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2015 in a snap shot – What has happened and what’s new in social media- Part 1

How Facebook and Twitter have evolved in 2015

Welcome to the first series in an analysis of the biggest things that have happened so far in the world of social media. 2015 has proved to be a busy year where many new features and tools were brought to life with the intention of helping marketers and advertisers get better results.

This post will specifically focus on reviewing how Twitter and Facebook have been working on the expansion of their current features, while in part two I will review other social networks.

There is a strong focus on providing marketers with a set of new advertising features in order to turn paid content into a better experience. New toolkits are also added with the intention of improving video creation and promotion. We have also seen an expansion of analytical tools which broaden the understanding of how to create better campaigns that drive business results. Amongst all these tools is a set of fresh online resources were also launched to educate and train not just agencies but business owners as well.

Here’s a look at the biggest announcements, tools and features created so far in 2015 in pursuit of making Twitter and Facebook become a set of more effective tools.

Twitter 

Twitter changes 2015

 

January 2015:

  • Twitter brought mobile camera and inline editing allowing the capture and sharing of videos up to 30 seconds long which can be uploaded from the camera roll
  • Launch of a Bing-powered translator for web and mobile apps which can provide translations between more than 40 languages
  • Twitter made private conversations with a group easier with Group Direct Messaging (DMs) allowing users (and also brands) to add multiple contacts to a group chat, even those who don’t follow each other

March 2015:

April 2015:

  • Launch of ‘retweet with a comment’ feature for web and mobile users which allows users to quote tweets without using up any of their 140 characters
  • Embedded tweets get a makeover to feature photos at the top of the embed to emphasise the visual side of content

 May 2015:

  • Twitter announced a partnership with Google aimed at starting to show tweets in search results. This integration was established with the aim of expanding Twitter’s reach to more users and make search and social tighter
  • Introduction of a partnership with Foursquare to pinpoint location tagging in tweets and offer the opportunity for businesses to create location-based information

June 2015:

  • Twitter started autoplaying videos and GIFs allowing them to play automatically in user's feeds which eliminates the need to tap on them to start playing

July 2015:

  • Twitter unveiled Audience Insights Dashboard designed to give more demographic, interest and behaviour information about their audience and people who engage with tweets to help target better campaigns
  • Background wallpaper was removed from profile pages as well as timelines which were replaced with a blank background
  • Summary Cards received an update to display more link content in the timeline for mobile users

Twitter Advertising

Twitter ads changes 2015

March 2015:

  • Quick Promote advertising feature designed for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) to get their best content in front of more customers
  • Launch of ‘Partner Audience’ ad targeting feature that lets advertisers and publishers select intended demographics and target users based on their activity outside of the social network

May 2015:

  • Launch of Auto Amplify service designed to help advertisers with creation and purchase of video clip ads
  • Objective-based ads’ became available to all advertisers globally. This new tool allows advertisers to get access to 6 types of objective-based campaigns and only pay for actions aligned to them

June 2015:

July 2015:

  • Launch of Twitter Ads Companion tool available on Twitter’s app on iOS and Android. This mobile management tool lets advertisers manage and check campaign performance, optimise budget and schedule as well as respond to notifications while they are on the go
  • Rollout of ‘Twitter Ads’ button to users’ profile pages on iOS and Android which is present right next to the ‘Edit profile’ The feature allows users to manage their ad campaigns while on the fly
  • Launch of event targeting, an advertising feature designed to help brands and businesses reach people engaged with live events
  • Introduction of video app ads to help advertisers promote their apps with video ads

Facebook

Facebook changes 2015

January 2015:

  • To compete against Yelp and Foursquare ‘Place Tips’ were launched offering businesses a new tool which gathers information about them (e.g. recent Posts from their Page, upcoming Events, recommendations and check-ins) and displays it to people while helping them connect and learn about places they visit

February 2015:

  • Introduction of a buying and selling feature to Facebook Groups allowing members to add a ‘Sell’ feature when creating a post

March 2015:

  • Facebook removed all fraudulent and inactive accounts from page ‘Like’ counts causing reduction in Fan numbers
  • Introduction of free ‘Analytics for Apps’, a tool designed to help measure and provide insights about app’s customer base, user behaviour and engagement aimed in helping marketers run better ads in order to maintain user retention
  • Launch of ‘Topic Data’ which allows marketers gain more understanding of an audience through what they share and engage with on Facebook
  • Launch of ‘Subscribe Button’ for Event Pages which notifies subscribers when the page hosts an event nearby their location
  • Announcement of an embedded video player that can easily add Facebook videos to a website
  • Rollout of ‘Blueprint’ training and certification program for brands and marketers
  • Launch of ‘Learn how’, an online learning centre which offers simplified guides to frequently asked questions
  • Introduction of ‘Business on Messenger’ program which allows customers to chat directly with companies

April 2015:

  • Launch of ‘Riff’, a collaborative video clip app

May 2015:

 June 2015:

  • Facebook added a new ‘Video Tab’ in Page Insights enabling publishers to determine more easily the performance of their videos
  • Launch of ‘Author Tags’ for website allowing publishers to encourage their Facebook readers to follow authors of these articles

July 2015:

Facebook advertising

Facebook ads changes 2015

January 2015:

  • Announcement of ‘Conversion Lift’ tool to help marketers determine the impact of ads and improve their marketing decisions

February 2015:

  • Announcement of ‘Dynamic Product Ads’, new ads which allow the creation of campaigns to target certain products or service catalogues to a specific audience across multiple devices
  • Facebook brought ‘Relevance Scores’ giving advertisers an inside look into how Facebook’s algorithm ranks ads to help them improve targeting and lower the costs

March 2015:

May 2015:

  • Introduction of mobile app ads in the carousel format supporting up to 5 images with links
  • ‘Call-Now’ button added to Facebook’s ads enabling customers to phone a business right from the ad they saw on their News Feed
  • Facebook gives publishers ‘Native Tools’ to customise native ads in third-party apps
  • ‘LiveRail’ introduced support for display ads in mobile apps alongside video
  • Launch of ‘Deep linking’ for mobile app install ads, a feature which sends people to a specific place in the app after it's downloaded

June 2015:

  • Launch of ‘Ads Manager’ app which makes setting up and monitoring performance of ads while on the go more convenient. Other features include setting up images and text ads, availability to change budgets and schedules, end dates as well as receive push notifications
  • Announcement of ‘Facebook Lite’, new 2G-friendly app for Android in India and the Philippines
  • Expansion of ‘Desktop Video App Ads’ in Power Editor and Ads Create Tool
  • Facebook made ‘Carousel Ad Format’ available for mobile app install ads and mobile app engagement ads
  • Facebook revamps Ads Manager and Power Editor to speed up the ad creation and optimisation process

July 2015:

 

 

 

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