We Are Social Asia Tuesday Tune Up #181
More tumultuous times for Reddit. Last month, the administration shut down several Subreddits which it had deemed offensive to the ire of some users who claimed the movie violated free speech. Now, the unexpected firing of one of Reddit’s key employees, Victoria Taylor, has sparked a concerted movement by the site’s volunteer moderators to block access to popular sections as a response to the dismissal. The Verge quotes a moderator as writing that this is just another episode in the ongoing difficulties between administrators and the volunteers who are lifeblood to the site.
In China, Alibaba has launched a partnership with the fried chicken chain to enable the use of its mobile payments system in the store. At the register, customers navigate to a QR code on an app which is then scanned by the cashier. The Alipay system is regarded as the most preferred in China thanks to its flexibility and simplicity. Users can employ various methods of payment such as credit card, payment on delivery, and an escrow service, which facilitates secure transactions between buyers and sellers.
This deal comes on the back of a collaboration between Walmart and Alipay, which not only yields the sophisticated payment system for the retailer but a whole host of new data to explore. Alibaba has stakes in Weibo and Snapchat. Perhaps in future they will further integrate mobile payment with their social platforms.
Marketing challenges in Western Europe
A poll by the Economist Intelligence Unit has explored the biggest challenges for marketers in Western Europe (France, Germany, UK) over the coming few years. It’s interesting is to see how each market has a different view of where its biggest challenges lie. While the shift to digital was important for all three, in Germany it was the number one concern, mentioned by 47% of respondents. In France, the biggest challenge looks to be ‘acquiring appropriate skills’ (31%), while in the UK it’s that age old issue: budget (52%).
Facebook changes its algorithm to make videos more relevant
Facebook has updated its News Feed algorithm to take into account when somebody expands a video to full screen, unmutes one or opts to watch one in HD. Facebook will show users more videos similar to those they interact with in any of these ways, while the platform will use the interactions to judge which videos should appear higher in other News Feeds. It’s the latest move in an ongoing battle for views between Facebook and other video services, primarily YouTube, and one puts Facebook’s data capabilities to good use.
Facebook to share ad revenue with video creators
It’s been a big week for Facebook’s video war with YouTube. As well as the above algorithm changes, Facebook has announced plans to start sharing ad revenue with video creators at the same rate YouTube already does: 55% goes to the creator. This will happen through its new ‘Suggested Videos’ product, in which ads are played between videos – the revenue from these is then split between all videos played in one session.
The system is being launched with a set of premium content partners, including the NBA, Fox Sports and Funny or Die; Adweek published an interview with the latter’s Vice President of Marketing, Patrick Starzan, which you can read in full here. In it, he discusses Funny or Die’s motivation to increase video views and how creators will change videos to fit the new product.
Facebook tests ‘cost-per-view’ video ad option
More Facebook video news! The network is testing an option for video advertisers to pay only once their ad has been viewed for at least 10 seconds, on a ‘cost-per-view’ basis. It’s aimed at preventing advertisers from feeling short changed, if their ads are technically being ‘viewed’ every time a user scrolls past them.
Twitter adds Personas for ad targeting
Twitter has introduced a set of ‘Personas’, which basically amount to a set of audiences for advertisers to target easily, based on similar attributes. Available personas include millenials, professionals and business decision-makers, of which I would proudly consider myself all three, though others may argue that I am none.
You can now open snaps with a single tap
The most recent Snapchat update for Android and iPhone will give users’ laboured fingers a rest. You’re no longer required to hold your finger down to view snaps and stories, because, as Snapchat CEO Even Spiegel puts it, “It’s just kind of annoying to hold your finger down for so long.” Other minor improvement include the ability add new friends in your vicinity and customise your Skype QR code.
Brands and the Women’s World Cup final
It’s no surprise that the most popular FIFA Women’s World Cup of all time proved a huge marketing opportunity. When USA beat Germany in last week’s semi-final, they received support from a variety of brands. They’ve since gone on to win the final, so clearly it did the trick.
English FA causes uproar with sexist tweet
England were one of the success stories of the Women’s World Cup, finishing in a more than respectable third place. The English FA tried to congratulate the team… but in doing so, they referred to them as “mothers, partners and daughters”. The tweet has since been deleted. Naturally, that didn’t stop some excellent responses from the Twittersphere.
Sprint and T-Mobile CEOs have Twitter spat
What’s worse than when two brands have awkward interaction on Twitter? When two company CEOs do it. Marcelo Claure of Sprint and John Legere of T-Mobile, to the naughty step with you both. Never say ‘u mad bro?’ again.