March Industry Trends Report

With spring right around the corner, we are here to remind you why you love the dynamic landscape of social media. This month, we focus on major updates and fixes to our favorite social media platforms including Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn.

Why Am I Seeing This Ad?

Why am I seeing this ad? It’s a question avid digital users ask themselves when they see an ad about a product or service, they had only ever thought once about.

In an effort to increase transparency, Facebook is making it easier to identify how your personal information is being used for ad targeting. According to TechCrunch, Facebook is adding a feature that will allow you to see how your contact information was uploaded to their ad management system, which will ultimately explain why you were targeted for a specific ad. Users will be able to tap a “Why am I seeing this ad?” button at the end of the month to view this information and why you were targeted.

Many of us, and rightly so, are concerned about how Facebook uses personal data and this will be an important new feature that users should take advantage of to better secure their information. Ever since the Facebook Cambridge Analytica data scandal in early 2018, Facebook and many other tech companies have been implementing new features and policies like this one to regulate the use of data. We will likely continue to see transparency improvements throughout 2019 – so stay tuned to this blog for future updates.

The Instagram Bug

Kylie Jenner, reality television star and cosmetic company owner, lost 2.5 million Instagram followers, but not because she was beaten by a photo of an egg for the most liked picture on Instagram.

Instagram confirmed that users saw a dip in social media following due to a bug in their system. For the average Instagram account with a few hundred followers, this bug was not a problem, but pop stars and social media influencers saw a significant dip putting a large dent in their followings. For influencers who make a living based on their following, this glitch was extremely concerning. There was a rumor circulating on social media that the platform had deleted bot accounts to eliminate fake users, but that rumor was soon put to rest.

“We’re aware of an issue that is causing a change in account follower numbers for some people right now. We’re working to resolve this as quickly as possible,” said Instagram in a tweet about the issue on the morning of February 13. The company promised in another Tweet that the issue would be resolved ASAP. This short 24-hour bug caused chaos on social media, but Instagram kept it under control and followers were restored back to their normal numbers in less than 24 hours.

While tech glitches are seemingly pervasive these days, we are still recommending that clients dedicate a spend for their social media activities. The algorithms favoring paid over organic is just too strong.

AI Helps Improve LI

Since its inception in 2002, LinkedIn has helped employers find individuals who fill specific roles at their company. The platform just announced a new update that will help streamline the hiring process for recruiters and provide even more relevant candidate matches.

The platform plans to consolidate its LinkedIn Recruiter, Jobs and Pipeline Builder products into one service — the Intelligent Hiring Experience. According to Employee Benefit News, artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms will help recruiters find the most suitable candidates for open positions. This is an exciting advancement for both recruiters and individuals looking for jobs and opens up an avenue for LinkedIn to become THE recruitment tool, highlighting relevant staffing choices, while also helping individuals get better insights into their ideal career paths.

While the upgrades are scheduled to debut in late summer of 2019, LinkedIn will slowly introduce the new features over the next couple of months.

That’s all for this month’s update! Be sure to check back here next month to stay up-to-date on all things PR, comms and marketing. Take a look at our diverse case studies to see how we integrate these social media tools and garner great results for our clients.

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