E-Power Online Marketing Roundup: The Week of March 25, 2016
Get caught up before the holiday weekend with updates from Online Advertising, Social Media Marketing, Google, and more.
Bing Adds Social Extensions to Suite of Ad Extensions: This new ad extension directs Bing searchers to your social pages. Search Engine Marketing and Social Advertising have typically been separate, but having this integrated feel alongside ad copy gives searchers even more opportunities to engage with your brand and start to drive even more traffic to your social pages.
“Businesses today spend a lot of time and resources to engage customers on social media and use paid search to drive traffic. Bing Ads team believes it’s time to build a bridge between two. We believe driving potential customers to your presence on social networks to join a conversation will allow you to engage customers more directly.”
Google is Releasing Its Own Keyboard for the iPhone: When Apple released iOS 8, it allowed third-party apps to create and replace the keyboard on iPhones. With that, Google has jumped at the chance to do this. Search Engine Land states that Google’s objective seems to be increasing the number of searches coming from iOS devices. We won’t know yet if this has an impact on Mobile Search Engine Marketing, but it’s something to keep in mind moving forward if many iPhone users start to adopt this new keyboard.
“Google has done numerous things to try and put itself back into the center of the user experience on mobile. AMP, app indexing, conversational search, predictive search and other innovations are intended to improve the mobile user experience and draw users into more frequent engagement with Google. Google’s mobile strategy is multi-faceted, and this third-party keyboard should be seen in that larger context.”
New Impersonation Warning Feature Coming to Facebook: Facebook is testing a feature that will send users automatic alerts when the platform detects that your name, profile photo or other account information is being used to impersonate you. According to Mashable, the feature is live in 75 percent of the world although the company is looking to expand its capabilities to address more complex security and privacy issues.
Although directed at protecting individual consumers (particularly young women who face higher than average rates of online harassment), it can also be used to protect small businesses from being negatively impersonated by competitors or individuals with malicious intent.
This new feature is no surprise, as Facebook has always preached the importance of keeping the platform safe from harassment-relate issues and encourages users to report suspicious or bad behavior.
“When Facebook detects that another user may be impersonating you, it will send an alert notifying you about the profile. You'll then be prompted to identify if the profile in question is impersonating you by using your personal information, or if it belongs to someone else who is not impersonating you.”
Microsoft Unveils New Skype Preview for Universal Windows Platform: After collecting feedback for months, Skype and Microsoft teamed up to create a new Skype app from scratch for Windows 10 that is responsive, simplistic in design and multi-functional. Initial testing suggested that users enjoy have apps focused on specific tasks, the team later discovered that this doesn’t apply to the Skype environment, especially on larger desktop screens.
Besides a user-friendly interface, what’s in it for video-chatters? According to TechCrunch, “Microsoft also told us that it is looking at using machine learning to automatically capture the most interesting moments from a video chat — maybe as an image or GIF.”
This is great news if you’re bummed about missed the picture-perfect meme moment. As video becomes the norm for social content and other aspects of the internet experience, video chatting will further develop to keep up to speed with the demand for visual communication.
“Do you want to send quick messages from your PC to your family while you’re working? Need help cooking at home and want to show your sister exactly what you are seeing with a couple clicks? Now you can connect with them straight from your PC’s taskbar.”
Google Announces Cloud Machine Learning for Developers: Developers are excited over Google's announcement of their new platform Google Cloud Machine Learning. Available as a preview for select users, it gives developers the opportunity to use either a pre-trained model or capabilities build their own. The technology, promoted by Google as way to "teach your apps new tricks," improves business applications as your machine learns complex patterns to better analyze data and complete tasks. While it sounds a bit like science fiction, machine learning has produced things like self-driving cars, speech recognition, Facebook Ad ranking and advanced spam filtering. Most importantly, it’s a huge component of how search engines rank webpages and can significantly influence the future of SEO.
“Google Cloud Machine Learning provides modern machine learning services, with pre-trained models and a platform to generate your own tailored models. Our neural net-based ML platform has better training performance and increased accuracy compared to other large scale deep learning systems. Our services are fast, scalable and easy to use. Major Google "applications use Cloud Machine Learning, including Photos (image search), the Google app (voice search), Translate, and Inbox (Smart Reply).”
Instagram Users Can Now See Notifications on Desktop: The new feature allows users to see likes, comments, and new followers on a computer. This is exciting not only for casual users, but brands as well. Instagram doesn’t have most features on its desktop version; however we now have more than we did when the app first launched. Facebook purchased Instagram back in 2012, and since that change, the app is beginning to have a Facebook-feel more and more. You might remember in last week’s update that Instagram is transitioning to a non-chronological timeline. Adding additional desktop features in just another change being implemented, and while we still can’t upload or share photos, it is something that may happen in the future.
“As of Tuesday, the Facebook-owned app began showing its users notifications in a drop-down menu located on the top-right corner of its desktop version. It’s the same familiar icon that you see at the bottom of the mobile app (a heart within a comment bubble), and it gives you the same sorts of updates. New favorites, followers, and comments are all displayed in the desktop-friendly format, so now, you can stay up to date on your Insta-activity no matter what device you’re on.”
How do you feel about this week’s updates? Ready for some more Instagram features on desktop? Are you impatiently waiting for the ability to upload photos on desktops? How about Bing Ads’ new Social Extensions? Let us know what you think!