We Are Social Asia Tuesday Tuneup #160
Twitter opens new R&D centre in India
With India set to become Twitter’s largest market after the US (with a projected 40 million users by 2018), it comes as no surprise that they have confirmed to open a new R&D centre in Bangalore, Twitter’s first centre outside of the US. It is likely that the Zipdial team, which they recently acquired last month, will form the basis for the new R&D facility, to develop new Twitter products relevant to users in emerging markets such as India and Indonesia.
Chinese Tinder copy Tantan raises $5m
According to Sina Tech, the Beijing-based app Tantan from Yay Media Labs recently raised $5m in series A funding, in a round led by Bertelsmann Asia Investments. It is an exact carbon copy of Tinder (but with stickers); letting users swipe through location-based profiles, match with mutually interested users, and chat with them. Founders Pan Ying and Wang Yu claimed Tantan has made over 15m matches, seen 20m swipes and sent 1m messages every day.
YouTube beats Facebook in Superbowl ad views
If you’re reading this, you’ve either got access to the internet or a trusty friend who’s printing it out for you every week. Assuming it’s the former, you’ll probably have seen something to do with the Super Bowl – perhaps even one of the halftime ads. Figures from the day after the event say that YouTube was the top place for online views of the ads, 126m to Facebook’s 61m, but that Facebook saw the most shares: 70% of all those online. Here’s a picture from the Budweiser ad, obviously included because of the dog.
Twitter’s revenue is better than expected for Q4
Twitter announced mixed results from its Q4 report. The network now hosts 288 million monthly active users, an increase of just 4 million for the quarter, well below the 291 million predicted. However, its revenue was up 97% year-on-year to $479m, compared to an expected $453m. Ad revenue reached $432m, of which 88% came from mobile. The Guardian published a piece about what we can glean from the report, stating that growth may have been hampered by technical issues with Apple’s iOS8 launch. The British newspaper discusses Twitter’s 2015 plans, including a focus on recommendation/curation, the growth of mobile video and big plans for the Cricket World Cup.
Expect tweets to appear in Google searches
Google and Twitter have struck a deal that allows the former access to the latter’s stream of data, which will make tweets more visible in search results. There’s no ad revenue involved – rather, the move is looking for a mutual benefit as tweets become more searchable and searches more useful.
Instant Timeline for new Twitter users revealed
Twitter is testing its ‘Instant Timeline’ feature, which it hopes will solve some of the problems encountered by new users. When you set up an account, it will scan your contacts (provided you grant permission) and analyse who they are/who they follow, then begin showing tweets that it thinks will be of interest to you. Vindu Goel tested the feature for the New York Times, describing the algorithm as “eerily accurate” at divining his interests. As you can see, it doesn’t look wildly different from Twitter as we know it.
Twitter to serve ads beyond its network
Twitter is planning to serve promoted tweets on partner apps like Flipboard and Yahoo Japan. The move could well prove lucrative – the company has claimed that, in the last quarter, it gained 185bn impressions outside of Twitter itself.
You can buy promoted tweets in Analytics
Twitter wants to earn ad revenue from small and medium businesses, so it’s making it easier to buy promoted tweets. Now, users can simply log in to the Analytics dashboard, select a tweet and budget and watch the magic happen.
Instagram tweaks videos to auto-loop
Instagram videos will now automatically replay in users’ streams, much like Vines. You can change settings so that it only happens on WiFi, but can’t turn off the feature altogether. Not that you’d want to, of course.
LinkedIn shows strong growth in ad revenue
LinkedIn ad revenue in Q4 grew to $153m, up 56% from the previous year, and accounting for 24% of total revenue. During 2014, ads raised $454.5m for the company, up 46% from 2013. If you prefer your numbers columned, here’s all that again in graph form:
The Gap produces Instagram campaign but gets kicked off Tinder
The Gap is getting all romantic this Spring. First of all, it’s launched a series of Instagram videos, designed for the new looping feature, under the hashtag #SpringIsWeird. They feature influencers Jenny Slate and Paul Dano, and will track “the burgeoning romance between [the two], as they navigate chance encounters, first dates and moody spring weather in the hope of finding their perfect fit.” Their perfect fit! Very good, clothes brand.
As if that wasn’t enough, the high street retailer is now on Tinder! Or it was, until its campaign got pulled for violating the terms of service. Not sure if that’s better or worse than my own Tinder record.
Better. It’s definitely better.
Chipotle gets poetic in new campaign
High-street fast-food chain
Asks fans to send in haikus
For chance at prizes.
@ChipotleTweets And you shall find Him, Wrapped in Swaddling Foil, Burrito Jesus. pic.twitter.com/5mevITCQQS
— JakesTea (@JakeWethington) February 5, 2015
@ChipotleTweets There is a secret – love I have, for the heavy – handed employee
— Bob Plow (@bobplow) February 5, 2015
@ChipotleTweets I hate you haiku, you’re too hard to do. Burrito.
— Kathy (@Rollergirl116) February 5, 2015
Coca Cola accidentally quotes Hitler
Coca Cola asked Twitter users to tag negative tweets with #MakeItHappy, in order to have them made into cute figures using ASCII code. Lovely, right? Well, provided nobody tags a quote from Mein Kampf. And the campaign isn’t automated. And… oh dear.