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Hello and welcome to another edition of Digital Marketing Week in Review by Four Dots – our weekly column where we comb through some of the most relevant news and events that took place within the digital marketing landscape over the last week or so.

Let’s see what “December 2020: Week 1” edition brings us:   

  • Google Improves Crawl Stats Report in Search Console 
  • Google Provides 7 Creative Tips for Improving your Web Stories 
  • Twitter Relaunches Account Verifications 
  • Instagram Updates Branded Content Ads – More User-Based Advertising Options 
  • Facebook Provides Best Practice Tips to Boost Video Content Performance

Alrighty then, let’s dive right in! 


Google Improves Crawl Stats Report in Search Console 

Google rolled out an improved Crawl Stats Report in GSC and now you have new features that provide better and more granular insights into how your website is being crawled by Google. 

Crawl Stats Reports show all the files that Googlebot has compiled in a 90-day period. This includes CSS, JavaScript, PDFs and images, and this report is typically used for keeping an eye on crawling pattern changes. 

The new features available in the upgraded Crawl Stats include: 

  • Total number of requests sorted according to response code, crawled file type, Googlebot type, crawl purpose.
  • Detailed information about host status.
  • URL examples to inform you about where in your website requests occurred.
  • A comprehensive summary of properties with multiple hosts and support for domain properties.

Tracking these crawl stats in Google Search Console can provide you with valuable data on what you are doing wrong/right with your pages’ crawlability. 


Google Provides 7 Creative Tips for Improving your Web Stories 

The good folk over at Google have decided to provide the users with 7 actionable tips for making better and more engaging Web Stories that could help you drive more traffic and build your audience fast. 

Web Stories are a form of light, snackable content and are often consumed on the go. They can be a powerful tool for content creators and influencers to drive new audiences and keep the existing ones engaged, which means that Web Stories are widely used as an additional traffic channel.

Here’s the summary of the tips: 

  1. Use video format. 
  2. Focus on first-person storytelling.
  3. Leverage your brand and identity.
  4. Incorporate using display infographics and dynamic visuals.
  5. Get a boost from illustrations.
  6. Post quizzes and polls.
  7. Use animations to build excitement. 

Read more in Google’s official post here


Twitter Relaunches Account Verifications 

Twitter is bringing back public verifications. The social media platform removed this application process in 2017, but the feature is making a comeback in 2021 with several new updates. 

Twitter first wants to get enough feedback from the users so the verification policy and the application process get an update that will be satisfactory to its user base:  

“We plan to relaunch verification,” state over at Twitter, “including a new public application process, in early 2021. But first, we need to update our verification policy with your help. This policy will lay the foundation for future improvements by defining what verification means, who is eligible for verification and why some accounts might lose verification to ensure the process is more equitable.”

There will be 6 types of Twitter accounts eligible for verification: 

  1. Government
  2. Companies, Brands and Non-Profit Organizations
  3. News
  4. Entertainment
  5. Sports
  6. Activists, Organizers, and Other Influential Individuals

The platform also adds that, aside from belonging to one of the aforementioned profile types, the account must be “notable and active” in order to receive the coveted blue badge. 

More information on Twitter bringing back the account verification process available in this SEJ article


Instagram Updates Branded Content Ads: More User-Based Advertising Options  

Instagram advertisers, as well as IG influencers, will be happy to hear that the platform is adding new endorsement-deal options that can benefit both of these parties. Namely, Instagram is updating branded content ads so the advertisers have an option to publish sponsored content from users’ accounts. 

The platform introduced branded content ads in 2019 in order to make the identification of sponsored content easier and more transparent. These branded ads are made to look like organic user-generated posts but feature a “Paid partnership with [brand name]” tag.

Instagram branded ads | Four Dots

(Image Source: Instagram)

This update will surely make the entire endorsement process much easier for both sides as now the advertisers have the option to publish branded content ads without having to wait for an influencer to post organic content first.

To find out how to create branded content ads, we recommend reading this SEJ article


Facebook Provides Best Practice Tips to Boost Video Content Performance

Great news for those who use video format for their marketing campaigns. Namely, Facebook has treated us with an informative and actionable piece wherein its team gives 3 best practices for creating engaging and effective video content. 

Quality video content has been among the most potent marketing tools since, well the advent of the video format in general, and is today extremely effective in terms of driving brand awareness and boosting leads/conversions. 

The summary of Facebook’s 3 best practices is as follows:

  • Capture attention – add a 3-5 second trailer to hold interest
  • Frame the story – with a 4:5 aspect ratio
  • Engage your community – commenting on posts

In addition to these not-at-all generic and entirely fresh pieces of advice, Facebook was also kind enough to provide us with informative bonus tips for creating this type of content. These additional tips state that your video should be:

  • Engaging: Videos that spark meaningful interactions and authentic shares
  • Original: Videos that are original and authentic (not shared from a third party or clickbait)
  • Relevant: Videos that capture people’s attention and are relevant to their interests
  • Consistent: Videos that people seek out and return to regularly on a Page
  • Retentive: Videos that are high-quality and 3+ minutes that drive longer views (1+ minute)

Fascinating stuff. 


Wrapping Up

That would be all for this installment of Digital Marketing Week in Review by Four Dots. See you next week, until then – feel free to check out our previous edition!

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