Filter bubble, confirmation bias, reciprocal liking: regardless of the terms used, social media have been painted as tools that polarize people, including but not limited to, of course, politics.
In this week’s long reads selection, we’ve decided to feature two articles, about the same topic, from the same publisher — Vox — yet offering two opposite perspectives:
On the one hand, in The year social media changed everything, Aja Romano highlights the impact of Facebook & Google on the 2016 US Election, showing how social media & search engines contributed to polarizing people.
Of course, these articles are about politics on the surface, but they also address a much more important question: does the Internet influence and polarize people, or do people influence and polarize the Internet?
The answer is probably both, and it’s perfectly fine.
What’s in it for social media managers: as community managers, we basically have two options to build and engage with our communities. We can either divide and conquer, in an “us versus them” kind of approach, hence fostering polarization. Or we can decide to make people come together and stress on what we have in common, hence alleviating polarization. Beyond a marketing strategic choice, it’s almost a civic decision.
On Loomly Toolkit, we often talk about online brands & shops, but we know many of you also use Loomly to tell the story of your local business on social media.
One thing local businesses can definitely benefit from are reviews, such as Yelp or Google Business reviews: and the only thing that’s better than Google Business reviews, are better Google Business reviews.
While many of your clients are certainly happy with your services, and most of them would be eager to share give you “five stars” if you asked, the actual process of leaving reviews is not always as straightforward as it could be.
That was until the good folks at Supple created this awesome link generator, which lets you create a direct link to your business’ Google Business review page, pre-filled with the previous “five stars”, that you can share with your customers.
Better Google Business reviews are not only good for your brand and reputation, they also impact positively your SEO, as well as the first impression you give to potential customers when they see you on a Google Map.
What’s in it for Social Media Managers: with a simple link, you can leverage your social media effort and encourage your audience to give you better Google Business reviews, or even ask customers you’ve helped through customer service (DM) to rate their experience.
Much of this growth comes from international markets, including Germany, Brazil, France & Japan.
According to Pinterest Head of Global Partnerships Jon Kaplan:
This growth also means more opportunities for brands to reach their audience on Pinterest. As we continue to grow faster than ever, we’re adding new business programs too. Recent initiatives include bringing ads to new markets, launching Promoted App Pins and introducing Pinterest Propel, our new program for small businesses and agencies.
At Loomly, we are always excited to see Pinterest grow and we are looking forward to taking our integration with the platform to the next level, bringing you new features and unlocking new opportunities.
It’s no secret that we, at Loomly, are big fans of Giphy, and yet, they keep amazing us with new products and ideas, just like they did with Giphy Says.
This free iOS app allows you to create your own GIFs with the camera and microphone of your iPhone, not only recording what you do as animated photos, but also turning what you say into captions!
You can use Giphy Says either with the front camera of your phone to create “Selfie”-style GIFs, or the back camera of your phone to shoot a scene, and of course, you can do so either in a portrait or a landscape format.
An Android version of Giphy Says is still to be announced.
What’s in it for Social Media Managers: an opportunity to make product shots or any announcement in an entirely new way, which will probably have an interesting impact in terms of engagement, as a brand-new format people are not yet used — blind — to.
The uninterrupted stream of distractions you have to face every day — from phone calls to push notifications and coworkers passing by — can make it challenging to focus on work over sustained chunks of time.
These sustained chunks of time, when you are so absorbed by your task at hand that work seems effortless and time flies, are what scientists call the flow state.
A team of engineers-turned-entrepreneurs may have found a solution to improve your concentration and train you to reach — and remain in — the flow state more efficiently: Mindset, smart EEG headphones that coach you to reach deeper levels of focus.
Mindset is the first all-natural way to improve your concentration, which:
Cancels out external noise
Alerts you when you lose focus
Recommends you to take a break when you need it most
Identifies your most productive hours
What’s in it for Social Media Managers: whether you work in a noisy environment or battles with notifications all day, the Mindset headphones can help improve your concentration and give you an edge when it comes to productivity.
Non-verified Facebook Pages can submit applications to access the branded content tool, and Facebook will go one step further by rolling out this very same tool to non-verified Pages that are likely to use it. In both cases, when branded content becomes available, this will materialize with a handshake icon in the post composer.
Facebook users will now be able to distinguish branded content posts from “regular” posts, thanks to the new “paid” mention in posts metadata.
This Facebook branded content update introduces some more flexible policies and guidelines, allowing logos, watermarks and graphical overlays to persist throughout a video. In addition, posts that violate these policies and guidelines will be hidden from News Feed and publishers will be notified that their posts need to be corrected, instead of simply getting their posts removed.
What’s in it for Social Media Managers: this Facebook branded content update is a great opportunity to develop partnerships with other Facebook Pages & Profiles, in order to expand the reach of a brand’s influence.
If you are a social media influencer, you pretty much have two options to monetize your influence: you can either develop partnerships with brands — directly or through an influencer agency — or you can join an affiliate program, for instance Amazon Associates.
There is now a third option: the brand-new (beta) Amazon Influencer Program, which is basically a more select version of Amazon Associates, exclusively reserved for social media influencers with “large followings and a high frequency of posts with shoppable content,” who can apply here to join the program.
Although no details have been disclosed by Amazon regarding potentially higher commission for members of the Amazon Influencer Program (versus members of Amazon Associates), the former offers two main advantages over the latter:
A vanity URL — amazon.com/shop/username — that influencers can proudly insert in their YouTube video descriptions or Instagram profiles.
A dedicated shop page where influencers’ followers can browse a curated list of products, “featuring thumbnail images of the suggested products, their pricing, their Prime status, and a brief description, ” according to TechCrunch.
The Amazon Influencer Program is currently being tested in beta, with the goal of assessing sales & commissions volumes, for influencers, vendors & Amazon themselves.
What’s in it for social media managers: this new program is actually an interesting way to respectively disintermediate and streamline (even more) the influencer marketing industry and processes, allowing brands who already sell products on Amazon to reach out to influencers and setup partnerships in a matter of clicks.