The Pit Stop: Social Media Moves Fast. Refuel to Keep Up.

  • December 19, 2017
  • Carly Ilvento

Well, it’s almost Christmas, and instead of Old Saint Nick, we’re taking the reins and gifting you this very special present: the first installment of The Pit Stop, a new monthly blog series from INK. Read on to keep up with all things social including updates, features, ad capabilities, and partnerships, compliments of our all-things-social digital specialist Carly Ilvento. There’s more of The Good Stuff to come each month from Carly, so keep coming back.


But can you follow a #hashtag?
You follow your favorite brands, drool-worthy foodies, hometown teams, and (sometimes) obnoxious friends and family on Instagram. Right now, your feed is probably flurrying with cookies and casseroles, semi-cute family portraits, and questionable reindeer sweaters. There’s also those hashtag things floating around that have seemed to lose a bit of their luster in the past few months.

Well, Instagram is giving those #hashtags a whole new purpose. Users can now follow hashtags, making the search for #vegan apple pie recipes for your sister’s husband’s mom’s

new diet trend a walk in the park. ‘Grammers don’t get all of the fun, though. Brands can use this new feature to create and promote content based on popular hashtags. If a majority of a clothing brand’s audience is following #neutrals, they’d better post those beige suede booties ASAP. Noticing an influx of #mealprep followers after the holidays = make that brown rice, broccoli, and baked chicken less boring and post content about spicing it up (literally). In short, this feature is awesome for users, but can also be a headturner for brands…so get to ‘gramming.


..and the Heisman goes to…Instagram Highlights!
Big news for brands hot on Instagram Stories, engagements, and usage: You now can not only archive Stories, but also add your previous Stories to the top of your profile. Yep! Users won’t have to wonder “Wait, what promo code did they say to enter?” or “How many cups of flour? Or was it baking powder?” Breathe, Susan. You can click on the saved story at the top of that brand’s profile for the sugar cookies you told your coworkers was a “secret family recipe.” This feature is called Highlights and it’s perfect for brands who have specific content like promos, events, articles, and timely products that need to reach more people than they can get their hands on in 24 hours. A little bird told us you’re already bad enough at keeping track of deadlines. Instagram has this one covered.


“Be extra.” -Twitter
With many a tweetstorm this past year, it’s only imperative that Twitter rolled out its threading feature. Now, users and brands can easily start a thread to accompany their hashtags, first-world problem rants, and replies to Wendy’s when they royally diss you in front of all of your friends. Simply click the plus sign under your 280 characters to add 280 more. With this feature, brands have the power to be “extra” in the best way. With quirkiness and sass trending on Twitter, brands can utilize this tool for posting and tracking longer content and all of the engagement and replies that come with it. Oh, yeah, there’s “thread support,” too. So use that.


So you post your opinions on Facebook? Please…tell me more.
“Huh, noone has posted their opinion on Facebook in a while. Why doesn’t anyone speak their unfiltered mind on here?” Said no one ever. Well, while your second cousin Carol will get a kick out of Facebook’s

newest polls feature, so will brands. Posting a poll to gauge your audience’s opinions on trends, new products, or services leads to quick, inviting engagement with just a click of a button. While Carol can poll, “Which holiday Frappuccino should I get from Starbucks?” (pumpkin spice all day, every day) brands can ask the important questions like, “What should be the new Pringle flavor in 2018?” Game. Changer.

Read this if you like posts on Facebook telling you to like things.
The days of tagging friends in a Facebook post so they “have to look at a wheel of cheese for no reason” are over. Facebook is taking the vote, react, and share baiting posts of your Newsfeed and training a machine learning model to give them the boot. For some brands, inviting engagement just got a little harder. Comment and share-based contest entries, comment-to-vote, “Like this if,” and “Tag a friend who” posts are all part of this battle against clickbait. Brands now have a chance to produce high-quality content. (Hint: They don’t really have a choice). Engagement can happen without saying, “Tag a friend whose name starts with ‘G’ so they have to buy you cookies.” You don’t need cookies, Greg with a ‘G’ doesn’t have time for that, and neither does Facebook.