September 2022 Social Media Platform Updates
Thursday 6th October 2022
by Beth Perrin
September 2022 Social Media Platform Updates
Thursday 6th October 2022
September was another busy month for TikTok, Twitter, Instagram and more of our favourite social media platforms, with lots of fresh features being released and app improvements being launched. We always enjoy discovering how brands, businesses and everyday users can have better experiences online, so join us as we outline and review last month’s updates below.
Twitter users have been asking for an edit button for a long time (in fact, it might be the most requested social media update ever!), and it looks like the platform is finally ready to start trying out this feature, with an initial test taking place at the start of September. Edited tweets will include a note at the bottom saying that they have been edited, along with a timestamp of the latest edit, and users will be able to view the edit history by tapping on the pencil icon. The trial is initially being made available to Twitter’s internal team, before being expanded to Twitter Blue subscribers in the coming weeks.
hello— Twitter Blue (@TwitterBlue) September 29, 2022
this is a test to make sure the edit button works, we’ll let you know how it goes
Scaled-Back Shopping Tools on Instagram
There’s no denying the social commerce boom during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, which saw shoppers flocking to apps like TikTok and Instagram to make direct purchases - but as we approach the final few months of 2022, it seems that the trend has started to slow down slightly, with customers beginning to lose interest in shopping on social media. As a result of this, Instagram has started scaling back its in-stream shopping facilities and may be removing the Shop tab, according to tech magazine The Information. Instead, the platform is planning to focus its efforts on short-form video (Reels) and the advertising opportunities this brings.
Instagram Repost Tab
Speaking of Instagram - it’s also testing a new Repost option, which will enable users to re-share posts to their followers in the app, just like the Retweet button on Twitter. However, unlike retweets which show up on a Twitter user’s main page, mixed in with their own tweets, all of the posts a user has reposted on Instagram will be displayed on a separate Repost tab on their profile.
Instagram Reposts Tab on profiles?!— Matt Navarra (@MattNavarra) September 7, 2022
What’s dis Adam? pic.twitter.com/WayWCJGBfx
WhatsApp & LinkedIn Share Buttons on Twitter
In order to facilitate cross-platform content sharing, Twitter has begun testing some new buttons which will allow users to easily share their favourite tweets to other social media sites. The first one is a WhatsApp share button (currently only available for some users in India), and the second is a LinkedIn share button. Snapchat and Instagram Story sharing, which were previously only available on iOS, have also now been rolled out to Android users too.
some of you might see a WhatsApp Share icon and if you do, let us know what you think pic.twitter.com/Y23vWUPTs1— Twitter India (@TwitterIndia) September 8, 2022
We enjoyed the Tweet. Now everyone should enjoy it too.— Twitter Support (@TwitterSupport) September 8, 2022
Sharing a Tweet directly to Snapchat and Instagram Stories is now available on Android (already on iOS!)
And we added LinkedIn sharing on Android and iOS. Tap the share icon on a Tweet to try it out.
Community Chats on Messenger
Meta has introduced Community Chats on Messenger, which “let people connect more deeply with communities in real time around the topics they care about in multiple formats, including text, audio and video”. The feature seamlessly blends Messenger and Facebook Groups together, enabling Group admins to start conversations about specific topics and get quick responses instead of having to wait for members to comment on a post. And, rather than navigating multiple topics in a single Messenger group chat, the person who creates each Community Chat can organise them into categories so group members can easily find what’s most interesting to them.
In our August updates blog post, we mentioned emerging social app BeReal and its sudden influence on other social media platforms - and now TikTok has jumped on the bandwagon too, by announcing a new tool called TikTok Now, which is available in a separate app. The feature invites users and their friends to capture what they’re doing in the moment using their device’s front and back camera, sending out a daily prompt to capture a 10-second video or a static photo to easily share what they’re up to. Just like BeReal, the quick, impromptu nature of TikTok Now aims to boost authenticity and prevent users from feeling pressured to post airbrushed, polished content that has been planned and perfected in advance.
Say hello to TikTok Now: a new feature for you to connect and create with friends. pic.twitter.com/rYcd599MVB— TikTokComms (@TikTokComms) September 15, 2022
New Snapchat Features
Snapchat unveiled a range of new in-app features, including lock screen widgets which keep conversations with your friends saved to your phone’s lock screen so you can start chats with one simple tap; chat shortcuts which appear at the top of the chat tab to make it easier to keep an eye on your unopened snaps, chats and missed calls; and finally, question stickers for Stories, which are similar to the question box sticker available on Instagram Stories.
Additionally, Snapchat has decided to make its web-based platform available to all users. It was previously only accessible to Snapchat Plus users, but now anyone can use it without having to pay the monthly subscription fee of $3.99.
YouTube Shorts Comment Replies
YouTube has added a fresh way for creators to engage with their community via Shorts, with a new option to create a Shorts clip in response to a comment rather than just typing a standard reply. This could be a great way for creators to answer fan questions, take content requests and add a further level of interaction and collaboration between them and their viewers. From the watch page of your Short or standard video, simply tap Reply on a comment, then tap +Create a Short. It’s currently exclusive to iOS users, but will be rolled out to Android users too in the future.
Streamlined LinkedIn Inbox
In order to help users manage their LinkedIn inbox more effectively, the platform has begun testing a new inbox layout which automatically sorts messages into two categories: ‘Focused’, which is for important, valuable messages that require attention, and ‘Other’, which is for junk/spam messages that aren’t as urgent or can simply be deleted. Users can also easily move messages between the two tabs, and over time, the inbox will become smarter based on how it’s used.
Downvote TikTok Comments
It’s been in a test phase for a while, but now the ability to downvote TikTok video comments has been rolled out to all users. TikTok says the feature will enable moderators to “better identify irrelevant or inappropriate comments”, which will help the platform “foster a comment section for genuine and authentic interactions”. A thumbs down icon will be displayed on the right side of each comment, which users can tap if they think it needs to be flagged. Dislike counts won’t be public like they are on Reddit - instead, only the person who tapped the button will be able to see that they have done so. TikTok explained that this is to “avoid creating ill-feeling between community members or demoralise creators”.
🔔 New feature incoming. Earlier this year, we started to test a new way people could identify comments they believe to be irrelevant or inappropriate. After some testing, we're releasing it globally. 📲 Read on for 3 fast facts— TikTokComms (@TikTokComms) September 23, 2022
Longer Instagram Stories
As part of the ongoing process of merging all its video tools into one, Instagram announced that Stories under 60 seconds in length will no longer be split into 15-second segments in the app, forming a seamless viewing experience and giving users more space for creativity. The integration of its video options (including the retirement of IGTV last year and the fact that all videos under 15 minutes are now automatically shared as Reels) aims to simplify the app, while also helping Instagram maximise user engagement by making all of its video formats available in more places.
Instagram is rolling out its longer stories feature— Matt Navarra (@MattNavarra) September 23, 2022
Videos will no longer be split into separate story segments if under 60 seconds long. pic.twitter.com/Rc2L8WVVmp
WhatsApp Call Links
Following the arrival of group chat links on Messenger last month, a similar feature has been added to WhatsApp called Call Links, which enables users to share a link to invite others to join a group chat in the app. Dedicated URLs can be created for both video and audio chats. This update could help enhance community connections amongst casual chatters, while also making it easier and more direct for brands to contact customers, influencers and advocates - for example, they could start a chat to discuss an upcoming product launch or create an exclusive space for Top Fans.
New Video Tools on Twitter
Twitter has launched a couple of new tools to enhance the video viewing experience on the platform. Firstly, there’s a new immersive media viewer which expands videos to a portrait shape with a single tap, allowing users to easily watch videos in full-screen mode. From here, you can simply scroll up to start browsing through more videos - or, if you want to exit the viewer and go back to the original Tweet, just click the back arrow in the top left corner. Secondly, a video carousel called ‘Videos for you’ has been added to the Explore tab, meaning users can find more videos they might like alongside the recommended Tweets and trends that usually appear here.
Some of you on iOS and Android will also see recommended content in a new video carousel on the Explore "For You" page.— Twitter Support (@TwitterSupport) October 5, 2022
Want to go back to scrolling? Tap the back arrow in the top left corner to exit the player to go right back to where you left off. pic.twitter.com/J2EFfAAJnf
Have you benefited from any of these new tools so far? Will your brand or business be using some fresh features over the coming weeks, or perhaps making the switch to a new social media platform? Whether you’ve strengthened your customer communications or found a fun way to showcase your products and services, tweet us @3sixfivepro to let us know which updates have helped you boost your presence online.
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