Snapchat launches location-sharing 'Snap Map'

It’s not just a catchy name - Snapchat has launched a new location-sharing feature called Snap Map. Similar to Facebook’s rather creepy “Nearby Friends” functionality, you can now see where your friends are out and about and also share snaps with non-friends for 24 hours. There’s also a heat map showing people where the most snapping is taking place (at large events for example).

Facebook offers two new tools for targeting 'valuable' users
If you want to base your self-worth off a social platform’s advertising assessment of you, Facebook has now made that even easier with their introduction of these solutions to help advertisers get more value from their top consumers:

  1. Value optimisation - this enables advertisers to optimise their ad campaigns based on purchase value data passed through the Facebook pixel
  2. Value-based Lookalike Audiences - this allows brands to include a value column in their customer list, which they can then use to reach new people that look like their highest-spending customers

If you think this sounds a little confusing (and dehumanising...), check out Facebook's blog post about it. Then you'll really be confused.

Facebook to launch app for influencers to manage content
Finally! Anyone who’s worked with influencers before knows it can be quite a headache chasing them for (quality) content. Well stay tuned, influencer babysitters, as Facebook is set to launch an app that will help creators better manage their content on the platform. It also features a Live Creator Kit that enables influencers to more effectively manage live broadcasts, adding intros and outros, custom stickers and frames.

Instagram Stories hit 250M daily users and adds Live video replays

Instagram is leaving Snapchat in the dust as Instagram Stories reach 250 million daily users, up from 200 million in April and 150 million in January. You can also now add live videos to your Stories on Instagram so they’re viewable by others for 24 hours, whereas before they disappeared at the end of broadcast. In case you’re wondering what the difference between normal videos and a posted Live broadcast is…well, good question. They’re pretty much the same.

Instagram rolls out new face filters

Want to take a road trip without leaving your bedroom or put on a virtual face mask to get ready for bed? If so, you’re probably bored, but you’re also in luck! Update your iOS or Android applications to version 10.21 or higher to be able to access brand new face filters on Instagram!

Twitter is introducing a direct message button to help engage users

As Twitter doubles its efforts to become the go-to platform for customer services and sales, it’s rolling out a button that’s designed to make it easier to get users to engage with brands. The feature will mean that users can be prompted in DM to do a variety of things including writing tweets, following accounts or clicking through to websites, with brands able to add up to three customisable buttons.

YouTube boasts 1.5 billion monthly users….
My, my, what big user figures you have, YouTube! Its CEO, Susan Wojcicki announced the milestone at last week's VidCon conference in California, as well as mentioning that they're all 'logged in' users, which implies that there are even more viewers watching who aren't logged in to the platform. It was also revealed that, on average, a YouTube user will watch an hour of video every day.

...and introduces new VR180 format
It's like 360 video but...you know... half of that. YouTube has launched a new VR180 format in an attempt to get more creators onto the video creation bandwagon (and it's a very odd shaped wagon).

Spotify adds 40 million monthly active users in a year
Spotify has announced that it now has 140 million monthly active users, up from 100 million a year ago. Of course this is great news for its ad revenue stream, with Brian Benedik, VP and global head of sales at Spotify, saying that they have been able to increase business by 50% year-over-year. Further to this, Facebook Messenger users can now build a playlist together with friends in the Facebook Messenger app using a Facebook chat extension.

Aussies and their social media usage - the new Sensis Report 2017 is out!!!

Consider Sensis the social media Santa Claus - ho ho honing in on every social stat you could put on your wish list. Great news is that this year’s Sensis came with two reports - one that came out last week focused on the consumer, and a second about businesses will be released on the 29th of June. Unsurprisingly, with 94% usage, Facebook is still the most prominent platform in Oz, followed by FB Messenger, Instagram, Snapchat and Twitter (YouTube is not included in these stats). The report also shows that trust levels for brands that interact with customers in a positive way have increased from 52% to 64%.

IKEA uses AR to improve customersshopping experience

Calling all IKEA lovers – watch this space – as your shopping experience will never be the same again. The retailer will be one of the first brands to launch an augmented reality app with the release of Apple’s new iOS 11. Customers will be able to use photos of their home and place digital versions of IKEA furniture on them to get an idea of how it will look in real life. HOW AWESOME! Personally, I can’t wait…

Microsoft secures patent on AR wearables that tell you what to eat

In case you’re struggling, like me, to stick to a healthy diet, Microsoft may have a game-changing solution for this ongoing problem. We’re already tracking pretty much everything we do from sleep, to sport, to steps, and with Microsoft’s augmented reality glasses it will now be possible to more accurately track your eating habits. The device will provide meal recommendations based on your nutritional needs and daily consumption. Will this stop my constant craving for burger and chocolate? Mhm…probably not…

This post courtesy of @vanessa_mller