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Hey October people! And welcome to the newbies.

Last month we commented on how quickly September came around and now we can’t believe it’s October, it’s properly October too – chilly, crunchy leafed October! We’ve said October too much already so let’s move on…

September was the month Instagram founders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger left Facebook seven years after selling the platform to Mark Zuckerberg, it was also the month they released new shopping options, so let’s start with Insta!

Instagram news

As has been the trend for the last year Instagram continues to release new features and updates, and seems to be going from strength to strength – despite the rumoured meddling from Facebook’s Zucks.

Instagram shopping has been around for some time now. It allows qualified brands to tag products in their images. Then users can click on the “tap to shop” tab, they’ll see product information like name, description, and cost. When they click again they’re taken to the product page, where they can make the purchase directly.

But this month they expanded that to Stories and started testing shopping in Explore. Talking about the update Instagram said: “With more than 90 million accounts tapping to reveal tags in shopping posts on Instagram every month, Instagram has quickly become a shopping destination unlike anywhere else.”

We all know social media platforms want users stay in the platform so it makes sense for them to make it even easier to discover and purchase in one place. Find out more about these updates here, and if you sell products to anyone between 25 and 45 (even more so if those people are women) you really should think about getting getting approved for Instagram shopping.

Here’s a few other news and updates you may have missed from Instagram:

Also, go take a look in Stories for some new Superzoom Effects with sound, and a new Poll feature in Direct Messages.

Twitter news

Audio is on trend, with an increase in podcasting and the steady upward trend in voice assistants – well Twitter are now jumping on something Facebook first tested in 2016! Live audio broadcasting through Periscope.

It comes after Twitter noticed people going live with video but hiding their camera. They tested it for a while but it’s now available to all. Once you’ve updated your app, go to the compose screen on Twitter and tap the “Go Live” button to reveal the standard live-streaming screen. You’ll now see a microphone icon to toggle the “audio-only broadcast” option on or off.

Could this mean a future in podcasts for Periscope and Twitter? Who knows, but it could be worthwhile you testing this new feature – kind of a live radio broadcast for your followers. That may be interesting.

Twitter also announced this month that it is testing a return to reverse chronological feeds. Meaning users would have the ability to between a curated newsfeed (tweets Twitter thinks you’ll want to see based on previous actions and the actions of those you interact with) and one that shows you the most recent tweets. 

Here’s some other Twitter news you may have missed:

Facebook news

Ah Facebook, those cheeky little monkeys! They’re ‘testing’ another feature that looks very similar to Snapchat’s Snap Maps (say that 10 times, quickly), well it’s not another feature it’s simply an update to their current friends nearby feature, which tells you when a friend is in the area and encourages to say hi!

The new maps, featured in the Stories area, provides a broader view of where your connections are on a map, which reduces the privacy concerns of the original (which was very accurate). Back in May at Facebook’s F8 conference they spoke of Stories being the future of social sharing but while it’s booming in Instagram it’s not really happening in Facebook, so perhaps this is a way of trying to move more people to Stories in Facebook.

Let’s see where it goes – we’ll be sure to let you know when / if we see this go live. We thought it was an interesting research tool for Snap Maps (being able to see heatmaps of where people spent their time) but we’re not sure if the Facebook version will be the same.

Here’s some more from those cheeky Facebookians:

Other news and interesting things

Just two infographics we like this month…

Well that was a slightly longer one than usual but we hope you found it useful, learnt something new or that we sparked an idea. As always, please do get in touch if you have any questions or if we can help you in any way.

Have a great October and we’ll see you next month,
Mel and James

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