Facebook Image Recognition Update, Facebook Lifestage, and More!
News for the Week of August 29
Facebook Image Recognition Software Open to Everyone
With the goal of someday applying it to live video, Facebook is open sourcing its image recognition software. Currently, Facebook algorithms work in conjunction with MultiPathNet convolutional neural networks, allowing the platform to understand images based on the pixels it contains. Facebook uses DeepMask segmentation along with its SharpMask segment refinement to classify and label objects. To continue to improve, Facebook says it’s important to use open sourcing and allow users access to its technology. As it continues to progress, Facebook hopes to use image recognition to help the visually impaired by being able to better describe photos as they appear on the social platform. Additionally, the next major step is image recognition during video—when images are moving and changing throughout time—which could allow for real-time narration. Dealerships, continue to watch Facebook and participate in this platform as it advances and offers even more capabilities for users. Be sure you’re using images and video, as well as interacting regularly with your audience, in order to increase awareness of your brand and build valuable relationships that will lead to sales.
Updated YouTube TV App
YouTube recently updated its TV app to offer a different look and feel, as well a category update which is more in line with the way people search for and view video. Since more people are turning to smart TVs and streaming players, categories have been reorganized to better fit in with people’s lives—right in their own living rooms. It was discovered that viewers search for and watch video differently when they’re at home versus when viewing on mobile, and with this in mind, YouTube made it easier to find videos they tend to watch at home. These include things like travel, news, sports, fitness, gaming, comedy, and family-friendly shows. Now, categories will appear on the top of the screen, rather than on a side menu—and high-level categories like “Recommended,” Trending,” “Entertainment,” and “News” will guide viewers to their selections. Additionally, even more viewing selections have been added for 4K content and live streams. Dealerships, keep in mind your consumers are watching increasing amounts of live video, so get in the game and check out ways you can highlight what’s going on at your location. Whether they’re watching via mobile or at home, you’ll get more engagement when you deliver content in a format viewers are interested in seeing.
Hello, Facebook Lifestage
Facebook recently launched a brand-new app aimed directly at high-schoolers. Lifestage is focused specifically on the social sharing preferences and activities of teenagers and allows users to build profiles made entirely of “video fields.” Rather than Facebook’s original format of building upon one’s profile by listing things like favorite music, relationship status, and other pertinent defining “who I am” facts, this new format allows users to express themselves via a visual format. Facebook Lifestage members build their profiles by filling in video fields like “How I Dance,” “My Happy Face,” “In My Fridge,” and more. In addition, users can build their profiles by adding more videos and fields of things they like, things they want to learn to do, and more. Aimed at the under-21 crowd, it’s pretty clear Facebook will be capturing the attention of audiences—both younger and older. Dealerships, as social media continues to capture the attention of younger audiences, it’s clear it’s the way of the present—and the future. Your youngest customers now are shopping and researching via social media, and your future customers will lean on social platforms even more for information, so jump in, start interacting on your platforms, and get to know your consumers in order to build your business.
Twitter Direct Messaging for Websites
Twitter recently released a Direct Message enhancement which allows visitors to message website owners with a single click. In other words, visitors can go directly into DMs from your website, making private communication quick and easy. This allows consumers to start one-on-one, private conversations directly from business websites. As a note, according to Twitter, this latest functionality works best when user account settings are configured to allow them to receive Direct Messages from anyone. The Message button is available to all site owners and boosts Twitter’s focus on live conversations and interactions. Dealerships, check out the latest from Twitter and work to get more in-the-moment with your consumers. Today’s shoppers are active on social media, and when you are responsive to their needs and give them one-on-one interaction, you’ll build more trust in your brand.
New LinkedIn Content Search Features
LinkedIn mobile just got some updates, and with them, users can look forward to new search capabilities that will help them discover great content and connect with like-minded professionals. Users can search their feeds simply by entering keywords they remember from specific articles in the search box under the Posts tab—and related articles will pop up. To explore topics more thoroughly and deep dive into content, users can search content and refine their searches to see updated conversations, articles, and ideas. And finally, users can include tappable, searchable hashtags to help them track and discover similar posts across the platform. Currently available to iOS and Android apps for English-speaking customers, these updates will continue to roll out for all members across the platform in the coming weeks. Dealerships, as you branch out into social media, don’t forget about LinkedIn! Still a powerful resource for professionals across the globe, this is a great place for you to share, collaborate, and gain visibility for your brand.
Tip of the Week – Check Into Snapchat
I know, I know…you think it’s for the kids. Or you think it’s a passing fad. But I’m here to tell you more and more businesses are sharing and interacting on Snapchat. And guess what? It’s working!
In fact, valued at approximately $20 billion, this platform is gaining popularity—with 22% of ad execs stating they intend to advertise there this year. And to top that off, Snapchat ads are viewed up to a million times per day, so it’s time to start giving Snapchat some attention and letting it help you reach consumers in a new and impactful way. Want to know how? Check out some quick tips below:
- Engage followers with one-on-one interaction. If users follow your dealership, that means you’ll have the opportunity to share content directly with them. It’s pretty tough to find time to interact with every consumer individually, but Snapchat makes it fun, easy, and quick to share personal interactions, letting consumers know they’re important to you.
- Find industry partners. Snapchat makes it easy to find influencers and partners within the automotive industry, and once you’ve connected with them, that means you can connect with their You can discover brand-new demographics and reach potential shoppers you may not have reached before.
- Highlight your brand. Share positive things going on at your dealership, like community service pics, employee engagement updates, and new vehicles that have just arrived. Remember, this app is meant to be in the moment, so don’t worry about making things look perfect; instead, just have fun with it and show off the positive side of your brand.
- Introduce a contest. Consumers love contests, especially when they can win great stuff. Offer up coupons or discounts in exchange for the best pic, the best doodle, or even the fastest response to a question. Be creative and have fun. The point is to get consumers involved with your brand and offer them a chance to win whatever you’re giving away.
- Share an exclusive coupon. Ask customers who get the coupon to screenshot it and show it at the dealership to redeem. Once your followers know you’re prone to handing out coupons via your Snaps, they’ll follow you regularly and interact to see what’s next.
There are plenty of engaging ways to use Snapchat to boost your dealership’s visibility—and ultimately, drive more business to your lot. Be sure to try lots of different and creative ways to reach consumers, and don’t be afraid to leverage Snapchat to help you have a little fun while reaching out to consumers. It’s time to snap to it and get social in a brand-new way!
Author: Joey Little
Joey Little serves as Director of Digital and Social Engagement for AutoAlert. An expert in customer experience management, he educates automotive professionals at speaking engagements across the country. With results-driven advice and proven industry knowledge, he assists dealerships in reaching their audiences and increasing business via their social platforms.