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Monthly update: October’s social and digital trends

Here’s our latest installment of headlines, trends and updates from social media, in partnership with The Content Marketing Association and Luan Wise.

Katie
3rd November 2021

Here’s our latest installment of headlines, trends and updates from the social media stratosphere, in partnership with The Content Marketing Association and Luan Wise.

This month’s update has three main sections so you jump straight to what matters most to you - or read them all like the social media guru you are:

  • Trends
  • Spotlight on Facebook v Instagram ad performance
  • New features and platform changes

You can also watch a replay of the live social media round up session here. It’s about 45 minutes long but you can change your playback speed settings to 1.5 to save some time (just listen closely because there is a lot to cover).

Screenshot 2021-11-03 at 10.12.49

People are spending more time in social apps, spending more money on ecommerce and adapting more virtual habits as a result of working from home. This ‘data never sleeps’ graphic from Domo, published by social media today, shows exactly what that looks like. This is the ninth iteration of the chart, presenting a range of digital consumption data as an overview of what’s collectively happening online every minute of every day.

You can start to plan your 2022 social strategy with our content toolkit, free strategy masterclass and guide to [best times to post on social media in 2022](/blog/best-times-to-post-on-social-media-in-2022/ "best times to post on social media 2022).

A deeper dive into how virtual and online habits have changed as a result of the pandemic can be seen in The global media landscape whitepaper. It includes some particularly interesting data on how the social media has evolved and how people are consuming content within social:

Screenshot 2021-11-03 at 10.14.44

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TikTok stays a firm fixture within in our trends update with a survey from the Influencer Marketing Factory naming it as the platform of choice for creators:

Screenshot 2021-11-03 at 10.16.09

And the milestones just keep on coming for TikTok, as it crosses the 1 billion active monthly users count. As a comparison, here’s how long it took other platforms to hit that same milestone:

Screenshot 2021-11-03 at 10.17.39

Spotlight on Facebook vs Instagram ad performance

For months social media professionals have been discussing whether Facebook organic reach has been killed off by ad focused algorithms and if Instagram ads serve a better purpose. There are compelling points on both sides of the argument. But, if we just focus on the ad spend and revenue aspect of Facebook V Instagram, what see that YoY ad spend has increased by 7.16% on Facebook, while Instagram has a greater growth, with an ad spend increase by 8.69%:

  • Instagram ads are more expensive, having a double CPC than Facebook ads.
  • For ads that have conversion goals, Facebook is the go-to platform, for having a 3.05% average click-through-rate, compared to 0.67% which is Instagram’s.
  • On Instagram the main focus on ads is in the Instagram feed - it has both the highest CPC, of $1.86 and CPM, of $7.27.
  • Instagram stories is the ad placement that converts the most on Instagram, having an average CTR of 0.76%.
  • Facebook Stories have the highest CPC - $0,55.
  • Facebook Feed is the king of ad placements: brands invest the most in it, and has both the highest CMP ($5.18) and the highest CTR (4.70%).
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New features and platform changes

A platform by platform breakdown of changes throughout October and updates that are on the way.

Facebook

Check out our guide on the best times to post on Facebook in 2022

Screenshot 2021-11-03 at 10.22.00

  • Facebook is seeing a steep decline in usage from younger users. This has been the case since 2012/13 but the decline is growing, with only users aged 25 and above increasing their use of the platform
  • Multi-group sharing is currently being tested. This means you can upload or select a post/image and share it to multiple groups within the same action. Instead of just selecting the one group from the audience option, you can select multiple
  • Following the initial early stage tests of its audio rooms, Facebook is seeing enough positive results to roll the feature our further
  • Linked to the above point, Facebook will also be launching a new audio tab to support this and all Facebook groups will be able to run audio rooms
  • Changes to Facebook ads mean that unconnected Facebook and Instagram accounts will be counted separately within ad reach data. If Facebook and Instagram accounts are not connected in the Accounts Centre, Facebook will assume they are two different people. This could mean that Facebook’s ads start to look like they are reaching more people than they really are
  • Facebook lives are returning to the story feature and Facebook is starting to roll out its own Reels feature

Instagram

Check out our guide on the best times to post on Instagram in 2022

Screenshot 2021-11-03 at 10.23.34

  • IGTV is no more! Instagram has retired its IGTV brand and combined video feed posts into a single format, to create a more streamlined video experience
  • Instagram Insights has added new analytics to provide more performance data for marketers, to specifically show who is engaging with your content, if they follow you and how far your reach is extending
  • Instagram ‘collabs’ go live! Initially launching as a test, Instagram collabs will allow people to co-author both posts and reels. Users can invite another account to collaborate on the post from the tagging screen within the app. When two creators/authors choose to collab the post will appear on both of their accounts
  • Longer video lengths are currently being tested within Instagram stories and you can now post reels to multiple accounts
  • Instagram is also upping its game with monetisation tools for creators to keep up with TikTok as a platform that creators want to spend time on

Twitter

Check out our guide on the best times to post on Twitter in 2022

Screenshot 2021-11-03 at 10.28.25

  • Twitter is rolling out professional profiles for businesses and creators. The new profiles require an application to be completed via a form within the platform - if accepted, profile pages will then display business information
  • Topic tagging has gone live for twitter users to help your content be found in relevant searches and start to build your expertise in specific content areas
  • Twitter Spaces is continuing to perform well and is now being rolled out on iOS. The audio broadcasts will also be better highlighted within the app to make it easier for people to join sessions
  • While it’s not quite reaching the heady heights of TikTok growth - Twitter user numbers are continuing to grow and it remains a popular platform
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TikTok

Screenshot 2021-11-03 at 10.29.11

  • TikTok holds its crown as the creator platform of choice and encourages a wider business audience by rolling out new tools for retailers, brands and mobile marketers. The TikTok creator market platform will help brands find creators that can deliver the content and messaging they need to find success on the platform
  • Auto captions can be added to all TikTok videos making the platform a more inclusive environment and extend the reach of content displayed there
  • TikTok will launch even more features next year with shopping and enhanced measurement capabilities among them

The best of the rest:

  • YouTube has made really easy to add auto captions to livestreams, presenters will be able to turn them on with just two clicks and even select alternative languages
  • Pinterest is adding more tools for shoppers to support the brands and businesses using the platform for monetisation of products and services
  • Snapchat is following suit by adding monetization tools of its own
  • Clubhouse has launched more link sharing options to help promote rooms and invite people to them - as well as expanding clip access for all iOS users

In summary

  • With 2022 just around the corner and so many changes coming into play with social media advertising - it’s a good time to review your current strategy, measure your performance and decide if you need to do anything differently next year (our 2022 strategy sessions can help with this)
  • The Creator Economy isn’t just a buzz word - it’s very real and monetisation of creator tools is now driving social media direction
  • Collaboration is becoming easier than ever and has the potential to double your audience while halving your work. Add this into your 2022 strategy for sure!
  • TikTok is set to continue its path to world domination with brand profiles and shopping on the way. Here are some great tips on using TikTok from Ryanair’s Head of Social

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