SLPR Public Relations Associate Chris Zaccaro, our social/digital media Pro from Dover, pours through blogs and articles each week so he can stay up-to-date on the latest trends, tips, and innovations in digital and social media for our clients. Here’s a collection of recent third-party articles he’s found useful or at least worth a read…
📄 Social Media Today:
YouTube Adds Vertical Video
Support on its Web App,
Underlining Vertical Trend
As Story features from Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat continue to dominate the social media landscape, the vertical video push has forced video-sharing giant YouTube to adapt to the times by enabling users to view these videos as they are, without those annoying black or blurry lines on the side.
If you’re one of the few that are unfamiliar with Stories – a Story is a collection of videos or photos that will “expire” after a 24 hour period. You may have noticed the circular profile pictures at the top of your Facebook and Instagram News Feeds. Click on one and see for yourself what these Stories are. Just be aware that the other person will see you viewed it. CNN Tech’s 2017 article How to use Facebook Stories provides a solid overview. Also, I only refer to you as “one of the few” because Facebook has stated that Stories will overtake the News Feed as the primary way users view content by the end of this year.
For those that are familiar with Stories, you may well know that shooting your photos and videos vertically (not sideways, aka landscape) is definitely the way to go. That’s because Stories are primarily viewed full screen on smartphones. Many social media users will download the Story they created on one app and use them again on another app – or just send the file directly to friends via text or other means (there’s way too many options to list and I haven’t had my third afternoon coffee yet).
For this reason, and possibly because social media users are becoming conditioned to automatically start shooting their photos and videos vertically, it made sense for YouTube to make this move.
And yes, while I, and probably many of you, prefer to watch videos in the traditional landscape, 16:9 format (how old school of us) – this trend appears to be sticking around.
This article from Hubspot kicks off with “If you’re reading this blog post, chances are you already know you should incorporate more video content in your marketing.”
Don’t we know it? And if you don’t, here are some stats from WordStream blogger Mary Lister:
- 51% of marketing pros worldwide name video as the type of content with the best return on investment
- 61% of consumers make a purchase after watching branded social videos
- Views on branded video content have increased 258% on Facebook and 99% on YouTube as of June 2017
- By 2019, internet video traffic will count for 80% of all consumer internet traffic
The beauty of today’s technology is that the current slate of smartphones and tablets allow you to shoot and edit pretty decent video content without having to burn through your budget. As you could probably deduce from the title, this helpful post from Hubspot blogger Sophia Bernazzani provides a list and quick overview, including the “catches” that come with using free versions and trials, of the 15 best video editing apps for 2018.
📄 Social Media Today:
Two Academic Projects
to Help Improve Platform Discourse
Twitter has turned to the academic community as the major social media companies continue their “fight” against the rise of fake news, increasing division within society, and data breaches – all of which they have been hammered for (and deservedly so) the past few years. As you’ll read in this article from Social Media Today’s Andrew Hutchinson, Twitter has chosen two academic projects to help improve discourse on its platform. The two individual studies will examine the echo chamber effect, which happens when social media users only follow and read views that they agree with, and whether exposure to a variety of perspectives can decrease prejudice and discrimination and increase more worldly views.
It remains to be seen if the studies will highlight the Twitter “snark” epidemic, which unfortunately (but amusingly) targeted both a Black Eyed Pea and pancake (and burger!) restaurant chain just this year. You’ll learn more about that below…
And finally, the last article I wanted to share is not social or digital media specific – but the story certainly did make waves in the Twitterverse.
Back in early June the International House of Pancakes, you may know it as IHOP, kicked off SnarkFest 2018.2 when the folks at corporate decided to change the restaurant’s name to IHOb.
This phenomenon is not to be confused with Snarkfest 2018.1, which occurred back in February after Fergie’s legendary National Anthem performance at the NBA All Star Game. Not sure if John C. Reilly of Step Brothers fame chimed in on this one.
Back to the point.
It was fairly obvious from the get-go, and the chain eventually came clean once the waves finished crashing down, that the whole thing was a publicity stunt intended to create buzz about the restaurant’s new line of burgers.
Boy did it ever.
For what seemed like an entire week, I could not scroll through a Twitter feed without seeing some sort of IHOP/B mention. To be clear, I am not advocating for temporary name changes or publicity stunts, but throughout SnarkFest 2018.2 all I kept saying to myself was, “Until this week, I can’t remember the last time I thought about IHOP.” And this is coming from a big pancake fan. Huge.
Sure IHOP received a lot of snark that fateful week in June. Ragan.com even listed the move as one of its Top 10 Blunders of the Year – so far. But I don’t know if I can agree that it was a bad move or didn’t work. Here we are almost two months later and I’m STILL talking about IHOP!