July 1, 2020

Figaro Digital Digest: June 2020

As restrictions ease and life begins moving towards a new kind of normal, it’s starting to look like some of the trends that gained traction throughout the COVID-19 crisis might be here to stay.

With brands putting more energy than ever into in-home entertainment, streamed events and eCommerce, the digital landscape is changing.

Find out all the latest from social, Google, and brands below.

The Latest Social News

Instagram tests shopping tools in post captions

In another move to emphasise eCommerce, Instagram has added a range of in-stream shopping tools to their platform.

Some Instagram profiles can now add product tags in their post captions which take you through to shoppable product pages. Businesses can already use Shopping Tags (which appear in images) but this new feature gives the option to add another clickable incentive to the text itself.

Being able to add clickable links to captions is a long-wished-for feature, but this new tool is strictly shopping motivated and not available widely yet. Instagram is currently testing it with a small group of accounts in the US, and a date for the roll-out is yet to be announced.

New to Twitter on iOS: Tweets with audio

After experimenting with audio tweets last month, Twitter is now trialling the option to add audio clips to tweets for some iOS users. Audio tweets will display in stream, with your profile picture in the centre of the playback.

Audio clips are limited to 140 seconds but Twitter says “once you reach the time limit for a Tweet, a new voice Tweet starts automatically to create a thread,” which opens up the possibility for sharing longer messages and monologues. In this explainer thread, Twitter product designer Maya Gold goes into more detail about the design process.

Audio tweets will be rolling out to all iOS users in the coming weeks, with other platforms to follow.

YouTube introduces new eCommerce tools

YouTube is ramping up its eCommerce offering with the addition of new eCommerce products listings beneath video ads to guide viewers to specific products. YouTube explains, “To help businesses establish a stronger eCommerce presence, we’re experimenting with a new way to make your actionable video ads more shoppable – complementing your ad with browseable product imagery to inspire the next purchase.”

The option is largely automated and displays products from your catalogue while the video ad plays. Future updates will also roll out call-to-action buttons on each product image.

It’s not surprising to see YouTube catching onto the eCommerce trend. The shift away from physical shopping in favour of online retail is predicted to last, so we’re likely to see more advancements as we move forward.

The Latest Google News

Google releases new Pinterest-style “Keen” app

Google has a bit of a history of releasing copycat Pinterest tools and its new app, “Keen”, is already being compared to the popular image sharing and curating service. With “Keen”, “You make a ‘keen’, which can be about any topic, whether it’s baking delicious bread at home, getting into birding or researching typography. Keen lets you curate the content you love, share your collection with others and find new content based on what you have saved.”

Like Pinterest, “Keens” can be public or private, and Google’s advanced search algorithms will collate content similar to what you’ve saved – like Pinterest’s “For you” listings.

Currently only available on web and Android, we’ll have to wait and see whether Keen hits a chord with users.

Google’s Page Experience Update: Everything you need to know

Late last month, Google released its Page Experience Update. In a nutshell, the update means Google is more likely to rank your pages higher if they provide a good user experience. But Google product manager Rudy Galfi says great content will still be the most important factor, so in real terms, the update may not mean big changes for SEOs.

The real news may be Google’s announcement that Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) will no longer be required for content to appear in Google’s mobile Top Stories carousel – publishers are now re-evaluating whether maintaining AMP versions of their content will be worthwhile going forward.

After the update takes effect in 2021, publishers can opt to prioritise page experience factors to get their content into the Top Stories section, instead of maintaining AMP versions of their pages.

The Latest Brand News

TikTok joins the EU’s Code of Practice on Disinformation

The EDiMA trade association, which has a number of tech giants as members, announced today that popular video sharing platform TikTok has formally signed up to the EU’s Code of Practice on Disinformation, which is a set of voluntary steps aimed at combatting the spread of damaging misinformation online.

Platforms signed up to the Code of Practice have to provide monthly reports into the countermeasures they’re taking to tackle false and/or misleading information.

“TikTok signing up to the Code of Practice on Disinformation is great news as it widens the breadth of online platforms stepping up the fight against disinformation online”, said Siada El Ramly, EDiMA’s director general.

Mondelez shifts focus to brand building

Speaking at a summit, Mondelez’s executive vice-president and president of North America, Glen Walter, announced the company has been too focused on internal transformation in past years, and will now be looking to invest more in their brands.

The new focus will look at “fundamental core processes”: “how we build our brands, how we connect with customers and consumers, how we execute in the marketplace, and how we bring our supply chain back to stability and predictability.”

Campaign of the Month

Postponed MoneySuperMarket campaign finally launched

Originally intended for late March, MoneySuperMarket’s fourth “Get Money Calm” campaign has finally been released as consumers and businesses look to get back a sense of normalcy.

Narrated once again by Matt Berry, it introduces the Money Calm Bull in a number of anxious environments, from the classic china shop scenario to the stormy seas, complete with tentacled monsters and screaming fishermen. It might be the perfect, creative way to get MoneySuperMarket on people’s minds.

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