👋 Hey everyone! I’m back with another roundup of the latest marketing trends and a couple of new featured jobs. Plus, in the middle of the newsletter this week, you’ll see the pre-launch of our membership options. They’re on sale for the remainder of ‘21, and will be going up in ‘22, as a way to grow Forgematic into something bigger.
Let's get into, shall we?
Social & the creator economy
- Instagram is testing a new partnership feature to connect brands and creators. It allows creators to curate a list of ideal partners, as well as a special “partnership messages” inbox. Here’s what you need to know about it.
- It looks like TikTok is testing a new tipping feature, that allows fans to give creators money directly. At the moment, TikTok isn’t taking a cut of the fan-to-creator payments — but it’s not clear if that’s just part of the test, or if that part will last.
- Pinterest TV is heading our way soon. The daily video series could become a big time e-commerce play for the social media mainstay. If you’ve been following along, you know that live shopping has been an increasing trend — this plays well into that.
- Facebook launched two professional certification programs this week, aimed at helping people change careers and prepare for the future. The two programs are focused on marketing analytics and VR. Once you complete the certification, you get added to the Facebook Certification Career Network, which helps you get placed with big brands.
- Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: Instagram adds a new feature which already exists on TikTok. This week, the latest feature launching is Instagram’s new “Add Yours” sticker for Stories, which enables users to prompt others to respond to their Stories content. It basically lets you create public threads on stories. You know, trying to capture some of that sweet, sweet engagement.
- More Instagram news: the company is making a push into live shopping, and launched a Holiday campaign that focuses on Live Shopping events. Each week there’s a different focus, and most of November focuses on Black-owned businesses, featuring a new set of collections every Friday. So, now we have to ask: who will win the live shopping wars? IG, or Pinterest (see update above for their version of live shopping)?
- Last week, I pondered: why isn’t Facebook groups a separate product? Now I’m doubling down on that question as Facebook is adding new features to the Groups feature including subgroups, chat, and ways to make money. Just spin it off already, Zuck.
- Jay-Z is promoting a new movie, and it brought him into social media this week in ways he’s never been present. Last night, he co-hosted a Twitter spaces event with Regina King. Plus, this week, he came to Instagram for the first time.
- Later published a good guide this week on hacking the Instagram Reels algorithm. Check it out here to lift your engagement.
SEO, Content, & Strategy
- Topic clusters have proven to be core to a strong SEO strategy. Here’s how they work.
- Here is a great Twitter thread from Katelyn Bourgoin that details a simple strategy framework to turn customer stories into smart marketing ideas that work.
- The Content Value Curve is a great piece I read this week on how to think about the different types of content marketing and their value across a spectrum. It’s worth a read if you want to rethink your content marketing strategy.
- Google’s Core Web Vitals update was the biggest ongoing challenge for most websites and SEO folks this year. The folks at Attrock put together a cool infographic that provides an overview to help you not only understand each part of Core Web Vitals and how to improve your score.
- Google added new features that will allow businesses to chat with customers directly on your business profile. It functions like all the chat tools we’re already used to, and could provide useful as a low friction way to chat with customers.
- Google renamed Google My Business to Business Profile, and removed it’s dedicated app. Now, you can manage your profile directly from search/maps. The name change is sensible, and is on trend for Google changing the names of their apps all-the-damn-time.
- The headline is the most important piece of any content, but trying to create the perfect headline is quite hard. That’s why frameworks and guides are extra helpful. This week, I came across a guide inside a Facebook group which is 💯. Check it out here.
Branding & Advertising
- Your mind isn’t playing tricks on you, you really are seeing more ads for cryptocurrency exchanges featuring big stars. Crypto.com launched a new $100M campaign with Matt Damon at the center. You’ve likely also seen ads for crypto exchange FTX if you watch sports. Well, get ready to see their ads at the Super Bowl. This is all really wild to me because I remember trying to explain what Bitcoin was to someone nine years ago, and I could barely explain it myself. What a time to be alive.
- Speaking of crypto, McDonald’s ran an ad campaign this week for the McRib which featured an NFT giveaway. Embarrassingly, I entered the giveaway over on Twitter.
- Meta rolled out it’s first brand campaign this week, since changing the name from Facebook. It features a 2D painting coming to life, to explain the concept of the metaverse.
- $8.09 billion. That’s how much money Amazon made on ad sales in Q3, which is up 49% year-over-year. Sheesh.
- Instagram ads can be a gold mine, depending on your business type and your ad strategy. But, getting started can be an uphill battle. AdEspresso put together a guide on the 10 top Instagram Ads mistakes (and how to avoid them).
- This is a big year for rebrands, and apparently Velveeta didn’t want to be left out. It’s not just a logo change, it’s a cheesy lifestyle 🤣
- Brand Strategy Manager @ WoodSpoon. Lead brand and content strategy for a new on-demand homemade food delivery platform.
- Head of Marketing @ Verb. Be the first marketing hire at Verb, which helps developers build better dashboards for end-users.
- Are you or your company hiring? Get featured by posting your job on the Forgematic job board here.
- B.J. Novak (perhaps best known for his role on “The Office”) has had his face used for packaging on products around the world. He doesn’t understand how or why, and it’s quite funny.
- The 37-Year-Olds Are Afraid of the 23-Year-Olds Who Work for Them. It wasn't that long ago that my fellow millennials were the topic of every article about what was wrong with work at the time. Now, we're the ones clamoring for relevance as Gen Z comes to remind us of our age.
- A math teacher from Taiwan is using Pornhub to market his tutoring services to college students. Don’t worry, he’s fully clothed, and it’s a brilliant marketing strategy.
That’s all for this week, folks. As always, if you’re enjoying the newsletter, please share it with your friends! There’s no more “buy me a coffee” link, instead you can grab a membership above, which is about the cost of a coffee each month. A big thank you to all of you that have already purchased a membership!
Thank you, and see you next week!