This Week in Social Media – Sept. 22, 2017

Sharmin Kent September 22, 2017

The news this week includes a bit of everything: Pinterest is getting aggressive with ad targeting, Instagram is looking to draw Snapchat users with new features, and Nielsen has discovered a powerful and influential social media demographic.

Pinterest Opens 5000 Interest Categories for Ad Targeting

AdWeek reports that Pinterest is helping advertisers target very specific customers, offering brands approximately 5000 interest categories. After acquiring a deep linking startup called URX last year, the social channel has been leaning toward becoming search engine rather than a social network.

It’s a smart move for a site with 150 million global users to monetize its platform with hyper-segmentation. The ability to pinpoint specific interests–like “wedding on a budget” or “desk yoga”–can guide brands toward smaller, loyal customers. Initial results are positive: clickthrough rates for those ads increased by 50 percent and CPCs decreased by as much as 20 percent for brands using the tool.

Instagram Expands Instagram Live

Instagram is coming for Snapchat users with a new version of Instagram Live, which allows people to add virtual masks to video. Social Media Today notes that after Instagram introduced the ability to record videos earlier this year, the company added functionality for users to broadcast with a guest.

Snapchat’s key differentiators are being copied by Instagram and Facebook, eating into Snapchat’s business. Facebook wins by gathering data from itself and Instagram, giving the social channels a serious advantage. Snapchat’s younger users help it maintain solid numbers, but if Instagram can deliver a better user experience, that might not last for long.

#BlackGirlMagic is Real on Social Media

Nielsen recently released its 60-page report on the social media habits and influence of black women in the U.S. It’s a deep dive that explores how black women use social media to share ideas, search for products and services, and express support for their favorite companies. The report lays out a case for black women being a vocal and loyal force for their favorite brands.

The numbers in the report also guide brands toward ways to attract this demographic: 27 percent of black women use social media to find out about products and services, 25 percent use it to receive exclusive offers and discounts, and 20 percent use it to find people with interests similar to theirs. This makes social media an especially powerful tool for brands that want to engage with black women; it also means that investment in influencer marketing, exclusive perks and real-time customer service handles could yield great results.

What’s on your social media news docket this week? Email me at sharmin@quantifi.ai and let me know.