Latest Digital Marketing Updates May 2024

This summer, let’s beat the heat with the latest & hottest digital marketing trends and updates. I wanted to share some of my top digital marketing learnings this month that could help grow your business and online presence.

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Hi everyone! This summer, let’s beat the heat with the latest & hottest digital marketing trends and updates. I wanted to share some of my top digital marketing learnings this month that could help grow your business and online presence.

Whether you’re a solopreneur running social media for your startup or the head of a large marketing department, there is valuable intel here to take note of. Meta is offering $5k bonuses for influencers to generate engagement on Threads. 

They’re also testing letting users control who can quote their posts for more privacy. Instagram rolled out new stickers for music, frames and more in stories. WhatsApp added community events and reply options in announcement groups. 

Wait! There is much more, What are you waiting for? Let’s take a deep look into these updates and grow your audience this summer.

1. Meta Offers A $5k Bonus For Influencers To Post To Threads

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By offering financial incentives to well-known producers on Threads, Meta is stepping up its attempts to increase user interaction. Meta is giving prominent content creators incentives of up to $5,000 in an effort to increase engagement on the app. If their posts receive over 10,000 views, they may also be eligible for extra bonuses.

But this rich opportunity is only accessible by invitation, highlighting Meta’s discriminating approach to participant selection.
This is a tactical change in Meta’s Threads promotion strategy, which has involved the firm forming alliances with athletes and celebrities to generate buzz.

This most recent endeavour comes after a test version of the bonus programme was recently introduced to a limited user base. Meta has not only increased the payout amounts but also raised the threshold for qualifying posts, reflecting its commitment to elevating engagement levels within the platform.

2. Threads Enable Users To Control Who Can Quote Their Posts

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Threads users now have the ability to control who can quote their posts within the app, offering enhanced control over their in-app interactions. In the post options menu, accessible via the three dots icon, a new “Who can reply and quote” feature allows users to specify their quoting preferences, with options including “Anyone,” “Profiles you follow,” or “Mentioned only.”

This feature surpasses X (formerly Twitter), which Only allows users to limit replies but not quoting. This additional control serves as a deterrent against negativity and discourages “dunk posts,” empowering users with greater autonomy over their Threads experience.
The update was announced by Threads chief Adam Mosseri ahead of the weekend.

3. Meta Plans To Cut Staff At Its Oversight Board Group

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The Oversight Board project by Meta, originally created to showcase how external regulation could improve fairness in content moderation on social media platforms, is facing new challenges. The expected decrease in funding will result in staff reductions within the team, potentially restricting its capacity to handle upcoming cases.

The Oversight Board was initially designed to alleviate the responsibility of individual platforms in making content moderation decisions alone, and has been instrumental in reviewing moderation appeals and influencing Meta’s content policies. However, the upcoming staff cuts may impede its effectiveness as a mediator.

Reported by The Washington Post, these job cuts coincide with existing criticisms of the Oversight Board’s slow decision-making process in addressing important free speech discussions. Moreover, these reductions could weaken the Board’s efforts to establish itself as a reputable governance model for the social media sector.

As we approach a contentious election year, the Oversight Board’s role in evaluating challenging moderation decisions will continue to be crucial, despite potential constraints resulting from the staff reductions.

4. Whatsapp Adds Community Events To Facilitate Engagement

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WhatsApp is enhancing its “Communities” feature by introducing two new elements. Initially, they are launching Community Events, which will allow members to highlight and coordinate upcoming gatherings directly in group chats. Events will be visible in the chat and on the group’s information page, with automatic reminders for participants.

Additionally, WhatsApp is enabling replies in Announcement Groups, giving administrators feedback and members insight into community reactions. These enhancements will be gradually implemented, starting with Community groups.
Communities on WhatsApp facilitate social connections, offering a platform for organizing and engaging with various interests. These updates are designed to meet the changing dynamics of online interactions, providing more avenues for connecting within the application.

5. Copilot Is Now In The Microsoft Advertising Platform

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Microsoft Advertising Platform recently introduced Copilot, an AI-powered assistant designed to enhance user experience. Copilot offers various features such as natural language conversational chat, asset recommendations, and image asset creation.

Launched just a month ago, Copilot is now widely available, effectively guiding users through campaign creation processes. It provides real-time assistance and seamlessly integrates into the platform’s sign-up workflow and user interface.

Additionally, Copilot acts as a valuable support tool by providing instant answers to user queries and synthesizing relevant information. It also enables direct connections with support agents for further assistance.

This incorporation of AI technology aims to empower both new and experienced digital advertisers, streamlining their advertising efforts and ensuring they receive timely and comprehensive support as needed.

6. Google Search Tests Custom Filters & Templates

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Microsoft Advertising Platform recently unveiled Copilot, an AI-powered assistant designed to enhance the user experience. Copilot boasts various features such as natural language conversational chat, asset recommendations, and image asset creation. Despite its recent launch, Copilot is now widely accessible, providing valuable guidance to users as they navigate the complexities of campaign creation.

What distinguishes Copilot is its ability to provide real-time assistance, seamlessly integrating into the platform’s sign-up process and user interface. Moreover, it serves as a dependable support tool, offering immediate responses to user inquiries and facilitating direct connections with support agents for further assistance.

Through Copilot, Microsoft Advertising Platform aims to empower both novice and experienced digital advertisers, streamlining their advertising efforts and ensuring they receive timely and comprehensive support whenever needed.

7. Open AI To Launch A Search Engine

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Recent indications point to OpenAI perhaps releasing its own search engine soon. The presence of search.chatgpt.com in server log files is one indicator. Furthermore, there have been rumours that OpenAI intends to release a search engine on May 9th; some of these rumours centre on business-related details. A screenshot of OpenAI’s most current SSL certificate logs, which featured the domain search.chatgpt.com, was shared by Ashutosh Shrivastava. This finding raises the prospect of OpenAI creating search capabilities.

8. Google Ads To Automatically Pause Low-Activity Keywords Next Month

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From June 2024 onwards, Google Ads will implement an automatic pause on keywords that exhibit low activity. Specifically, keywords that were created more than 13 months ago and have not generated any impressions within the past 13 months will be subject to this adjustment. This measure aligns with the previous automatic pausing of inactive ad groups, which took place at the ad group level between March and April. Advertisers utilizing Google Ads who are affected by this modification have been duly notified via email by Anthony Higman.

9. Google Translates Knowledge Panel Content, Implements Blocks

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Google is auto-translating some of the content within the Google Knowledge Panels and blocks. So if you are in a location where you don’t only speak English, Google may show you your local language as an additional block of text in the knowledge panel.

10. Threads Adds View Counts On Posts

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Threads has introduced view counts on individual posts, allowing users to see how often their content has been viewed. This feature aims to provide users with more context on their reach and engagement, much like the existing features on X. Adam Mosseri, the chief of Instagram and Threads, highlighted the importance of this new metric in understanding the broader impact of posts beyond just basic engagement statistics. This mirrored a similar rationale provided by X when it implemented view counts in 2022. However, there are concerns that this could be a potentially harmful metric rather than a growth driver.

11. Instagram Rolls Out New Stickers For Music, Frames, And More In Stories

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Instagram has introduced several new stickers to enhance story interactions. The “Add Yours Music” sticker lets you share a song that reflects your mood and invites followers to add their tunes. Simply tap the stickers icon, select “Add Yours Music,” and choose a song from Instagram’s music library. Followers can then contribute their song selections.
The “Frames” sticker transforms any photo into an instant print, which followers can reveal by shaking their phone after you post the story. Additionally, the “Reveal” sticker allows you to post a hidden story that followers can only see by sending you a direct message.

12. YouTube Outlines EU Election Integrity Measures

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As the 2024 European Parliamentary Elections approach (June 6 to 9, 2024), YouTube has announced measures to combat misinformation and ensure voter awareness. These include new information panels directing EU users to Google’s voter registration and voting guides, targeted information on candidates, and voting reminders in the final weeks of the campaign.
On election day, YouTube will display particular messages on related videos and live election results on its homepage. These efforts, involving a global team of moderators and advanced machine learning, might also indicate the strategies YouTube will deploy for future U.S. elections.

13. Whatsapp Launches Refreshed UI Elements

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WhatsApp is implementing a user interface (UI) update that introduces a fresh appearance to Android and iOS applications. Noteworthy modifications include a more streamlined layout, an improved lower function bar, and revamped graphic elements.

The removal of the coloured header bar and the replacement of the search icon with a more prominent prompt for Meta’s new AI chatbot are particularly notable.

Furthermore, the app tabs have been relocated to the bottom with updated icons, and a “darker dark mode” has been included for users sensitive to light. On iOS, there is a new attachment layout that facilitates easier content sharing.

While these updates primarily focus on visual enhancements, they also bring new transitions and animations to modernize the app’s overall appearance, aligning it more closely with the Messenger UI.

14. YouTube Tests AI ‘Jump Ahead’ To Highlight Best Video Parts

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YouTube is currently experimenting with its latest AI-driven function, “Jump Ahead,” which enables users to swiftly navigate to the most captivating video sections. This innovative feature, accessible to all Premium subscribers in the United States, utilizes machine learning to pinpoint and skip to the video segments that have captured the audience’s attention the most. Doing so streamlines the process of discovering pertinent video clips without needing to search the entire content manually.

15. Open AI Joins C2PA Steering Committee To Standardize Digital Content Certification

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OpenAI has recently partnered with the Steering Committee of the Coalition for Content Provenance and Authenticity (C2PA) to advance transparency in online content.

The primary objective of this collaboration is to establish a standardized protocol for certifying digital content, which will aid users in distinguishing between genuine and AI-generated visuals.

This protocol will entail labelling AI-generated content with its source of creation, ensuring more straightforward identification across diverse platforms. This is increasingly vital as AI-generated images become more prevalent on social media platforms.

16. Google Search Tests Showing Only Local Listings For ‘Near Me’ Queries

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Google Search is experimenting with a new function that displays only local Google Business Profiles when users search for local services such as “dentist near me” or “Indian food near me,” omitting other web search outcomes. While not everyone may have access to this feature, a video posted by Melanie Funderburk on X showcases the trial, revealing 40 local listings on the initial page of Google Mobile Search for “dentist near me.

17. Google Tests New Search Notes Button

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Google is testing a smaller, more simplified button for adding notes to search results. This new button features just an icon of a notebook with a plus sign. The update was first noticed by Khushal Bherwani, who shared screenshots on X, highlighting the change from the original Notes feature launched last November in Google Search and Discover.

18. Bing Tests Clear Distinction Between Free & Paid Search Results

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Microsoft’s Bing is testing a clearer way to distinguish between paid ads and organic search results. This move comes after criticisms that Bing’s ad disclosures must be more transparent than Google’s.
The test, spotted by Frank Sandtmann and shared on Mastodon, includes a distinct visual separation using a white background for ads, enhancing visibility and distinction.

19. Instagram Tests Notes On Feed Posts And Reels

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Instagram has started a live test with extended Notes options for select users, allowing them to include Notes in feed posts and Reels. This new feature attempts to increase participation by providing conversation starter prompts.

Instagram Notes, which debuted in December 2022, are a simple way to stimulate interactions among users. They have grown in popularity among younger viewers, a vital demographic for Instagram as TikTok competes more effectively. Instagram intends to capitalise on its early success by incorporating Notes into various aspects of the programme and maintain its younger user base.

20. Threads Adds Recent Filter For Search Results

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Threads is getting closer to becoming a Twitter alternative by including a chronological filter in search results.

Threads Chief Adam Mosseri announced the addition of a “Recent” tab in Search, which allows users to see the most recent responses first. This improvement is critical for tracking real-time events such as sports, where X (previously Twitter) continues to thrive in giving timely updates.

The Threads team has been hesitant to introduce chronological discovery features due to the potential of abuse by spammers and scammers. Popular hashtags, for example, can be hijacked. To circumvent these concerns, Meta has adopted a unique way of incorporating these elements.

21. Meta Unveiled A New Tweetdeck-Style UI For Threads On Desktop

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Meta today introduced a new Tweetdeck-style UI for Threads on desktop, allowing users to create columns for relevant topics and browse real-time feeds for each.

As demonstrated by Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg, this new style allows users to build live streams of Threads posts on specific themes, allowing them to follow various conversations as they unfold. Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri revealed that users can pin different columns for their favourite searches, tags, accounts, saved posts, and notifications.

This update is comparable to TweetDeck, which is now known as “X Pro,” and is exclusively available to paid members. It’s a crucial inclusion because Threads, like Twitter, depends on real-time discussion. However, the Threads team has been wary of real-time feeds due to concerns about spammers and misinformation.

Meta aims to create a more positive real-time social experience with Threads, avoiding news and politics, and limiting the number of hashtags per post. 

22. Meta Adds Travel Mode For Quest VR Headsets 

quest-vr-headsets

Meta is enhancing its VR accessibility with a new “Travel Mode” for Quest 2 and 3 headsets. This feature allows users to enjoy VR experiences anywhere, overcoming the need for a dedicated space. Traditionally, setting up a Quest unit requires a clear area for user safety while interacting with simulated elements. However, Meta aims to reduce these space requirements, making it possible to engage in activities like watching movies in VR without needing a full range of motion.

23. Google Goes Big On Generative AI At I/O 2024

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Google is stepping up its AI efforts to maintain its advantage in the search business and the generative AI sector. Google introduced advanced AI technologies at the I/O conference, such as conversational search, enhanced image and video production, and personalised chatbots.

The most notable reveal is a new generative AI search mechanism, akin to ChatGPT, that offers comprehensive overviews in answer to queries. This could have an impact on websites that rely on Google for traffic, as consumers may no longer need to visit other websites for information. Traditional search results will still display below the AI-generated responses.

24. Google AI Overviews Launch In US Search Results

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Google’s AI Overviews, also known as AI Answers, will become available to all US English users within the next week. These generative AI replies try to answer complex questions by leveraging Google’s Gemini to generate responses and provide AI cards with links to publications for more investigation.

AI Overviews are provided for more complicated inquiries, where they provide additional value beyond standard search results. Contrary to popular belief, the existence of advertisements has no bearing on whether or not an AI Overview displays. Google has made this capability available to all US customers without charging for SGE.

25. Google Adds “Web” Filter To Only Show Text-Based Links In Google Search Results 

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Google is introducing a new search filter that displays only text-based links in search results. The filter is named “Web”. Clicking it removes photos, videos, and other types of search results, leaving only classic blue links.

Web filter. The web filter is adjacent to the other filters in the menu. Sometimes this means it is on the same line as the video filter, the news filter, and so on. Other times, it’s in the “more” menu.

26. Google Local Service Ads Tests Message Multiple Businesses

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Google is testing a new button for Local Service Ads that allows users to “message multiple businesses” simultaneously, instead of one at a time. Previously, this option only appeared after messaging the first business. Matt Casady spotted this feature and shared screenshots on X.

27. Google Launches New ‘Saved Comparisons’ Feature For Analytics

saved-comparisons

Google Analytics now includes a new tool for streamlining data comparisons. The “saved comparisons” feature allows users to save filtered chunks of data, allowing for quick and efficient side-by-side comparisons. This innovation is intended to simplify the process of comparing various data sets, allowing users to acquire insights and make more informed decisions.

28. Meta Joins AI Safety Initiative For Responsible Development

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Meta has announced its membership in the Frontier Model Forum (FMF), a non-profit AI safety collective dedicated to establishing industry standards and regulations for AI development. 

The FMF is setting up an advisory board and creating institutional frameworks, including a charter, governance, and funding, with a working group and executive board leading these initiatives.

While a future dominated by robots may seem distant, the FMF will address several pressing concerns, such as generating illegal content, preventing AI misuse, and handling copyright issues. 

Notably, Meta recently joined the “Safety by Design” initiative to prevent the misuse of generative AI tools for child exploitation. Meta’s Fundamental AI Research (FAIR) team is already progressing towards developing human-level intelligence and simulating brain neurons digitally to create a form of “thinking” in a simulated environment.

29. Youtube Clarifies Rules, Adds AI Soundtracks

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YouTube is rolling out a new tool that will allow producers to identify particular instances of breaches in their uploads. This update aims to better assist creators in addressing difficulties related to demonetization and restrictions.

Creators will soon receive remarks on the precise policies violated, along with timestamps showing where YouTube found infractions in their films.

YouTube clarifies:

“A creator can request a review if they upload a video through our Self-Certification process and see a yellow icon. Following the evaluation, Studio will provide a thorough account of the problems that resulted in the yellow indicator (for Limited or No Ads), along with the timestamps of those incidents.

This will allow the makers to review the issues raised and fix any problems, such as flaws in the video’s title or thumbnail.

30. Whatsapp Adds New Colour And Font Options In Status

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WhatsApp has introduced new creative options for its Status updates, allowing users to customize their ephemeral posts more effectively.

As shown in the example, WhatsApp has updated the font and colour options presentation in the Status composer. Now, users have more font styles and can change the colour of their text, not just the background.

WhatsApp Status is similar to Stories, providing users another way to stay connected by sharing updates with their contacts.

31. Whatsapp Experimenting With AI-Generated Profile Images

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Meta aims to lead the generative AI race, investing heavily in AI development and integrating new features across its apps. This includes WhatsApp, despite users primarily using it for messaging.

Meta is now developing an AI profile image generator for WhatsApp profiles. A screenshot from WABetaInfo shows the new code for a “Create AI Profile Picture” option in the latest WhatsApp version.

32. YouTube Adds A New Video Playback Quality Option For Shorts

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YouTube has introduced a new video playback quality option for Shorts and a special Minecraft effect to celebrate the game’s 15th anniversary.

The new Shorts video quality setting allows users to choose between Data Saver, Higher Picture Quality, or Auto Detection, which adjusts based on connectivity. You can find this option in your Shorts settings. According to YouTube, your selection will remain until you change it or exit the Shorts player.

Additionally, YouTube is testing new ways to enhance viewer interaction during live streams. They are experimenting with a “Reply” button and the ability to like Super Chats, providing viewers with more ways to engage with the community.

33. Google Adds Visuals To Source Knowledge Panels

visuals-to-source-knowledge-panels

YouTube has introduced a new video playback quality option for Shorts and added a Minecraft effect to celebrate the game’s 15th anniversary.

The new Shorts video quality setting allows users to choose Data Saver, Higher Picture Quality, or Auto Detection, which adjusts based on connectivity. This option is now available in the Shorts settings.

According to YouTube, once a selection is made, it remains until changed, or the Shorts player is exited. This means users can now manually ensure the best playback quality.

Additionally, YouTube is testing new Super Chat features for live streams, including a “Reply” button and the ability to like Super Chats, enhancing viewer interaction.

34. Bing Search Testing Tag Filters

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Microsoft is testing a tag filter for Bing Search results. Some users can now click a tab on the right side of the page to access tag filter options.

These options include filtering by:

  • Site or domain
  • Product/Service
  • Company/Organization
  • Event
  • Person
  • Other

35. Google Tests Special Reddit Search Result Snippet Interface

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Google may be testing an enhanced search result snippet interface for Reddit. In this test, Google shows additional details, such as the number of upvotes and comments on Reddit threads. This feature aims to provide users with more context about the popularity and activity level of Reddit content directly within the search results.

36. Google Analytics Real-Time Reports Add Users In The Last 5 Minutes

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Google has made real-time data from the previous five minutes visible in the Google Analytics real-time reports. Google used to simply display the last 30 minutes for users, but at the right moment, it displays both the last 30 minutes and the last 5 minutes.

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