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Welcome back to another Spark Social Report brought to you by Spark Growth! This week, we have some exciting news—Snapchat launches its Spotlight feature and users can expect Twitter’s verification process to be revamped in 2021. Keep reading for more social media updates.



Facebook’s Chief Operating Officer, Sheryl Sandberg, recently announced how Facebook will be giving back to the community this holiday season. The company has launched Season of Giving, a centralized hub where users can learn how to donate blood, participate in food drives, and engage in other charitable activities. With GivingTuesday set for next week, users can donate to nonprofits across the U.S. through the app and Facebook will match donations up to $7 million.

A new feature called “Drives” has gradually been released for U.S. Facebook users. Located in the Community Help section, Sandberg says collecting clothes, food, and other necessities for donations will be made easier.

screenshot of smartphone featuring facebook's new drive feature



For paid content creators on Instagram who use the Reels and Live features, this next update is for you! Instagram has launched a Branded Content tag for Reels. It’ll also be releasing the tag for Live in the next few weeks. For influencers engaged in paid partnerships with different brands, using the Branded Content tag will provide more transparency by clearly labeling promotional content.

Next, Branded Content ads can now be created immediately without needing to create an organic post beforehand. Instagram says this update gives marketers more flexibility in terms of the type of content they want to promote. Branded Content Story ads also saw an update with new elements users can tap on, including @ mentions and hashtags. This makes Story ads function much more like their organic counterparts.

screenshot of phone featuring instagram's new branded content ads


Product tags can also be used with Branded Content ads, giving users a more streamlined shopping experience. Last but not least, content creators and marketers can set a minimum age for their branded content by selecting just the age or include different ages by country. This feature will be particularly useful for certain products, like alcohol, where the legal drinking age may be different from region to region.



Three major social media platforms—Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube—are teaming up to fight against misinformation about the COVID-19 vaccine. The apps will be coordinating with Full Fact, a fact-checking charity, alongside other organizations around the world. The goal is to agree on a starting framework for dealing with misinformation by January 2021, ahead of the release of any vaccine.

Next, Twitter’s new prompt lets users know that the content they’re liking may be disputed. Over the past few months, Twitter has released tweet labels for content that may be misleading or untrue in light of the COVID-19 pandemic and the U.S. elections. These new prompts provide users with more context on why a tweet was labeled.


After being put on pause for three years, Twitter’s verification process is set to be revamped in early 2021! There is, however, some work to be done before the feature is finally re-released. The company is still building its public application process and wants users’ feedback. You can fill out a survey here or Tweet your ideas and feedback using #VerificationFeedback.

From November 24 to December 8, Twitter will be monitoring both the survey responses and any Tweets using that hashtag. Twitter’s verification process will start with six account types: government, companies (including non-profit organizations), news organizations, entertainment accounts, sports, and individuals (including activists and influential individuals).

screenshot of a survey for twitter's verification process



For those with epilepsy, TikTok is making it easier to avoid potentially harmful content. Its newest option in the Accessibility section allows users to remove photosensitive videos that may trigger seizures. The company worked with The Epilepsy Foundation of America to develop the new feature and says it will be continuing to work with organizations around the world to gather more feedback. TikTok states that more safety features will be coming over the next few weeks so stay tuned!



Snapchat is hoping its newest feature, Spotlight, will catch on with video content creators, and to promote it, the company will be giving away millions of dollars. Spotlight is a new tab in the app that features short videos, similar to TikTok. At this time, users can submit their best video Snaps to Spotlight for a chance to win some cash. The company says its proprietary formula will reward users based on the total number of unique views they get compared to the performance of other Snaps that day. Spotlight is currently available in select countries and the contest is open to those over 16 years old. Visit Snapchat’s official blog for more details!

a gif shocasing snapchat's new spotlight feature


For those of you who manage Snapchat ads, the company has released a variety of updates to help brands reach their audience and business goals. The Creative Kit will be getting some new AR (augmented reality) options, such as stickers and dynamic lenses. Login has been streamlined, allowing users to use their Snapchat credentials. Marketers can now optimize AR Lens campaigns for installs and set their own cost-per-install bid. Next, a new campaign option being offered to advertisers is App Conversion, which features an ad format optimized for link engagement. Lastly, a new bid strategy called Minimum ROAS (return on ad spend) has been released, which will allow marketers to reach the highest-spending Snapchatters on the app.



YouTube is currently testing automatically adding video chapters to a video. The app’s video chapters feature lets creators segment their video and provide short titles for each section, but it requires them to manually add timestamps. YouTube notes that it’s currently testing the feature with a handful of videos.

That’s all for this week. Be sure to check in next Friday for more social media updates! If you haven’t already, follow us on Instagram for fun marketer highlights, digital marketing stats, and more.


If all of the latest ad updates has you confused, don’t worry. Our team can help! Our social media marketing experts not only create custom strategies for our clients, but we help build their online presence so that it drives towards their business goals.

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