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Snapchat Adds New Voter Registration Tools Ahead of the 2020 US Election

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Snapchat’s rolling out a collection of new tools to encourage Snapchatters to vote in the upcoming US Presidential election, including registration prompts and new guides to assist first-time voters in having their say.

Snapchat voting tools

As reported by Axios, the new push from Snap will include four elements:

  • Voter Registration – Through its new mini apps, Snapchat’s adding a new “Voter Registration Mini” which will enable users to register to vote directly in Snapchat
  • Voter Guide – Snapchat’s also adding a “Voter Guide” which will provide users with key voting information and notes, including resources from official partner organizations
  • Before You Vote – Another mini app, this will provide users with more insight into their voting options ahead of the poll
  • Voter Checklist Snapchat’s also adding a new, interactive platform to help ensure users are registered and ready for the vote.

And given Snap’s younger user base, this new push could be important, and could actually end up playing a key role in deciding who wins the November poll.

Back in May, a study published by Democracy Works showed that around 260,000 Snapchatters who registered to vote through Snap’s TurboVote process in 2018, went on to actually participate in the US Midterms, which may well have influenced the outcome of the vote. Another study from GlobalWebIndex found that 72% of 18-24 year old Snapchat users, and 88% of 25-34 year old Snapchatters, are planning to vote this November.

Given the last US Presidential election was decided by fewer than 200k votes in most seats, Snapchat’s efforts on this front can absolutely influence the final outcome, and encouraging civic participation among younger people is key to the future of democratic process.

In 2020, it feels like we’re more politically aware than ever, and with the election race set to become more divisive in the coming months, it’ll be an almost inescapable campaign.

Young people are more engaged, more active on social issues. And if they want to ensure their view are heard, they will indeed need to get out and vote. 

Snapchat’s efforts on this front are absolutely an important push.

Socialmediatoday.com

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Instagram Tests Out New Ad Options, Including Explore Placement and Interactive AR Displays

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Instagram Tests Out New Ad Options, Including Explore Placement and Interactive AR Displays

As we head into the holiday shopping push, Instagram has announced that it’s testing out some new ad options, in the hopes of maximizing its revenue intake, while also providing new opportunities for brands.

Though I can’t imagine that these will be entirely popular additions with users.

First off, Instagram’s adding new ads into Explore, with the first page of Explore now set to feature a new ad unit in the content feed.

As you can see in this example, that’s a pretty big ad. Instagram hasn’t clarified if all of these new Explore ads will be featured as prominently as this, but the option will provide another means to reach IG users ‘in the earliest stages of discovering new content they care about’.

It could be a good consideration, with a chance to get your products featured in the main discovery feed in the app.

Instagram’s also testing ads in profile feed – ‘which is the feed experience that people can scroll through after visiting another account’s profile and tapping on a post’.

So now, if you check out someone’s profile, and tap on a post, you’ll also be eligible to be served ads in that dedicated stream of their content, essentially inserting ads into another surface in the app.

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Instagram’s also looking into whether this option could also be used as a monetization opportunity for creators, as that activity will be tied back to an individual profile and content.

Instagram’s also testing what it’s calling ‘Multi-Advertiser Ads’, which will display more promotions from similar businesses to users after they’ve engaged with an ad.

Instagram ad updates

As per Instagram:

“When a person expresses commercial intent by engaging with an ad, we deliver more ads from other businesses that may be of interest, powered by machine learning.”

So Instagram’s looking to push even more related businesses at you, stacking ads upon ads. I don’t know how effective that will be, but in theory, it could get your brand in front of interested users based on previous ad engagement.

Finally, Instagram’s also launched an open beta of its AR Ads, which will be available in both feed and Stories in the app.

Instagram ads update

As you can see here, Instagram’s AR ads, built in its Spark AR platform, will invite users to interact with their ad content, which could also include positioning virtual furniture in their home, or test driving a car in the app.

Which Meta also says will help brands align with future engagement shifts:

“By giving businesses tools to create more personalized and immersive experiences today we’ll help them drive performance and prepare for the metaverse.”

I mean, AR and the metaverse, which is largely VR-based (going on the examples we’ve seen thus far) are not the same thing, but the creation of 3D objects will play a part in that next stage, and could help to advance your thinking on ad approaches.

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These are some interesting ad considerations, but they’ll also see a lot more promotions being squeezed into your Instagram feeds, which, as noted, likely won’t be welcomed by users.

But with parent company Meta under rising pressure, Instagram has to do its part. And while leaning into further Reels, and forcing in more ads, may not be a great play, long-term, the usage and engagement data will ultimately tell the tale.



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