Instagram Messenger Bots
Could Instagram be helping you offer a better service to your customers?
This week Facebook announced chatbot integration for Instagram. This will be huge for e-Commerce, and will hopefully give you access to the same tools you have for Facebook.
They can help with the sales process, run contests, send reminders and keep shoppers up to date with their orders or when stock they are interested in arrives.
We’ll have to wait and see if they allow us to use all the tools we use on Facebook in these bots but it does mean less friction both for businesses and for customers.
Thanks to Sacha from Think Outside The Bot for helping me with this segment.
Choose your own Facebook feed
If people could choose which friends and pages to follow on Facebook, would they choose your page?
We may soon find out. Facebook is working on a ‘choose your feed’ system that will allow people to select from three feed options.
Home will be the algorithmically prioritised feed we see now.
Recent will be the same exact stuff you see in the home feed, still selected by the algorithm but in reverse chronological order.
Favourites will contain posts from the 30 top friends and pages you select.
If people use this new feature we could well see reach for pages drop even further. So the question has to be, how can you make your page favourite worthy?
New Facebook & Instagram Shopping Tools
If you sell products, it’s going to get a lot easier to get results from your Instagram and Facebook ads.
Up until now, if you wanted to run an ad on Instagram including product tags, you had to create an organic post first, then use that post in your ad. You couldn’t add the tags in ads manager.
Facebook just fixed this, you can now add tags when creating the ad.
But that’s not all. They’ve added new audience types. You can advertise specifically to people who have engaged with your shop, and you can create a lookalike audience that is similar to your existing audience, but only consists of shoppers.
This should help your ad spend to become more efficient and you’ll reach more of the right people.
Finally, if you are in the US there is a new Discount section in commerce manager that will let you set up specific discounts like ‘Spend $50 get $10 off.
Facebook wants to help you know your neighbours
Facebook is testing micro social networks that are geographically based. They will be part of Facebook but you will be able to edit your profile specifically for these spaces.
There is already a tool that facilitates local networks called Neighbourhood and it’s growing fast. Facebook clearly wants to assimilate it.
This is also a smart move for Facebook as a business. People are becoming more ingrained in their local community during the pandemic. Facebook is offering this tool to assist, and it’s on-brand because it’s a social network.
This could be how Facebook plans to expand in the future. We’ve seen them launch a similar tool for colleges that could attract younger users. This new tool could bring dormant, or infrequent users back into the Facebook fold.
Instagram cracks down on Influencers
Influencer marketing can be a powerful way to grow brand awareness and sales.
But there are sneaky unethical practices that both influencers and the brands that hire them get involved in.
Instagram offers branded posts that connect influencers and the brands they work with, depending on your region there is also disclosure required through hashtags or other tools. But so many brands and influencers hide or just ignore these disclaimers.
Instagram will now prompt people when they publish to say if they were paid for the post. This could scare some into compliance. Instagram says the algorithm will help them identify these types of content.
They will also contact the brand if they feel that a post has been shared without the correct disclosures.
Will it work? Maybe…
Snapchat is growing again, and as it does it’s taking the Facebook route of stealing ideas from other places.
This week ‘Sounds’ is officially being rolled out to snappers. This is a swipe at TikTok.
The tool will allow you to add music to your stories. Click the musical note icon at the right-hand side of the camera to access music or create sound clips.
You’ll then be able to create your snaps to the music. You can select the section of the track you want to add to your snap so technically you could create a multi-snap, multi-shot story with consistent background music.
Will this make Snapchat attractive again to those who have abandoned it for TikTok?
Google online shopping trends
The way we shop has totally changed this year.
Google has released a report that looks at the key shopping trends and how they can help us market our businesses better over the holiday season.
This includes, ‘A month-long Cyber Monday’. People are fearful of stock running out so they are buying early. If you plan on running a discount, the right time could be now rather than on the traditional sales day.
People are shopping for the first time online, so make it a simple process. Look at how you can help them along the way.
Even if people aren’t buying online they are researching online. Make sure your product pages are optimised for SEO as well as running paid ads to your target market.
People want to shop local, so make sure you’re using your online presence to reach your local community, not just with sales posts but with photos of the local area that will remind people you are there.
People are trying new companies to buy from. Make that first experience amazing so they’ll come back.