Fresh Egg Round Up

Fresh Egg's Digital Marketing News – 01 January to 18 January 2016

In this fortnight’s digital marketing news, find out about Twitter removing the 140 character limit, social platform Peach, Facebook Messenger’s aims for 2016, and autoplay live streaming from Periscope in Twitter.

You can always listen to us discuss the news via our podcast here:

Twitter considering massive increase in tweet length limit to 10,000 characters

No longer content with limiting itself to 140 characters, (initially decided because 160 characters was the SMS limit), Twitter is considering a massive increase to the permitted size of tweets.

Jack Dorsey, CEO of Twitter, wrote about his thoughts on the matter in a 10,000 character screenshot posted on his Twitter account:

Recode also revealed that Twitter was testing a version where “tweets appear the same way they do now, displaying just 140 characters, with some kind of call to action that there is more content you can’t see. Clicking on the tweets would then expand them to reveal more content.”

This change – which could be in effect in a matter of months – did not go down well with Twitter’s current users. Here at Fresh Egg, we ran a small poll on Twitter, in which 97% of responses agreed that 140 characters is plenty.

Do you think 140 characters are enough for Twitter? What are your thoughts? Let us know on Twitter!

Find out what the Fresh Egg team has to say about the proposed increased character limit and more in our digital marketing podcasts. Subscribe to our iTunes Podcast or follow us on SoundCloud to hear this every other week.

What is Peach?

It feels like brand new social media apps appear every week, but, as we saw with previous golden-child Ello, they disappear just as quickly. Will this happen to the current talk-of-the-town app, Peach?

Founded by Vine co-founder, Dom Hofmann, Peach arrived in the Apple App Store on Friday 8 January. The iOS-only app is described as a mix of Tumblr and Slack, and to us who have used it, it resembles a mix of a group messaging app and your Facebook News feed.

Image source:

One of Peach’s biggest features is the use of ’magic words‘. Using magic words allows you to pull in information, content, GIFs and images from other sources into your feed. This is similar to how GIFs work on Facebook Messenger and Slack. You can find a list of these words here but notable ones include “here” (shows your current geographical location), “song” (identifies a song through your phone's mic) and “dice” (it will roll a dice on-screen).

You can find out more in Wired’s video, and read about why some think it has already ’failed’ here.

Periscope videos now autoplay in Twitter’s timeline

Twitter introduced us to autoplay videos and GIFs in June 2015, and now it has rolled out autoplay live streaming videos.

In its official announcement, Periscope described the impact of the change:

For broadcasters, this means you can reach the massive Twitter audience. And for everyone on Twitter, there’s now a richer experience in your home timeline, search results, and on anyone’s profile who’s shared a Periscope.”

This change provides brands with a large opportunity to increase the reach of their live streams as people naturally scroll through their timelines. Although some have said this shows Periscope has failed to build its own community, studies have shown that users have an increasing reluctance to install more apps on their phones.

Making it easier for Twitter users to watch Periscope streams is a fantastic move. It exposes a huge number of people to Periscope live streams within an app they already have, instead of relying on convincing them to download the Periscope app first. They’re able to see the benefits and features of Periscope within Twitter, before deciding to download the app themselves.

Speaking to Wired, Periscope CEO Kayvon Beykpour said:

 “For us a really important place to start, a really important focal point, was making it really easy. No account needed, you don’t have to download the app, you can have never heard of Periscope and as quickly as possible experience it.”

Facebook messenger reaches 800 million users

With the announcement that Facebook Messenger has reached 800 million users, Facebook’s VP of Messaging Products, David Marcus, also laid out the trends and plans it will be focusing on in 2016.

These include:

  • The disappearance of the phone number
  • Threads are the new apps
  • We’re all social beings (make Messenger your personalised social space)
  • Innovation (artificial intelligence)
  • It’s all about delighting users

The rise of Facebook Messenger and messaging as an overall communication habit is undeniable. Facebook-owned messaging app WhatsApp already sends more messages than all SMS texts in the world and users send 9.5 billion photos each month. However, the most important trend to consider here is Facebook’s belief that “threads are the new apps”. The digital trend is focused on moving customer experiences from individual apps and websites into chat conversations (in this case, hosted by Facebook Messenger). A great example of this is the Facebook live chat functionality that can be implemented into your website.

In the announcement, David Marcus writes:

“We’re seeing a paradigm shift in how people engage. At Messenger we’re thinking about how we can help you interact with businesses or services to buy items (and then buy more again), order rides, purchase airline tickets, and talk to customer service in truly frictionless and delightful ways. It is so much easier to do everything in one place that has the context of your last interactions, as well as your identity – no need to ever login – rather than downloading apps that you’ll never use again and jumping around from one app to another.”

You can read the official blog post here and TechCrunch’s roundup of the Facebook Messenger 2016 trends here.

You can find our previous digital marketing news roundup here for more recent news and analysis.

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