USES: Case studies and general user stories

Charity raises 1 cent at a time using VenmoAdweek
This is simply a brilliant use of social media, app loopholes and, loosely, friend recommendation. The peer-to-peer payment app doesn't allow ads, but users’ transactions appear on the public Venmo feed. So, Deutsch worked with Water is Life to send users 1 cent on Venmo, knowing a message would show up in their friends' social media news feeds. 

Spotify makes customized out-of-office message playlistEngadget
Leaving the office for a few days? Tell Spotify where you’re going, and it will give you a link to a playlist based on what's trending in that city. It even suggests a message you can cut and paste into your email client. Great idea for content sharing (and branding) via what’s sometimes called “dark social.”

“Ghostbusters” Snapchat lens uses both camera directions Digital Trends
For one day, Snapchatters and those nearby could bust some ghosts or slime each other. Yes, the lens used both the front- and rear-facing cameras. Though it did not cause mass hysteria, it was a first.

Adult Swim program premieres on VineThe Drum
Now that Vine allows long-form videos, the show “Brad Neely’s Harg Nallin’ Sclopio Peepio” posted its first episode there before it aired on Adult Swim. The 10-minute video has over 1.4 million loops. Why not use Facebook or YouTube? We’ll wait for more results before we judge too harshly, because 1.4 million is not chopped liver or small potatoes or whatever.


INFLUENCERS: Voices behind the hype

Selena Gomez asks and answers questions on SnapchatTeen Vogue
Last Thursday, she answered questions from users in a story and even asked some of her own. Another celebrity first, that back and forth with fans. Talk about killing ‘em with kindness.

Chrissy Teigen wears a virtual bikini top on SnapchatDaily Mail
Customized body-size lenses are possible! Wanna guess what Chrissy’s Snapchat-lens-bra-thingy was made of? Hint: She was promoting her partnership with Vita Coco Coconut Oil.

CHANGES: Updates to existing platforms

Snapchat Memories saves snaps — Snapchat Blog
Starting this month, users can swipe up from the camera to see the new option, yet another UI experience the older users joining the platform can complain about. Is a Facebook-like exodus of younger users ahead? Probably not, but it’s ironic that Facebook is testing “disappearing” content now.

Facebook Messenger Platform 1.1 is made for botsWeRSM
Users can now link their account to the business they’re chatting with in Messenger. For example, an Amazon bot can be linked to your Amazon account and, perhaps, suggest items to buy based on your past purchases or search history. Again, in Messenger. See the article for all updates.
Instagram blocks nasty commentsTechCrunch
Business pages can choose to use a new feature that automatically blocks commonly reported phrases. Community management just got a little easier.


NEWBIES: Emerging platforms

Find a partner and/or BFF and get a new job (basically change your life) all in one place. Bumble users can create a professional profile, separate from their dating profile, to network locally and search for new jobs. Smart? Weird?

SnowNew York Times
South Korea’s version of Snapchat could be lucrative for advertising in Asia. So far, users like what they see.