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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 3” edition brings us:   

  • Google Unveils Top 2020 Searches 
  • Facebook Identifies Hottest 2021 Topics and Trends 
  • LinkedIn Is Testing Ads in LinkedIn Stories 
  • WordPress 5.6 Is Rolling Out: Here’s a Quick Overview 
  • Pinterest Boards Upgraded: 3 New Features 

Alrighty then, let’s dive right in! 


Google Unveils Top 2020 Searches 

Google recently revealed its annual list of top terms and phrases we’ve been searching for during 2020

This year has indeed been a seminal one. However, what kind of change it will end up triggering is yet to be known. We sure hope it would involve a positive shift in the human mindset during the following decades. A shift toward a more balanced societal structure wherein equity, togetherness, and logic prevail. 

But, perhaps, we are being far too optimistic, and the only possible constant is indeed chaos induced by the suboptimal competence of our political “leaders”, as well as the ignorance of their target audience. 

Hard pills to swallow aside, here’s Google’s official “Year In Search 2020” video:

Our personal favorite insight is that 2020 was the year when people searched what day is it? more than any previous in recorded history. 


Facebook Identifies Hottest 2021 Topics and Trends 

Facebook has been studying the most talked about topics across Facebook and Instagram users. This research looked at the data pulled from anonymous accounts and used it to draw valuable insights and better understand user trends and topics that are most likely to be all the rage in 2021.

Facebook published the research in a downloadable PDF form and divided the acquired insights into 4 basic categories:

  1. Education and Action
  2. Technology
  3. Lifestyle
  4. Leisure

For example, the Facebook team looked at the Black Lives Matter movement to understand how its users were educating themselves and taking appropriate action. 

(Image Source: SEJ)

As per Facebook:

“Shared instructions for calling elected officials underscore a renewed investment in local government, and people are advocating for policies that will benefit their cities, towns and neighborhoods. People are shifting their time and money toward advocacy…”

Read more about these handy insights in this SEJ article


LinkedIn Is Testing Ads in LinkedIn Stories 

This September, the most popular business-focused social media, LinkedIn, launched its own version of stories and is now rolling the very first ads test for them. 

“Today, we’re excited to announce that we are testing Stories Ads with a limited number of advertisers in a closed beta with all members globally,” say folks over at LinkedIn. 

“Stories Ads can help brands grow their reach with our community of more than 722M members with video and image ads. Already, we have had more than 600 advertisers activate campaigns with positive performance in clicks, views and cost metrics.”

Though LinkedIn Stories ads are potentially an effective marketing channel, the platform hasn’t yet provided any tangible insight into story-based data or metrics.

LinkedIn did mention on several occasions that the feedback on this new feature is “incredibly positive”, but no specific data that would be useful to marketers has yet been revealed.


WordPress 5.6 Rolls Out: Here’s a Quick Overview 

WordPress released a new version dubbed “Simone” in honor of the famous singer Nina Simone. The initial reviews and reactions about WordPress 5.6 were quite positive, and this time around the update didn’t break anything (unlike the 5.5 version back in August 2020). 

However, some concerns soon started cropping up, mainly with regard to certain security issues. Although there are numerous new features and improvements, it didn’t take long for researchers to locate a major security-based pitfall. 

Let’s focus on the improvements at first. 

WP Updated the Enable jQuery Migrate Plugin 

The 5.5 issues are now mitigated as WordPress 5.6 updated the Enable jQuery Migrate plugin, thus preventing the August crashing scenario from happening again. 

When the plugin is active and the publisher is logged in, the plugin will detect outdated jQuery and log it, presenting a display at the top of page to signal the problem,” says SEJ. “The plugin detects jQuery issues from page to page as the pages are served to the publisher as they browse the site. There is an option to perform similar logging using pages served to users are browsing the site, but WordPress warns that this could create significant server load and recommends not turning it on.”

“There is a deprecation log page that shows the plugins responsible for the warnings. After updating a plugin the publisher can clear the old log and resume browsing again to see if the Enable jQuery Migrate plugin detects additional issues.”

The Security Issue 

It seems that the new feature called REST API authentication with Application Passwords (aside from its benefits) brings a potentially critical security concern that could – if exploited the right way – result in a full website takeover.

Namely, this password feature allows for the connection between your website and outside apps in order to improve functionality, but the potential issues in the form of social engineering attacks may occur as well. These hacking methods include obtaining administrator credentials and other highly sensitive information that could lead to huge issues, including phishing-based hacks where the attacker is posing as a user’s bank and is requesting bank account credential resets. 

More information here


Pinterest Boards Upgraded: 3 New Features 

Pinterest rolls out 3 new features for Pinterest Boards that should provide its users with more ways to productively use their time spent on this social media platform.

The network reports a 35% year-over-year increase in the creation of Pinterest boards on a monthly basis, with the biggest boost seen in the following categories:

  • Home improvement
  • At-home workouts
  • Baby products
  • Essential goods
  • Gifts

The new Pinterest Boards features include: 

1. New “Notes to Self” Section

The saved pins screen now offers a new option where users can leave private notes to themselves so they can have a more accurate context about specific saved posts when they revisit them later. 

New “Notes to Self” Section | Four Dots

(Image Source: SEJ)

2. New Board Toolbar

Users can navigate more easily across boards. The new toolbar is located at the top of the screen and provides quick access to all the actions.

New Board Toolbar | Four Dots

(Image Source: SEJ)

3. Board Favorites

This feature enables users to mark their favorite pins. 

Pinterest Board Favorites | Four Dots

(Image Source: SEJ)

Read more here


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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