I was fortunate to be invited to the 2019 Facebook Gather event in Dublin this month. This is the second such event, bringing together small and medium sized businesses (SMBs) from across Europe.
There were four central themes to the Conference: - Curation, Community, Conversation and Commerce.
Following on from this, what became evident to me was how there are effectively four separate Facebook entities now - Feed (the newsfeed), Stories, Groups and Messenger. Each of these has its own audience and therefore needs to have its own strategy, content and targeting.
Instagram Stories is now an incredibly versatile and creative tool which is helping brands to engage with audiences over a 24-hour period. One thing which has become clear is that more and more people now prefer to watch vertical videos. This means that videos need to be shot in a 1:1 or 9:16 ratio.
We heard an inspiring talk from futurist Shivvy Jervis. As well as talking about Emotive AI, Mixed Reality and Bio-Security, she said that within the next ten years, there will be completely new jobs to match what is happening in the so-called Fourth Industrial Revolution. These include titles such as Organisational Disrupter, Tech Ethicist, Chief Trust Officer and Robot-human interaction counsellor. So we need to be gearing up our youngsters for this new world of work.
Facebook Messenger is now becoming a bona fide competitor to the B2C website. Using a combination of in-feed ads, engaging content and bots, it is now possible to do e-commerce, customer engagement and customer service all within the app.
Facebook’s Blueprint is a fantastic - and free - way of learning how to use Facebook. Just as Google Garage has been used to reach out to SMBs across the UK, Blueprint is also there to help businesses make best use of Facebook’s various platforms - Facebook, Instagram, Messenger.