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Little Bits Digital Trends: Brands plan to invest more in search in the next 12 months

This month we are happy to share some interesting Media, Content and Design announcements, articles, features and reports along with our take on each, to help keep you up to date with the latest marketing news.

Three Things Marketers Should Know About Netflix’s Possible Foray Into Ads

Three Things Marketers Should Know About Netflix’s Possible Foray Into Ads

The arrival of a major new ad-seller wouldn’t immediately create a buyer’s market, but it could yield creative new approaches. Three things’ marketers should know about what Netflix’s change could mean for them.

  1. It won’t be a flood. Meaning Netflix isn’t likely to suddenly turn streaming-TV advertising into more of a buyer’s market.
  2. Data will be a key battlefield. Netflix will have to grapple with new kinds of considerations about data if advertising enters the picture.
  3. Fresh eyes could bring new approaches. One possible option could be a foray into TV-based commerce. 

Our take: Personally, I love the idea of a Netflix with ads. This option provides an opportunity to reach the streaming giant’s younger, more affluent viewers.

Google Unveils New Maps Advances, Shopping Tools and Search Insights at I/O 2022

Google Unveils New Maps Advances, Shopping Tools and Search Insights at I/O 2022

At their annual I/O Summit, Google shared some key announcements. New Maps features will merge ariel and street-views to create more interactive models of the work around you. 

A new Carousel ad format in search will let consumers browse between several different product types in one swipe-able ad format (like what you see on social platforms). 

In addition, a new personal ads insight engine will let users control their Google Ads experiences, including opting in or out of seeing ads related to sensitive topics. Read on for a more complete run-down of these and many other shared announcements.

Our take: We are excited to hear about all the new developments Google has in place to enrich the user experience. 

Brands Plan to Invest More in Search in the Next 12 Months

One in six brands plan to increase their paid search advertising budget over the next year.

A new report from Forrester, on behalf of Microsoft, shows that the development of the “workday consumer” is creating even more touchpoints during the average buying journey, as people continually shift between personal and professional searches and activity while working remotely. As a result, 60% of companies surveyed said they plan to increase advertising budgets for search, online video, and display over the next year.

Our take: Consumer habits and preferences have shifted. Brands already recognize this and are planning to invest more in search and other types of advertising, according to the report. Search continues to be an important touchpoint during multiple phases of the buying journey – from initial research, to produce exploration, to purchase (and everything in between). “Go where your consumers are,” is a simple statement and a very complex challenge. In the “before times” marketing focused on connecting with customers everywhere but work. That all changes when work is potentially everywhere and anytime.

Global CTV Impressions Outpace Mobile, Accounting For Nearly Half Of Video Impressions

Connected TV (CTV) surpassed mobile as the channel with the greatest share of global video impressions, with 46% of all video impressions, up from 40% in 2020. Meanwhile, mobile dropped from 43% to 39%, a sign that consumers keep flocking to streaming devices to get their content.

Our take: The past two years have seismically changed consumer behavior and content consumption habits. CTV is no longer in its experimental or emerging stage. It’s an integral pillar in the marketing landscape and offers consumers a premium viewing environment coupled with data-informed targeting and captivating ad formats.

Introducing New Ads and Messaging Tools for Small Businesses

Many businesses are finding Facebook and Instagram ads that open to a WhatsApp chat the best way to get discovered by new customers and have a conversation. To make it easier to create these ads, starting soon we’ll make it possible to create the full ad directly from the WhatsApp Business app. This will make it faster for small businesses looking to find new customers and grow.

Our take: These tools were built to help improve how small businesses connect with customers and identify leads. And, with 71% of people saying they want to communicate with businesses the same way they do with friends/family—the focus is on Facebook and Instagram ads that open to a WhatsApp chat. They’re also testing a new way for businesses to send promotional messages to customers who opt in directly through Messenger.

Facebook’s Removing a Range of Location Tracking Tools as Data Regulations Continue to Evolve

Meta is deprecating some location-based features on Facebook. Users can continue to use Location Services to continue to monitor how their location information is collected and uses, however some services like “Nearby Friends, weather alerts, and location history” will be going away. 

This may be in response to further privacy regulations coming out of Europe or a move to lessen the number of users opting out of location tracking. Last year it was reported that Facebook had started using device accelerometer data as an alternative means of pinpointing user locations even if users had opted out of location tracking via the Apple update. This subversion of privacy protection measures has caused the company to incur significant fines, these changes could be a way of creating a workaround the current location restriction. 

Regardless of the reason, Facebook is about to lose another swathe of data, which could be used to power its ad platform.

Our take: We may see some regulations appearing within the next few months that brings more clarity to these changes. We may also see Google responding similarly, only time will tell in this ever-changing data privacy landscape.

Instagram Added Reels Templates

Instagram Added Reels Templates

If you’re familiar with making Reels on IG, you’ve probably spent lots of time trying to time your cuts just right to match the song or trend that you’re going after. IG Reels Templates make this so much simpler by allowing you to quickly copy clip timings for an existing Reel — saving tons of time and effort.

Our take: Love it. As content creators this makes things much easier. But we’re still waiting it out to see how accessible these templates are, especially for brand pages, who historically have less features available than users and creator accounts.

Instagram Is Testing a New Full-screen Home Feed View

As discussed in earlier months, IG is pushing video content over static images this year. Part of this rollout is testing full-screen images/videos.

Our take: IG is trying to keep pace w/ Tiktok on this one who utilize as much screen space as possible to capture your attention. Thinking vertically while shooting and editing content may be more important than ever and perhaps the days of square photos being the standard could be coming to an end. For now, it’s in testing, but we see this as a very likely permanent move for IG.

Instagram’s Testing a New Stories UI Which Could Have Big Implications for Your Content Strategy

Instagram has been testing a new Stories presentation in the UI that hides Stories posts after a certain frame count. Some stories are now only displaying the first three frames followed by a ‘Show All’ prompt located on the top left of the screen. This may be the latest effort in Instagram’s Reels-first focus as the social media platform continues to push users to focus on Reels instead of other content. It is worth mentioning that Reels now make up more than 20% of the time spent on Instagram.

Our take: This may have an impact on future story-based campaigns. Now is the time to utilize Reels as they continue to find support and growth within Instagram.

YouTube Shorts Up To 30 Billion Daily Views As Shorts Ads Begin Testing

YouTube Shorts Up To 30 Billion Daily Views As Shorts Ads Begin Testing

And that’s not all – according to Google, Shorts is now averaging over 30 billion daily views. That’s a significant increase from the 5 trillion all-time Shorts views that YouTube reported back in February, which underlines the rising popularity of short-form content, and why every platform is now making it a focus.

Our take: Yet another way for YouTube to monetize video.

We hope you have enjoyed our June edition of Little Bits from Littlefield.

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