Each week the Insights Team at The Goat Agency pull together the latest news from the social space in a weekly social media industry news round-up. This week we cover internet sensation, Hasbulla agreeing to fight in the UFC, TikTok Shop to the US confirmation and YouTube Handles coming to the platform.
YouTube Handles Set To Improve Traffic Driving
YouTube will soon start to look more like Twitter. That’s right, YouTube is looking to add @handles for channels, which will make it easier to drive traffic to profiles, and in-app channel promotion.
“Handles are a new unique identifier (example @youtubecreators) & ALL YouTube channels will have one. Your unique @handle will help people find & interact with you & your YouTube channel. And because handles are unique (unlike channel names), it’s easy to confirm if you’re engaging with the right person or not.” Explains YouTube.
@handles will be unique to each channel and will seek to connect users directly to creator content, like it does on Twitter, TikTok and Instagram for example.
YouTube handles will also function as a unique channel URL, offering another avenue for branding. Until now, customer channel URLs have only been offered to creators with 100 subscribers. Now, YouTube is making this feature available to all app users.
The reasoning behind the new feature is to better promote channels, aligned with habitual trends, and a key consideration is likely the rise in YouTube Shorts content. @handles will likely benefit Shorts channel growth by making it easier to follow creators.
Another element YouTube will hope to crack down on is to tackle the rise of copycat channels, where scammers create channels that replicate that of a popular creator, often using the same channel name.
For more info on the @handles implementation, check out this video:
TikTok Adds Photo Mode for Still Images
TikTok has Instagram in its crosshairs once again. This time, it’s in relation to the new ‘Photo Mode’ available on TikTok that enables still image posts within the app.
Photo Mode looks exactly like Instagram, with users posting carousels of still images that are scrollable.
When highlighting the new feature, TikTok said:
“Photo Mode allows you to share carousel posts of still images that automatically display one after another. You can add music to soundtrack the images, which viewers can swipe through at their own pace.”
TikTok hopes that this will spark a new trend and open the door to new creative options, which it has already began to do.
Content creators within the meme community have adopted this new feature to create posts around different songs, such as the Jellyfish Jam. For those who aren’t aware, Jellyfish Jam refers to an episode of SpongeBob Squarepants in which a smack of jellyfish invade the protagonists home to host a rave (of sorts).
Meme creators on TikTok are using the Jellyfish Jam song overlaid with memes of characters listening to music and transcending into tranquility. It is unlikely that TikTok intended this outcome, but this is what the early version of Photo Mode has fetched upon us.
In non-jellyfish-related news, TikTok has also added new editing tools to make it easier to refine clips before posting. It’s also been announced that longer captions are available, enabling creators to use up to 2,200 characters.
Is The GIF A Dying Format?
‘Gifs are cringe’ was the headline of a recent article published by The Guardian, detailing the fallout of multimillion dollar business, GIPHY.
It is not often that businesses cease to exist due to relevancy amongst generational divides, yet that is the case with the gif search engine. GIPHY was recently the subject of a proposed takeover involving Meta. Now, it is reported that the UK’s competition regulator is attempting to block a $400m acquisition by Facebook’s parent company.
GIPHY’s argument with the Competition and Markets Authority is that there was simply no other company aside from Meta that would purchase the platform. The company’s valuation has dropped by $200m from its peak in 2016, and now it seems that its core offering is going out of fashion.
“There are indications of an overall decline in gif use, due to a general warning of user and content partner interests in gifs” explained GIPHY.
The generation divide appears to have taken its toll on the gif as a creative format. The general perception is that gifs are extremely dated, and are now seen as redundant by a large portion of social media users.
At the peak of its cultural impact, curating and sharing gifs could have been a full-time job. Now, the format is facing imminent extinction.
MrBeast X Corpse Feastables Bar Released For Halloween
Halloween is looming closer – and what better way to enter spooky season than eating a Corpse bar? The chocolate bar that is.
MrBeast has teamed up with everyone’s favorite deep-voiced streamer, Corpse Husband. The partnership will bring a new snack to the Feastables brand that fans of the creators can indulge over the Halloween period.
Feastables recently expanded its presence to the storefronts of Walmart, but the Corpse Bar is only available to purchase through the Feastables website.
Between October 10 and Halloween, Corpse Bar purchasers will be entered into a giveaway. The prize is a “Corpse hoodie,” which will be delivered to 25 selected winners.
Corpse is the first creator outside of MrBeast to get his own Feastables product. Unlike the YouTuber’s other food-based venture, MrBeastBurger, which has released several products themed around popular creators.
TikTok Shop To US Confirmed By Job Openings
Last week we spoke about TikTok’s plans to bring TikTok Shop to the US. Now, those rumours have been put to bed.
More than a dozen job openings have highlighted the imminent rollout of the commerce platform. Roles that indicate a portion of TikTok’s staffing plans, which include positions for Amazon-style “fulfilment centers”.
Some of these openings reference TikTok Shop by name.
“By providing warehousing, delivery, and customer service returns, our mission is to help sellers improve their operational capability and efficiency, provide buyers a satisfying shopping experience and ensure fast and sustainable growth of TikTok Shop,” as stated in one of the openings
The workers at the fulfilment centers will take on a variety of jobs, varying from warehousing to logistics and customer service. It is reported that TikTok aims to provide a selection of merchants that offer a range of product and delivery potions as part of its live commerce push.
TikTok first attempted to crack western markets with TikTok Shop when the platform entered the UK. British creators and consumers didn’t deliver the results TikTok needed, which forced the app to draw back its commerce expansion earlier this year.
The US markets will over TikTok Shop a second chance at tackling the West.
YouTube Sheds Light On Data Stories Analytics Tool
YouTube has shed some light on its Data Stories analytics test, which offers insights into a channel’s performance using a Stories-esque format.
YouTube first unveiled its Data Stories function back in August, with handpicked creators being shown a prompt to access the option via the main overview page in YouTube Studio.
Data Stories can currently be displayed for four elements: Audience, Content, Monetization and Education about YouTube.
The latter delves into insights around how YouTube works, while others are tailored towards a specific channel metric that entails content performance. The system seeks to highlight the most critical data points around channel growth.
Other entries include recommendations on how to make better thumbnails, or develop notes on how to improve the chances of content featuring in user’s feeds via algorithm recommendation.
YouTube Data Stories could make it easier for creators to understand their performance data and metrics that infer to channel growth. Having to dig into the finer data can prove difficult for a lot of creators who find the process overwhelming or just plain confusing. The instalment of Data Stories will help simplify the process as well as encourage users to work with performance metrics to boost their channels.
Hasbulla Signs To Fight In The UFC
Yes, you read that correctly. Viral internet sensation Hasbulla has signed a contract that will see him fight in the UFC.
The 19-year-old sensation is one of the biggest names on social media today, with over 3.5 million followers on Instagram alone. Hasbulla Moagomedov has been pictured in the fighting circle time and time again, seen hanging out with Khabib Nurmagomedov and other prominent figures in the MMA world.
Last year, he struck up a friendship with UFC president Dana White during a cameo in Abu Dhabi. Rumours started to circulate that Hasbulla had signed a contract with the world’s leading MMA organisation for marketing reasons.
However, Hasbulla recently took to Twitter to confirm that his signature actually meant that he would be fighting in the octagon.
Interestingly, the signing of the contract comes at a time when Hasbulla has been back and forth between jabs with a certain Conor McGregor. Hasbulla has since asked White to schedule a fight between himself and ‘the Notorious,’ which in all likelihood will not come to fruition.
It will be worth keeping an eye out for updates on possible opponents for Hasbulla, and when the time does come there is no doubting the internet will descend into mayhem.
Don’t forget to check out the latest episode of the Goat Vlog!