It has been quite the quiet month in the social media world. Regardless, we have summarised the most valuable and relevant social media updates in May. Here are the following:

Instagram – Native Payment for Commerce

Instagram – Brands build AR lenses

Facebook – Simplify Your Live Stream with Persistent Key Streams and Simultaneous Crossposting

Facebook –  Making Group Management Easier for Admins

Facebook – Clear History

GDPR – It’s Not That Bad for Your Business

Instagram – Native Payment for Commerce

Lovin’ the shoppable tags on Instagram? Well, get ready for more commerce-supporting features! You can soon receive payment right from the platform itself. That’s right! Expect higher sales and lower cart abandonment rates with native payments. 

Instead of sending your customers to a new window and completing checkout there from your profile, Instagram has now added a native payment feature in its app. Users can now complete the entire purchasing process in the platform. Consumers can complete their purchases in a much more convenient way, allowing businesses to deepen their customer relationships. Users can register a debit or credit card as part of their profile and set up a security pin, as shown above. Payment is currently limited to a set of selected partners such as dinner reservation app Resy.

Instagram may integrate this payment system with their “shoppable tags” in the near future. Users are being redirected to external sites for now. We don’t see why the native payment option shouldn’t be applied here. The native feature is in midst of testing and only selected users have access to it.

Instagram – Brands build AR lenses

Probably Snapchat’s most valuable asset, Augmented Reality lenses has made its way into Instagram. It is not uncommon knowledge that Instagram has been trying to push Snapchat out of the race by introducing similar features such as Stories and Video Call within chats.

By designing unique and interactive experiences, you can build stronger relationships with your followers. It opens more possibilities for you to reach out to your followers in a meaningful and engaging way. For example, you can make use of the Augmented Reality lenses to showcase your product virtually, allowing your followers to interact and visualise it to get deeper insights. Or, you can leverage on your followers’ network to increase brand reach by using the AR lenses to create fun filters that your users will want to use in their Insta Story!

Facebook – Simplify Your Live Stream with Persistent Key Streams and Simultaneous Crossposting

An increasingly popular content format for businesses, Facebook revealed that daily average Facebook Live streams from verified publisher Pages has close to doubled over the past year. In order to keep its live streaming on top of the game, Facebook has a list of ideas under its belt – simultaneous crossposting of live videos and persistent key streams.

Facebook now allows you to crosspost your live videos to multiple Pages at once. This is great if you are managing multiple Pages and are hosting a live video with content relevant to more than one of them. Instead of re-sharing the original post onto each Page, you can now send the stream to all of the pages as an original post. This reduces the number of steps, hence making live streaming much easier.

social media updates in may - keystream

To enable persistent key stream, simply tick the “enable persistent key stream” option in step 2. Before persistent key streams was introduced, you had to share a new key stream for each new live stream. After the live stream ends, the key stream becomes invalid. This means that each time you want to start a live stream, a new key stream has to be created and shared. However, persistent key stream removes all of that. With persistent key stream, you can use the same key stream for all your live videos. This minimises any confusion between you and your production team, improving coordination with regards to this step. However, do note that you can only create one live video at a time with a the persistent stream key.

Facebook – Making Group Management Easier for Admins

Groups are a great way to engage virtual communities and people from various parts of the world. However, it can get tedious for administrators to regulate the published content.

Hence, Facebook introduced “Pre-approve”. The update allows chosen group members’ posts to be published without the admin’s approval.  This will be especially useful as it reduces the trouble that admins have to go through – enter the platform just to approve of a post contributed by a trusted member whose content has been consistently valuable and relevant. With Pre-approve, content sharing within groups will become much more effective.

Another valuable update, Facebook has introduced personalised help in the form of “Get Support”, allowing admins to ask Facebook questions or raise issues to them directly. The feature can be found in the Admin tools and Insight section. The social media giant made a statement on how they will make it a goal to reply within one business day. Replies are stored so that group admins and Facebook can revisit and keep track of issues raised.

These features are currently available to selected group admins on Android and iOS in English and Spanish.

Facebook – Clear History

Amids the Cambridge Analytica scandal, Facebook has added a new “Clear History” feature for privacy control to their to-do list. The feature allows you to remove your cookies and browsing history on Facebook.

You will be able to see all information you have shared thus far and have the ability to prevent it from being stored. This can affect businesses that are leveraging on personal data from users who are unknowingly sharing their information. However, by cleaning history, you will not be able enjoy the same experience as before – you will have to re-login to all affiliated platforms and reconfigure your preferences while Facebook learns your browsing behaviour again.

GDPR – It’s Not That Bad for Your Business

As you might have already noticed about a week ago, many businesses (including yourself) have been sending quite a number of emails. These emails have one core purpose – to get you to sign up willingly for their newsletter. The new General Data Protection Regulation act has been in action since 25 May. This means that you cannot collect, store and process personal data without a “legitimate, explicit and specified” reason, and customers have to give consent for you to collect their personal data.

Your customers can also demand for you to delete any of their personal data as and when they want. Completely. Deleted. No backups. Breach of GDPR can result in a fine of up to 4% of your annual turnover or €20 million. Is it worth risking all the $$$? We think not.

But, before you start groaning about how many emails you are losing/ have lost, see GDPR as a blessing in disguise! Obtain better result from your future campaigns with a cleansed email list full of active and engaged leads/ customers. Open rates, click through rates and bounce rate will improve dramatically because these people do want to hear from you. You have already validated an albeit small set of high quality contacts that are more likely to respond to you, compared a large set of contacts that are not going to open your emails, click on your call to action buttons or even worse, unsubscribe!

While GDPR definitely makes it more difficult for you to engage all of your leads/customers via emails and newsletters, it ensures that those engaged are likelier to take meaningful actions.


Well, that’s a wrap for all of the social media updates in May. Stay tuned for our next social media update wrap-up in June! ??