Instagram Gives Businesses Best ROI
Where can brands get the best results promoting themselves online? Twitter is receiving hype as an advertising tool, but according to a new study, Instagram beats out its competitors as the social media destination most effective at turning digital ‘likes’ into cold, hard cash.
Business analytics firm SumAll looked at brand performance on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and Google+, and issued a verdict in no uncertain terms: “On this day, Instagram has been appointed supreme ruler of the social media universe,” the company’s blog proclaims. SumAll looked at data from 6,000 customers and determined that Instagram gives businesses far superior returns on investments than other social networks. In the U.S., Instagram drove revenue up between 1.5-3 percent, and the photo-sharing app produced even larger gains in the U.K.
While SumAll appears to be the first analytics firm boldly coronating Instagram for its branding superiority, a study by SimplyMeasured highlighted how swiftly brand engagement grew on the photo-sharing site in 2013. SimplyMeasured found a 350-percent increase in brand engagement among ‘top brands’ over the past year. And it appears these brands are engaging with purpose, since active Instagram use bolsters revenue. SimplyMeasured echoes SumAll in its recommendation of Instagram over other platforms. “There’s been less resistance to the addition than other networks have seen, suggesting that users are more comfortable with branded content when it’s visually appealing,” the study notes.
Facebook Working on Artificial Intelligence
Facebook is reportedly moving forward with a new research laboratory intended to “bring about major changes in artificial intelligence.” Yann LeCun, a New York University professor of computer and neural sciences, posted about the new laboratory on Facebook and Google+.
LeCun’s post also includes news of a partnership between Facebook and NYU’s Center for Data Science intended to carry out research in data science, machine learning and artificial intelligence. He added that Mark Zuckerberg would announce the new laboratory on Monday at a conference in the Lake Tahoe area.
Facebook first formed the AI team, which currently has eight members, in September. “The goal here is to use new approaches in AI to help make sense of all the content that people share so we can generate new insights about the world to answer people’s questions,” Zuckerberg explained. “Over time, I think it’s going to be possible to build services that much more natural to interact with and can help solve many more problems than any existing technology today.”
Facebook Updates Employment Status Section
Facebook lately has loved borrowing and adapting from other social networks. While hashtags are a Twitter original, it looks like Facebook is trying to get users to share more information about their employment status – similar to LinkedIn. In the left side of timeline, when a user completes a job, Facebook asks users if they want to share that they don’t have a job currently. We’ll just have to wait and see how people respond, and whether or not they use this new feature.
Google+ Auto Awesome Makes Your Photos Festive
The Auto Awesome feature onGoogle+ was updated on Thursday to add sparkle to photos that feature items that could use an extra twinkle or two – think Christmas trees, holiday lights, or a Menorah. Images that feature snow will be updated so that it looks like snow is actually falling over the picture. While it’s unclear how long this Auto Awesome feature be in effect, the new feature is certainly a fun way to enhance your holiday pictures, and maybe encourage a few additional photo uploads.
Facebook Considers Adding “Sympathize” Button
Facebook‘s no closer to instating a Dislike button, but according to Facebook engineer Dan Murillo, the company has considered the idea of a “sympathize” button to help users show their support for friends going through a tough time. Murillo discussed the possibility of a it at Facebook’s Compassionate Research Day, held December 5. The potential button wouldn’t appear alongside the Like button – instead, whenever a user expressed a negative emotion or reported a hardship, Facebook would replace the Like button with the Sympathize button, so users could show their support without implying that they like what’s happening.