2017.09.29 Last Week in Digital Media

Here’s the news from last week:

  • twitter is testing 280 character limits for some users. If you’re not part of the official test, you can use some browser scripts to get access provided you are tweeting via the twitter.com website. Some brands have already started experimenting.
    (The above was all said in under 280 characters, it would have stopped at the red get in 140).
  • instagram has 500MM daily active users, which means some of the negative behaviors on the internet can detract from the service. In response this, Instagram is adding comment moderation tools to help curb abuse on the platform. Specifically, you can now limit comments to your followers or people you follow.
  • vimeo acquired livestream, a popular live event streaming platform. This is not about vimeo competing with live TV offerings like that of Hulu and YouTube Red but more in the higher-end live stream area typically used with Facebook Live or Periscope.
  • during AdWeek, Facebook revealed that over 2B messages are exchanged on Facebook Messenger with businesses each month. This is interesting in the context of the 2017 Salesforce Connected Shopper Report (registration required) that reports 43% of millennials look to messaging apps to research products prior to purchase. Facebook’s own research puts the number at 54%.
  • also in Facebook Messenger news, you can now have click to Messenger as a campaign objective. There’s a handy PDF case study (Sephora) and summary of how it works and advice on how to use this tactic.
  • Amazon launched a lot of new Alexa-based products during the week, all of them priced under $150 each. The most interesting devices are the Echo Spot ($130) which is an Echo Dot sized device with a screen and camera; and Echo Buttons (price TBC) which is a set of game show style buttons as part of an Echo Gadgets offering to make Alexa more interactive.
  • proof that attribution is growing up, Nielsen agreed to acquired VisualIQ. VisualIQ was one of the few non-media owner aligned attribution partners (Google owns Adometry; Oath: owns Convertro).
  • Google pulled the YouTube app from the Amazon Echo Show during the week for a Terms of Service violation. In the same week, rumors circulated that Google is launching their own Echo Show competitor. And next Wednesday (Oct 4th) Google is expected to announce their new Pixel2 smartphone and other devices. Plenty of room for speculation around all of this news.

Last weekend, after writing this weekly update, I wrote an article about how Smartwatches and AI enable a future “mobile light” consumer. It cover themes like AI, wearables and assistant interfaces and their potential to fundamentally transform the way we think about how consumers experience media and advertising. You can read it here.

Joshua