Digital Marketing News – July 22nd, 2022
You may have noticed that Instagram now throws suggested posts in your feed. I find some of the recommended posts welcome, others annoying. And apparently I’m not the only one annoyed by the change. Nearly 100,000 Instagram users signed a Change.org petition calling for Instagram to stop trying to be like TikTok. (Yes, Instagram got that “suggested content” idea from TikTok.) That petition, by the way, was launched by an influencer named Tati Bruening. But Bruening isn’t the only influencer who wants Instagram to get back to its photo-sharing roots. Kylie Jenner joined in on the fun as well.
“MAKE INSTAGRAM INSTAGRAM AGAIN,” she posted… on Instagram. She signed it: “SINCERELY, EVERYONE.”
Please note: Jenner has 360 million followers on the platform. So she’s an uber-influencer. Will Instagram listen? Not if the company stands to make more money with the new feed format.
New Instagram Videos Under 15 Minutes Will Automatically Become Reels
If you go to post a video on Instagram, you might see a new notice: “Video posts are now shared as reels.”
Indeed, going forward any video under 15 minutes gets posted as a Reel. There’s an advantage to that. When you post a Reel, it might get a recommendation. As a result, more people may see it. But to earn that recommendation, the video can’t exceed 90 seconds in length.
WordPress Releases Gutenberg 13.7
It seems like Gutenberg was just born yesterday. And now we’re already at version 13.7. One new feature in the latest version allows you to lock block elements. That will prevent unwanted changes. Additionally, an enhancement to the pop-up modal menu blurs the background page. That improves the focus. Finally, you now have the ability to create more templates for posts, pages, tags, and categories. So, if you’re a WordPress user, talk to your development team about getting the latest version of Gutenberg.
Google: Unique Ip Address Won’t Give A Ranking Boost
If you’re hosting a site on a shared IP address, you don’t need to worry that your ranking performance is limited. Because it’s not. According to Google’s John Mueller, you don’t earn any SEO benefit when you have an IP address all to yourself. “Just to be absolutely clear, using a shared IP address is fine,” he tweeted this past week. “There is no SEO advantage to using a unique IP address.” And it’s not the first time he said that. So you can take this one to the bank.
Snapchat Disappoints On Q2 Results, Stock Plunges
Shares of Snap, Inc. fell about 30% last week after the social media company reported Q2 results that fell short of analysts’ expectations. Snap lost two cents per share. Analysts were expecting a loss of just one cent. Revenue also came in shy of expectations. The company took in $1.11 billion versus the anticipated $1.14 billion. Revenue grew 13% year-over-year, but analysts wanted to see growth of 16%.
“We are not satisfied with the results we are delivering, regardless of the current headwinds,” Snap said in its letter to investors. The company blamed sluggish demand for ad sales on its lackluster revenue number. Snapchat also said that Apple’s 2021 iOS update, a tough economy, and increased competition from TikTok all contributed to the poor performance. As a result of those challenges, Snap will “substantially” cut back on hiring and reduce its expense rate growth.
Twitter Adds 9 Million Users
Twitter also reported earnings this week. And it fell short on the revenue number as well. The social media company took in $1.18 billion in Q2. Wall Street expected $1.32 billion. That revenue figure, by the way, shows a decline of 1% from the same period a year ago. Like Snap, Twitter blamed its revenue drop in ad industry challenges. And, of course, the company also blamed some of its unremarkable earnings on the elephant in the room named Elon Musk. Twitter lost eight cents per share. Analysts expected positive earnings of 14 cents. However, the platform did gain about nine million monetizable daily active users (mDAUs) from the previous quarter. But even that number fell short of analyst expectations. Twitter said that costs related to the Musk acquisition amounted to $33 million.
Alphabet Misses On Q2 Earnings, Stock Rises Anyway
A recurring theme here: Alphabet, the parent company of Google, reported weaker-than-expected earnings this past week. The search giant reported revenue of $69.69 billion. Analysts expected $69.9 billion. YouTube accounted for $7.34 billion of that overall revenue. Search and Other revenue amounted to $40.69 billion. Revenue growth slowed to 13% from 62% in the same period a year ago. Alphabet also reported earnings per share of $1.21. Wall Street was looking for $1.28. The company offered no revenue forecast, but shares rose in after-hours trading anyway.
Shopify Reports Earnings Miss
Shopify also reported a miss on the top and bottom lines. And lowered guidance. The ecommerce company lost three cents a share in Q2. Analysts expected a profit of two cents per share. Revenue came in at $1.3 billion. That’s an increase of 16% YoY but slightly under estimates of $1.33 billion. Gross merchandise volume (the total amount of products sold on the platform) stood at $46.9 billion, below projections of $48.8 billion. The company also projected operating losses for Q3 and Q4. Before earnings, Shopify reported it will cut 10% of its workforce.
Linkedin User Sessions Grow 22%
Microsoft released the latest performance update for LinkedIn this past week. It’s got a lot of good news. User sessions grew by 22%. Overall revenue grew 26%. Additionally, Microsoft said that it sees “record engagement” with the platform. The company didn’t define what it means by “record engagement.” Further, Microsoft reported “record engagement” on LinkedIn every quarter since 2018. And that could be really what’s happening. But it would be nice if Microsoft were more transparent.
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