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Talk Social: 26 January, 2021 – Facebook News launches in the UK

Facebook News launches in the UK

Facebook News, the social network’s dedicated section for news content, is launching in the UK today.

Previously only available in America, Facebook News is a curated feed of trusted and reliable news sources accessible through the main iOS app. This serves to combat the spread of misinformation online, as well as address the long-running friction between it and news publishers, as advertising spend moves away from news outlets and towards large tech firms.

The portal will launch with content from hundreds of local and national media organizations including Channel 4 News, Daily Mail Group, Telegraph Media Group, Archant, as well as lifestyle titles such as GQ, Cosmopolitan, Glamour, and Vogue.

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Pinterest adds new AR ‘Try-On’ tools

With eCommerce being a big focus for all social media platforms, Pinterest is looking to enhance its shopping experience, with the expansion of its AR ‘Try On’ tools.

After launching lipstick Try on Pins with selected brands early last year, the platform is now expanding its AR overlays into eyeshadow, with new, shoppable eyeshadow Pins showcasing products from Lancome, YSL, Urban Decay, and NYX Cosmetics.

AR is set to see significant growth this year, with the expected arrival of AR-enabled glasses from both Facebook and Apple. Snapchat is also working to incorporate more product-related AR functionality into its camera.

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TikTok adds New Q&A option for fans to post questions to creators

TikTok is looking to prompt more engagement between creators and their fans with the launch of a new Q and A option which enables users to pose questions to creators that can then be answered in future video clips.

By encouraging conversations between fans and creators, TikTok hopes this will help creators solidify their followings, as well as keep users engaged. This will in turn bolster the opportunities for influencer marketing partnerships.

It’s not clear which creators have access to the option as yet, but some TikTok users have reported seeing the option in the app.

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LinkedIn launch “Swipe-Up” links to Stories

LinkedIn has announced it will be adding the capacity to add links to LinkedIn Stories – though it is not available to all users at this stage. 

The feature, which is available to pages and members who have at least 5,000 connections or followers, works in the similar way as it does on other platforms: a “See More” prompt can be added to a Story that directs people to a given URL.

Stories are still a new addition to LinkedIn and there are still questions around whether this functionality is right for the platform.  However, for brands who already have an active and engaged audience on LinkedIn, it is worth experimenting with the feature to see if it is a viable method of driving traffic.

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Boohoo reveals eCommerce ambitions after Debenhams purchase

After its purchase of the Debenhams brand and website for £55m, Boohoo’s has discussed their ambition to become the UK’s largest online marketplace.

Executive chairman, Mahmud Kamani, said: “Our acquisition of the Debenhams brand is strategically significant as it represents a huge step which accelerates our ambition to be a leader, not just in fashion eCommerce, but in new categories including beauty, sport and homeware.”

Online retailers have been chipping away at their High Street competitors for several years, but this has been greatly accelerated by the pandemic. Boohoo doesn’t see any value in Debenhams High Street estates and will concentrate their developments on their online presence and digital marketing.

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