Snapchat files for massive IPO
My! What a big IPO you have. After confidentially filing for it last year, Snap (formerly known as Snapchat) has officially gone public, filing its IPO through the Securities and Exchange Commission. It’s expected to go public at a valuation of more than $25 billion in early March, and the public filing means that now everyone can see its more private data around financials and plans for future growth.

If you’re like me, you might be thinking, how much was Facebook valued at when it went public? $104.2 billion back in 2012. If you take a look at this chart, you can get a sense of the reason behind the difference.
How Snap IPO compares with Facebook and Twitter

But there’s plenty of room for Snap to grow. As you can see, they’ve barely managed to monetise markets outside of the US.
Snapchat monetisation

On the other hand, there’s significant competition from Instagram and Facebook, who are rapidly developing products that are eating away at Snapchat’s user numbers. Instagram Stories and the new ephemeral offerings from Facebook have caused a reported 15-40% decline in Snapchat Story views.
Instagram vs Snapchat

Snapchat opens up ads API
Eight months after debuting the technology at Cannes, Snapchat is now letting all marketers buy campaigns via the ads API. Until now, only 100 companies had been able to use it including Gatorade, Nissan, Unilever and McDonald’s. Whilst it’s not yet completely self-serve like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn, allowing access via ads, creative agency and software partners is one step closer to making advertising on Snapchat more accessible.
Snapchat API

You can now create Snapcodes for any website including *whispers* PORN
Snapchat has rolled out a new update that makes it easier for users to create their own Snapcodes of anything (even if it’s NSFW). These can then be used online, out in the real world, on posters, in store etc. With so many daily users of Snapchat, perhaps this is marketers’ last attempt at mass adoption of QR-type codes?!
Creating Snapcodes

Facebook earns $8.81B revenue in Q4, has slower (but still impressive) user growth
Facebook had another strong quarter in Q4 2016, earning $8.81 billion in revenue, which blew it past analyst estimates (it hovered around $8.51 billion in estimated revenue). It pulled that cash money from its 1.86 billion monthly users, up 3.91% this quarter (however, slower than its 4.67% growth last quarter). Daily active users also hit 1.23 billion, up from 1.18 billion last quarter and up 18 percent YoY, compared to 17 percent last quarter.
Facebook Daily Active Users Q4 2016

Facebook planning set-top box app for its video content
Facebook is planning to create an app for devices like Apple TV where users could watch all their favourite Facebook videos in one place. It won’t just be a version of their app, which you watch on your TV – it’ll be like Netflix or Amazon Prime. There are even rumours that Facebook wants to license their own original content. Come on Facebook, you can’t do everything… Can you? ?
Facebook TV?

Facebook launches measurement partnership program updates
Facebook has announced a list of updates regarding its measurement partnership program, which include an expanded partnership with Nielsen and comScore and the addition of a new partner, DoubleVerify. The company also offered details on the status of current integrations and the launch of a new online portal to help marketers see how their Facebook ads perform in comparison with other platforms like print or TV.
Facebook Marketing Mix Modelling

Facebook starts planning brand lenses for users a la Snapchat
Facebook is talking to the big wigs of Hollywood about letting them promote their new movies on Facebook using animated selfie masks. Facebook Live already lets people use filters to put special effects onto live video, but until now, brands have not been able to play with the tech. This announcement must come as another blow for Snapchat who is slowly seeing all its previously unique attributes shamelessly duplicated on Facebook and Instagram.
Facebook Masks

Facebook tweaks algorithm to favour authentic content
Facebook has announced it’s doing more to keep misleading or spammy content away from your newsfeed and to bring relevant content higher up. New signals have been established to “better identify and rank authentic content” (i.e. not ‘fake news’) as well as a new, real-time prediction algorithm to serve stories that might be relevant to you even faster.

You are fake news! Donald Trump

Using emojis on Instagram leads to higher engagement
You have my permission to keep using emojis in brand (and personal) posts on Instagram. Posts with emojis bring 17% higher interaction rates than those without.
Top 10 Emojis on Instagram in 2016

Instagram is testing multi-photo albums for everyone
It looks as if multi-photo albums on Instagram are nearly here as Android users apparently are able to create albums already on the platform but can’t post yet. I do look forward to seeing even more amateur photos of bleak architecture and trees blowing in the wind.
Instagram Multi-Photo Albums

Pinterest introduces ads focusing on searches
Pinterest can now offer marketers the option to target people searching for products on the platform. This means users can be captured when they’re still idly searching for inspiration and not even sure of what they’re looking for. Global head of partnerships at Pinterest, Jon Kaplan, said that most Pinterest searches don’t include a brand name, so targeting the ads to keywords is also a wise tactic for marketers.
Target Pinterest Advertising

T-Mobile and Verizon get into Twitter brawl during Super Bowl
It all began with a 50 Shades of Grey ripoff from T-Mobile. The idea they were trying to get across is that if you’re a Verizon customer, it’s probably because you’re addicted to pain (in the form of fees and taxes). Spicy. Why don’t we get brands calling each other out in Australia?!

We Are Social Sydney celebrates Chinese New Year
In local news, Sydney’s A-Listers (jk, just us) gathered around large servings of dumplings and Tsingtao to bring in the Year of the Rooster in style. ?

Family dinner ? #bfixchinesenewyear

A photo posted by We Are Social AU (@wearesocialau) on Feb 3, 2017 at 4:01am PST

This post courtesy of @jackjbreen.