Social Media News: The Professor’s Pick

A five minute digest of the latest social media news from the Professor.

No more Facebook app-in chat

Last week Facebook announced the removal of messaging functionality from its mobile apps. From now on, users who want to send and receive Facebook messages via an Android or iOS device will be required to download the standalone ‘Messenger’ app.
In order to minimise the outrage that seems to accompany each and every Facebook update, the migration is being done in stages, with users given a number of notifications about the change before the current messaging functionality disappears entirely.

Facebook has been strategically moving its mobile business model towards using multiple apps for some time now, believing that the separation of apps will provide a faster and enhanced overall user experience.

As of the end of July 2014 Messenger had only 200 million monthly users – less than a fifth of Facebook’s total user base. No doubt this figure will increase significantly as the change is rolled out across the globe.

Interestingly, in other news, Instagram, which is owned by Facebook, has also unveiled a new messaging app. Tagged as a one-tap photo messaging app, ‘Bolt’, which looks set to become a rival to SnapChat, allows users to send photos or videos that disappear once they have been seen. According to reports however, Bolt is currently only available in New Zealand, Singapore and South Africa.

Facebook introduces a ‘Buy’ button.

In what is set to be a significant game changer for retailers, Facebook is currently testing its ‘Buy’ button, which allows people to complete an online transaction without having to leave Facebook. Believing that today’s users trust Facebook enough to conduct purchases through the site, Facebook is beta testing the functionality, which it says is in the early stages, with a few key companies.

LinkedIn announces changes to help businesses to connect.

Geared towards helping salespeople win more business, LinkedIn has announced the release of its ‘New Sales Navigator’.

While the Sales Navigator name is not new, the latest version of the platform will operate as a standalone product, rather than a set of features bolted onto the main LinkedIn site.
New Sales Navigator will provide up-to-date information on potential leads as well as letting users know which of their contacts may be able to introduce them to new leads. With a focus on ‘social selling’ to help users establish a presence, find the right leads, engage and build trust, Sales Navigator aims to challenge the old cold calling sales process head on. With Sales Navigator also able to talk to CRM platforms such as Salesforce, this latest launch could see LinkedIn become an increasingly powerful sales tool.

In addition to New Sales Navigator, LinkedIn has also announced an update to the way it displays profiles on mobile devices.

Tapping into the trend towards corporate storytelling, the new LinkedIn Profile helps users to better tell their story to other professionals. With at-a glance additions such as ‘in common’, providing insights to help business professionals break the ice when they meet for the first time, LinkedIn is currently rolling out the update across its mobile apps.

Checking in with Foursquare

Earlier this year, Foursquare, a location-based networking app, announced it was removing its core ‘check-in’ functionality.

Having since split its service in two, and moved check-ins from its main app over to a completely separate app called Swarm, this week Foursquare has revealed a fully redesigned version of its main app, with a focus on discovery.

While Swarm is still undergoing its share of teething troubles, the team at Foursquare are now firmly focused on creating an app that helps users find new places to visit.
Twitter shares rise by 34%

Shares in Twitter have exceeded expectations by rising as much as 34%, following reports that active user numbers figures jumped 6.3% quarter on quarter and 24% year on year to 271million.

With Twitter CEO Dick Costolo announcing grand ambitions to make Twitter “the largest information network in the world” watch this space for changes to Twitter over the next few months as it transforms from a social network into a media company…

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