Twitter to open an office in Hong Kong
While Twitter may be blocked in China, that is not stopping them from starting an office in Hong Kong to help Chinese companies grow their businesses overseas. Following Facebook's strategy, Twitter's move is in a bid to grow itself even in markets where it does not have any users.

Snapchat received US$200M in funding by Alibaba
Continuing its investment spree, Alibaba has recently invested US$200 million in American chat app Snapchat. Just last year, Alibaba also invested US$280 million on another American chat app, Tango in line with its broader strategy of expanding its global reach.

Brands post more on Instagram than Facebook
As organic reach on Facebook reaches an all time low, brands are turning to Instagram. A new study has shown that the world’s top 250 brands post on average 9.3 times a week to Instagram, but only 8.8 times to Facebook. Recently topping 300 million active monthly users, Instagram is proving to be an attractive place for brands, not least because all content posted will reach every single fan’s feed.

Facebook to provide topic data to brands
Through a partnership with DataSift, Facebook will now offer brands an insight into who is talking about what on the platform. This aptly named ‘topic data’ will include the demographics of people discussing a given topic, the specific things spoken about within it, such as brand names or products, and even the sentiment of the discussion. Advertisers will also be able to filter by the location and demographic information of the people within the conversation.

Twitter adds two new features for advertisers
This week, Twitter has launched a new analytics home page and in-tweet promotion feature, to make it even easier for brands to promote themselves on the platform. The analytics home page will provide a holistic view of tweet activity, such as how many people have seen your tweets, mentioned your username and shared your links. Also updated is the ‘quick promote’ feature which can now be done directly from a Twitter profile rather than through the analytics tool.

Twitter experiments with TV timelines
As the popularity of second-screening during live TV grows, Twitter is experimenting with ways of making this experience easier and more enjoyable for users. The new feature would track when users are talking about or searching for a particular programme and offer them the option to try out the show’s dedicated timeline. If the user accepts, they would see a new Twitter interface showing three column feeds (highlights, media and all) helping audiences to delve deeper into TV conversations and the promise of more eyes on your hilarious X Factor tweets.

Twitter buys live video app, Periscope
Its been confirmed that Twitter has acquired Periscope, a beta stage startup that lets users “explore the world in real-time through someone else’s eyes”. The move into live video is an obvious one that fits seamlessly with the real-time news element of the platform as well as their current focus on video content. The deal has come at a time when Meerkat, a similar live streaming video app, has gained a lot of traction. But,Twitter might have put a stop to Meerkat’s exponential growth by cutting access to the platform’s social graph, essentially making Meerkat users build their own following from scratch rather than using the fan base they have already acquired on Twitter.

YouTube launches 360-degree video
YouTube makes the first steps towards a virtual reality offering by introducing 360-degree videos. The videos can be watched through a browser, but also on mobile, with the android app allowing users to change the viewing angle based on where the phone is pointing. This feature means the android mobile app can be used with a Google Cardboard headset. YouTube have uploaded a playlist of the first 360-degree videos that are available.

Apple buys all Twitter ad space for smart watch launch
In a bid to stop rival brands hijacking conversation around the Apple Watch unveiling,the technology giant bought out Twitter ad space on the day of the launch. Firstly with a promoted trend around the ‘Apple event’, but also with promoted tweets linked to all keywords associated with Apple and watches. The move follows on from last year’s iPhone 6 launch, where Samsung managed to steal much of the Twitter conversation.

Brands bid for attention during Apple Watch launch
Of course, that didn’t stop brands trying to join the conversation, so here’s our pick of some of the best and worst attempts…