Social media platforms are constantly updating to keep up with consumer demand. With the plethora of options at their disposal, these platforms need to do what they can to stay cutting-edge. 

So what are the world’s top social media sites doing to stay on top of their game?

Let’s get right to it: 

1. Clubhouse is now available to all 

The news

Previously an invitation-only app, Clubhouse has opened its virtual doors to all as of Wednesday, 21 July. 

After 12 months of thorough beta-testing, anyone with a Clubhouse link can tune into discussions, attend public events on the platform and join any creator’s community. The app is also now available for download on iOS and Android devices. 

In its ‘opening day’ statement, the app commented on its launch saying that “the average listener now spends over an hour a day on Clubhouse, and a huge percentage of people don’t just listen, but actually talk. That’s our favourite part of the whole thing.”

Why it’s making headlines

Since its public launch, the app has experienced a major boost in users. 

In its weekly ‘town hall’ update on Sunday, 1 August, Clubhouse announced that it is hosting 600 000 chat rooms per day. This figure has increased by 300 00 since May. 

This incremental rise in followers proves that the buzz surrounding the app was not short-lived and that the social scene may have a new power player at its hands. 

Additionally, this also proves that Clubhouse is putting up a fight against its competitor, Twitter Spaces, a feature where the audience can have live audio conversations with other users on the app.

2. TikTok tests ‘TikTok Stories’ 

The news

Everyone’s favourite short-form video app is dipping its toes in the waters of ephemeral content. (You know that content that only appears for a certain period of time and then disappears?)

Similar to stories featured on other platforms, TikTok Stories will only be available for 24 hours. The active stories will be displayed on a collapsible left-hand side panel on the user’s home page. 

*Image courtesy of Ad Age

Creators will be able to make their own stories by swiping right to view the collapsible left panel mentioned above. Here, they can access the dedicated camera for story creation. 

This feature is separate from the creation flow they can use to create short videos (aka, TikToks.) 

Why it’s making headlines

As everyone and their mother is adding stories features to their platforms, it comes as no surprise that TikTok’s version is making headlines. 

This also comes out of the blue because TikTok already specialises in short-form videos, so some questioned whether it was really necessary for it to add its own stories feature

But, TikTok’s reasoning behind this move is to create more effective monetisation options as it continues to grow and add more users to its platform. 

As it stands, ads can be quite disruptive on the user’s newsfeed, resulting in TikTok needing to look for better ways to create more advertising space. 

3. Facebook invests $1-billion in its creators

The news

The world's biggest social media platform is implementing several new ways for its users to earn more from content creation on Facebook and Instagram. 

The business has created various creative and monetisation tools, such as:
  • Live Audio Rooms: This Clubhouse-esque feature enables creators to start live conversations with up to 50 features. 
  • Bulletin: Journalists, this one’s for you! Bulletin is a set of publishing and subscription tools aimed to support independent writers in their content creation. 
  • Facebook Stars: Stars is a simple way for creators to earn money from fans. Fans can buy a Star to show support for a creator; for every star they receive, they earn one cent from Facebook. This monetisation tool is currently still undergoing beta-testing.
  • Badges: Similar to Stars, followers will be able to purchase badges during Instagram live streams to show support for creators.
  • Native affiliate tool: This Instagram commerce tool will help users to earn commission on the purchases they drive in the app’s Shop feature. 

*Image courtesy of Instagram

Why it’s making headlines

These updates are part of a bigger effort on Facebook’s part to support and incentivise creators. 

This development is major for influencers / content creators as this will help them to build their careers, earn money directly from their fanbase and connect with brands. 

4. Twitter pulls the plug on Fleets 

The news

As of Tuesday, 3 August Twitter depreciated its contender, Fleets, in the ephemeral content game after a year of testing.
Why, you ask? According to its blog, the company “hoped Fleets would help more people feel comfortable joining the conversation on Twitter. But, in the time since we introduced Fleets to everyone, we haven’t seen an increase in the number of new people joining the conversation with Fleets like we hoped.” 

Why it’s making headlines

It is very rare that a social media platform, especially one as big as Twitter, would be so forthright with its missteps. For this reason, the way the company openly admitted its defeat was refreshing. 

In its blog, Twitter explains that it will use its learnings to “focus on creating other ways for people to join the conversation and talk about what’s happening in their world.” 

What recent social media news has grabbed your attention? Let us know in the comments section below. 

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Want to stay clued in on the latest and greatest buildouts in the digital arena? Then be sure to check out these Top social media developments to look out for
*Image courtesy of Pixabay