Here is our take on the most notable stories in Digital and Social Media Marketing from last week.
Last week Snapchat began their journey into search through their acquisition of a mobile search startup, Twitter's US growth was "significantly downgraded" by eMarketer, and social media marketers shared their biggest challenges with the channel.
Tech Crunch | August 15, 2016
Snapchat, looking to eat into Google's search empire, has acquired Vurb, a mobile search startup. Vurb's differentiation is that they are a search engine to help connect users with activities that would be of interest to them. Per Vurb's website, the app helps users "find and explore things to do from sights to see, restaurants to try, events, music, and more...based on your interests, what’s trending, time of day, weather, and location."
One of Snapchat's greatest strengths is their ability to document events as they are happening through the eyes of their users. This acquisition of Vurb seems like a natural extension of that. As events are happening, Snapchat could leverage this platform to serve ads for tickets to that event, display reviews to restaurants in the area, or an infinite other different possibilities. This could make Snapchat ads more actionable, which is something their current ad offering is missing.
eMarketer | August 15, 2016
eMarketer "significantly downgraded" their US user growth projections for Twitter through 2020. By the end of this year, Twitter will roughly have 52.2 million active users. This is only an increase of 2% from 2015. By comparison of the same metric, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Tumblr will grow 3%, 17%, 9%, and 10%, respectively. Potentially worse for Twitter, as the pool of social network users grow, the percentage of these users who use their platform is projected to decline.
These statistics tell one thing: Twitter has a great core fan base, but they are struggling to attract new users. While Facebook's relatively low growth has to do with US user saturation, not stagnation, Twitter is struggling to adapt and find their next evolution of core offerings to attract new users. For digital marketers, Twitter is still worth testing, but there may be a definitive ceiling on the horizon.
Marketing Dive | August 19, 2016
Social Media Marketers are all sharing a common headache, measuring ROI. In a Simply Measured study, a whopping 61.1% of marketers found that measuring ROI was their main dilemma. The next few problems Social Media Marketers are facing is securing budget and resources (38.2%), integrating social and business goals (33.6%), analyzing results via a dashboard (27.6%), and understanding the results (25.2%).
Measuring ROI is a tricky obstacle to get by in digital marketing - but it proves to be extra difficult for social media marketers. However, with platforms like Facebook and Twitter leading the way, Audience Onboarding is the solution that will answer this challenge. Through carefully organized campaigns, marketers can onboard marketing lists of prospects, customer, or donors to these platforms and "matchback" the responders to the campaign. The resulting analytics can tell you exactly how each campaign performed.
Historically something done in Direct Marketing, digital matchbacks will greatly improve the ability to measure ROI. Once ROI is more measurable, securing budget and resources will have a much lower barriers.