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This Week in Social Media – Mar. 23, 2018

Sharmin Kent March 23, 2018

Good Friday morning, readers! It has been one heck of a week for social media, hasn’t it? Well, at Quantifi, we focus on the future of social, not its past, and there’s still plenty of social media and paid media news to keep us busy. News publishers are doing it live with Twitter, Instagram is (kind of) giving the people what they want, and buying by voice is still in its infancy.

Tweeting the News

So, Twitter-based news shows are officially A Thing. BuzzFeed and Bloomberg recently joined Cheddar in creating Twitter-exclusive news outlets and content, hoping to drive audience growth among millennial users. These efforts also give publishers a way to deliver real-time news without filtering it through mainstream news channels.

But it feels like these news orgs might be building on shaky ground. What happens if Twitter’s business model changes? Will advertisers flock to Twitter news shows the way they’ve embraced other live video channels, like Facebook and YouTube? These real-time channels appear to be successful in the short term, but the long-term effect is still up in the air.

Instagram Update Gets Fresher

Seems like social channels are starting to listen to their users and updating algorithms to deliver the content people want–and in the order they want it. Well, at least Instagram is listening, anyway: Engadget reports that Instagram will now surface newer posts instead of delivering the same posts over and over again. Users can now tap “new posts,” instead of simply returning to the top of the feed.

This isn’t a return to a choronological feed, but it does give users more power of what they see and how often they see it. This puts brands in an interesting position: should they support a user’s choice to see newer content, or find a way to deliver earlier posts to customers who follow them? There’s sure to be more tweaking, so what Instagram looks like this week might be old news in the next few weeks.

Voice: The Next Frontier?

Voice-powered devices like Amazon Echo and Google Home have infiltrated the houses of millions, but folks aren’t using them much to make purchases. Marketing Dive reports that two-thirds of consumers with voice assistants don’t use use voice to browse or buy. With only two out of five consumers using voice at all, it seems like the road to adoption is going to be long.

There’s an upside, though: voice assistant programs and devices have the opportunity to boost engagement with consumers who do rely on voice to shop. It’s a small group, but early adopters often shape markets and set the rules. It’s worth it to Amazon, Google and other big tech companies to stay the course with voice, build audiences and devote resources to creating a user-intuitive, voice-powered market.

Got any social media news to share? Drop me a line at and let’s chat about it.