Facebook—Back in the Headlines Again
Facebook has managed to lay low the last couple months—relatively speaking. But this week, they are right back to the top of our round-up with the announcement Thursday that the popular platform has once again suffered a security breach—this time affecting 50 million user accounts. Although the breach has been corrected, hackers were able to gain access to accounts and Facebook has admitted they do not know whether any personal information was gathered from those affected. But the damage has been done and Facebook may now be facing a class-action lawsuit.
How do you know you’ve been hacked? According to the platform, if you were affected, you will be asked to log-in to your account on all devices. The New York Times also suggests taking three-steps to further safeguard your account. Get the info here.
The newest security breach isn’t the only reason Facebook is back in the news. Rumor has it that Facebook will be launching their new chat device, Portal, which will allow easy video chat on the platform. The device will be powered by Alexa, will have two versions that will retail between $300 and $400 and will be similar to Amazon Echo Show. However, the rumor—Cheddar reported it first—had it launching last week, so only time will tell when they officially let the cat out of the bag.
And finally—ever wonder why the ads you see in your Facebook feed are so perfectly targeted to your interests or a purchase you have recently made? Turns out that while the company is working to be transparent and offer a safer and more private experience for users, they are also still allowing advertisers to target you using your shadow profile.
A shadow profile is a layer underneath your profile that is there when friends have used your email to search for you on Facebook, or when you completed a two-step verification on the site. Advertisers simply need to upload phone numbers or emails you have provided to them to match them to the Facebook shadow profile. You are then included in a “custom audience" which allows advertisers to target you because you have already indicated interest in their products or services. Like it or not—at least the creepiness of Facebook always knowing what you are searching for on the Internet has been cleared up.
Hashtags and Other Insta-News
Now we switch our focus from Facebook to Instagram—which seems totally different except for the fact that Facebook has owned Instagram since 2012. Still, the co-founders, Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger have stayed on staff for the past six years but announced just last week that they will be leaving the company. Their current plan is to take some time to focus on what the world needs to plan their next project.
In other insta-news, Instagram is testing a feature to make hashtags separate from the caption on posts. Right now users use hashtags in the captions, which can make posts messy and not translate as well to other platforms like Facebook and Pinterest where hashtags are not as common. Until the testing is complete and the new feature rolls out, experts suggest users post hashtags as a first comment, which will still make them searchable.
Advertising in a Snap
Snapchat made several advertising announcements last week, all designed to make advertising on the platform quicker and easier for companies. The first, which launches this month, are collection ads, which feature up to four products in a catalogue-type-ad. Advertisers will also be able to import their product feeds including photos, prices and product descriptions into Snap’s ad manager to streamline posting ads.
Happy Birthday to Google
Finally, Google reached a milestone birthday last week—20 years! To celebrate, the site released a Doodle covering the most popular searches since 1998. They also included a feature under the main search-bar that shows what people have searched for over the past 20 years.
Well, that’s our round-up of need-to-know marketing news from the past two weeks. Subscribe now to make sure you don’t miss out!
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