Five things worth sharing from the last week or so, brought to you by a different member of the Browser Media team every Friday.
This week’s My Five is by Matt.
1. #Stickers are #Fun
Twitter has rolled out its new #Stickers feature, which according to Sr. Product Manager, Sasank Reddy, offers users; “a fun new way to add creativity to your photos and connect them to the world on Twitter.”
Here’s how it works:
— Twitter (@twitter) June 27, 2016
“Boooring”, I hear you cry. But wait, there’s more. The cool thing about #Stickers, is that they have all the qualities of a hashtag (hence the # part), in the sense they’re clickable and searchable. Visual hashtags, if you like. Have a play around with the following image and you’ll soon get the idea.
— Tim Perzyk (@tperzyk) June 28, 2016
Twitter will be rolling out this new feature to all users in the coming weeks, so stay tuned.
2. Google Keyword Clanger
Google Keyword Planner has long been the go-to tool for marketers looking to obtain keyword search volume data. Whether that data was being used to help make decisions about paid or organic campaigns, the ability to compare keywords alongside one another, along with associated search volumes, the tools has helped its users make more informed decisions about which specific keywords to target.
Well, it was fun while lasted.
Last week, Google made a change to the tool, where instead of providing search volume data for individual keywords, it’s now lumping similar terms together. For example, plurals and non-plurals, which may once have shown different estimates, are now the same. Acronyms and their longhand counterparts; the same. Keywords spelled with or without space; the same.
While we’ve always maintained that the accuracy of Google’s keyword data is somewhat questionable, the ability to make relative comparisons between specific keywords has always been extremely useful. There’s no doubt this is a massive blow.
Check out Annie’s blog post for more details.
3. The end of filming at concerts?
To the delight of many (at least three people in this office), filming at gigs could soon become a thing of the past.
Wired reports that Apple has patented a way of blocking smartphones from capturing footage at concerts, through a camera that detects infrared signals emitted in ‘no film’ zones.
The patent states that the technology could also be used for a whole host of other applications, such as applying a watermark to detected images, or providing museum visitors with information about exhibits via their smartphone screen.
The technology is still believed to be some way off, but I live in hope that one day we see an end to people watching live music through their phone screen. Who does this anyway?
4. Instagram sharing on the decline
Instagram announced last week that it had hit the 500 million user mark, with 300 million daily users – good times for the Facebook owned photo-sharing app.
However, despite its rapid growth, reports have since emerged that while users are on the up, sharing is in decline.
While this news does not necessarily spell trouble for Instagram, the trend does suggest that people are now sharing more on competing photo-sharing apps such as Snapchat.
Full report on Tech Insider.
5. Hit me with your pet shark
Earlier this week, it was announced that LyricFinder, the world’s largest lyric licensing service, has partnered with Google to bring song lyrics to Google’s search results.
For Google, this arrangement is likely intended to drive users towards Google Play Music, as in order to see the song lyrics in full, users will be be invited to visit a page that promotes Google’s on-demand music service.
It looks like this move is good news for the artists who own the lyrics too. LyricFinder Chief Executive and co-founder Darryl Ballantyne, predicts publishers and songwriters will see “millions” of dollars in additional revenue from this arrangement.
But there can’t be winners without losers, and in this instance it looks like it’s going to be the longstanding song lyric sites such as AZLyrics, who rely on organic search traffic, that get the bum deal. With Google serving lyric results at the top of it’s SERPs, there will be little incentive for users to scroll any further down the page.
While on the topic of song lyrics, I couldn’t not share this video. Enjoy.