Welcome to Connected Church News!

Top 5 latest Digital, Social Media & Web3 News in 5 minutes, to help your ministry stay on top of industry trends. 

This week, we have news about Instagram, YouTube, Snapchat, Pinterest, Google.

🗞️ News 1: Instagram launches Broadcast Channels with unlimited audience  

Source: Instagram

Instagram announced that they are launching a new messaging tool called Broadcast Channels. Broadcast channels are “public, one-to-many messaging tool”, which means you can make a broadcast or make an announcement, you can share text, video polls, all of it. And it’ll go to basically your followers and it can be unlimited audience. That’s what makes it interesting. Because there are many broadcast tools out there like WhatsApp broadcast list. And broadcast announcement tool. All of them have limits, like2 56, 5,000 people . But this they say is unlimited audience. So imagine as a church, a non-profit or a ministry, this could be really useful when you have a tool where you can make broadcast announcements to followers and audience with an unlimited number behind it I see a lot of applications in the faith-based space. I’ll link to all the details in the show notes. Take a look and pass it on to your social media team.

🗞️ News 2: YouTube now allows you to reply to a comment with a Shorts video  

Source: YouTube

YouTube has announced that you can now reply to a YouTube video comment using YouTube Shorts. You can basically create a YouTube Shorts video, when you reply to somebody in the comments section. Let’s say you put out your sermon video or something like that, and people ask a question, a follow-up question to that video saying, “where is it in the Bible? “instead of just typing it out, you can just, pick up your phone and you can actually create a Shorts for that person. Just 10, 20 seconds and respond to them in the comment section. I think it’s a great tool of engagement. By the way, this already exists in TikTok. This is a great tool, especially for churches, non-profits, ministries because it adds a personal element to it when you are responding to a comment. So I think you have to take a look at it, try to implement it in your YouTube channel. It has the potential to increase your YouTube channel engagement rate. And also when people look at that, the comment will appear right on top of the Shorts. People can click on it and watch the full video again.

🗞️ News 3: Snapchat launches Ray Tracing to enhance AR experience in the app 

Source: Snap

Snapchat announced that they are launching a new capability called Ray tracing, which adds light reflection when you’re projecting a digital object using augmented reality, ar reality. AR is basically you take a digital image and you project it on a real life situation. Like Pokemon, you point your phone and then you put an object on you feel like the object is sitting in the room wherever you are pointing it. So that is AR. Now they’re adding light reflection to make it look lifelike. When there is a light reflection and you move the object, it’s almost like the light is shining on the object. It looks very life-like, even though it’s a technological thing. There are lots of implications to it because if you are working in the AR space with churches, nonprofits, in teaching or education, then you can use this technology to create life-like, simulations, which can help in the learning process and in the education process. It’s also widely used in the e-commerce space.

🗞️ News 4: Pinterest launches a new, improved Pinterest Academy online platform    

Source: Pinterest

Pinterest has announced that they have released a refreshed, updated version of Pinterest Academy, which is an online e-learning tool to help you learn about the platform, advertising campaigns, how to use it to reach people, and various things related to the platform. Pinterest is unique, very fast growing and it has a following that is very committed to the platform. So if you are looking to use Pinterest in some way as part of your media mix, then this is an academy that you definitely want to check out. The announcement says they have 14 courses made up of more than 30 snackable lessons right from foundational knowledge, to Pinterest ad formats, to on-platform measurement tools.

🗞️ News 5: Google Translate gets an AI-powered major upgrade with new features

Source: Google

Google Translate, which is a very popular tool among many ministries that work around the world has had an AI powered upgrade. Now there is a tool that is built into a Google Translate that helps you get results with more context and relevancy. Because when you say a word, you know in each language that word has a different context and a different relevancy. Now AI is able to understand your intent and suitably suggest situations or ways in which a word can be used in different languages. Could be quite useful, especially for your missions teams. They also release new features technologically, design wise, with new gestures, new readable elements, and also on device language expansion.

Connected Church News: Digital, Social Media & Web3 – Week 4, February 2023
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