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February 2022 Social Media Platform Updates

Thursday 3rd March 2022

Blog Author Beth Perrin by Beth Perrin
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February 2022 Social Media Platform Updates

Thursday 3rd March 2022

2022 is flying by and March is here already! That means it’s time to look back over all of the useful updates that were released by our favourite social media platforms throughout February. Read on to discover which ones might be applicable to you or your brand.

Convert Stories Highlights to Instagram Reels

As part of its ongoing efforts to increase Reels usage and prevent users from switching over to TikTok, Instagram began testing a new process which enables users to easily convert Stories highlights into Reels clips. The option isn’t available to everyone yet, but some users are now seeing a tappable Reels icon in the lower right corner of their highlights which lets them convert that highlight into a Reel and sync the clip with a music track of their choice. This provides a great opportunity for creators to recycle and repurpose their content, show their highlights to followers who may not have seen them on their profile and share Reels even when inspiration is running low.


Mid-Roll Ads on Snapchat Stories

Snapchat added another new monetisation tool for creators: mid-roll Story ads for Snap Stars (public figures and top creators who bring some of the best and most entertaining content to Snapchat). These users will be able to switch on ads within their Stories and take a cut of any revenue generated by those ads. Snapchat explained: “We believe placing ads within a Snap Star’s public Story will allow an easier path to financial success”, and: “For advertisers, this represents a new opportunity to reach our community with a new, high-value placement.”


Story Likes on Instagram

Previously, the only way to let a friend know that you enjoyed their latest Story was to reply to it, which would appear as a message in that user’s DMs. However, in mid February, Instagram added a new, simple way to engage: Story Likes. A heart icon now appears in the bottom right corner of a Story beside the share icon, which, when tapped, will notify the creator of that Story that it’s been liked. Story Likes aren’t public - only the creator will be able to see them in their Story insights, where a small heart icon will be displayed next to the liker’s name in the list of viewers.

Instagram users have agreed that it sometimes feels a little excessive having to send somebody a DM to let them know that you liked their Story, so this update adds a more straightforward, relaxed way to indicate your interest in their content.


Facebook News Feed Gets Renamed

In order to simplify its branding and clear up confusion for some users, Facebook announced that it’s renaming the News Feed to just the Feed. As reported by Alex Heath, Senior Reporter for The Verge, the “news” label has caused some people to believe that there are only news stories on the app’s homepage instead of general content and posts shared by friends, hence the decision to remove this word from the title. To reassure users that this update won’t affect anything else on the platform, Facebook explained: “This is just a name change to better reflect the diverse content people see on their Feeds. [It] does not impact the app experience more broadly.”


Snap Map Ticketmaster Collaboration

Snapchat introduced a new feature to its Snap Map via a partnership with the world’s largest ticket marketplace, Ticketmaster, bringing forward a new way for Snapchatters to discover live events with their friends. Using the new Snap Map Layer, Snapchatters can browse Ticketmaster’s complete catalogue of upcoming events in their area, from comedy and sports to pop concerts and indie gigs. Users can then tap to invite their friends though stickers that plug right into the Snapchat Camera and buy tickets directly through a seamless checkout process.

Thanks to Ticketmaster’s Ticketmatcher Mini, which adds a further level of personalisation, Snapchatters can also list their favourite artists and genres and get matched with nearby events based on their personal preferences. From there, they can swipe left or right to browse, and the Mini will keep track of what they’ve saved.


Shorts Tab on YouTube Channels

YouTube is continuing to push its Shorts feature, recently releasing a new addition to its desktop site that will display a user’s Shorts clips in a separate section below the rest of their videos, giving Shorts content a more specific focus and likely driving more views. Rather than making an individual Shorts app to compete directly with TikTok, YouTube is framing Shorts as a supplementary element to creators’ main channels, which is where they are able to generate the most engagement and therefore make the most money.


#GoodBots on Twitter

In line with its ongoing attempts to reduce the number of ‘bad’ bots and fake accounts on the platform, Twitter has begun rolling out a new label for ‘good’ bots, which developers will be able to add voluntarily to automated accounts. A new robot icon can now be displayed beside the profile name of bot accounts, along with a marker indicating that the account is automated. The same will also appear in the main tweet feed, with an ‘Automated’ tag beneath the account’s profile name. This means that ‘good’ bots, as opposed to those that are used for negative, harmful or spam purposes, will be easier to spot on the app, hopefully making them less likely to get reported or banned.

Twitter explained: “#GoodBots help people stay apprised of useful, entertaining, and relevant information, from fun emoji mashups to breaking news. The label will give people on Twitter additional information about the bot and its purpose to help them decide which accounts to follow, engage with, and trust.”


New Service Listings Elements on LinkedIn

Originally launched in 2019, LinkedIn’s Services Listings are a space for users to outline the services they offer, helping businesses find contract workers and making it easier for recruiters to see if someone has the skills required for a role. In February, LinkedIn released two new additions for this feature: the ability to link a Company Page to your services listing, and an option to add a media showcase. This means that if you have a company page for your brand or business, you can now establish a link between your services and that page - plus you can give prospective clients a preview of what they can expect by highlighting some of your favourite projects.


Pinned Conversations in Twitter DMs

Twitter introduced a new option to pin specific DM conversations, with the capacity to pin up to six chats at once to the top of your inbox. Simply swipe right on any chat and the pin option will appear, enabling you to keep that exchange at the top of the page, even as new DMs come in.

This update offers benefits for both casual users and businesses - individuals can keep in touch with their closest friends in the app without having to scroll through their inbox every time they want to send a new message, while brands who manage their customer queries natively on Twitter can now keep track of ongoing conversations more easily, therefore providing an enhanced customer service experience.


Full Facebook Reels Rollout

Facebook Reels were already available to some users, but now Meta has made them available in 150 more regions, with a dedicated Reels display at the top of users’ feeds - and, in line with Instagram’s Reels extension which launched last July, creators will now be able to post Facebook Reels up to 60 seconds in length. Additionally, users can share publicly posted Reels to their stories and remix other creators’ Reels (just like Duet on TikTok and Remix on Instagram), adding even more engagement potential. Reels Drafts have also been added, along with a new video clipping option that will make it easier for creators who publish live or long-form recorded videos to test different formats.


LinkedIn Podcast Network

LinkedIn is leaning into the rising popularity of podcasts with the launch of its new Podcast Network, where it will host a range of shows focused on key professional trends, created by both internal staff and external experts. All podcasts will be available natively on LinkedIn as well as other major podcasting platforms such as Apple Podcasts and Spotify. Users can follow each podcast host in the app and subscribe to their newsletter, meaning they can extend the conversation beyond the passive listening experience. If you want to join LinkedIn’s network of broadcasters and get your podcast heard by a large, engaged audience, you can fill out an application form here.


No More IGTV

In October last year, Instagram announced that it was combining IGTV and feed videos into one new format called Instagram Video, an update which saw the arrival of the video tab on users’ profiles. At that time, they also gave IGTV ads a new name: In-Stream video ads, which was a clear indication that they were planning to slowly phase out the IGTV brand. And now, with Reels continuing to rise in popularity and long-form video on the decline, Instagram has decided to stop supporting its separate IGTV app altogether, and will therefore remove its In-Stream video ad option too.

The platform explained: “As part of our efforts to make video as simple as possible to discover and create, we will no longer be supporting our standalone app for IGTV. Instead, we will focus on having all video on the main Instagram app. We believe that this makes it easier for people to have all of these features and abilities in the main app, and are excited to continue to simplify and improve video in the main Instagram app over the coming months.


Improved Analytics on LinkedIn

As well as acquiring analytics company Oribi in order to boost its marketing solutions, LinkedIn has begun testing a set of new analytics which will provide more specific insight into who exactly is reading your posts, filterable by job title, industry, location and more. In 2019, the platform launched its Reactions feature, similar to the reaction options available on Facebook, and now, the new data will show how many Reactions each piece of content has received - Like, Celebrate, Love, Insightful and Curious. LinkedIn’s Chief Product Officer, Tomer Cohen, also announced the arrival of a new laughing emoji reaction, which aims to add a splash of humour and lightheartedness to the platform.


10 Minute TikToks

Interestingly, despite being best known for its short, quick-fire content style, TikTok has confirmed that all users will soon be able to upload 10 minute long videos in the app, a significant expansion on its current time limit of 3 minutes. This most likely comes as a response to rising pressure from competitors such as YouTube and Facebook where, due to the longer time limits, creators have access to more monetisation opportunities which ultimately leads to more ad revenue.

Up until now, creators have worked around TikTok’s limitations by encouraging viewers to follow them for part 2 or more of their video series - and although this can sometimes be a great engagement tool, it can often be frustrating for users to have to scroll through a creator’s feed to find the next video in a series. This extended duration will give TikTokers more time and flexibility when filming content such as cooking demos, beauty tutorials, educational content and comedy sketches, preventing their videos from feeling rushed or hard to follow.



What have been your favourite updates this month? We’re always on the lookout for new ways for brands to engage and interact with their audiences and features that make our social media experiences more enjoyable, so feel free to tweet us @3sixfivepro and tell us what you’ve been loving so far in 2022!