Posted on the 10th November 2015

Being sociable – the latest social media updates

Those with a keen eye may have noticed that their favourite social media channel has had an update or two in recent weeks. Our short attention spans mean we’re already bored of sending snaps of us spewing rainbows to friends and we’re demanding more than just a favourite or reply to our tweets.

To keep you up to date, we’ve rounded up the latest features that the multi-billion dollar industry has launched to keep up us hooked.

Twitter – Polls and hearts

Because Twitter’s ‘favourite’ star icon “could be confusing, especially to newcomers” the social media giant has swapped the simple star shape for a red heart ‘like’, mimicking Instagram. The simple change - designed to draw in new sign-ups and increase engagement - has caused a stir among current users, who feel there is a big difference between marking a tweet with a favourite and ‘hearting’ something, which is more of a public display of agreement and over-familiarity.

Polls on Twitter are another attempt to increase engagement on the platform and can be added quickly to your tweet and could work well for businesses as long as they are not overused. My reservation however, is that they didn’t last long on Facebook… but will Twitter’s reputation as a platform for debate mean they stand the test of time?


Snapchat – Speed filters and Geofilters

Snapchat is going from strength to strength and its latest face effects are the reason you’ll spot so many people pulling odd faces at their phone. But giving yourself a zombie face is old hat, Snapchat now enables users to slow down, speed up or reverse videos with its latest slow-mo, fast-forward and rewind filters.


You can also add geofilters, which are location-based graphics of a close landmark or city name – users can even submit their own designs to the Snapchat community and, for businesses, there is the option to create sponsored geofilters.

LinkedIn – Connections in the news

Some users are starting to receive emails from LinkedIn about their connections in the news. The professional channel has created an automated feature that trawls online news stories and newswires for articles containing the names of network members. The clever algorithm then assesses whether the individual in the story is your connection, or someone with the same name, and then shares the story via email if it’s a match.

Currently this is just an automated service, but if LinkedIn does decide to create an option for users to build their own ‘in the news’ entries, it could be a key opportunity to spread news about your business in a targeted way. If you’re unsure whether this is for you, you can opt out of the feature in your LinkedIn privacy settings.

Facebook – Message requests

Facebook is swapping the ‘other’ inbox for message requests on its Messenger app. If you weren’t aware of the ‘other’ inbox, it was a separate private message box that could only be accessed via the website (not the app) and stored any messages you receive from people who aren’t your friends, or friends of friends – usually spam (or weirdos). Occasionally however, it would result in you missing a message from a new friend you have no mutual connections with. Given that you don’t need a Facebook account to use Messenger, a name is all you need to connect with someone and online.

What are your thoughts on the latest social features? Tweet us @bcsAgency