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As per usual, this week’s Spark Bites has you covered with all the newest social media updates! Instagram is utilizing new technology to combat bullying on the platform, Google Plus is shutting down after seven years, and YouTube TV introduces a ton of new features! ...

This has been a big week for social networks. There have been major upgrades, redesigns, integrations, you name it! While some social media apps overlook basic household maintenance, others show us their humane side. Read on to find out more!   Facebook   In a bid to beat tween-focused competitors like Snapchat, Facebook has launched “Messenger Kids,” a text/video chat app exclusively for children. One huge USP of the app is that kids needn’t sign up for an account at all and parents have control over their friend list. The social network also has special safety filters in place to prevent kids from sharing inappropriate content. Whether these efforts pay off and the app gains popularity remains to be seen.   Facebook has always taken a strong stand against pre-roll ads on videos. However, after the launch of its (YouTube-esque) Watch platform, the social...

In a recent post on it's Mobile Ads Blog, Google shed light on an important issue facing online companies.  The search giant conducted a study of over 1000 smartphone users in the United States and came to a decisive conclusion: mobile-friendly websites are more important than ever.  The most interesting statistic is that 61% of users said that they’d quickly move onto another site if they didn’t find what they were looking for right away on a mobile site.  This means that if your site is not optimized for the mobile format, you are giving away customers to your competitors at an alarming rate.  Here are more conclusions from the study: 74% of users are more likely to return to a site that is mobile friendly, thus creating brand loyalty and increasing customer engagement 96% of consumers say they’ve encountered sites that were...

There is no decisive formula for a stellar social media strategy.  Every business has a different audience, different resources, and a different story to tell.  While it's safe to say that almost everyone should be on Facebook and Twitter, not every social media platform is right for every business.  Google+ is one of those platforms that may be good for some but not worth the time for others.  Today's article from customerthink.com lays out some food for thought regarding Google+ and whether or not it's right for your small business. The article mentions a few pros and cons of Google+. One benefit is that it's a great way for your business to get discovered. Since Google is the king of search engines, listing your business on it's Google+ Local Pages will increase your chances of being found.  Another pro of Google+...

The infographics keep on rolling out this week! Today's article from Mashable comes off the heels of our Wednesday post (here) discussing another Mashable article talking about the Google's newest app, Local (here). With Google+ beginning to integrate more and more with other Google features, the social media underdog is continuing to keep itself relevant. The article links to a fantastic infographic that gives you 20 pretty convincing reasons to switch to Google+ as your go-to social network. Even if you're not convinced to make a complete switch to make this your default social media tool, you'll likely be swayed into thinking about giving Google+ another try. Read the article and see the infographic here...

Google+ is still finding ways to keep itself very relevant in the social media world. Today it introduced something very useful for consumers and businesses alike, incorporating the reputed Zagat guide into their new 'Local' tool. The Local tool lets users search for information on local businesses as well as share their own experiences. Today's article from Mashable has all the details on this new Google+ feature. Click here to read on. ...