New from Instagram this month – Instagram users can now add a GIF to their Instagram Direct Message.
With the new feature, users have a choice of trending GIFs, or for a bit of fun, they can select a random button and see what pops up.
Instagram has been making improvements to its direct messaging platform for a while now, with an increased uptake of Instagram Direct by younger people.
Instagram has also confirmed that soon users will have the option to tag followers in videos.
In another effort to increase traffic, Digital Trends reports that Instagram is running tests on a project to connect students who attend the same colleges, making it easier for them to communicate.
Instagram is rumored to be looking at removing hashtags from captions, to avoid hashtagging overkill, and to make content easier to read. This is according to a TechCrunch report.
Instead, there would be a “Add Hashtags” function under the caption composer.
Augmented Reality Makes Online Shopping Easier
Now small businesses can also join the augmented reality marketing world.
Introducing their services marketplace, Shopify is making it possible for small businesses to create 3D models of their products.
This allows would-be customers to view the product from all angles and even place them in their surroundings.
This aims to increase conversion rates and reduce returns.
Twitter Adds New Options
Twitter has now added an ad option to its third-party websites.
It started testing the concept in May.
This will make it possible for publishers to generate income from timeline ads on their sites according to Marketing Land.
Publishers that want to take advantage of this option must apply to Twitter.
TechCrunch reported earlier that Twitter had confirmed the launch of an audio-only feature from its Periscope and iOS application.
Now users can create live audio broadcasts where previously they could only record videos.
Broadcasters can view their statistics in the same way as they do with video content.
LinkedIn Rolls Out New Groups Platform
According to Adweek LinkedIn has started the rollout of the new groups platform that they announced last month.
The old group functions will be phased out.
The feature will allow the users to include graphics and videos in their messages.
It also offers major benefits to group administrators who can highlight appropriate content for their users.
Pinterest Keeps Gaining Traction
Pinterest announced this month that it now has more than 250 million people using its platform.
The 175 billion pins now available on Pinterest represents growth of 75% year over year.
Since 93% of pinners say that they use the platform to make purchasing decisions, Pinterest is a platform worth watching.
For the first time, Pinterest has given “Shop the Pins” access to all businesses advertising on the platform.
They have also opened up their API platform to help businesses to identify the influencers through metrics supplied to them by Pinterest.
Meet Nico and Veronica
Snapchat introduced the world to Nico and Veronica during the month.
They represent new, more modern versions of the camera spectacles released two years ago.
They are capable of recording 70 videos or hundreds of photos before they require recharging.
The captured material is transferred wirelessly to a smartphone.
Snapchat will release software later this year for easy curation.
Facebook Prepares for the Holiday Season
Facebook has expanded its overlays just in time for the holiday season.
Advertisers can add the holiday overlays to their video advertisements.
At the same time, the company announced updates to their collection ads.
Once live, advertisers will have the option to send shoppers directly from their ads to their storefront.
Brands who have tested the tool say that it resulted in a 9% increase in conversions.
The video creation process has also been simplified so that advertisers with fewer resources can make use of them.
Facebook will unveil its newest product before the end of the month according to Cheddar.
The portal video chat device is similar to an Amazon Echo Show.
The wide angled video camera features face recognition technology.
Artificial intelligence will track people to film them.
The product includes a privacy shutter.
It will integrate with the Amazon assistant Alexa.
Facebook plans to produce two different sizes.
This month Facebook also announced brand safety measures for its advertisers.
Now advertisers have more visibility over which publishers and categories are using their advertisements.
They can see where the ads will appear and can block publishers and categories that they don’t want to be associated with their product.
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