Facebook’s F8 conference took place last week in Silicon Valley and the tech world is once again set on its ears. From direct brain-computer interface for typing to augmented reality, special effects picture sharing and more, the F8 of the tech world appears to be glorious (and will undoubtedly have profound effects on marketing).
- Facebook Analytics Update
Changes in Facebook’s analytics platform will provide businesses more in-depth info on their customers’ engagement with not only their Facebook Pages but their websites, applications, services, and bots. The new analytics systems will follow customers through their entire journey, including offline conversions, and will offer businesses better insights on how marketing and ad campaigns can be used to increase engagement, and ultimately, sales.
A better understanding of ROI when using social media will help marketing teams better target specific audiences, like those who have visited a company’s website and are more likely to make a purchase.
- Getting in on the filter action.
What is being coined as the Camera Effects Platform, Facebook has been developing a new app that will allow users to create their own unique image and video filters and effects. Essentially turning smartphones into an augmented reality platform, Facebook users, businesses, and marketing teams will have the ability to create one-of-a-kind frames and animated effects to better engage with audiences.
As there has reportedly been a decline in sharing on Facebook, the social media juggernaut is hoping to revamp it’s sharing feature to basically make it more fun for users. Seeing how popular Snapchat’s personal and business geofilters have become, this one is sure to strike a chord with audiences.
- Talk to the bot.
Facebook has introduced Messenger Platform 2.0 to support their billions of monthly users and tens of thousands of active bots. One of new features in Messenger is known as the Discover Tab and will allow users to find the best bots and businesses to connect with—together.
Another improved element with be Messenger’s AI assistant, M, which will help to make customer experiences run smoother across Facebook’s multiple tools. The new API will allow brands to better track the customer experience and deliver better services like cross platform purchases and delivery.
Look for businesses to develop models to create a seamless experience across apps and devices with users being able to more easily chat with bots in a group.
- Augmented Reality
Zuckerberg highlighted some new AR technology features that can quickly be making their way to your smartphone (the AR demo starts at 19:22 during his keynote). And in a nutshell all we can say—COOL!
The tools previewed during the demo will allow users and brands to create fun (and informative) interactive content, such as adding 3D objects to an image or virtual pop-up cards to provide information about a product. The potential for what brands will be able to create in the digital world and in real life opens up an entirely new channel of marketing.
- Facebook Workplace continues to evolve.
As Facebook grows older, it’s also growing up to speak. Rather than just being the social media go-to platform for friends and families, Facebook is hoping to delve into the working world, that’s why Workplace is adding chatbots, file sharing services, and better integration with various IT compliance tools and services.
Adweek has reported that more than 400,000 groups have been created on the platform with customers as large as Starbucks and Viacom. A free version known as WorkPlace Standards is set to become available to companies and organizations relatively soon. With the potential to link businesses across the world in real time and work as a virtual office, small businesses and firms can benefit from cost savings.
- Smarty pants.
The development of Facebook’s Smart Replies will help to enhance customer support and automate answers so Page owners won’t have to deal with huge influxes of questions alone. Smart Replies will be able to respond to FAQs such as business hours or directions by drawing from information found on the Page and replying with the correct information.
Brands will now be able to free up some time to meaningfully engage with the audience rather than simply answers questions. Just remember that because the Smart Replies is grabbing information from your Facebook Page, you’ll need to make sure that information is being updated as necessary.
- VR get togethers, mind control, and more…
This week’s F8 conference also included a few more amazing topics and technologies that blew us away, including:
- Facebook Spaces—A VR app being introduced for the Oculus Rift, Facebook Spaces is going to offer friends and family an interactive virtual environment where you can chat, draw, play games, take pictures, watch videos, and more. You’ll even have your very own avatar created from images loaded onto Facebook. This one seems like the perfect virtual hangout spot.
- Facebook is reading minds—Well, maybe not just yet, but the company’s development division is working on a neural interface that will allow a user to type by just thinking the words. Facebook comments might get even zanier than we thought imaginable.
- Surround 360-degree camera—Technically two new versions were announced and Facebook is hoping both help to accelerate the development of 360-degree content. While the cameras definitely cost a pretty penny, the company is planning on working with businesses to lease out or rent the costly (but innovative) tech.
- Oh yeah…there’s this whole hearing through your skin thing—Facebook’s Building 8 development department is also working on skin sensor technology that will allow the brain to recognize and translate what a person touches into symbols, words, and patterns. Yup…
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We know that to stay competitive we need to be ahead of the curve. That’s why we are constantly researching and understanding the newest technologies that are set to emerge. Let us be the guiding light you need in the ever evolving digital marketing world.