You can now set up a 360 photo as your Facebook cover

https-%2F%2Fblueprint-api-production.s3.amazonaws.com%2Fuploads%2Fcard%2Fimage%2F572323%2Fa3dc1f9a-e76b-4e04-9e8e-45d4160947fb.pngWant to add a bit more pizzaz to your Facebook cover photos? You can now take a 360-degree photo and set it up as your cover photo, and you can do it all directly from your Facebook mobile app.

The new feature, available on both iOS and Android, lets you capture a 360-degree photo with your Facebook Camera.

The process is simple: Spin around as you take the photo and make sure you stay within the guiding lines on the screen. Choose the starting point and you’re done.

Read full article here.

Do Different Age Groups Prefer Different Content Online? [Infographic]

There have been many reports on the different media consumption habits of each generation, and how you need to take that into account when planning on how you’re going to reach your audience, but there’s fewer on how, exactly, each generation is different.

One of the most difficult elements of this is that the Milennial generation, the one that every brand’s so keen to reach, is huge. Millennials (those born between 1981 and 2004) are now the largest generation in America, covering a wide spectrum of varying people – too wide, by most accounts, to actually be used as a demographic divider.

In practical terms, it makes more sense to separate this group into Gen Y (1981-1999) and Gen Z (After 2000), which is more likely to be indicative of habitual behavior – which is what Hand Made Writings have done with this new infographic, examining the key content habits and behaviors of the different generations online, based on various research reports and studies.

And while there are still some wide generalizations implied by the data – and the only true way to know your audience habits and preferences is to study your own audience analytics – the insights presented do provide some important considerations worthy of factoring into your plans and testing.

generational content info

Google brings six-second video previews to mobile search

dg8lmkuo0wdqsqylawnkvuks-d6-1yxjrnfwu5isbockxonjo4nvd5s0e4v4zhcullznuws400Google announced a major update to its mobile search results pages today. Whenever your query brings up a video, Google will now show you a silent six-second clip to help you decide if it’s actually a video you want to see.

This will work for the vast majority of videos on the web today — including, but not limited to, YouTube. Indeed, as Emily Moxley, Google’s director of product management for this project, told me, any video on the web is eligible for inclusion, though Google may not have a preview for some of the newest videos available yet because it takes the servers a bit of time to build the previews.

Even though video is getting more and more popular, it’s no secret that it’s not always the most convenient way to get information. A thumbnail isn’t going to give you a lot of information about what the actual video is going to look like, after all (and video producers have gotten pretty smart about which thumbnails will generate the most clicks…).

Ideally, Google’s new feature will remove at least some of this ambiguity so you know that you won’t be wasting time on some boring gongoozling video when you’re looking for the real thing. Google’s canonical example involves looking for salsa dancing videos. Some videos may simply show you professionals at work, while others will actually teach you the steps.

Unsurprisingly, Google decided to use some of its machine learning smarts to enable this feature. That’s because the first six seconds of any given video aren’t usually the most representative ones. So Google’s algorithm actually analyzes the whole video and then decides which six-second clip to pick. While the team didn’t want to delve into the details of how this algorithm decides what to show, Google product manager Prashant Baheti told me that the algorithm looks at what’s in the different scenes in a video, where those scenes start and end, and which scenes best represent the video.

What the algorithm doesn’t do, though, is look at your query. Unlike the previously launched Featured Snippet, which directly links you to the relevant answer to one of your questions in a video, the snippets are always the same. Moxley noted that this is something the company is looking at, though.

It’s worth noting that these previews do not feature any ads and by default, they will only play when you are using a WiFi connection. If you want, you can enable video previews on mobile networks, too, or even completely opt out of them in the settings for both the Google app and Google Chrome for Android.

For now, this feature is only available on mobile, both through the Google app and in Chrome. It’s not available on the desktop yet. A Google spokesperson argued that this is because the company now focuses on its mobile users, though I can’t think of any major limitation of the desktop platform that would prevent the company from rolling this out across all platforms.

Do Different Age Groups Prefer Different Content Online? [Infographic]

There have been many reports on the different media consumption habits of each generation, and how you need to take that into account when planning on how you’re going to reach your audience, but there’s fewer on how, exactly, each generation is different.

One of the most difficult elements of this is that the Milennial generation, the one that every brand’s so keen to reach, is huge. Millennials (those born between 1981 and 2004) are now the largest generation in America, covering a wide spectrum of varying people – too wide, by most accounts, to actually be used as a demographic divider.

In practical terms, it makes more sense to separate this group into Gen Y (1981-1999) and Gen Z (After 2000), which is more likely to be indicative of habitual behavior – which is what Hand Made Writings have done with this new infographic, examining the key content habits and behaviors of the different generations online, based on various research reports and studies.

And while there are still some wide generalizations implied by the data – and the only true way to know your audience habits and preferences is to study your own audience analytics – the insights presented do provide some important considerations worthy of factoring into your plans and testing.

generational content info

The Best Times to Post on Social Media (According to 20 Studies) [Infographic]

There’s always an inherent risk to ‘best times to post’ reports – with the most critical being that generic best times don’t relate to your specific audience and their habits. The only true way to know what times are best for you to post is to study your own analytics, test different post times, then study again, till you find what works.

But that said, there is still value in using generic best times as a guide, particularly as a means to narrow your test pool. This is particularly relevant when starting out – if you start with the generic best times, you may be closer to finding your optimum posting time in the beginning, which can help deliver better results faster, while you’re testing.

The team at CoSchedule also recognize that finding the mythical ‘best’ time for all can be challenging – so rather than coming up with a single survey report, they’ve actually collated the results of 20 ‘best times’ guides in order to formulate a more comprehensive, inclusive report on best posting times.

best times info.png

8 Digital Stats From Last Week That Brand Marketers Need to Know

ice-cream-stats-CONTENT-2017-840x460We are now well into August and staring the busy fall sales season right in the eye, so digital marketers need to catch up on current trends. With that in mind, here are 8 stats from last week that grabbed our attention.

1. AI drives sales
Artificial intelligence represents a chance for startups to make an impact and cash in like never before. It’s especially interesting to see sister duo Caroline Stern Klatt and Dana Stern Gibber, who co-founded Headliner Labs, a two-year-old chatbots company that has landed clients like Women’s Wear Daily, BoxyCharm, La Sun, Jemma Wynne and Donni Charm. Donni Charm just reported that they saw a 63 percent increase in sales from their Headliner-powered chatbot, which helps consumers discover new products, deals and style guides.

“Across the board, Headliner’s clients are seeing a 40 percent engagement rate, with customers spending an average of six minutes per bot session,” Klatt claimed. “Most importantly, the bots are driving sales—we’ve seen an average of 13 percent increase in digital sales (across clients).”

See the rest of the stats here. 

Over 93% of Celebrity Influencers are Violating FTC Guidelines [Infographic]

As influencers and celebrities post, filter, and hashtag their way to fame and fortune, brands are working with them to reach and communicate with consumers. Influencer marketing on Instagram alone is now a massive $1 billion industry.

In April 2017, the FTC sent notices to over 90 celebrities, brands, and influencers reminding them of the regulations. Celebrities and influencers on Instagram have been known to neglect proper disclosures on paid posts, and we wanted to know the extent of the problem. Over the course of one month, we assessed the top 50 celebrities on Instagram to find that just 7% may be in compliance with the FTC’s guidelines and regulations.

Like the rest of the advertising industry, celebrity social media endorsements and influencer marketing are monitored by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the government agency charged with consumer protection against unfair or deceptive business practices. Previously, the FTC had filed several notable complaints against large companies like Lord & Taylor for failure to require disclosures on sponsored content on social media.

See the full breakdown of the state of FTC compliance among Instagram’s top 50 celebrities below.

Celebrity-Social-Media-Endorsements-FTC-Violations-Instagram2 (1)