[Introduction] – 00:00
Hey, everyone. Welcome back to Episode 68 of This Week In Marketing. This is your host Sajid Islam, and today I’ll be going over the notable news and updates in the digital marketing space from the week of August 2nd, 2021.
[Update 1 – Instagram Adds New Way for Businesses to Discover Inspiration] – 00:11
So today, First off, we’re gonna begin with Instagram. There is a bit of an update from Instagram where Instagram has ads added new ways for businesses to discover inspiration. So what they’re basically mean is, you know that now when you have a business account. You remember back in January they launched a professional dashboard and that was covered in a trim shop. So now when you go into a professional dashboard and you know you’ll be screwed and you’ll be able to find a new section that says see. How? How other businesses connect with people, people and guide and guide within that staying from section when they’re gonna show you ads that other businesses are creating and you can see the examples, things like that. This is Instagram square all effort to give you inspiration and. Ideas to create new ads? New polls? What to post? What call to action? Things like that? Now this is great. Now very few businesses are. You know, I’m really struggling to push what? They should publish on Instagram. I mean, if you go to Instagram, do you really think there is a? Limitation of content to follow, content to consume content. Things. I mean, I understand what Instagram is trying to do from here in terms of giving everyone a guidance on or hey, these are the best practice we ever businesses usually. You don’t give this task. Outsource this task or delegate this task over to someone in the social media team or someone else to. You know, really post information like even for our business and I barely pause unless I am going live right most of the time it’s my team. So how? Good. This effort is going to be I do not know. We’ll have to, you know, really see. Time will tell. But I personally think you know Instagram is trying to do all sorts of things but really not doing the one thing that they should be doing, which is like, you know, go fix their you know ads security and banning algorithm, where the banned businesses reference center. You know fix that, put more people behind you know this manual fact-checking verification or whatever you call it so that you know if Someone Like You know messing up correct them and talk to them. See if that was really an error on their part, or if they’re really intentionally being, you know, bad and then kind of take decisions like that. I think that would go up longer way than trying to tell businesses, hey, here’s how you should create. I mean, you know, do you really think business owners are going to go ahead and create study all these things and create content because business, Instagram and saying. They’re all busy. Business people are busy. Anyway, I think I’ve gone this part on this thing for way too long. You get the point with that. Let’s move on to the next part,
[Update 2 – Instagram Shares How its Reels Algorithm Works] – 03:12
which is Instagram this week also shared how it ranks and how the rules algorithm works. How it decides size want to show things like that. So first of all Instagram says you know, we basically take a Reeland we decide how likely are you to watch the whole Reels all the way through like it and engage with it whether it’s saying entertaining, if there really was entertaining or funny and in next they decide you know how likely are you supposed to go to. The audio page to make your own Reels now I will tell you that. I think I don’t hate three of the four points right there. I watch a Reelonce in awhile. I never liked the real. I’ve never said engage with the real. I’ve never gone and checked out an audio just ’cause, you know, I consume Reels things. Silent mode, that’s just me. Unless you know I am really desperate to like, you know, listen what they’re saying anyway so after that. They going to, you know, what are some of the important signals they look at to decide which rules to show. Again, this is based on what you’ve probably seen in YouTube. Like, you know, You Tube shows based on content you’ve already consumed Instagram. It does the same thing similar which is your activity, your history of interacting with the person who posted the reels. But then again, you know I’ve never consumed a real from that person before. You know, whatever that’s insert limbs and informations about the wheels such as audio new track video understanding based on pixels and hold from. So basically Instagram text. Their Reel and process it with their video. You know understanding algorithm and realizes you know and will interact with this kind of topic based on what he has you know. Interacted with in the past. So that’s what Instagram is doing in a very basic level. Right. And then you know obviously Instagram is saying, you know for some of the best practices like in hey, don’t use loaders, use high resolution videos, make sure you don’t have any watermark Reels. That’s basically going for people who are repurposing content from TikTok and with the TikTok logo ’cause. If you do that, Instagram is like here and they’re gonna. You know, kind of not show your reels to anyone. Reels that focuses on political issues, rules that are made by political figures, parties or government officials, or on their behalf. They don’t get, you know, they get limited rules distribution. Other than that you should have, you know, pretty good run. Just go ahead. If you really wanna know what the nitty-gritty details are? These are going to be in the show notes page You can check it out. OK with that very last update. Not from Instagram but from Facebook.
[Update 3 – Facebook Updates Its Settings Page] – 05:49
Facebook is launching a redesigned page settings in the app in order to make it easier for us to find tools and options available to customers and improve our individual on platform experience. I mean, come on, this is a place where we all page or not go every day minimum 5 to 10 times a day and we are always last. So we really. He didn’t need to Facebook and Instagram to go ahead and dedicate their resources to clean it all up. My God, you know, we couldn’t figure out because, you know, this would really be helpful, though, by the way, I’m being sarcastic. Well, it’s good that they’re cleaning things up and, you know, organizing things. But at the same time, like I said, you know, there are many other things that the platform could really fix versus, you know, trying to fix out, you know, the layout for a page settings apps. I mean, most of the times, I will tell you there is so many things that are like, you know, makes no sense. The documentation is out of the things like that I don’t really understand. Facebook is a big company, a lot of different departments, a lot of different, you know, competing priorities. But at the same time, I really wish someone would really come in and talk to small business owners and understand their pain point and see, you know, what are you guys trying to do? Why are you on Instagram? Why are you in Facebook? What tools are you going? Maybe they’re doing this, but I mean, they’re probably talking to the wrong people. They just the other day, you know, I was thinking, you know, something like we own a page and I have a personal page. We have a business page and, you know, obviously my personal account is connected to my personal Instagram. But. For my business account, I have to log into Instagram differently. It’s just that they’re little things. These are use cases that corner cases which I’m pretty sure people are there. Many people are out there like me that they don’t address, but they’re talking about, you know, updating the pages ’cause they UI is gonna be looking nicer and prettier and it’s organized anyway. Like that, that’s saying, you know, the page ruler has been laid out, rolled out the updated page settings. Layout has been rolled out to all users across Android, iOS, mobile web and they’ve be like, so go ahead and check it out. Next we have an update from Shopify.
[Update 4 – Shopify Launches Entrepreneurial Space in New York City] – 07:56
Shopify has launched Stop entrepreneurial space in New York City. Yes, folks. That is right. One Shopify saying that there are tens of thousands of entrepreneurs that have opened businesses on Shopify in 2020, he asked. We are still in the middle of a pandemic or towards the tail end of a pandemic, depending on how you look at it. Even though the delta viruses like. Going crazy, but Shopify has decided to open up a space. Where entrepreneurs will have a space to call their own, they will be, they will have the ability to attend workshops, events, get one on one support book, podcast, photography, studio space and sale in their pop-up shop. This is big folks. This is big. Shopify is taking the game up to a next level by opening up our pop-up space or an entrepreneur space. I mean, I’ve seen Amazon AWS is doing for Amazon AWS space in New York, as well as one other city forgot. I think in the yeah in San Francisco. And that’s where in the startups with AWS you know account could go in and get help on it. So this is really good ’cause. I’ve seen what it does. To take have one on one support and take, you know entrepreneurs and big scale. Engage with entrepreneurs and helping them get forward. Especially the podcast space and the photograph studio space. Can you imagine with professional grade audio and video recording studio for merchants to access in order to grow their business like we maybe I could if I was in New York I could. Go and record this podcast in their studio. Assuming you not had a Shopify store, but I’m just I think you get the point, right? So this is great news. OK. With that, let’s move on to the next one, which is Twitter.
[Update 5 – Twitter Adds New Co-Hosting Option for Audio Spaces] – 09:34
Twitter has now a Co-hosting option for their audio spaces. Again, if you’re not sure what? If you’re unsure what audio spaces are, is basically the Twitter so answer to clubhouse, which is the audio portion audio chat feature. Up until now, you know, it was only a host. Now you know you can add co-host, add guest. Labs bring in other ways speakers, things like that. Really. It’s like they’re becoming bigger. This is a feature that has already been rolled out in clubhouse, so they’re catching up and nevertheless, it’s a good feature to see that Twitter is investing in it. They’re not sunsetting this feature like other things that they sunsetted and we have covered in the last episode. OK. With that next is Microsoft.
[Update 6 – Microsoft Ads August Updates: New Bidding Strategy, Automated Extensions, & More] – 10:18
This is on August, obviously, Microsoft are really announced a quite a few slew of updates. Number one is like you know target impression share, this is for people who wants to show up there, show their add regardless of where they are and they just like says you know what show my head I want to show my add to. Anyone and everyone doesn’t matter which position, but I wanna show up right? So this is something for them that Microsoft has announced. But by the way, this is something that always was that always existed in Google. So Microsoft is playing catch up. But that’s good. They have added a few automated extensions like dynamic locations. Extensions will pulling information from advertisers, location extensions, and Bing maps. This is something again existed in Google add, multimedia extension, Dynamic multimedia extension with multimedia successes, image and videos, it begins. Early 2020 is not there yet, but they just announced it. Syndication decorations are automated, buttons are enhancer. That partners used to entice clicks like you know. This is again to show up nicely on your add so that you know people can click on it and they get excited. Other than that, all our advertisers have ability to opt in or opt out of any of these extensions. The last other thing I will tell you that they have done in this month update is that they have changed, made some changes to Unified campaigns. If you’re not sure what unified campaign was. Basically, it’s the Microsoft Portal from where you could actually not only run ads, but you could do Instagram posting and things like that. We had covered this in our show awhile back. But basically typically they’re saying you just cannot post to the Instagram accounts from the social media section of unified campaigns. Updates to access management and user management, uh billing experience and things and so forth. I’m not going to go through all of the nitty-gritty details just causing it’s gonna take a long time, but if you really want to know each and every nitty gritty details, it’s gonna be in our show. No space. So check it out. But while I will tell you the one thing that you need to really. See is that if you’re planning to use Microsoft add Slash Bing, then target impression share is there for people who really wants to show up and create a brand visibility. That’s the option. OK. With that, let’s move on to Google. Since you know it’s a good segway.
[Update 7 – Google Drops Safe Browsing as a Page Experience Ranking Signal] – 12:45
But Google this is the SEO portion which is basically Google is saying they’re removing the safe browsing signal from Google to page experience update Again, if you are not sure what this is, a page experience update. It basically takes a few factors like you know. You know how long your page takes it to load, how long it takes for some of the first bite to show up? Does does your elements on your page jump around? Is it easy to navigate? Is it fast? Is it just HTTPS? And there’s quite a few of those right? And page Safe browsing was also one of those. Things where you know Google was taken into account now what Google and that was in my opinion that was I think it was a bad idea. But so Google Now saying I said you know we’re not gonna pay tech safe browsing as a signal the reason being is a sometimes you know, websites do fall victim with third party hijacking. Uh, Google will continue to flag them in such console, but they’re not gonna penalize you. That’s what they’re saying. So, for example, what this all means is that if for some reason you are my website gets hacked specially, we are in WordPress. WordPress is notorious about getting hacked or getting broken into. Then Google is not gonna come and like really penalize us. They’re gonna now. Alert us through your search console and that’s what we will is saying. This is All in all a great news because what Google is saying is, you know, we understand things happen beyond a businessman and business persons. Ability to control and we we will not penalize you for that. So basically, we’re not gonna kick you when you’re down, that’s all. OK. With that,
[Update 8 – Google Explains Importance of GMB for Local Search] – 14:28
The next one is Google announces the importance, or not announces. Google explains the importance of Google My Business for local search because what Google’s John Mueller is saying, you know, whether you And when you do a local search query or informational query and the difference between the two is that we’re a local search query is something when you are looking for a service or a store that is in your geographic area. So I could say I live, I live in near Washington DC I could just say, you know, Pizza store, Washington DC and that’s going to be a local. You know search versus informational queries such as like let’s just say. White House DC, right or best time to visit White House DC or how to cook say? I don’t know green beans and mashed potatoes, things like that so. What they’re saying Google is like, you know, saying John Mueller is saying, look, whether we from an issues perspective, everything is the same, whether it’s for local or informational, but where it really matters is like you know, you need to have a Google My Business profile because Google My Business will have your local address and that will tell us that you are a business located in. Washington DC, that and when someone is searching for business in Washington DC, like Pizza store, Washington DC, we know to we know we need to show your business up. That’s all they’re saying, folks. So. If you’re listening and you’re a local business, and if you have a, even if you have a physical business like a big physical business office, even though your informational business, go ahead and create a Google My Business profile, you’ll be glad you did. That’s all I wanted to say. OK, Next up and the last update for this week is that
[Update 9 – YouTube Launches Shorts Fund – Up to $10k Per Month for Top Performing Shorts Video] – 16:11
YouTube YouTube has launched a short fund. They are willing to pay you up to $10,000 a month based on your shots. Video performance. If you do not remember what shorts are, shots are basically those shorts 60 seconds video to basically YouTube answers to or should I say YouTube’s answer to TikTok Reels or TikTok Instagram reels. And then I think Snapchat had a creator spotlight. Right. And Instagram. YouTube has probably seen and taken note of how. Snapchats funding, really, to thing took things off and you know, basically it went on a it was on like it was like a rocket ship taking off. So You Tube is saying maybe we should do the same thing, right, give some money. And this is going. The funding is gonna come from YouTube. Brought $100 million shots fund, which was announced back in May. So it’s just providing a direct pathway to monetization for shots. Video creators who aren’t able to monetize the shots efforts with ADS at this stage. So what all all that matters is that expect YouTube shorts to blow up, right? And I wouldn’t be surprised if Instagram would come out and announce something similar like that. Or maybe they will, like, you know, do a different angle. We’ve already seen Instagram is like, you know, making you giving you options to. Make money through Instagram reels. They’ve increased the number of tons like from 30 seconds to 60 seconds. Things like that. But you know, that’s one other day. Overall, I like it. I’m excited about this update. Just ’cause, you know, now people can make money, although I don’t think I will create. I will call if I can make money just ’cause I’m boring. I do not know if I can really push out content. But to someone, let’s just say in Southeast Asia or in Africa, $10,000 is a lot of money, right? Someone unemployed again, I’m not taking it yet. I’m not taking a swipe at anyone else. But imagine if you can create one good shot video that takes off and it’s every three months. $3000 a month is not bad if you are, you know in some parts of the world where you know where the average income is $300 a month, right? So All in all, I’m saying, you know, it’s a good effort. I mean, we’re gonna see a lot of content on YouTube, and I just hope made the best one. Means not best person to manipulate the algorithm with that folks, that’s it for this week. Once again this is also.
[Closing] – 18:48
With that, folks, that’s it for this week in marketing. Now you need to know everything to be in the know. If you’d like to read more, please make sure you visit our show page, where you’ll find the links to the articles. Once again, this is your host Sajid Islam signing off until next week. Take care. Bye-bye.
Thank you for tuning in this week. It was a pleasure to serve you all. Hit the subscribe button so that you remember to sign on next week. Same place, same time for another round of This Week In Marketing.
1. Instagram Adds New Way for Businesses to Discover Inspiration (0:11) – Instagram is looking to help brands improve their posting approach by highlighting top examples of both organic and promoted posts from other businesses in the app, which may help to spark creative thinking and consideration. The new element has been added to Instagram’s Professional Dashboard, which it launched back in January, and is accessible within the app to those who have Business and Creator accounts.
Now, when you tap through to the Professional Dashboard (at the top of your profile), you’ll be able to find a new ‘See How Other Businesses Connect with People’ guide within the ‘Stay Informed’ section, which is in the lower part of the display. Tap on that tile and you’ll be able to access a range of examples of good brand posts and ads, as chosen by Instagram’s creative team.
Once you tap into an example, you’ll also be able to scroll down to see more, while Instagram has also included ‘Create Post’ and ‘Create Ad’ CTAs in between the displayed posts to streamline your own creative process.
Instagram says that the feature is part of its ongoing commitment to build a suite of solutions “to help businesses of all sizes unlock their potential”.
2. Instagram Shares How its Reels Algorithm Works (3:12) – This week, Instagram has shared a new overview of the key factors that it considers in ranking Reels, which ultimately points to how you can maximize Reels reach, by aligning with these elements.
In order to Determine, which Reels to show you, Instagram considers how likely you are to
- Watch a Reel all the way through
- Like it
- Say it was entertaining or funny
- Go to the audio page to make your own Reel
So the more Reels you watch – ideally all the way through – the more signals of interest Instagram then has in order to determine what you want to see, with the additional, direct factors of Likes and comments also playing a big part.
Next, Instagram shares the four most important signals that can boost Reels’ reach. The most important Signals, roughly in order of importance are:
- Your activity – They look at things like which Reels you’ve liked and commented on, and engaged with recently.
- Your history of Interacting with the person who posted
- Information about the Reel such as Audio track, Video understanding based on pixels and whole frames, as well as popularity.
- Information about the person who posted and how others interacted with them.
And finally, Instagram also shares this interesting overview of what it will limit in Reels distribution.
- Low-resolution or watermarked Reels
- Reels that focuses on political issues
- Reels that are made by political figures, parties, or government officials or on their behalf.
3. Facebook Updates Its Settings Page (5:49) – Facebook is launching a redesigned settings page in the app, in order to make it easier to find the various tools and options available to customize and improve your individual on-platform experience. The updated format provides more room between each element, with less text on the main screen to clutter your view, better guiding you towards each option. It also groups several elements together, reducing the number of main options displayed – the new ‘Payments’ menu, for example, will incorporate all payment tools, as opposed to having each individually listed at present.
Facebook’s redesigned settings layout is being rolled out to all users from today, across Android, iOS, mobile web, and FB Lite.
4. Shopify Launches Entrepreneurial Space in New York City (7:56) – According to Shopify’s press release, tens of thousands of entrepreneurs in New York City have opened businesses on Shopify in 2020. And to support this vibrant entrepreneurial spirit in the city, they’re excited to open Shopify New York. Now, existing and budding entrepreneurs will have a space to call their own, with the ability to attend workshops and events, get one-to-one support, book podcast and photography studio space, and sell in their pop-up shop.
Shopify New York is a one-stop destination for entrepreneurs, featuring:
- Support 1:1s: They’re bringing their world-class support experts in person to offer free, 30-minute 1:1 sessions daily for founders and their employees to get all of their questions answered.
- Podcast Studio: They have created a professional-grade audio-video recording studio for merchants to access in order to grow their business.
- Photo Studio: They know that photos can make or break a brand’s success, so we designed an easy-to-use photography studio that comes with professional equipment ideal for taking beautiful product shots, along with a handbook to show merchants how to bring their photos to life.
- Cha Ching Café: Named after the famous sound effect that plays when merchants get a sale on their Shopify store, the coffee shop is operated by merchant Birch Coffee, visitors will be able to purchase coffee, tea, and to-go snacks.
- Pop-up Shop: Our pop-up shop features several local merchant products (from Greenery Unlimited and Nguyen Coffee Supply) for visitors to purchase.
5. Twitter Adds New Co-Hosting Option for Audio Spaces (9:34) – Twitter has launched its new co-hosting option for Spaces, providing another option for managing your audio chats. Spaces hosts will now be able to easily add co-hosts from the ‘Guests’ tab at the bottom of the Spaces screen. Within that tab, you’ll see a new ‘Invite co-hosts’ option highlighted in blue, which, when tapped, will enable you to search through those attending your Space and add that user as a partner host.
You’ll be able to add a maximum of two co-hosts to each Space, which will give them the capacity to invite speakers, manage requests within the Space and pin Tweets. Co-hosts will also be able to remove guests – so really, it’s a perfect supplementary admin tool, and if you’re going to host a massive Space, with a heap of attendees, then having two additional hands to moderate and direct the discussion could be a major help in the process.
It could be especially handy for brands looking to run Spaces, with more capacity to manage the discussion, fend off spammers, and keep things civil in the chat. Even the basic ability to pin tweets could be big in this regard, enabling your co-host to add contextual elements into the discussion in order to better illustrate key points, without the speaker having to be distracted from the presentation task.
6. Microsoft Ads August Updates: New Bidding Strategy, Automated Extensions, & More (10:18) – Microsoft announced a list of new product updates and releases for Advertisers. Here’s what you need to know!
Target Impression Share – Mirroring that of Google Ads, Microsoft Ads will automatically set your bids based upon where you want your ads to appear and your Target Impression Share. Advertisers can choose that they’d like to show anywhere on the page, meaning that they don’t care which position they are in on the first page, “Top of page”, meaning they want to show in the first set of ads that appear on the first SERP, or “Absolute top of the page” meaning that they want to be the very first ad in the SERP. Target Impression Share is a good bid strategy for folks who prioritize visibility, though it may cost more.
New automated extensions– Starting in August, Microsoft is launching new automated extensions, which will be available to all advertisers.
- Dynamic Location extensions will pull in location information from advertiser location extensions and Bing Maps
- Dynamic Multimedia extensions will append multimedia assets, such as images and videos (begins flighting in early 2022)
- Syndication Decorations are automated buttons or enhancements that partners use to entice clicks
All advertisers will have the ability to opt in or out of any of these extensions.
Track product-specific conversions with product conversion goals – Advertisers using Shopping Campaigns or other feed-based campaigns will now be able to create product conversion goals.
Changes to Unified Campaigns – Lastly, Microsoft Advertising announced a host of updates for unified campaigns based upon feedback from early adopters.
- Instagram posting: Users can now post to their Instagram accounts from the social media section of unified campaigns.
- Updates to access management and user invitation: unified campaigns users can now invite other Microsoft Advertising users to have access to and manage their accounts.
- A new billing experience: unified campaigns users can now use the same billing pages as Expert mode users.
- Updates to the campaign management experience: Microsoft notes that they’ve received user feedback and made several tweaks to improve the usability of unified campaigns, such as always visible overview information during campaign creation.
- Last but not least, users of unified campaigns are now able to manage multiple sub-accounts underneath a single parent account. Manager accounts are able to:
- Create multiple unified campaigns accounts underneath the same manager account.
- Create a mix of unified campaigns and expert mode accounts underneath the same manager account.
- Link to and from manager accounts that contain a combination of unified campaigns and expert mode account.
7. Google Drops Safe Browsing as a Page Experience Ranking Signal (12:45) – Google is removing the safe browsing signal from the Google page experience update, the company announced. Google said, “We recognize that these issues aren’t always within the control of site owners, which is why we’re clarifying that Safe Browsing isn’t used as a ranking signal and won’t feature in the Page Experience report.”
Google said it is removing this as a signal because these are issues that are not always in the control of site owners. Google said, “sometimes sites fall victim to third-party hijacking.” Google will continue to flag these notifications in Search Console but outside of the page experience report. Google is also removing the Ad Experience widget, Google said: “to avoid surfacing the same information on two parts of Search Console.” But Ad experience was never used in the Google page experience update.
8. Google Explains Importance of GMB for Local Search (14:28) – Google’s John Mueller explained what a business needs to do to rank for local search queries, stressing the importance of Google My Business (GMB).
A “Local Search Query” is a search question that someone types into Google when they are looking for a service or a store that is in their geographic area. Examples of a local search business can be a plumber, a restaurant, a retail store, or a lawyer. An informational search query is one where a searcher is trying to find information, like, for example, the cast of a movie, a product review, or instructions on how to cook a Hungarian goulash.
SEO for Local and Informational Intent Essentially the Same. So what he’s trying to say is that SEO considerations like the title tag, meta description, heading use, content on the page, and perhaps even the structured data are all the same between a web page that’s optimized for a local search query and page that’s optimized for an informational search query.
Mueller next underlined the importance of setting up a Google My Business profile.
“With Google My Business set up, you automatically have a location specified anyway.
So it’s a little bit easier there.
But having all of that combined makes it a lot easier for us to actually understand this is a local result, and the user is local and they’re looking for something local, therefore we should highlight this better in search.”
One thing to keep in mind is that a business must be local if it is included in Google My Business (GMB). GMB may not be a good fit for a company that has national and/or global clients. What can happen is that the site may disappear from the search engine results pages (SERPs) to searchers outside of the service areas indicated in the GMB profile.
9. YouTube Launches Shorts Fund – Up to $10k Per Month for Top Performing Shorts Video (16:11) – On August 3, 2021, YouTube announced the launch of its new Shorts Fund. They will pay up to $10k per month to individual creators based on Shorts’ performance.
As explained by YouTube:
“Each month, we’ll reach out to thousands of eligible creators to claim a payment from the Shorts Fund – creators can make anywhere from $100 to $10,000 based on viewership and engagement on their Shorts. The Shorts Fund is the first step in our journey to build a monetization model for Shorts on YouTube and is not limited to just creators in YPP – any creator that meets our eligibility criteria can participate.”
The funding will come from YouTube’s broader $100 million Shorts Fund, which it announced back in May, and will provide a direct pathway to monetization for short-video creators, who aren’t able to monetize their Shorts efforts with ads at this stage.