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Welcome back to Spark Social Report by Spark Growth, your weekly source for social media updates! This week, Instagram launched a range of features for messages, Twitter is testing experimental new advertisement formats, and Snapchat has a new integration with YouTube. Continue reading for more updates across social media from this week!

Digital Marketing Insights

Google announced that it will stop collecting data for its Universal Analytics platform on July 1, 2023, making way for Google Analytics 4 to serve as the new property type for the platform. 

What should marketers do to prepare for this switch? CMSWire broke down how marketers can start crafting a strategy that will lay the groundwork for the transition. Here are some of the key takeaways from the article. 

  • Set up Google Analytics 4 tracking as soon as possible, and start using both Universal Analytics alongside Google Analytics 4 until the transition.
  • Shift your focus to collecting first-party data, which will become essential as restrictions on cookies continue to get tighter.
  • The transition to Google Analytics 4 will shift conversion signals from last-click attribution to data-driven attribution, which marketers will need to understand to make the most of the transition.
  • While Universal Analytics used a session-based data model, Google Analytics 4 is based on events and parameters. Starting to use Google Analytics 4 now will give marketers the time they need to ensure they are tracking data efficiently before Universal Analytics is phased out.

Interested in learning more? Check out the full article by CMSWire here



New Messaging Features For Instagram

Instagram has announced multiple updates and new features for messaging. The company is following through on its announcement late last year that cited an invested effort in creating new, fun ways for users to connect through messaging.  

Users can now reply to messages without having to leave their feed, making chatting while browsing less disruptive. Posts can also now be shared quickly from within the feed by tapping by holding the share button.

instagram messages


A new tab at the top of a user’s inbox will display friends who are also online at that very moment, creating what Instagram calls “serendipitous opportunities” to reach out.

New integrations with Apple Music and Amazon Music will allow users to share 30-second previews of songs that can be listened to directly inside of the chat window. Spotify integration is coming soon.

Adding “@silent” in front of a message will send the message without a notification to the receiving user. Instagram group chats now have polls, and a new “lo-fi” inspired chat theme can be applied to any conversation.

Message threads


Updates To Instagram Reels Editing Tools

Instagram has updated the editing process for Reels, making it easier to reorder, delete, and trim video both captured within the app or pre-recorded.

Tapping on the thumbnail of a clip will now expand the video, making it easier to grab and drag the handles to trim clips. Additionally, tapping on the new “Re-order” button allows the user to drag and drop clips to reorder their position in the reel.

The “Add Clips” button will return the user to camera capture mode, allowing them to continue filming or upload additional pre-recorded clips.

updated tools for reelsupdated tools for reels 2


Instagram Location Pages Now Link To “Guides”

When visiting a Location Page on Instagram, users will now see a new “See Related Guides” link that will take the user to a collection of “Guides” that have tagged that location.

Guides were rolled out back in 2020 with an initial focus on creating wellness content. Guides have since then grown to cover a wide variety of topics, including the local guides that are now featured on Location Pages.


Interactive Advertisements Being Tested On Twitter

Twitter is testing three new types of interactive advertisements for the platform: Interactive Text, Product Explorer, and Collection Ads.

Interactive Text ads will feature a typeface that is both larger and bolder than the standard Twitter font. Along with this larger font, advertisers will have the option to highlight up to three words in the ad’s copy that will drive users to landing pages specified by the brand. The highlighted text will come in 10 different colors that marketers can choose from. A small number of U.S. brands, such as Oreo, Bud Light, and Wendy’s, are currently testing this feature.



Product Explorer ads will allow advertisers to upload and showcase their products in 3D for the first time. Users will be able to swipe and rotate around the product to view it from different angles and click on a shop button to visit the advertiser’s website.



Collection Ads enable brands to display a primary image along with five smaller thumbnail images below it. Users will be able to horizontally scroll through these five images while the main image remains static above. Each image has the ability to drive users to individually chosen websites or product landing pages. Both Collection Ads and Product Explorer Ads are currently being tested by New Balance, Lexus, and Bose.



New Tests For Status Update Indicators On Twitter

Alessandro Paluzzi, mobile developer and reverse engineer, provided screenshots of a feature Twitter is testing that would allow users to add customizable status updates to their Tweets.

The status indicators would appear below the user’s display name and above the content of their Tweet in a small dialogue window. For now, it appears that it may also be possible to add emojis to these status indicators. The indicators may also be present on the profile page of the user.

Twitter tested a similar feature back in 2018 that would allow users to include their current status on their profile, which would then be added to each Tweet posted while the status was active. The current test appears to be a revitalization of this idea.

Twitter Working On New “Edit Button”

Elon Musk, who is now Twitter’s biggest shareholder and latest board member, posted a Twitter Poll on Monday asking users if they wanted an edit button. 

As seen above, over four million users participated in the poll, with 73.6% saying that they wanted the feature. In addition, Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal also chimed in on the topic, noting that the consequences of Musk’s poll would be important.

While it is still unclear exactly what is happening with this feature, it appears that Twitter is at least considering the much-requested edit option.


New “Background Player” For TikTok Live Streams

Originally posted in a Tweet by Jonah Manzano and then shared by social media expert Matt Navarra, TikTok has added a new “Background Player” option for TikTok Live. Users can now choose to keep the live stream playing in a floating window or keep just the audio playing while navigating outside of the TikTok app.


New YouTube Link Stickers On Snapchat

Snapchat has added a new integration feature with YouTube that allows users to share videos directly from YouTube into their Stories as a sticker. The new sticker includes the title of the video, the video’s thumbnail, and a link for Story viewers to go directly to the shared video in the YouTube app or in their mobile browser.

Pressing “Share” on a YouTube video will now provide a Snapchat option, which will automatically bring the user to the Snapchat Camera with the sticker automatically added.



New ASL Alphabet Lens on Snapchat

A new lens has been added to Snapchat that aims to inspire users to learn American Sign Language (ASL). 

The new feature, led by an entirely Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing team, teaches users how to fingerspell their names, practice the ASL alphabet, and play games using ASL. The lens uses new, cutting-edge hand-tracking technology. Snapchat aims to bring new and improved experiences to the platform that will provide inclusive experiences for all users. 




New “Share to Reels” Option For Third-Party Developers 

Facebook has added the option for third-party developers to integrate a “Share to Reels” feature into their applications in order to make it easier for users to share their content directly to Facebook Reels.

share to reels


The “Share to Reels” feature allows third parties to integrate a Reels button into their applications, allowing users to directly upload videos to Reels rather than downloading their content and then importing it to Facebook.


New Updates For WhatsApp Voice Messages

WhatsApp has added several new enhancements to the voice messaging experience. These new features include: pausing and resuming recording, waveform visualizations, out-of-chat playback, the ability to pick up where you left off listening to a recording, and options to increase playback speed.

Voice messaging was introduced back in 2013, and there are now over 7 billion voice messages sent daily through WhatsApp. Now that audio features are trending across other major social media platforms, these updates make WhatsApp’s already popular feature even more versatile.

whatsapp voice messages



That wraps up the latest social media update for this week! Be sure to check us out on Twitter for more digital marketing trends and news.

Interested in learning more about how social media marketing can help grow your brand? Click the button below to connect with our team. Let’s discuss how we can help you reach your business objectives!

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