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Welcome back to Spark Social Report by Spark Growth, your weekly source for social media updates! This week, Instagram announced changes to its navigation bar that removes the shop tab, Twitter is expanding the bookmark functionality, and TikTok launched movie and TV show tags. Continue reading for more updates across social media from recently! 


Digital Marketing Insights 

2022 was a big year for social media with TikTok growth and new apps like BeReal. Data.ai’s app performance report gives insights into some key statistics from last year. Here are some highlights: 

  • TikTok generated the most in-app purchases of any social app in 2022 and a majority came from coin purchases, the platform’s in-app currency.
  • BeReal added 5.3 million users in August 2022, the highest number of new users of any social app in the U.S. 
  • The total time spent using social apps rose by 17% since 2021.

If you are interested in reading the full 91-page report click here or check out this article for more highlights. 



Verification for Organizations is Open for Applicants 

Twitter’s “Blue for Business” got a name change to “Verification for Organizations” and it’s now accepting applications. The only details we know so far are that the subscription service will provide affiliation badges for businesses such as the gold checkmark and a business logo badge for staff accounts. Businesses can apply to the waitlist where applications will be reviewed. 

New Functionality for Bookmarks 

Twitter is developing a new approach to bookmarks. Bookmarks are private and a way to save a Tweet to refer to later. The bookmark button is being moved to the top right corner, shown when viewing a Tweet, and folders are being added to organize the Tweets. Elon Musk believes this will improve the functionality of the feature. 

Hashfetti Feature for Branded Hashtags 

Next, Twitter has added a new element for branded hashtags called hashfetti. Currently, companies can create branded hashtags through Twitter ads with custom emojis. The new element adds emoji confetti when you click on the hashtag in the mobile app, seen in the video above. This is a small update but could make branded hashtags more effective and popular. 

Annual Twitter Blue Subscription 

Twitter launched a new annual option for subscribing to Twitter Blue. When subscribing on the web, users can choose between $8 USD monthly, $11 USD monthly for iOS, or $84 USD annually. Twitter Blue is currently available in the U.S., Canada, the U.K., Australia, and New Zealand. 



Instagram’s Updated Navigation Bar Removes the Shop Tab

instagram navigation bar


Instagram is changing the navigation bar on the app. A button to create content and post is being added to the middle and the Reels shortcut is being moved to the right, replacing the shop tab. Shopping tools on Instagram are not doing as well as expected, and although shops will still run, the shortcut is being removed. Instagram stated it will still be investing in the feature and the new navigation bar is coming in February. 

Updated Restrictions for Meta Ads Targeted to Teens 

Meta updated its data privacy restrictions for advertising to young users for its apps (Instagram, Facebook, and WhatsApp). Starting in February, advertisers can only use age and location as targeting options for teens. That means gender is being removed as an option. Additionally, teens’ common engagement habits will not affect the ads they are shown anymore. 

Also stated by Meta, in March, teens will have more ad controls by being able to restrict the types of ads shown or specific advertisers they would like to see less of. 



Dedicated Movie and TV Show Tags Through IMDB 

tiktok imdb feature


You can now tag TV shows and movies in TikTok posts. When clicking on a movie or show tag, users will access a dedicated page with film information from IMDB and view other posts with the same link. Users can also bookmark the film to save for later. This feature will come in handy for many users and help to promote movies and shows. 

Expanded State-Affiliated Media Policy 

TikTok is expanding its state-affiliated media policy to more countries. The policy adds a label on content from state-controlled media to inform users of accounts that are influenced by a government. This feature started in Russia, Ukraine, and Belarus last year, and has now been further developed and expanded to 40 new global regions. 

TikTok is working to ensure these labels are correct and properly assessed. Click here to learn more about how they assess an account. 



Updates to YouTube Analytics 

YouTube has announced new analytics for its YouTuber Studio. The new elements will give an in-depth breakdown of how each content type and video is contributing to your channel growth. The new format will show what your audience views most, such as Shorts, videos, and live streams. 

Location Tagging for Shorts

Next, the company is working on adding location tagging on Shorts. Users will be able to add a location when uploading on the app. Previously, this was only available on the metadata editor. This can help with engagement on Shorts and reach a more specific audience. 



Connect with Proxy Support 

WhatsApp is helping people stay connected with proxy support. If your local network goes down, choose a proxy server to keep connected. Some countries’ governments are working towards controlling information flow. So if there is a government-mandated communication disruption, a proxy allows users to connect through servers set up by worldwide organizations dedicated to helping people communicate freely. The messages are still protected by end-to-end encryption and are not visible to the proxy servers, WhatsApp, or Meta. 


That wraps up the latest social media updates you need to know about! Be sure to check us out on Instagram for more digital marketing trends and news. 

Social media marketing is more than just likes, it drives leads and sales. Click the button below to learn more about our social media marketing services. From influencer marketing to strategic ads that put you in front of your audience, our team can help!

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