Facebook is all about the vids
The story of 2015 for brands on social media is going to be all about video. The evidence is already mounting up. In the final month of 2014, brands posted 20,000 more videos on Facebook than they did on YouTube.
That’s a massive shift from just a year ago, when YouTube had almost double the number of published videos than any other platform. But now the number of video posts per person are up 75 per cent globally and the average Facebook user watches at least one video per day.
Facebook’s autoplay function on video posts, with no audio, has been a hit with users keen for minimal disruption to their news feed.
To aid this video explosion, Facebook has bought QuickFire Networks, a video startup.
Twitter also sees 2015 as the year of ‘play’
Never one to be left behind, twitter’s plans for 2015 also revolve around native video content.
The social network is in talks with brands and advertising agencies about advertiser-specific video features such as autoplay and pay-per-click that are part of a video product that is almost ready for launch.
Twitter already owns six-second video platform Vine, but this separate move to a new video product that will appeal to all brands is a clear indication that they need to keep pace with Facebook, YouTube and Instagram.
Another likely development is that twitter will start to offer suggestions for related content once a video has been watched, in a similar style to YouTube.
App Store prices on the rise
79p is the new starting point for paid-for apps in Apple’s app store after the company rolled out a 15% price rise for the new year.
The price rise is to cover tax and foreign exchange shifts.
However, this means that the cost of software in the UK and US is now further apart than ever. Entry price for a paid-for app in the US is $0.99, which is 65p.
The last price rise on the UK app store was in 2011, when the base price rose by 10p to 69p.
Why big brands want to chat
New figures have been released that show the success that some brands are experiencing on chat apps.
The BBC promotes news stories to its audience of 500,000 ‘Line’ users, the Wall Street Journal has 300,000 followers on ‘WeChat’, while the Huffington Post and Buzzfeed are both claiming six figure audiences for their ‘WhatsApp’ channels.
At this stage, the name of the game is engagement and awareness with the predominantly younger demographic who use these platforms the most.
And the opportunity is big. WhatsApp now has 700 million monthly active users globally; SnapChat usage grew by 55 per cent in 2014; WeChat is now the No.1 social media platform in China.
Spanish football team, Valencia’s social media team has even found that WhatsApp outperforms rival social networks for social shares when it comes to match reports, player interviews and other news stories about the team. It found that for most stories, WhatsApp outperforms Facebook, twitter and Google Plus in terms of shares by a ratio of two to one.
Making meetings easier
Never again will you have to email a bunch of possible times for meetings – now, there’s an app for that.
Pick is a new app that collects information from the calendars of everyone attending a meeting and sets the best time for everyone to get together.
Launched last week, it’s already getting good reviews and plenty of downloads from business people who want one thing less to have to think about.
The only thing it doesn’t do, is factor in travel time to wherever the meeting is to take place. Maybe they’re saving that for version 2.0.