As social media experts, we thought we’d share our round-up of 2021, full of what’s new and in development across Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and other platforms and even some things you may have noticed have disappeared!
NOT SO INSTA-GRAM
In June, Instagram started testing a feature that allowed you to create feed posts from your desktop. This means that rather than uploading photos you take while you’re out and about, you can post professional, edited images straight to your desktop. We know this will be a really useful feature, allowing us to use high-quality content for our clients’ accounts.
Instagram only used to allow accounts with a certain number of followers add ‘swipe up’ links to their stories. In October Instagram changed this and allowed all accounts to share links in their stories via a sticker. Being able to add links to stories makes it easier to share resources and information to friends and family that matter to you (like cake!)
We love this new feature from Instagram, allowing us to invite people to collaborate on a post or reel and showing up on both profiles. It also means that you share likes, views and comments and are able to engage with each other’s community.
Take a look at an example here.
LIVE AUDIO ROOMS
Facebook are introducing live audio rooms, allowing you to listen in and join conversations with public figures, experts and other topics you’re interested in. Hosts can invite others to be a speaker too and the feature looks like it’s set to be similar to the existing live videos. We think this could be a useful tool to share our social media knowledge, and an interesting alternative to an online workshop.
NEW PAGES EXPERIENCE
A new pages experience is being rolled out across Facebook, making it easier to manage your business pages and connect with your community. As a Meta Business Partner, Social Progress has access to the new format and it’s slowly rolling out across the platform. We love how you can easily interact with a post as Social Progress, engaging with our online community.
Read our blog post to find out more.
In June, Facebook rolled out a new public groups experience, allowing more people to join open, public groups without admin approval. It comes alongside a ‘participant approval’ feature, meaning that instead of having to approve new group members, you approve people who want to comment or post for the first time. The idea behind it is to encourage conversations and help grow communities, something which will be beneficial and we encourage everyone to take advantage of.
TWITTER FOR PROFESSIONALS
Over the last year Twitter have started rolling out features for professional profiles. Here at Social Progress we have a professional profile but the only current difference is being able to select a category for the business which is then displayed on your profile. Twitter are developing more content for professionals including modules for about, a shop and newsletter, which are currently only available for a small, select group. We’re looking forward to the potential this will mean for our clients.
Twitter removed the location feature back in 2019 as many users were faking their location which wasn’t its intended purpose. You can now add a location to your Tweets again but you have to enable the feature to use it. Turn on the setting in your privacy and safety settings and you should notice that the location pin icon is now clickable.
FULL SCREEN MODE
Twitter has launched a test of a full screen explore tab, similar to that used on TikTok (just ask SoPro Abbie!) The idea behind it is to get people using, and exploring, Twitter more, and the new feature should use its algorithms to show you content that is interesting to you. It’s currently in a test mode in certain countries but look out for the new feature appearing in your app.
What makes a good Tweet? How do you create a lasting impression online? Well Twitter have crowned the #BestOf2021, including most Tweeted about brand and best brand presence. Take a look at the full list.
PINTEREST IDEA PINS
Pinterest’s new idea pins are a story-like feature, allowing its creators to make content in a more creative way. The pins can be saved by Pinners and don’t disappear after 24 hours like stories on other platforms. Their aim is for anyone with a business account to generate more engagement in the platform.
WHATSAPP VIEW ONCE
WhatsApp have started allowing you to send a photo to be viewed once in its messaging service, meaning that once a photo has been opened it ‘self-destructs’ and can’t be forwarded, saved, starred, or shared. It adds to WhatsApp’s existing encryption protection, allowing you to send sensitive data which useful for sharing a password or payment details, without it permanently being stored.
LinkedIn Events allow you to find and join communities, expand your networking and even learn new skills. You can join events such as workshops, meetups and more, all helping to develop your business. Look out for SoPro events in the future!
TOP TO BOTTOM TIPS:
LINKEDIN AND TWITTER STORIES
In September 2020 we saw LinkedIn introduce a Snapchat style, disappearing stories function. In September 2021 the feature was removed as the platform realised that people wanted to have videos linked to their professional profile, just ones that told your professional story rather than informal ones that disappear after 24 hours.
Twitter also realised this didn’t work on their platform; Their Fleets feature was removed after 9 months. The idea behind it was to make people feel more comfortable to use the platform and join in conversations, when in reality Fleets were used by those already actively using it.