Analytics, Security and More
March 14, 2018

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New in Digital is a blog series dedicated to highlighting digital news from across the web and explaining what those developments mean for organizations in the public affairs environment.

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In this age of digital consumption, it’s sometimes hard to tell what’s real and what’s fake when scrolling through your feed. Brands want to know they’re reaching the right audiences with their content. Facebook is trying to combat incendiary ads with a new mailing system, while Snapchat is trying to lure users back and Instagram is making a big push for brands and users both to start publishing Stories.

Snapchat rolls out analytics tool

Content creators want a way to track who consumes their content and how. One of the big knocks on Snapchat from an advertiser perspective has always been that there was very little data to gauge the effectiveness of content on the platform. That’s why Snapchat is rolling out an analytics tool for certain influencers which will detail view counts, viewership details and even audience breakdowns.

In recent months, many influencers have been moving away from Snapchat to other platforms, especially Instagram. In addition to sharing some elements of its back-end with parent platform Facebook, Instagram also provides detailed analytics for their engagements. Since its controversial redesign, Snapchat has been trying new tactics to keep its users happy and boost the ranks of influencers on the platform.They’re hoping more data might be the key.

How brands can take advantage of Instagram stories

Instagram stories have definitely benefited from the mixed reception given Snapchat’s redesign. Users and brands alike have moved their short-form sponsored video content to the platform. As of November 2017, Instagram Stories topped 300 million daily users and is only growing.

Stories on Instagram include some cool interactive features, like polls and links to drive user engagement right inside the platform. These interactive features help a brand better connect with its audience and create a reputation for interesting content. Brands also can use Instagram takeovers and give one individual control of the brand’s Stories for a specific window of time. This can humanize a brand and give users a feeling of affinity for their products or message.

Facebook plans to use U.S. mail to verify identifications of election ad buyers

To combat the spread of fake news, Facebook is take a page from a (very old) form of communication: U.S. mail. The marketing behemoth will be implementing a new procedure for entities purchasing advertising related to an election in the United States. Facebook will be sending a postcard through the mail to verify the identities and confirm the locations of those advertisers.

Advertising that mentions a specific candidate running for a federal office falls under this new plan, not issue-based political ads. Each postcard will have a specific code that will allow the buyer to verify their location.

This brings up several questions: Is this really the most efficient way of doing this? Will this program truly be able to scale in the face of a national election like the presidential race in 2020? Can Facebook scale up the infrastructure to generate thousands and possibly even tens of thousands of postcards as election advertising will likely continue to surge?

It’ll be interesting to see how Facebook enacts this new policy, and we’ll be watching in November to see if they can pull it off.

Between the 2018 elections and the rollout of new analytics tools, it’ll be a busy few months for brands and companies online. Advertisers will be forced to adapt to these new changes, and the whims of consumer preference could leave some platforms in the dust.

Stay tuned for more New in Digital posts.