Snapchat Releases Latest Update of Trending Topics on the Platform [Infographic]

Snapchat has released the latest version of its “Snap Chatter” audience insights report, which provides a listing of all the key topics and trends generating discussion among users within the app.

And given Snapchat’s younger audience, the trends identified in Snap Chatter could be of key value, with many rising trends often identified first by younger groups.

So what’s generating discussion amongst Snap users? Check out the new Snap Chatter infographic below.snap_chatter_info_T0LwDJF.png

Airbnb for Work now accounts for 15 percent of bookings

Screen Shot 2018-08-06 at 9.17.26 AM.pngBusiness travelers have become an increasingly important part of the Airbnb business, according to a new blog post. The company says that Airbnb for Work, which launched in 2014, has seen bookings triple from 2015 to 2016, and triple again from 2016 to 2017. In fact, Airbnb  says that almost 700,000 companies have signed up for and booked with Airbnb for Work.

Interestingly, the breakdown of companies working with Airbnb for traveler lodging are pretty diverse — employees from large enterprise companies (5,000+ employees) and employees from startups and SMBs (one to 250 employees) take a 40-40 split, with the final 20 percent of Airbnb for Work bookings going to mid-sized companies.

In July of 2017, Airbnb started making its listings available via SAP Concur, a tool used by a large number of business travelers. Airbnb says that this integration has been a huge help to growing Airbnb for Work, with Concur seeing a 42 percent increase in employees expensing Airbnb stays from 2016 to 2017. Moreover, 63 percent of Concur’s Fortune 500 clients have booked a business trip on Airbnb.

One interesting trend that Airbnb has noticed is that nearly 60 percent of Airbnb for Work trips had more than one guest.

“We can offer big open areas for collaborations, while still giving employees their own private space,” said David Holyoke, global head of business travel at Airbnb. “We think this offers a more meaningful business trip and it saves the company a lot of money.”

Given the tremendous growth of the business segment, as well as the opportunity it represents, Airbnb is working on new features for business travelers. In fact, in the next week, Airbnb will be launching a new feature that lets employees search for Airbnb listings on a company-specific landing page.

So, for example, a Google employee might search for their lodging on Google.Airbnb.com, and the site would be refined to cater to Google’s preferences, including locations close to the office, budget, and other factors.

While the growth has picked up, Holyoke still sees Airbnb for Work as an opportunity to grow. He said that Airbnb for Work listings only represent 15 percent of all Airbnb trips.

But, the introduction of boutique hotels and other amenity-driven listings such as those on Airbnb Plus are paving the way for business travelers to lean toward Airbnb instead of a business hotel.

Plus, as mobility and relocation become even more important to how a business operates, Airbnb believes it can be a useful tool to help employees get started in a new town before they purchase a home.

FACEBOOK PROMISES TO START TELLING YOU WHEN YOU’RE FACEBOOKING TOO MUCH

Facebook on an iPhone.

Facebook, during all its years of expansion, has been focused on one thing above all else: getting people to spend more time on its social network.

Now, as tech giants face increasing criticism over the addictive nature of their products, the company is releasing features that do the opposite. Facebook and Instagram, its photo-sharing app, will add controls to help people measure how much time they’re spending on the sites, so they can dial it back if they want to. Users can also mute notifications on the apps for a certain period of time, or sign up to get an alert when they’ve been scrolling for too long.

“It’s not just about the time people spend on Facebook and Instagram but how they spend that time,” Facebook said in a blog post Wednesday. “It’s our responsibility to talk openly about how time online impacts people—and we take that responsibility seriously.”

Most companies haven’t focused on that issue until recently, following concerns from mental-health experts and industry critics about internet and device addiction, and the way technology is designed to keep users coming back for more. In June, for example, Apple introduced “Screen Time,” an activity report that will show how much time users are spending on individual apps and how often they pick up their iPhones. Google announced similar controls in May.

Facebook has been working on improving the way people feel about its website, which has been a destination for political bickering, misinformation, clickbait and viral videos. The social network earlier this year pledged to change the mix of its news feed to emphasize conversations that are meaningful between friends and family, as opposed to content designed specifically to go viral. The changes have affected how much time people spend on the site, which could in turn affect Facebook’s ad revenues. The company has said that it expects sales growth to slow in the coming years—and revenue fell short of estimates in the second quarter, sending Facebook stock down 19 percent in a day last week.

“We want the time people spend on Facebook and Instagram to be intentional, positive and inspiring,” the company said.

As part of this push, Facebook said it convened a summit with online safety experts, researchers and teens in March to talk about technology and how it’s influencing well-being. It plans to tweak its products to further address concerns like a lack of kindness online.

Meanwhile, the company is grappling with its impact on society in other ways. It disclosed on Tuesday that it identified an ongoing effort to use its platforms to influence the U.S. midterm election, via a network of false-identity accounts and pages. The company says it doesn’t yet know who is behind the coordinated campaign, which follows a similar effort, linked to Russia, ahead of the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign.

Apple reaches $1,000,000,000,000 value

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Apple just became the first American public company to cross $1 trillion in value.

The iPhone maker achieved that big number on Thursday when the stock passed $207.04 a share. Its new all-time high is $207.05. Apple is now up more than 20% this year.

Shares surged after Apple reported earnings that topped forecasts and a healthy outlook on Wednesday.

Even though some think Apple (AAPL) needs a new product to keep sales and profits booming, Apple has rallied past the trillion level thanks to solid sales of the iPhone 8 and X — particularly in China and Japan — and surging services revenue from the App Store.

Related: Apple is showering its investors with cash

Wall Street thinks Apple could go even higher. Thirteen analysts have a price target of above $225 for Apple. The most bullish, Brian White of Monness, Crespi, Hardt & Co., has a price target of $275 a share. That would value Apple at $1.3 trillion.

Apple is benefiting from investor euphoria surrounding the tech sector broadly as well — and it could soon have company in the trillion dollar club.

Amazon (AMZN), Google owner Alphabet (GOOGL) and Microsoft (MSFT) have all rallied to near record highs this year, too. Amazon is worth nearly $900 billion while Google and Microsoft are each now worth more than $800 billion.

Apple is not the first publicly traded company in the world to surpass the trillion dollar mark though.

Linear TV ad spend plunges while digital broadcast surges

reportt-20180730071844179.jpgThe U.S. endured a .35 percent year-over-year contraction across broadcast, digital broadcast and radio platforms in Q2, according to a new report.

This figure comes despite the emergence of political advertising spend in primary Democrat and Republican elections, which has seen a 264 percent growth rate. When excluding political ad spend from the findings, broadcast, digital broadcast and radio saw an overall 4.90 percent contraction compared to this time last year.

The findings, from Matrix Solutions’ 2018 Midyear Ad Spend Report, are the latest comprehensive update on the state of the advertising spend ecosystem. It derived from the activity of more than 10,000 active users within media ad sales teams from January 2018 to June 2018.

“According to our data, overall ad spend throughout the year, to date, has remained relatively flat when including the buoyancy that always comes from political campaigns, and without there’s a clear contraction,” said Mark Gorman, CEO at Matrix Solutions.

Read full article here. 

Amazon is planning to give Prime Video a big makeover

Screen Shot 2018-07-31 at 9.07.39 AM.pngCould user profiles and better personalization features be coming to Amazon’s Prime Video app at long last? The company’s new Amazon Studios head Jennifer Salke just teased that a major upgrade to Amazon’s streaming video app is in the works – and she already has it running on a phone in her office, she said.

The exec was speaking at the Television Critics Association’s summer press tour in L.A., according to reports from AdWeek [paywall], TheWrap, and Deadline, when she mentioned the app’s big makeover.

And while Salke’s statements were light on key details – like when such an effort would reach end users, for example, or what changes, exactly, would be in store, there’s plenty of room to speculate on what Prime Video’s app today lacks.

Read full article.

Facebook shares dropped more than 20 percent after it warned growth would slow

Zuckerberg_phone.0Facebook’s second-quarter results revealed that it is no longer growing in the U.S. and Canada, its most valuable geographic region; shares dropped nearly 20 percent in after-hours trading and will likely fall this morning when the market opens. The social media giant added just 22 million new daily active users worldwide, its lowest increase since at least early 2011. Facebook has been hampered by scandal after scandal for the past 18 months, but until now, it hasn’t seen an impact on user growth or revenue. [Kurt Wagner / Recode]

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