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Clubhouse Adds New Way to Share Rooms, Additional Analytics and Access Options

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Clubhouse Adds New Way to Share Rooms, Additional Analytics and Access Options


Clubhouse has added a new way to improve Room discovery, with a new re-share option that will enable users to highlight interesting sessions that they’re in to other users.

The process is essentially Clubhouse’s version of re-tweeting, in order to help amplify great discussions.

As explained by Clubhouse:

Now when you tap the “Share” button at the bottom of a room (or Replay), you’ll see three options: Share on Clubhouse, share via a social network, or copy the link to share via a messaging app. If you select Share on Clubhouse, you’ll be able to add a comment (e.g., “This person is rapping people’s bios and it’s insane”) and then share it to your followers. They’ll see this room in their Hallway and, if the room is live, also be notified that you shared it so they can come join you.

To be clear, Clubhouse has had the share via social network and share via messaging app options for some time, it’s only the new, internal sharing function that’s been added.

Discovery has proven to be a major challenge for audio social platforms, as it had been previously with video live-streaming, because while giving everyone the capacity to stream content provides functional benefit, the challenge, from an audience-building standpoint, is that it also means a lot of low-quality broadcasts will inevitably be added into the mix.

Every video streaming app found the same, with initial hype drawing audiences in, then quality issues seeing them drop-off.

Blab founder Shaan Puri summed up the challenges with live-stream quality in his announcement of the demise of that app back in 2016:

The struggle with live-streaming is that we need to show you something awesome that’s being made right now. Turns out, that’s really tough. It killed Meerkat, and Periscope & FB Live are feeling the pain right now. In live-streaming, the churn is real. We hoped replays would help, but less than 10% of all watch time was on replays. Why? Because the off-the-cuff, unpredictable nature of livestreams make for terrible replays.”

The challenge of showcasing the best of live-streaming content, in real time, as Puri notes, has killed off many a platform entirely, and while audiences will reliably tune into the best, most interesting streams, relative to their interests, in order to do that, they need to know when they’re happening, which puts the onus on the platforms to come up with better algorithms and recommendation processes to highlight such at any given time.

No platform has got this right yet, and Clubhouse’s new share option is another step in this direction. Which is unlikely to end up being a major element in the broader battle, but it is another step to help move things in the right direction.

But the real value will be in building a stable recommendation system that can let you know, as soon as you go to listen, what you should tune into. The platform that can get this right stands to maximize the full value of live audio – but if they can’t, each will continue to lose audience interest over time.

In this respect, Facebook’s approach, in restricting its audio broadcast options to popular users and groups could be a better, more targeted way to go, while LinkedIn also looks set to see more value from its own take on audio social by tying it into its events offering.

Both Twitter and Clubhouse, meanwhile, have a big challenge in filtering the mass of streams down for each user.

In addition to the new share option, Clubhouse is also launching new analytics, with share and clip counts now displayed at the bottom of each room, and a new Room insights page now in development.

That could help refine your audio strategy, with increased information on audience specifics, in order to better target and plan your future activity.

On another front, Clubhouse has also added web listening, which will enable anyone to listen to a Clubhouse room from their phone or laptop, without needing to download the app.

“To start, [web listening] will work for both Replays and live Rooms with Replays enabled, and will include support for most major browsers. It will be rolling out as an experiment in the US starting today. If you find it useful, we’ll plan to expand support to cover more room types, more countries, and more parts of the full Clubhouse experience over time.

It’s hard to say what the future holds for Clubhouse, the much-hyped star of the early part of last year. At one stage, Clubhouse was valued at $4 billion, and was being touted by some as the future of social connection, but as competitors rose, and audience interest waned, it has seemed, to many, like the app was indeed a flash in the pan, a fad that holds little value moving forward.

But Clubhouse is still moving forward. The app was downloaded 2.6 million times in December (up from 1.8 million in November), and while US audiences are less interested than they once were, the app has surged in the Indian market, which holds huge potential, if it can maintain a hold in the space.

And there is value in niche communities and engagement in the app. Sure, the initial projections may have been overhyped, but there is still potential in the platform, which could carve a space for itself, if it can continue to evolve, and align with specific use cases.

It may not be the place to be, in a broader sense, but it is still worth checking in on Clubhouse rooms, and tuning into relevant chats as you find them. The capacity to share with connections will add to this.



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Reports Show that Facebook Usage is Up, as Meta Continues to Develop its AI Targeting Models

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Reports Show that Facebook Usage is Up, as Meta Continues to Develop its AI Targeting Models

While Facebook is no longer the cool app, especially among younger audiences, it remains a key platform for many users, and its capacity to keep people updated on important updates from friends and family is likely to ensure that many continue to return to the app every day for some time yet.

But more than that, Facebook usage is actually increasing, according to internal insights viewed by The Wall Street Journal, which also include some interesting notes on overall Facebook and Instagram usage trends.

As per WSJ:

Data gathered in the middle of the fourth quarter showed that time spent on [Facebook] was up worldwide, including in developed markets, over the course of a year.”

Which seems unusual, given the subsequent rise of TikTok, and short form video more generally. But actually, Facebook has been able to successfully use the short-form video trend to drive more usage – despite much criticism of the platform’s copycat Reels feature.

Indeed, Reels consumption is up 20%, and has become a key element in Meta’s resurgence.  

How is it finding success? Increased investment in AI, which has driven big improvements in the relevance models that fuel both Reels and its ads, which are also now driving better response.

On Reels, Meta’s systems are getting much better at showing users the Reels content that they’re most likely to be interested in. You’ve likely noticed this yourself – what was initially a mess of random clips inserted into your Facebook feed has now become more focused, and you’re probably finding yourself expanding a Reels clip every now and then, just to see what it’s about.

Reels has actually been too successful:

“Because ads in Reels videos don’t currently sell for as much as those sold against regular posts and stories, Reels’ growing share of content consumption was denting ad revenue. To protect the company’s earnings, the company cut back on promoting Reels, which lowered watch time by 12%.

So again, while Meta has been criticized for stealing TikTok’s format, it’s once again shown, just as it did with Stories, that this is a viable and beneficial pathway to keeping users engaged in its apps.

You might not like it, but replication works in this respect.

But for marketers, it’s likely the development of Meta’s AI targeting tools for ads that’s of most interest.

Over time, many performance advertisers have been increasingly recommending that marketers trust Meta’s AI targeting, with newer offerings like Advantage+ driving strong results, with far less manual targeting effort.

Advantage+ puts almost total trust in Meta’s AI targeting systems. You can choose a couple of targeting options for your campaigns, but for the most part, the process is designed to limit manual impact, in order to let Meta’s systems determine the right audience for your ads.

Which may feel like you’re ceding too much control, but according to Meta, its continued AI investment is now driving better results.

Heavy investment in artificial intelligence tools has enabled the company to improve ad-targeting systems to make better predictions based on less data, according to the interviews and documents […] That, along with shifting to forms of advertising less dependent on harvesting user data from off its platforms, are key to the company’s plans to overcome an Apple privacy change that restricted Meta’s capacity to gather information about what its users do outside its platforms’ walls, the documents show.”

That’s likely worth considering in your process, putting more trust in Meta’s targeting systems to drive better results. At the least, it may be worth experimenting with Meta’s evolving AI for ad targeting. 

It’s not all good news. Meta also notes that while time spent in its apps is on the rise, creation and engagement is declining, with fewer people posting to both Facebook and Instagram than they have in the past.

That’s particularly true among younger audiences, while notably, usage of Instagram Stories is also in decline, down 10% on previous levels.

So while Meta is driving more engagement from Reels, which draws on content from across the app, as opposed to the people and Pages you follow, that’s also led to a decline in user posting.

Is that a bad thing? I mean, logically, engagement is important in keeping people interested in the app, and Meta also relies on those signals to help refine its ad targeting. So it does need users to be sharing their own content too, but if it can get more people spending more time in its apps, that will help it maintain advertiser interest.

In essence, despite all of the reports of Facebook’s demise, it remains a key connective platform, in various ways, while Meta’s improving ad targeting systems are also helping to drive better results, which will keep it as a staple for brands moving forward.

If you were thinking of diversifying your social media marketing spend this year, maybe don’t reduce Facebook investment just yet.

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Effective Ways To Personalize Your Customer Touch Points Even More In 2023

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Effective Ways To Personalize Your Customer Touch Points Even More In 2023

Will 2023 be the year of personalization? Consumers hope so. For the past two years, shoppers have been craving the personal touch: In 2021, McKinsey & Company noted that 71% of customers expected companies to deliver personalization. In 2022, a Salesforce survey found that 73% of people expected brands to understand their needs and expectations. So, this year is looking like one where personalization can no longer be seen as a “nice to have.”

The problem, of course, is how to get more personalized. Many companies have already started to dabble in this. They greet shoppers by name on landing pages. They rely on CRMs and other tools to use historical information to send shoppers customized recommendations. They offer personalized, real-time discounts to help buyers convert their abandoned shopping cart items to actual purchases.

These are all great ideas. The only problem is that they’ve become widespread. They don’t move the needle on the customer experience anymore. Instead, they’re standard, expected, and kind of forgettable. That doesn’t mean you can afford to stop doing them. It just means you must devise other ways to pepper personalization throughout your consumer interactions.

If you are scratching your head on how to outdo 2022’s personalization in 2023, try implementing the following strategies:

1. Go for full-blown engagement on social media.

One easy way to give the personal touch is through your social media business pages. Social media use just keeps growing. In 2022, there were about 266 million monthly active users (or MUAs) on Facebook, one billion on Instagram, and 755 million on TikTok. Not all these active users will fall into your target audiences, but plenty of them will.

Make engaging with your social followers one of this year’s goals. People spend a lot of time on social media. It’s where many of them “live,” so it only makes sense that it should be a place to drive personalization.

One quick way to ratchet up your company’s personal touch on social media is to personalize all your retargeted ads. Quizzes can also offer a chance for personalization. Simply set up an engaging quiz and allow people to share their results. It’s a fun way to build brand recognition and bond with consumers. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with going very personal and answering all comments. Depending on your team’s size and the number of comments you receive, this might be a viable option.

2. Leverage AI to go beyond basic demographics.

Most companies rely on customer demographic information to bolster personalization efforts. The only trouble with this tactic is that demographics can’t tell the whole story. It’s impossible to get a lot of context about individual users (such as their lifestyles, personal preferences, and motivators) just from knowing their age, gender, or location. Though demographic data is beneficial, it can cause some significant misses.

Michael Scharff, CEO and cofounder of Evolv AI, explains the workaround for this problem: “The most natural, and therefore productive, personalization efforts use demographics as a foundation and then layer in user likes, dislikes, behaviors, and values.”

You can leverage AI’s predictive and insightful capabilities to uncover real-time user insights. Scharff recommends this technique because it allows you to stay in sync with the fast-moving pace of consumer behavior changes. He adds that AI can be particularly beneficial with the coming limits to third-party cookie access because it can be a first-party data source, allowing you to maintain customer knowledge and connection.

To flesh out your organization’s strategy, look to other companies that have gone beyond demographics. Take Netflix, for example, which constantly tweaks its AI algorithm to help improve personalized content recommendations. Bottom line? Going deeper than surface information makes all the sense in the world if you want to show customers you know them well.

3. Keep your data spotless.

The better your data, the better your personalization efforts. Period. Unfortunately, you are probably sitting on a lot of unstructured or otherwise tricky-to-use (or impossible-to-use) data. One recent Great Expectations survey revealed that 77% of data practitioners have data quality problems, and 91% say that this is wreaking havoc on their companies’ performance.

You can’t personalize anything with corrupt or questionable data. So, do your best to find ways to clean your data promptly and routinely. For example, you might want to invest in a more centralized data system, particularly if the personalization data you rely on is scattered in various places. Having one repository of data truth makes it easier to know if the information on hand is ready to use.

Another way to tame your data is to automate as many data processes as possible. Reducing manual manipulation of data lessens the chance of human error. And you’ll feel more confident with all your personalization efforts if you can trust the reliability and health of your data.

4. Go for nontechnical personalization.

It’s the digital age, but that doesn’t mean every touchpoint has to be digitized. Consumers often react with delight and positivity when they receive personalization in decidedly nontech forms. (Yes, you can use tech to keep track of everything. Just don’t make it part of the actual personalized exchange!)

Consider writing handwritten thank-you notes to customers after they’ve called in for support or emailed your team, for instance. Or send an extra personalized gift to buyers who make a specific number of purchases. These interactions aren’t technical but can differentiate your customer experience from your competitors’ experiences.

A groundbreaking Deloitte snapshot taken right before the pandemic showed that people were hungry for connection. By folding nondigital experiences into your personalization with customers, you’re showing them that you see them first as valued humans. That’s compelling and appealing, making them more apt to give you their loyalty in return.

Putting a personal spin on all your consumer interactions takes a little time. It’s worth your energy, though. You’ll wind up with stronger brand-buyer connections, helping you edge ahead of your competitors even more.

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Planning for 2023: What Social Media Marketers Need to Win in 2023

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Planning for 2023: What Social Media Marketers Need to Win in 2023

January is, for many, a month of reflection, goal-setting, strategizing and planning for the year ahead. 

In line with this, we’ve kicked off the new year with a series of articles covering the latest stats, tips and strategies to help social media marketers build an effective game plan for 2023.

Below, you’ll find links to our 2023 social media planning series, which includes:

  • Content strategy guidelines to help you define your brand’s content mission and set SMART goals
  • Organic posting tips for Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, Twitter, LinkedIn, Snapchat and Pinterest 
  • Explainers on how to research key topics of interest in your niche, understand the competitive landscape, and help you find your audience and connect with them where they’re active
  • A holiday calendar and notes on the best days and times to post to each of the major platforms

 

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