Columnists

Year-End Review: 2021’s New Social Media Features for Engagement, Commerce

ColumnistsDec 21, 2021

Year-End Review: 2021’s New Social Media Features for Engagement, Commerce

Duvall O’Steen and Jen Cullen Williams share the latest and greatest social media tools and features jewelers can take advantage of in 2022.

Duvall O’Steen, left, and Jen Cullen Williams are independent communications strategists and senior consultants for the Luxury Brand Group. They can be reached at DuvallOsteenNYC@gmail.com or Jen@JenCullenWilliams.com.
The ever-changing world of social media can be difficult to keep track of, so our year-end round-up this year is a list of the latest and greatest social media tools and features jewelers can take advantage of in 2022.

When the dust settles from the holiday selling season, be sure to check out each of these and get your marketing team to find creative ways to put them to good use.

Many of them will help you drive engagement with your brand and enhance your mobile selling opportunities.

Instagram

1. Story links. You no longer need 10,000 followers to use the link feature in Stories. Instead of “swipe up,” Instagram now has stickers for links in stories for all accounts. To drive more traffic to their websites, jewelers could feature a different piece every day as a 24-hour story with a sticker link directly to the piece on their e-commerce website. Instagram Shop buttons can also be used in stories and posts.

2. “Add Yours” stickers. Instagram now allows you to place an “Add Yours” sticker on your story, inviting others to share your story but keeping you in the loop by including you in the continuation of the story. This allows other users to post your images into their friends’ stories. Basically, people see the sticker and reply to the chain with their own take on whatever your prompt is.

Consider posting a picture of a great piece of jewelry with text like, “Who are you in love with?” Or a post with a classic diamond stud earring or pearl necklace with, “Diamonds or Pearls?” The tool is intended to be a nice way to build a sense of community, so you can also get creative with local posts. For example, a jeweler in Columbus, Ohio could post a photo of a real buckeye, a buckeye chocolate candy, and an OSU football player with something like “Which do you prefer?”

3. Collab option. Jewelers can now send collaboration invites to other Instagram users and create feed posts and reels mutually. The posts will appear in both the creators’ Instagram feeds and will share the exact view count, like count, and comment thread. Consider using this option for your work with influencers, agencies, local groups, charities, organizations, or micro-influencers.

4. Reels. Famed jewelry influencer Katerina Perez recommends that more jewelers use Instagram’s Reels. “Jump on the wave of Reels’ popularity and grow your audience by sharing them regularly. You can now substitute your general videos with Reels as they are more popular, and there is even a separate Reels feed on Instagram. When creating your video, I recommend putting together something dynamic—several shorter videos in one, showing a jewel from various angles, stills mixed with model shots, etc. It will be more effective than one continuous video. Also, look for trending music as it will help with more visibility; you can choose songs by either pressing ‘Browse’ when choosing the music directly in Reels or by going to your ‘Explore’ section, finding a Reel of someone else you like and saving their music.”

For more from Katerina, see our Q&A in a previous Creative Connecting column. Her new course, Brilliant Content for Instagram, is also starting soon.

5. Coming soon. Instagram has been testing ads in Instagram Shops, so if you are selling there—and you should be—make sure your marketing team checks out this new feature when it finishes the testing period. Stay up to date with all the app’s latest features by following the Instagram Business Blog.

Pinterest

1. New shopping features for Pinterest advertisers. Now, pinners can review company values by clicking “merchant details” when reviewing content. Make sure you have succinct, clearly stated values in your Pinterest profile. Advertisers can also highlight the brands as Black-owned or woman-owned businesses.

2. Shoppable pins. Pinterest added shoppable video pins last summer. “Idea Pin” product tagging allows content creators to pin your shoppable products (for example, a stylist suggesting your pendant with their outfit of the day) as part of their content. They can earn commission by sending buyers your way.

3. Hashtags. Pinterest encourages all businesses to include hashtags in pins to help people find their content.

4. Pinterest Predicts 2022. Review the annual “not-yet-trending” report that, according to Pinterest, provides a “window into the future, from the place where people plan for it.” The report highlights predicted themes based on audience and category and shares stats on why, as well as insights on how businesses can incorporate these themes into their marketing strategy. Jewelers can use this as a source of inspiration for marketing campaigns, social media strategies, and even in-store and online merchandising.

For more ideas on how jewelers can best utilize Pinterest, see our previous column on how to use Pinterest properly

 Related stories will be right here … 

Facebook

1. Audio hub. If you have a podcast or are considering starting one, be sure to use the audio hub to your advantage. There are audio-only “rooms,” and now followers can discover and listen to your podcasts without ever leaving Facebook. Also, check out the Creative Connecting column about how jewelers can use podcasts to establish trust and credibility in their communities.

2. Facebook Creator Shops. If you work with influencers or content creators, be sure to check out Facebook Creator Shops. The new feature allows content creators or influencers to showcase your products as recommendations while highlighting your brand.

3. Facebook Messenger Rooms. Launched back in the spring, Rooms creates a nice alternative for clients who still prefer virtual connecting over the in-store experience. Think Zoom for Facebook—this video conferencing feature allows you to meet with up to 50 people. You can go live (unlike Zoom) and/or share or the broadcast later. Jewelers can use it to build buzz for upcoming trunk shows, to get distant family members involved in engagement ring decisions, to showcase new designer collections, or to build community by sharing styling tips, educational info, or shopping advice.

TikTok

1. CommunityToks. The platform debuted this new feature in November to help brands connect with TikTok creators by generating community engagement around specific topics and niches. TikTok advises brands to actively pay attention to the hashtags, comments, and sounds/effects that are being used by the community, and then, according to TikTok, “Create hyper-relevant, native content that speaks authentically to those communities. Once you feel like you understand the various CommunityToks that work for your brand, invest in a content strategy that creates native TikTok videos that feel like a friendly neighbor in that CommunityTok.”

Jewelers should consider exploring relevant business-related CommunityToks such as #ringtok, #finejewelrytok, #jewelrytok, and #watchtok. Jewelers should also consider working with established creators in those segments to drive reach and engagement with target demographics. For more on TikTok, revisit our Creative Connecting column on TikTok tips.

2. Advertising. There are several recently launched forms of advertising on the platform that can drive awareness and conversion for products within videos. Jewelers may consider the “Collection Ads,” which enable an instant storefront, product page, or multiple products for seamless e-commerce transactions.

In August, TikTok announced the Shopify Partnership, which allows business accounts to easily add a shopping link tab to sync payments and products to their profile. There are many ways to create promotional content on TikTok for Business, and jewelers should not miss this dedicated resource to help small businesses grow on the platform.

YouTube

1. Translated descriptions and titles. As a leading global internet search engine, YouTube is a platform jewelers should not neglect. Recently, YouTube began showing videos from other languages with automatically translated titles/captions and descriptions to help viewers receive more relevant content, especially when native language searches provide insufficient results. For companies looking to expand globally, this provides a window of opportunity to reach a broader audience by producing content that is underserved in other markets. For more YouTube inspiration, revisit our Creative Connecting column on how jewelers can use YouTube.

2. Video Chapters. YouTube also recently introduced “chapters” to videos. Essentially, it splits videos into multiple sections that can be seen on the seek bar and within the descriptions, breaking up the video content so viewers can identify which parts of the video are most pertinent for them. Jewelers can consider using “chapters” in their videos. For example, if a jeweler was going to do a video on how to select a diamond using the 4Cs, each “C” could be its own chapter. A customer can just skip to the parts they are most interested in.

3. Video Snippets. This new mobile feature allows YouTube video snippets on the app when someone is searching on their phone, so that when you scroll over the video, a short snippet can be previewed. This feature already exists for desktop but has been added as a mobile feature. If you are loading video, make sure to have a captivating snippet to draw in the clicks.

Additional new features for other platforms such as Clubhouse, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Reddit can be found online here

Staying on top of the latest new social media features can be a full-time job. As always, we recommend jewelers continue to review the data insights on business accounts that each of the social media platforms provides, and then identify what your customers and potential customers are consuming. You can then put concentrated efforts in those areas of interest and growth to get the most of your digital marketing efforts.

Let’s make 2022 your best social year yet!  #happynewyear 
Jen Cullen Williamsis an independent communications strategist and senior consultant for the Luxury Brand Group.
Duvall O'Steenis an independent communications strategist and senior consultant for the Luxury Brand Group.

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