This week's hottest headlines: Facebook takes on Craigslist with new Marketplace, tests own version of Snapchat Stories; LinkedIn-Microsoft deal to get new scrutiny; Twitter's Moments now rolled out globally and what it means for you; four tips to building trust and influence on LinkedIn; using Snapchat for lead generation, and much more...
Skim for all the important bits!
1. Facebook takes on Craigslist, eBay with new Marketplace
What do you do when 450 million people already show an interest in buying and selling personal items on your social network? You create a dedicated platform and tab within your mobile app for it. That's what Facebook did this week with the launch of its new Marketplace in the US, UK, Australia, and New Zealand. It lets users browse a relevancy-sorted feed of items to buy from people nearby, and also lets them list their own items for sale.
Though there's no two-way rating to discourage fraud, and no native payment capability, Marketplace is integrated directly within Messenger to encourage in-person exchanges over fraudulent shipping. In a show of confidence, the social giant is placing its new feature front-and-center, swapping the central Messenger tab within its flagship app for the Marketplace one.
The biggest benefit for Facebook's new venture could be the level of trust it brings compared with competitors like Craigslist. People can find out much more about sellers via their Facebook profiles than anonymous selling on Craigslist, and Facebook hopes the average 50 minutes users already spend on Facebook, Messenger, and Instagram combined can translate to big sales.
2. Facebook testing its own version of Snapchat Stories
The social network is targeting countries where Snapchat hasn't quite taken hold yet to test what it's dubbed Messenger Day, a clone of Snapchat Stories housed within its Messenger app that encourages users to share filter-enhanced photos and videos that disappear after 24 hours.
Sources in Poland confirmed the test, making it clear Facebook is keen to take the wind out of Snapchat's sails before it can gain market share in the country, just like it has with Instagram Stories in countries like Russia with low Snapchat adoption rates. No word on whether the test of Messenger Day will be rolled out wider, or launched in the future.
3. Salesforce urges regulators to review Microsoft's purchase of LinkedIn
Whether it's bad sportsmanship or legitimate concern, Salesforce is set to signal its worry about Microsoft's takeover of LinkedIn to American and European regulators, after losing its bid for the acquisition itself.
LinkedIn's dataset of over 450 million professionals in more than 200 countries will soon belong to Microsoft, and Salesforce says Microsoft could develop an unfair competitive advantage by denying competitors access to that data.
Although the Microsoft-LinkedIn deal has already been cleared in the US, Canada, and Brazil, Salesforce hopes to make the case to European regulators, where LinkedIn has other direct competitors like Germany's Xing.
4. Twitter's Moments now open to all users
Now anyone on the microblogging platform can create and share Moments—slideshows of several linked tweets that can include photos, video, GIFs, and Vines with Twitter's Moments.
After launching last October, the feature was initially reserved for the company itself to curate easily digestible series from events across the world for its users, and now the capability is rolling out to all after being expanded to select influencers, partners, and brands. Moments can be viewed and shared within the platform itself, or embedded elsewhere on the Web. Will your brand tell stories via Moments?
5. Messaging app battle heats up
Although in opposite directions, both Facebook and Telegram launched some big updates to their platforms to keep their users involved.
Facebook launched a pared-back version of Messenger dubbed Messenger Lite to entice users in emerging markets that might lack high-speed internet or high-end smartphones. Telegram introduced a new gaming chatbot to its platform that brings HTML5 games directly within the application, which means users can now use bots to play games directly within their chats.
With over 30 games already published and a clear scoreboard of users' performance compared to their friends', addiction could be the side effect Telegram is hoping for.
6. Four ways to build influence and trust on LinkedIn
Sometimes the most basic of social media tasks, like setting up a profile, can be the most overlooked and important. LinkedIn serves as the face and identity of the company for many B2B brands, and as one of the world's largest databases of professional contacts, your brand might want to put some more thought into how it represents itself on the platform, not just the content it posts.
Building trust and, in turn influence, on the social network can take time, but Social Media Examiner's got four ways to do so. Covered in detail: optimizing your profile, proactively growing your audience, publishing content, and fostering the community you've worked so hard to build.
7. Meerkat's no more, but the company's live-streaming ambitions endure
Meerkat burst onto the livestreaming scene before both Facebook and Twitter, but its run was short-lived as it failed to compete with Twitter's Periscope and Facebook Live. Now, Life On Air, the company behind Meerkat, has officially announced the end of the app, but it has slowly been building a group video chat app in a shift of strategy.
The new app—called "Houseparty"—was originally announced in March and is a more intimate livestreaming platform for close friends and family rather than a public forum. Life On Air purposefully didn't spread much news about Houseparty in an effort to avoid criticism of Meerkat's demise, but the new app already boasts close to a million users and particularly popular among teenagers. Is it here to stay?
8. The most annoying things brands do on social
Knowing what users don't want to see brands do on social is just as important as knowing what users do want to see, and MarketingProfs dives into just that in its analysis of a recent Sprout Social survey.
Posting too much takes the top slot, with more than 50% of those surveyed citing it as a top annoyance from brands. Surprisingly, using slang or jargon (likely what brands see as an effort to humanize a brand) is the second-biggest reason users find brands annoying. Jump into the rest of the results to see the 2016 do's and don'ts when building your content plan!
9. Five ways to generate leads on Snapchat
It might not be the first platform B2B-ers head to for generating leads (that might be an understatement for this one), but Snapchat can prove useful for brands if they're strategic and creative in approach.
Check out Social Media Examiner's extensive list of great ideas—from prompting followers to join your email list and showing your product or service in action, to promoting discount offers and giveaways.
10. We'll wrap up with how Kim K.'s social media posts led to her being held at gunpoint
Sometimes it takes a major wakeup call to remember that social media might not be the place to flaunt everything you've got. Kim Kardashian learned that the hard way this week in Paris, when a band of robbers broke their way into her private apartment, tied her up in the bathroom, and stole millions of dollars' worth of jewelry they'd seen the worldwide celebrity post on social media. And the results were a tour across the worldwide news media.
With over 48 million followers on Twitter and 84 million on Instagram, posting photos of your $4.5 million diamond ring might be something you keep as private as possible. This lesson translates to business as well, and serves as a reminder to think about whether the content you're posting on social adds value, positively promotes your brand image, and isn't simply an irrelevant knee-jerk reaction to an event that could harm your interests in the future.
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