Welcome back to the Weekly Download — your favourite digital marketing news roundup!
On the agenda today: Meta prepares to drop a Twitter clone, TikTok tests a new AI chatbot, a warning about youth social media use, Instagram adds search ads placement into its Marketing API, and as always, some Friday fun.
Meta’s microblogging platform is due to drop this summer
With ongoing turmoil at Twitter, Meta is determined to build the world’s next big microblogging platform, and according to a new report from TechCrunch, the app should be ready to launch sometime this summer.
The text-based app will stand alone but integrate with Instagram. Users will be able to retain their Instagram account handles and verification, and their followers will be notified to follow them on the new platform — which has yet to be named.
TechCrunch says that Meta wants to attract high-profile public figures with early access, and notes that the company has an advantage when it comes to building community due to its family of existing apps, including Instagram, Facebook, WhatsApp, and Messenger.
Based on a (somewhat blurry) example I got, Meta's new app looks a lot like Twitter.— Lia Haberman (@liahaberman) May 19, 2023
So, could this take over all the Twitter screenshots we've been seeing on the Feed lately? Maybe.
It’s impossible to predict how audiences will respond but this could be an alternative. pic.twitter.com/xgQa1kUjCl
Based on some early leaks, like the ones pictured above, the platform certainly looks a lot like Twitter. But how will it compare in popularity? We’ll be following along and will be sure to let you know!
TIkTok is testing a new AI chatbot called Tako
TikTok is reportedly testing an AI chatbot called Tako, a virtual assistant that can recommend videos based on search terms.
In screenshots released by The Verge, it appears that tapping on the chatbot leads the user to a new chat screen with several conversation prompts, where Tako can also answer a wide range of questions.
1/ We're in the early stages of exploring chatbot tools with a limited test of Tako with select users in the Philippines. Tako is an AI-powered tool to help with search and discovery on TikTok.— TikTokComms (@TikTokComms) May 25, 2023
According to a TikTok spokesperson, the chatbot is “a limited experiment” and is not currently available to users in North America or Europe. For now, the test is only in the Philippines.
U.S. Surgeon General issues urgent warning about youth social media use and impacts on mental health
A new advisory issued by the U.S. Surgeon General, Dr. Vivek Murthy, solidifies what many of us already know to be true: Social media can be detrimental to youth and their mental health.
The 19-page advisory details how social media can pose harm to children and teens, by exposing them to content based on violence, bullying, and self-harming behaviours, among other things.
While the report also notes that some good can come from social media, including connection with peers, self exploration, and development of interests, it emphasizes the potential harms and calls for solutions led by policymakers and technology companies.
While urgent action has been encouraged, it remains to be seen whether those involved will answer the call to protect their youngest users.
Instagram adds search ads placement to its Marketing API
More good news for marketers: Instagram will now allow for ads in Instagram search results via the platform’s Marketing API.
With the new update, marketers will be able to use third-party social media management platforms to create Instagram search ads, making the process more streamlined.
According to Social Media Today, the new capacity will also enable ad analytics, making it possible for third-party platforms to provide full ad creation and analysis capacity within their management apps — a convenient change that could also lead to a lot more brands testing Instagram’s search ads placement.
Heartwarming and fun, all rolled into one! We love this story of Brad Ryan and his grandma, Joy Ryan, and their quest to visit all of the U.S. national parks. Check it out below!
@abcworldnews Brad Ryan and his #Grandma Joy were on a journey to visit every U.S. National Park. Seven-and-a-half years later, #DavidMuir shares where they are in their #journey and their message of #hope. #WorldNewsTonight #WNT #News #ABCNews #AmericaStrong #UnitedStates #NationalPark #adventure #travel #nature #bucketlist #grandmasoftiktok ♬ original sound – ABC World News Tonight