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FACEBOOK

Facebook introduces more security features, adds dark mode to Workplace

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Yesterday was a busy one over at Facebook. The company rolled out a variety of updates, both to Facebook itself and the Messenger app. Some of these updates look pretty promising – here’s a rundown on the biggest features being added:

  • Messenger just got more secure for you iOS users out there. New privacy features had been rumored over the past couple of days, but were officially unveiled yesterday. You can now use Face ID or Touch ID to lock private chats – and more privacy features are coming soon.
  • Facebook Pages might be getting streamlined, with new analytics additions. The ‘Like’ option may no longer be available on Pages in the future, as the company is beginning to test pages that strictly use the ‘Follow’ feature. We’ll also be getting new stats on the Insights page, including top-performing posts and audience overlap with Instagram.
  • Workplace gets a whole host of updates, including a dark mode. If you use Workplace in your company, the list of updates announced yesterday will be a welcome one. Dark mode is now available on both desktop and mobile Workplace apps, and the iOS app got a lot of simplifications.

It’s great to see Facebook continuing to optimize their platform – the potential updates to Pages are particularly interesting.

With more of a focus on followers and audience overlap insights with Instagram, could Facebook Pages have Instagram-like functionality in the future? Time will tell.


E-COMMERCE

Using artificial intelligence to personalize e-commerce

Google just unveiled the public beta of a long-awaited tool, Recommendations AI, that aims to help online businesses serve relevant product recommendations to their customers.

The tool has been in a private beta with brands including Hanes and Sephora, who gave some feedback and overall statistics in Google’s official announcement. Here’s what Google is claiming Recommendations AI will be able to do:

  • Google touts that the feature will help drive click-through rates and conversions by serving relevant recommendations to users. The artificial intelligence model pulls a variety of user data and purchase history to come up with recommendations that it thinks will offer the most value.
  • The model learns and adapts over time. One of the advantages that Google claims its Recommendations AI model will have over other models is that it is scalable and adapts over time with your customers.

The Crew’s take: Whether you’re a Google Cloud customer or not, the new Recommendations AI model is certainly interesting. We’d like to see more results from other brands before we can have a good handle on just how effective it is – but if it’s anything like Google claims, it could be useful for a lot of e-commerce businesses.


SPONSORED BY OUTBRAIN

Conversion Bid Strategy helps native advertisers squeeze max ROAS in less time

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Nope, it’s not magic.

It’s Artificial Intelligence combined with a huge data set applied to native advertising. All thanks to Outbrain, one of the largest native advertising platforms.

How large? Did you know that Outbrain reaches 1.2B users every month? They surpassed Facebook’s reach in the US!

That means they have a lot of data to optimize your campaigns. And their latest optimizing feature, Conversion Bid Strategy (CBS), is in the spotlight for the next online workshop.

Outbrain is hosting a free online workshop on July 29, at 11am EST in which they’ll explain everything about CBS:

  • What is Conversion Bid Strategy (CBS).
  • How to stop caring about CPC, section bid, hour bid, and content adjustments to get more conversions.
  • If you are a performance marketer whose campaigns are capping too early, CBS will ensure that your camps run during peak hours. Discover how.
  • CBS modes: Semi-Auto, Fully-Auto, CPA Targeting.
  • How to get more conversions with CBS while reducing the time you spend in front of your desktop controlling stats.
  • How to use the Semi Automatic CBS to automatically bring more traffic to top converting sections.
  • Live Q&A: Ask anything about CBS and Keioni Walker from Outbrain will answer!

Register for the free online workshop to discover more about CBS.


SEO

Do you want your PDFs to hit page 1 of Google?

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Let’s be honest: PDFs aren’t great for SEO. They’re not mobile-friendly, they lack navigation, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

However, this 7-steps guide written by Patrick Stox at Ahrefs might shed some light on optimizing your PDFs for the glorious first page on Google.

Some of these suggestions also apply for ordinary webpages, but mind that you might need the pro version of Adobe for some steps.

Shall we continue?

  1. Write good content: That’s the backbone of SEO, and it doesn’t change for different formats.
  2. Add an optimized title: Like web pages, PDFs have titles too. Search engines use the title to describe the document in the search. And if there’s no title, they rely on the file name.
  3. Add an optimized description: This is not a ranking factor, but enables you to control the text that appears in search results.
  4. Use a relevant file name: The file name will be part of the URL and, therefore, it’s a small ranking factor.
  5. Include image alt attributes: This helps search engines to understand the content of your images.
  6. Use headings: Headings make your document more readable and enhance the user experience.
  7. Include links: Internal and external links are ranking factors, exactly like webpages.

Tracking PDF views

There are several ways to track the views your PDFs are getting. Some easy solutions are:

  • Event tracking: You can track clicks on your PDF and send them to your analytics system following these instructions.
  • Embeds: You can embed your PDF into a page using Javascript or an iframe to track the views of the page itself.
  • Server logs: Since PDFs are stored on a server, any access request for the files will be recorded in your log files.

That’s all folks!

Ranking PDFs might not be easy, but this guide should help point you in the right direction.


ROUNDING UP THE STACK

QUORA: Lead generation forms are now available on Quora Ads – this might be interesting enough to attract a few new advertisers to the platform.

GOOGLE MY BUSINESS: Love it or hate it, subscription-based services are coming to Google My Business. According to Tom Waddington on Twitter, the price will be $50 per month for a Google Guaranteed, checkmark-style badge.

TIKTOK: A new feature for advertisers hit the platform today – Gamified Branding Effect. Advertisers can now create branded elements that users are able to interact with and make their own.

LINKEDIN: Microsoft’s Q4 earnings report just came out, and there’s some good news for LinkedIn. Even with a worldwide pandemic, the platform grew revenue by 10% and user sessions by 27%.

WORDPRESS: Basic, extensible XML sitemap functionality is now a part of the WordPress core in the new version 5.5 update.

GOOGLE: We all knew mobile-first indexing is coming soon. The official date has been changed from September 2020 to March 2021. Google explains what you need to do until then.


BRAIN TEASER

A man lives in a cabin, with each window facing to the south. There are windows on each exterior wall. One day, gazing out of one of the windows, he spots a bear. What color is it?

You can find the solution here.


POOLSIDE CHAT

Cool tech, (funny) business, lifestyle and all the other things marketers like to chat about while sipping cocktails by the pool.

Elon has some wild ideas for his neural implant

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To preface this story: this would be a lot crazier if it wasn’t a project from Elon Musk. But, of course, it is.

One of his companies, Neuralink, has been working on a neural implant for quite some time now. Elon thinks it’s going to be necessary to compete with AI, while a lot of people out there are interested in some of the potential practical effects of this neural implant.

One of the coolest? According to a tweet from Elon a couple days ago, you’d be able to listen to music via the neural implant, a crazy idea that you probably didn’t even know was possible until now.

Like we mentioned at the beginning, though – this is Elon Musk we’re talking about, so take it with a grain of salt. The man’s been known for not following through on some promises (we’ll just call him an eternal optimist), so this may not be coming anytime soon.

If this neural implant does become a thing, though: would you get one?

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