As Twitter CEO Dick Costolo steps out of the company, it seems that the internet giant is edging towards dramatic changes. Since the announcement that Costolo will leave and be replaced by Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey (who will become the interim CEO until a permanent replacement is found), the stock value of the Californian social media powerhouse has jumped by 7% and it has been announced that Twitter will be removing the character limit from it’s DM service. This means that although all public tweets will still be limited to 140 characters, private messages can be much longer, (up to 10,000 characters) giving businesses a new way to target their customers. Twitter also removed the need to be followed by a user in order to DM them, another feature that makes it easier for marketers to increase their reach by using Twitter.
In other news, Facebook’s algorithm for ranking posts is changing dramatically, and seemingly with an approach that could hurt businesses using the social network. Facebook will now rank posts based on a user’s posting activity and audience, which means that posts from businesses are less likely to make it into your newsfeed if you don’t want to see them. Facebook are also removing the feature that shows users posts that their friends have liked or commented on. While this will greatly improve the average Facebook users experience with the site (gone are the days of having to scroll through two hundred posts to find something written by an actual friend) it gives marketing opportunities such as entering a competition by liking a post a significantly smaller reach. The new algorithm also places organic content higher than posts shared from pages, something that has saturated the newsfeeds of many users.
Despite this, Facebook claimed in a recent blog post that referral traffic to media publishers has doubled over the last year and a half. With the changes to the algorithm this means that Facebook is still a very viable and potentially lucrative marketing tool, but it will have to be used in a way that allows for the posts made by marketers to be buried under content that Facebook deems more ‘relevant’ to it users. This will mean that more organic posts and less ‘clickbait’ style posts can be used to get a message across.