Hello! Welcome to this week’s edition of The Connected Church News, where we bring you the Top 5 Digital and Social Media News each week for Leaders of Nonprofits, Churches, Ministries and Faith-driven Entrepreneurs.

We know you are busy. And we know that most of you don’t have the time to search the big world wide web for the current news that is relevant to you.

That is why each week we bring you the Top 5 Digital and Social Media News that you need to know for this week and present it to you in a short video format.

This week we look at news items related to WhatsApp, Instagram, Facebook, Google and Byte.

📰 Top 5 Digital & Social Media News

🗞️ News #1 – Facebook releases Blueprint lessons on getting started with Shops

News 1, The Connected Church news by Natchi Lazarus, Week 3, July 2020

(News 1 – Source)

Our first big news of this week is about Facebook. It is about Facebook Shops. Recently, Facebook released a learning module about ‘Getting started with Shops’ inside its Blueprint learning system. When you get news like this from Facebook, you know how much they are focusing on this particular feature. Especially if you’ve been following the news, you know that they’ve been talking about digital wallets, shops, integrating all this across Instagram and WhatsApp, etc. So this is an important area that Facebook is focusing on, which means you have to take note of it and see if this can help your nonprofit or ministry.

There is another news connected to this, which I’ll also link to in the show notes, where Instagram is planning to replace the activity button… you’ve seen that activity icon at the bottom – the heart icon… they want to replace that with the Shops icon. They’re going to bring the Shops tab instead of the activity tab, and they want to move the activity tab to the top right corner. This was last week’s news.

This means Facebook is seriously considering bringing Shops as a big part of everything that they do, right in the middle of it. And this learning module talks in detail, step-by-step about how you can set it up. So I highly recommend you or your church team goes through this module and get yourself equipped for it, because this could be a big thing in the social media space, in the days to come.

🗞️ News #2 – Google brings ‘Predictive’ capabilities to Analytics through Machine Learning & AI

News 2, The Connected Church news by Natchi Lazarus, Week 3, July 2020

(News 2 – Source)

Our next news is about Google. An interesting one about Google Analytics. Last week, the Google Analytics team released an article talking about the two new ‘predictive’ metrics that they are adding to the tool. What are predictive metrics? These are metrics that would ‘predict’ what is going to happen with a group of people in the future. Let’s say, for example, 100 people visited your website, you can see, out of those 100 people how many people will actually make a decision to take ‘an action’ in the next 7 days.

They call it the ‘purchase probability’. Here they’re calling it the purchase property, but you can also map it to any action. If you want to know out of all your website visitors, what is the probability that certain people will take ‘an action’ in the next 7 days, you can actually do that. It’s an incredible application of Machine Learning (ML) and Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) capability. They also have another metric called ‘churn probability’ in which they’re saying ‘here is the probability of certain people not coming back to your website’. What you can do… the interesting thing is, you can take these people and create an audience out of them. And you can actually retarget them. So you can say, ‘these are the people, who Google thinks, are going to take an action in the next 7 days – highly probable”. And then you can show them another ad that will actually help them to take that action. How exciting is that! And even for churn probably you can create an audience, that is connected to the analysis, etc. So definitely check out this new feature from Google.

🗞️ News #3 – Instagram releases ‘Edit’ feature in IGTV preview section & cover image

News 3, The Connected Church news by Natchi Lazarus, Week 3, July 2020

(News 3 – Source)

Our next news is about Instagram. Instagram has added two new features inside the IGTV upload section. Earlier, when you upload on IGTV, you would have seen an option called ‘Add to Preview’, right? When you add that, a 1-minute clip of your IGTV will appear on your Instagram news feed. Now, you can edit that preview. It’s called ‘Edit preview’. And you will see it right below the preview enabling section. Then you can also edit the cover image, which will appear in various places like ‘discover’ and other places. Two useful features for your IGTV upload process. Do check it out.

🗞️ News #4 – Byte app sees an increase in downloads as users look for TikTok alternatives

News 4, The Connected Church news by Natchi Lazarus, Week 3, July 2020

(News 4 – Source)

Our next news is about the app called Byte, which is from the creators of Vine. We’ve talked about that app in the earlier news episodes, but last week, the app saw a huge number of downloads, 600,000 plus downloads in one single day, last week! Probably because of the news of TikTok-ban in certain countries, potentially. Certain countries actually banned it. So that has made the creators and users of TikTok look for alternatives. So, you as a church or ministry, check out Byte and see if it is something that’ll fit into your social media plans.

🗞️ News #5 – WhatsApp now gives links to Catalogs & Products inside the Business app

News 5, The Connected Church news by Natchi Lazarus, Week 3, July 2020

(News 5 – Source)

Our final news of this week is from WhatsApp. Last week, WhatsApp released an article talking about a couple of new features. One of them is so important that I wanted to bring it to your notice… that was kind of actually buried in that article! It talks about ‘links’ that WhatsApp is giving you for your products and your catalogs that are inside WhatsApp Business app. If you have already started using catalogs… we spoke about catalogs a few episodes ago and the importance of it… if you’re already using catalogs and products, you can share a link to that specific product or a specific catalog across the Web. I mean, you can share it on Facebook, Twitter, email, whatever you like.

This is a big feature, especifically for ministries and non-profits who have a regular newsletter going out. If you have broadcast going out on WhatsApp, now you can send links along with it. Definitely check out and see if you can apply it to your WhatsApp strategy.

That’s all we have for you this week. Thank you for spending your time with us.

Have a wonderful week!

Do leave your comments, questions, feedback, and reviews. You can also email me: podcast@natchilazarus.com

We will bring you a fresh set of the latest Social Media news for you next week.

Until then, Stay Connected, Stay Blessed.

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