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Social Media Industry News- October 2023


Social Media Platform News and Updates for OCTOBER 2023

The social media industry is in constant flux, marked by innovation, privacy concerns, and the growing influence of AI. Meta, the parent company of Facebook and Instagram, has unveiled AI-powered features, including celebrity-voiced chat assistants and creative tools on Instagram. Questions arise about the impact of character-driven chatbots on user engagement. LinkedIn introduces AI elements to enhance Sales Navigator, while Pinterest uses AI to improve image representation. X (Twitter), on the other hand, discontinues its Circles feature, reflecting the evolving landscape of social media. These updates and more provide a glimpse into the dynamic future of the industry. Happy reading!

Social media updates for Meta

  • Meta, the parent company of Facebook and Instagram, announced several new AI-based features at its 2023 Connect conference. The headline announcement is an AI chat assistant tool that will be integrated into all of Meta's apps. What sets it apart is the ability to choose different celebrity voices for the AI chatbot, enhancing familiarity and engagement. Other AI-related features include AI image editing for Instagram, generative AI stickers, and a new AI studio for creating custom AI engagement systems. Meta also unveiled updates to its smart glasses and a new VR headset.

  • Meta is set to introduce AI chatbots with distinct personalities across its social media apps. Users can engage with chatbots with up to 30 different personas, such as surfer dude or historical figures. Meta believes these character-driven chatbots will attract young users and create a cool novelty factor. While this may initially generate interest and conversations, the long-term impact of such chatbots on engagement remains to be seen. It could be a promotional tool to boost awareness of Meta's AI advancements and retain users within its apps.

  • Meta has published a guide to its automation and generative AI ad tools for marketers, focusing on helping them prepare for the holiday season. The guide covers Meta's AI ad tools, including the Advantage+ suite and creative automation features, which automate various aspects of ad creation, from background generation to targeting. It also offers tips on effective ad account structure, messaging for businesses, and planning holiday campaigns. Meta's automation tools have evolved significantly, making it easier for advertisers to optimize their Facebook and Instagram ad campaigns. Read more

Social media updates for LinkedIn

  • LinkedIn is introducing new AI elements for Sales Navigator to make it easier for users to search for information and connect with leads. It includes a "Filter with AI" feature to refine searches using conversational language and an "Account IQ" option that summarizes essential information on potential contacts. These additions expand LinkedIn's use of generative AI to improve user experiences and insights. The platform also offers free, generative AI courses to help members enhance their AI knowledge.

  • LinkedIn is partnering with CoderPad to launch 33 new software development courses and interactive coding exercises. These courses cover various coding languages and are free until December 18th. The move recognizes the growing demand for coding skills and the impact of AI on the workforce. Enhancing coding skills can help individuals adapt to changing technology and job opportunities.

  • LinkedIn is enhancing accessibility on its platform by integrating Microsoft's "Immersive Reader" system. All articles published directly on LinkedIn will now be processed through this system, offering features like text-to-speech and translations. This initiative aims to make content more accessible to differently-abled audiences and improve the overall user experience.

Social media updates for Instagram

  • Instagram is testing a new feature that allows users to add location tags to their Notes queries. This update aims to make it easier for users to share their thoughts, moods, and even places with their connections. Instagram's Notes feature, launched in December of the previous year, lets users add short 60-character notes viewable by all their connections at the top of their inbox. This feature has proven popular, especially with younger users. Instagram is expanding it with additional functionality like audio clips, song highlights, and location tags to maximize engagement.

  • Instagram is testing a privacy feature that allows users to hide their like activity from others. Users can hide their likes from non-followers, limit visibility to close friends, or hide likes from everyone. This move aligns with the broader trend toward increased privacy in social media, similar to features offered by other platforms like Twitter. The goal is to make users feel more comfortable engaging on the platform while reducing potential stigma or association with certain types of content.

  • Instagram is expanding its virtual gifts feature for Reels creators to more regions. Creators can receive gifts from viewers through a dedicated button on their Reels clips. These gifts are purchased using Meta's in-app currency, Stars, and creators earn money based on the Stars they receive. To be eligible, creators must have over 5,000 followers, a professional account, and meet other requirements. While it may not be a game-changer for most, it offers an additional income stream for creators and encourages them to continue posting to the platform. Read more

Social media updates for Pinterest

Social media updates for X (Twitter)

  • Twitter's Circles Feature Deprecated: Twitter is shutting down its Circles feature as part of its transition into X. Elon Musk, the owner of X, had expressed plans to discontinue Circles, and now the official end date is set for October 31, 2023. Circles was introduced last year as part of Twitter's effort to facilitate more private group interactions, but it needed to gain significant traction. Users who want to keep their Circle contacts must unfollow and refollow those profiles.

  • X's Audio and Video Calls as Premium Features: X is reportedly planning to make its upcoming audio and video calling features available only to X Premium subscribers. While X has shared details about these features, it hasn't been confirmed whether they will be accessible to all users or restricted to paying subscribers. This move aligns with X's strategy to boost X Premium subscriptions, aiming to increase revenue and combat bot activity on the platform.

  • Verified-Only Replies on X: X is developing a new feature allowing users to restrict replies to their posts to verified users only. This "Verified Only" reply restriction encourages interactions among paying X Premium subscribers and could prompt more users to sign up for X Premium. X also plans to introduce a cheaper subscription tier called "X Basic" to attract more users to its Premium package.

Social media updates for TikTok

Social media updates for Snapchat

  • Snapchat is implementing several safety enhancements for young users. It will now display warning labels on accounts trying to connect with teen users with no mutual contacts, helping protect them from strangers. A strike system for accounts promoting inappropriate content will be introduced to deter rule violations. Snap is also providing new resources and explainers for parents and teens to educate them about online safety. These measures aim to improve safety for young users on the platform.

  • Snapchat has filed a patent for an "image-based valuation system" allowing users to estimate the value of items by scanning them with the Snap camera. The system uses computer vision to identify items and provide price estimates based on basic identifiers. While it's unclear where Snap will source its valuations, this feature could be valuable for collectors and those looking to sell items. It may also enhance Snap's understanding of user interests for ad targeting.

  • Snap Inc. is shutting down its Augmented Reality Services for Business (ARES) platform less than six months after its launch. ARES allowed businesses to utilize Snap's AR tools in their own apps, with a focus on retail. The decision to close the division and cut 170 jobs was driven by the platform's cost, technical challenges, and the evolving AR landscape. Snap will continue to support CameraKit partners and expand its Sponsored AR business.

Social media updates for WhatsApp

  • WhatsApp Expanding Business Features: Meta-owned WhatsApp is expanding its business offerings with a new feature called "WhatsApp Flows." This feature will enable businesses worldwide to offer more transactional processes within the app, such as choosing seats, ordering meals, and booking appointments without leaving the chat. WhatsApp is also enhancing its in-stream payment options in India, allowing users to add items to their cart and pay using various methods, including UPI apps, and debit and credit cards, through partnerships with Razorpay and PayU. Meta Verified, a program that verifies business profiles, will soon include WhatsApp, granting verified businesses a blue checkmark, direct support, and discoverable WhatsApp pages.

  • WhatsApp's Interoperability Feature: WhatsApp is working on a "Third Party Chats" section that will enable users of other chat apps to send messages to WhatsApp users. This move aligns with the EU's Digital Markets Act, which requires significant apps to allow third-party interoperability. While Meta has been working on its own cross-platform interoperability, this new measure will require Meta to open up its platform to outside tools, potentially impacting its growth and adoption.

  • Meta is introducing animated avatar stickers on WhatsApp as part of its ongoing efforts to integrate avatars across its platforms and guide users toward the metaverse. These stickers allow users to add animated versions of their digital avatars to WhatsApp chats, expanding their usage within Meta's ecosystem. Meta's push into avatars includes features like avatar profile pictures, simulated profile backgrounds, and avatars in video calls. By familiarizing users with interacting through avatars, Meta aims to make this mode of communication more natural and engaging as it envisions a future where digital personas play a central role in interactions.

Social media updates for YouTube


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