By Shane Carroll, Vivian Tan and Ashleigh Sim

Movie Stars Kickstart Release Buzz With An Emoji 🎈

They float, Georgie. And with the sequel to 2017’s It remake taking flight this year, you can expect a returning wave of campaigns riffing on the film’s iconic red balloon. Starting with its actors themselves. Days before the trailer dropped, the likes of Jessica Chastain, James McAvoy, and Andy Bean got the ball rolling (or floating) on Instagram with photos that all featured that red symbol of doom creeping up ominously behind them, sending fans into a frenzy.

The movie’s official Instagram built on that, unveiling a clean slate after shedding all content from Part I to focus on teasing Part II. Overall, both a fun and conversation-starting kickoff to the sequel’s social campaign – reinvigorating the tried-and-true balloon motif before opportunistic brands turn it stale again in the coming months.

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Instagram is nudging you to buy more stuff with their new curated account @shop

Instagram is doubling down on e-commerce. This week, Instagram launched its own curated account, aptly called @shop. The account plan to highlight emerging brands from top shopping categories including fashion, beauty, and home decor. @shop publishes posts from these online merchants in hopes to inspire the community of shoppers on the image-sharing app.

On top of that, every product shown on @shop has its own shopping tags, allowing interested buyers to make a direct purchase without leaving the app. As of this afternoon, the account had approximately 50,000 followers ―and counting.

Instagram has been accelerating its e-commerce development this past year and they have been rather successful. Its e-commerce features have been working out for some marketers such as Adidas.

Spotify’s new 'Storyline' feature lets artists tell the story behind their songs

In a bid to increase engagement, Spotify turns to the new popular social media format – Stories. Musicians can now interact with listeners using story style content to show trivia, the inspiration for their music amongst other kinds of content. By bringing such insights from normal editorial notes and interviews to the songs, Spotify can gain an edge over other music subscriptions like Apple Music. Currently only selected iOS and Android users have access to this added feature but we can expect that the feature might be rolled out to our mobile devices soon.

The addition would give Spotify a form of original material beyond the occasional album exclusive. This update could also make the app more relevant to the younger demographic who already understand and regularly use Stories in other social apps.