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Facebook Messenger means business, Pinterest is going global, Twitter is playing some sweet tunes, and Periscope is drawing doodles. Social platforms just won’t quit stealing ideas from each other. #CantStopWontStop

FACEBOOK

Facebook Messenger Codes And Chat Bots

Over 900 million people are active on Facebook messenger. Those users send more than 1 billion messages to businesses even though most businesses do not have official profiles on messenger itself.

That’s all about to change thanks to messenger codes and chat bots.

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Soon businesses will be able to set up Messenger accounts that will be manned by a combination of human customer service agents and bots built with Facebook’s help.

The bots will carry out simple back-and-forth responses that follow different paths, like a menu tree. Conversations will also most likely include clickable elements like buttons, forms, and pull-down menus.

To support this transition, Facebook has announced Messenger Codes — a series of dots and dashes that circle a profile photo on Messenger. They will work much like QR codes or Snapcodes: users can scan codes hung in windows or on counters, etc. in order to connect with businesses.

Facebook Adds Live Video To Trending Topics

Facebook has made it easier to discover Live video in topics that are trending on Facebook.

If relevant Live video is available for a trending topic, it will be included in the Search results page so users can get a direct, first-hand look at what’s going on. A new indicator will let you know when relevant Live video is available for a Trending topic.

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For now, expect to find Live video in a small handful of topics. As more people start creating video content and sharing Live, it could make searching Trending topics an even better experience.

Facebook Does Away With The 20% Text Rule

You may not have liked Facebook’s 20% text rule for ad images, but at least it was clearly defined and easy to follow.

Now Facebook’s grid tool is gone, and Facebook will provide a visual guide to illustrate the impact too much text will have on your ad performance.

It’s now up to us to decide it we’ve used too much text or not. Here are the four new categories of text overlay:

  • Image Text: OK
  • Image Text: Low
  • Image Text: Medium
  • Image Text: High

If your image is classified as OK — close to no text with maybe just a logo — then your ad will display just fine.

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With a low/medium classification, your reach may become restricted, though it’s not clear by how much. And if your ads have a high volume of text there’s little chance they will display at all.

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Facebook has made it clear that they prefer little to no text on ad images, so ensure that you achieve maximum reach by reserving your promotional test for the post copy itself.

PINTEREST

Pinterest Starts Selling Ads Overseas

The image discovery platform is making international expansion a priority, in hopes of growing its 100-million user base. Paid advertising will become available to businesses in the U.K. looking to spend on the platform.

The U.K. is one of Pinterest’s high-priority markets because users there grew by 50% over the past year, and they have saved over 2 billion pins since the site’s U.K. launch three years ago.

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Much like in the U.S. market, the company will focus on consumer packaged goods companies and retailers, but they hope to expand into other categories such as travel and financial services.

Pinterest aims to sell ads in all English-speaking markets by the end of the year including Canada, Ireland, and Australia.

TWITTER

Twitter Teams Up With SoundCloud

Music fans everywhere will be pleased to know that they can hear their favorite band’s tracks and see their news without ever leaving Twitter.

The social platform is bringing audio clips to your timeline under the Moments tab. Their latest feature enables sound clips to play automatically in users’ feeds as they scroll over them, just as Vines would do.

PERISCOPE

Periscope’s Next Major Feature

Periscope is beta testing a new feature that closely resembles tools from two of its main competitors: live, hand-drawn doodling.

This new tool is called Sketching and allows users to draw doodles on top of live-stream video. Broadcasters can write quick messages that will disappear after a couple seconds in order to clear the frame.

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Snapchat has long offered users a drawing tool for doodling on top of photos and videos, and Facebook recently announced their own hand-drawing tool as part of their new Live feature.

This beta feature will launch in a few weeks for everyone.

CONCLUSION

Social platforms are looking to make the user experience all encompassing by focusing on powerful search features, live broadcasts, and customer service. Video is key and being able to search through trending topics in real time will change the game. As they all adapt to each other’s latest and greatest features, it will be interesting to see how the competition stacks up — who will come out on top? It’s anyone’s guess.

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