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 Kerry.
1. LinkedIn is testing a new paid tickets service
LinkedIn is currently testing a new paid ticketed events service, following a surge in growth of LinkedIn Events.
The news emerged after an anonymous tip off to Tech Crunch in the form of code relating to the events test, which was later confirmed by a LinkedIn spokesperson, who claimed “We continue to learn from member and customer feedback and test new ways to improve the experience. As part of this, we are exploring options for payment in the Events product based on feedback from event organisers.”
The LinkedIn Events feature provides members with an easy way to create and join professional events like meetups, online workshops and seminars, so naturally it’s been a popular feature during the pandemic, with as many as 21 million people attending an event on the platform last year.
LinkedIn is clearly keen to take advantage of this, and essentially would like to sell you tickets to work events. At the moment there’s not much more information shared on this news, but it will be interesting to learn more about how this will actually work.
2. Facebook wants to make money from your children
Just in case it hadn’t been long enough since Facebook did something morally questionable, it emerged this week that the social media giant had set up a specific team dedicated to studying the long term business opportunities presented by children, aka its “valuable but untapped audience.” Yikes.
Internal research was leaked, looking into how it could appeal to children under 13, and, somewhat concerningly, included a section on proposed tailoring of some of its features to infants aged four and below. One document even discussed “leveraging playdates” as a means to drive growth.
The report also delves into Facebook’s struggle with global teen usage, and the issue of attracting new teen users to the platform, which has been on the decline for a while now. Internally, it is apparently expected that this audience will fall by an additional 45% by 2023.
3. Google rolls out more “visually browsable” interface for selected search results pages
Several changes to Google’s SERPs were announced at its Google Search On event, including the launch of larger and more visually browsable search results for certain queries. Phrases that include the word ‘idea’, for example ‘painting ideas’, will return the larger images.
Details were also shared on a more “shoppable” Google search interface. These tweaks are designed to make it easier for mobile users to see a visual feed of products, alongside helpful information like local shops, style guides and videos. An in-store inventory is also being added to try and recreate the in-person shopping experience, allowing users to refine the results via an “in stock” filter to check if nearby stores have specific items on shelves.
Google also announced enhancements to the “About this result feature”, which you can read more about here.
4. There’s a new budget report in Google Ads
Google has announced it is introducing a new budget report that will allow advertisers to visualise monthly campaign spend behaviour, showing daily spend, monthly spending limit, monthly spend forecast, cost to date and any budget changes you’ve made.
The new budget report is available from the Campaigns page, the shared library and the Ad groups page, but to see it you’ll need to have a campaign with a date range that includes the current month.
It should be a useful way of showing at a quick glance, how edits to your budget are affecting performance and spend limits.
5. Fuel shortage brings out the best of British humour
Just like the bog roll panic before it, there’s nothing like a mild crisis to bring out peak British banter and the current fuel shortage hasn’t disappointed. One pub landlord used it to his advantage:
— Simon Bates (@SimonBatesUK) September 24, 2021
This reporter for the BBC fulfilled his life purpose:
The perfect man for the job!
BBC journalist Phil McCann’s name sparks jokes on social media as he reports from a petrol station in Stockport https://t.co/d4mz8MsvLb
— BBC News (UK) (@BBCNews) September 25, 2021
And this man got on his high horse to taunt drivers at a petrol garage in Surrey:
Man heads to the petrol station with his horse to ‘stir up’ some laughs pic.twitter.com/NsPiW8Ijcg
— The Sun (@TheSun) September 29, 2021