YOU Get a Sponge! 局 YOU Get a Sponge! 局

TikTok's fancy new product-detecting AI is going off the rails, in the most hilarious way possible.

Upgrade to Premium and get ad-free issues, access to 20+ marketing science interviews, Tods course on growing a digital agency, and more. [learn more]

YOU Get a Sponge! YOU Get a Sponge!

TikTok's fancy new product-detecting AI is going off the rails, in the most hilarious way possible.

Listen to todays issue

  Subscribe free to the podcast

Today's News:

Creator Brew 儭Creating better collaborations between +1.400 brands and creators

Shopify Product Reviews App Being Removed

A short but important story for those of you who use Shopifys product reviews app the company announced it will be shutting it down in three months.

They didnt say why, though its likely because the whole reviews ecosystem has moved well beyond their own in-house app. Platforms like Yotpo, which we use for our agencys clients, have advanced light years ahead of Shopifys own app.

So May 6th is the shutdown it might behoove you to start checking out Shopifys app store now to look for and start onboarding a replacement app, if you use that functionality.

Todays Trivia Guess and Win!

Each month, we pick someone who guesses in a trivia question and comp them the Premium Newsletter! Just click on any option below:

What was Shopify's original name before it became Shopify?

Login or Subscribe to participate in polls.

Threads Algorithm Revealed, But No Surprises

Threads, Metas answer to Twitter, has released some details about its discovery algorithm, and while there arent any huge surprises on what makes things rank higher, its still good to review.

Like most of these algos, engagement points like replies and likes and follows all give a bit of a boost. But there are also some other factors we havent seen a lot of, like:

  • How many posts youve seen so far in your session

  • How long its been since you were active on Threads

  • How many times any given posts account profile has been visited

As Threads continues to gain momentum, with the platform now up to 130 million active users, more brands are also testing the waters, and seeing what sort of engagement they can drive in the new app.

Which, honestly, is probably not a lot for most businesses as yet.

The Threads community still feels pretty sparse, while the algorithms driving discovery in the app seem inconsistent, with some posts gaining a heap traction, while others are essentially D.O.A., and theres no obvious logic as to why one post goes big and another flops.

Social Media Today

Also interesting to note, since Threads was built on top of the Instagram code stack, some of the Instagram signals come into play, such as how often youve viewed the authors profile on Instagram.

Metas full Threads algorithm summary is here. 

TikTok Every Video is an Ad is Kinda Crappy

A great piece in the Verge today about TikToks latest change to its experience the app tries to detect products in a video, then provide links to buy those products in the catalogs of its various advertisers.

In theory, it sounds great. If you see Taylor Swift wearing a sparkly dress, you can quickly go buy it. Or, at least, TikTok will show you one like it. Or, it might show you a sponge.

Yes, it seems TikToks product-detecting AI is a little off its rocker.

As I was scrolling through my feed this week, a video from an account I dont follow popped up discussing actor Hunter Schafers Grammys afterparty outfit

As the video was ending, a button popped up prompting me to view items in TikTok Shop related to the shoes. The blue and orange embellished heels字etail for over $2,000. What could TikTok possibly have for sale that come close to them?

Apparently, nothing. The shoes TikTok pushed me toward looked nothing like what was in the video. Many of the items were not even shoes after a pair of black patent leather slip-ons ($16) and yellow and brown platforms ($81), the shopping feed took several left turns. I was served a 10-pack of socks for $11.09, a chair that I had been looking at on Amazon a week prior, cooking sauces, a Scrub Daddy sponge, and nylon handbags.

Interesting that it sounds like theres a connection with Amazon retargeting in there.

To be clear, were not talking about the system where influencers directly link to specific products. No, this is basically TikToks educated guess as to what an object is, and its guesses are apparently terrible.

So too, from what I understand, is the overall TikTok experience in the U.S. right now. Thats where theyve gone hog-wild on TikTok Shop, with many people complaining its just a glorified Aliexpress store now. (Im in Canada, and so far it doesnt seem like theyve rolled that out here, because at least my TikTok has been blissfully devoid of product pitches.)

But this product identification system raises many questions that, so far, there are no answers to.

Will creators have a say in it? Will they, too, get a cut of whatever sales happen as a result of their video?

TikToks identification system is bad now, but what if it eventually could identify the brand of soap or keyboard in a video and give viewers a direct link to buy it?

Whats in it for the person who piqued shoppers interest in the first place?

TikTok didnt respond to [our] request for comment.

HubSpot January 2024 Updates

HubSpot has released some updates.

One notable change is a simplified process for complying with the stricter email requirements set by major email providers like Google. HubSpot has updated email headers for a one-click unsubscribe feature and bolstered SPF/DMARC authentication to help users meet these new standards easily.

Other highlights include increased limits for custom objects and properties.

Its also refined its lead management features, allowing for more detailed tracking and management of leads.

For those focusing on inbound marketing, HubSpot now offers conditional form confirmation pages, giving you a more tailored approach to lead routing.

And HubSpot's introduction of a Currencies API will help keep exchange rates up to date automatically definitely good for brands operating on a global scale.

Rounding it out: Integration updates with Dynamics 365 and NetSuite now permit direct enrollment in sequences and booking of meetings from within these systems.

GenAI Google Brings Gemini Out of Beta

Google has killed its AI tool named Bard. But dont worry, it only killed the name. Its AI capabilities will live on under the new brand: Gemini.

They also released a dedicated mobile app, a premium version, and most notably, theyve integrated Gemini into Google Assistant. This is definitely a shot over the bow of Apple, whose Siri assistant has fallen well behind in this space.

The mobile app is now available on Android, and Google has integrated Gemini into the iOS Google app.

The upgraded version, which they call Gemini Ultra, is available at $20 a month.

Previously named Bard, it was only accessible through a website, and labelled everywhere as being in beta.

Threads Ability to Save Posts Coming Soon

Back to Threads for a moment, they have started testing letting people save posts in the app this has been one of the most requested features.

We can also assume that, too, will be an engagement signal to be factored into the algorithm. In fact, the Save function tends to be a pretty strong signal on most platforms often given more weighting than Likes.

You probably dont have it right now, unless youre in the test group. If you are, youll find it under the three-dots menu on any post in your feed. You can find your saved posts in the profile menu.

Creator Brew 儭Creating better collaborations between +1.400 brands and creators

Get free stuff for referring friends and family

1 referral = Tods How to Go Viral keynote speech 儭
2 referrals = One Month Free of the Premium Podcast 儭
3 referrals = Access to Private Slack Channel

You currently have 0 referrals, only 1 away from receiving Tod's Keynote: "How to Go Viral".

Copy and share  this link

Reach 4,300+ marketing decision-makers for as low as $7! [learn more]

Upgrade Your Media Buying Skills:

Tools We Use and Recommend:

Some links in this newsletter may provide affiliate revenue to us.


or to participate.