July 30, 2021
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SmartBrief on Social Business
The Big Story
Amy Houston explores how brands such as Spotify, Calm, Starbucks and Google are using GIFs on social media to playfully engage with audiences by telling stories and even showcasing products and events. "Standing out from the crowd, being consistent and showing products in a modern way are all factors brands need to consider in their social strategy -- and GIFs can be an excellent way to encompass that," Houston writes.
Full Story: The Drum (free registration) (7/30) 
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TikTok Influences Purchase Decisions
Did you know 66% of Millennial TikTok users have looked up a product after seeing it in an ad? Download our study to learn more about both Gen Z & Millennials on TikTok, their attitudes and receptiveness to ads, and which brands are standing out on the platform.
Connecting & Collaborating
High-quality content is the most critical element of a successful email newsletter, and business-to-business marketers should focus on long-term strategy rather than tactics such as clickbait headlines that give quick wins but destroy trust, writes 1440 Media's Pierre Lipton. Lipton explains how to scale email newsletters and use them as a foundation for other content marketing, such as podcasts and YouTube videos.
Full Story: MarketingProfs (free registration) (7/29) 
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Marketers should take heed with emoji selections
Marketers need to exercise caution when selecting emojis as the "seemingly innocent images" can have different meanings for political, age and geographic groups and subcultures, write Ashley Cooksley and Elizabeth Koenig. For example, the baseball cap symbol represents a lie among the hip-hop community, and the two warn that "if brands are looking to create a credible voice online, they need to understand the context surrounding emojis."
Full Story: MediaPost Communications (free registration) (7/29) 
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Wendy's has eclipsed Burger King for the No. 2 spot among burger giants and is nipping at McDonald's heels with a first-mover loyalty program that has attracted 13 million app downloads, jumping early into the gaming space, engaging with fans on social media and launching a pop-up experience with Adult Swim, said chief marketer Carl Loredo. "We're winning not because of one flash-in-the-pan idea where someone has moldy Whoppers in print ads. ... It starts with who we are and continues in the way we engage and communicate," Loredo said.
Full Story: The Drum (free registration) (7/29) 
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Marketer Moments
TikTok taps its creators to remake classic ads
(TikTok for Business/Facebook)
TikTok created a "Re:Make by TikTok" campaign that features some of the platform's top creators reimagining three classic ads -- TBWA\Chiat\Day New York's "Touch" for Skittles, BBDO New York's "Game" for Snickers and Wieden+Kennedy Portland's "The Man Your Man Could Smell Like" for Old Spice. The push was created by BBDO, Mars and Mars Wrigley's The Hive and Procter & Gamble, and #TikTokRemake encourages others to share their own ad remakes or suggest other spots to be remade.
Full Story: Muse by Clio (7/29),  Ad Age (tiered subscription model) (7/29) 
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Platform News
Snapchat has enhanced its Snap Ads Manager with a Campaign Lab tool. Brands can use the tool to conduct split tests, view results to determine which works best and receive recommendations based on past tests for actionable steps.
Full Story: Social Media Today (7/30) 
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Pinterest generated $613 million in revenue for the second quarter, a 125% year-over-year increase, while its US monthly active users dropped 5% compared with Q2 last year. Executives attributed the downward turn of new members to the COVID-19 vaccinations combined with the reopening of brick-and-mortar stores and other venues.
Full Story: Social Media Today (7/29),  The Wall Street Journal (7/29),  Reuters (7/29) 
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Social Shareable
An Australian Shepherd named Secret has gone viral on TikTok for her creative skills. A clip showing the dog painting a picture of a flower with a brush between her teeth has attracted more than 76.7 million views and 15.3 million likes.
Full Story: Newsweek (tiered subscription model) (7/29) 
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GIFs and looping videos enable brands to communicate with their audience in a more conversational and fun way.
Amy Houston, writing for The Drum
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