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Instagram’s Chief is Heading to London to Spark New EU Growth for the App

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Instagram’s Chief is Heading to London to Spark New EU Growth for the App

Instagram chief Adam Mosseri is headed to London, with the long-time Meta product leader relocating to Europe for an extended period in the second half of the year.

Mosseri’s move won’t be permanent, but it will see Instagram’s top voice spend a big chunk of time in Meta’s UK office, where he’ll meet with local teams and officials to help boost the platform’s prospects in the EU region.

There are several reasons for the shift. For one, Meta now has more than 4,000 staff in London, largely focused on development, which includes a dedicated Instagram product team that’s focused on building and improving its services for creators, which has been a key focus for Mosseri in recent times.

Meta’s also concerned about growing calls to update the UKs Online Safety Bill, which could impact how social platforms like Instagram operate in the region – with specific proposals to offer improved verification tools for all adult users, to highlight digitally altered images more clearly, and to force platforms to better regulate potential harms.

But the last reason may be the most compelling – TikTok has already built a huge team in London, as the base of its European operations, where it’s been mapping out its coming push on in-app shopping, and integrating live-stream commerce into the app.

This far, that push hasn’t gone to plan, with TikTok’s local team complaining of unreasonable work hours and expectations, which has forced TikTok to both scale back its commerce program and replace its local chief.

Maybe, Meta sees that as a key opportunity to get in now, before TikTok can re-group, and launch its own in-stream shopping push to counter TikTok’s EU growth strategy.

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There are various reasons why having Mosseri on hand will be of benefit, with the immediate capacity to meet with local officials and leaders, as well as business partners, to help improve Instagram’s performance in the region.

And Meta does need to improve here. The company doesn’t break out Instagram’s user counts specifically, but Facebook has lost over 20 million users in Europe alone this year, as engagement continues to slide among EU audiences.

Much of that can be attributed to the invasion of Ukraine, and increased uncertainty in the Eastern bloc, which has had extended impacts for all regions. But even so, Mosseri’s move could also suggest that the downturn is not entirely linked back to the conflict, with Meta’s usage in the region fluctuating over the last two years.

Could having a local Meta representative from senior management lead to a better outcome for the company?

Of course, another potential reason for Mosseri’s re-assignment could be that Zuck just finished watching season two of Ted Lasso and had a lightning bolt moment.

For UK IG staff, maybe get this printed out now to place above the door to Mosseri’s office:

Ted Lasso 'Believe' sign

Jokes aside, there are various ways that Mosseri could contribute, on a range of elements, and it’ll be interesting to see how his change of location impacts Meta’s planning.

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Meta Launches New Reels Features, Including Stories to Reels Conversion and Improved Analytics

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Meta Launches New Reels Features, Including Stories to Reels Conversion and Improved Analytics

As it works to latch onto the short-form video trend, and negate the rising influence of TikTok, Meta has announced some new updates for Reels, across both Facebook and Instagram, including additional Reels insights, the expansion of the ‘Add Yours’ sticker, and ‘auto-created’ Reels clips. Yes, automatically created Reels videos.

Here’s how the new additions work.

The main addition is the expansion of the ‘Add Yours’ sticker from Stories to Reels, providing another way to prompt engagement from other users via Reels clips.

As you can see in these example images, you’ll now be able to post ‘Add Yours’ questions via Reels clips, while you’ll also be able to view all the various video responses to any prompt in each app.

It could be another way to spark engagement, and lean into the more interactive ethos of the short form video trend. Part of the appeal of TikTok is that it invites people in, with the participatory nature of the app essentially expanding meme engagement, by making it more accessible for users to add their own take.

Meta will be hoping that the ‘Add Yours’ sticker helps to facilitate the same, prompting more engagement with Reels clips.

Next up is auto-created Facebook Reels, which, as it sounds, will enable users to automatically convert their archived Stories into Reels clips.

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Reels updates

As you can see here, you’ll soon see a new ‘Create from Your Story Archive’ prompt in the Reels creation flow, which will then enable you to convert your Stories into Reels clips.

So it’s not exactly wholly automated Reels creation, as it’s just flipping your Stories clips into Reels as well. But it could provide another, simple way for users and brands to create Stories content, utilizing the video assets that they already have to link into the trend.

Worth noting that Meta also recently added a tool to convert your video assets into Reels within Creator Studio.

Meta’s also expanding access to its ‘Stars’ creator donations to Facebook Reels, which is now being opened up to all eligible creators.

Stars donations in Reels

Meta initially announced the coming expansion of Stars to Reels back in June, which will provide another critical monetization pathway for Reels creators. Short form video is not as directly monetizable as longer clips, where you can insert pre and mid-roll adds, so add-on elements like this are key to keeping creators posting, and fueling an ecosystem for such in its apps.

Stars on Reels will be available all creators that have maintained at least 1,000 followers over the last 60 days.

Meta’s also adding new Reels performance insights to Creator Studio, including Reach, Minutes Viewed, and Average Watch Time.

Reels updates

That’ll provide more perspective on what’s working, and what’s not, to help optimize your Reels approach – which could be especially valuable in the coming holiday push.

Lastly, Meta’s also expanding some Reels features that were previously only available in Instagram to Facebook as well.

Crossposting from Instagram to Facebook is now available to all Instagram users, while Meta’s also expanding its Remix option to Facebook Reels also.

Reels updates

As noted, Reels has become a key focus for Meta, as the short-form video trend continues to gain traction, and TikTok continues to rise as a potential competitor. By replicating TikTok’s main elements, Meta’s working to negate its key differentiation, which could ensure that more of its users don’t bother downloading a new app, and just stick with its platforms instead.’

Which, whether you agree with that approach or not, has proven effective. Reels content now makes up more than 20% of the time that people spend on Instagram, while video content, overall, makes up 50% of the time that people spend on Facebook.

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Meta additionally notes that it’s seen a more than 30% increase in engagement time with Reels across both Facebook and Instagram.

Meta doesn’t need to ‘beat’ TikTok as such (as much as it would like to), but it does need to dilute its significance if it can, and make it less appealing for users to have to start yet another new account, and re-build their friends list.

That’s why it’ll continue to replicate TikTok at every turn, because millions of people are currently not going to TikTok because of the presence of Reels in its apps.  

You can learn more about Meta’s new Reels updates here.

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