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Boost Your Instagram Community Engagement with GIFs

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Every week, I bring you a summary of the need-to-know news in the world of digital marketing. No fluff, just the good stuff.

If you find it helpful, be sure to share it with a friend!


  • 🌍 Meta’s New Twitter Rival Could Be Launching Next Month
  • 💃 Adapting GIFs in Your Community Engagement
  • 🏆 You Can Finally Schedule and Publish Instagram Stories
  • 🍔 McDonald’s Qatar Does TikTok Trends Right


Get Ready for Meta’s New Twitter Rival: Launching Next Month
Meet Barcelona. A Potential Twitter Alternative being developed by Meta that is rumored to launch next month.

Reports suggest Meta is developing a separate decentralized social network for text updates, targeting Twitter users seeking an alternative. The prototype, known as ‘Instagram for your thoughts,’ resembles a text-based feed, capitalizing on the popularity of private messaging.

Similar to Instagram Channels, Barcelona allows users to follow others and stay updated on text posts. The project is slowly taking shape offering a maximum post length of 500 characters.

It will be interesting to observe the contrasting shifts in social media as Meta emphasizes text updates while Twitter moves away from text and focus intead on video. Twitter is expanding its focus beyond text updates by enhancing video features. Recent updates include 2-hour long uploads for paid users and playback speed controls for videos, reflecting Twitter’s efforts to diversify its platform.


As Instagram has evolved into a feature-rich app and Meta has a track record of unsuccessful standalone apps, it’s likely that the Barcelona experiment will eventually be integrated into Instagram. However, this poses a significant challenge as some users already perceive Instagram as being bloated with features.

Facebook and Instagram paid verification starts in UK
UK users can now get verified on Facebook and Instagram with Meta Verified. For a monthly fee starting at £9.99, subscribers receive a blue tick, protection from impersonation, and access to personalized support. The service requires users to be 18+, submit a government ID, and offers peace of mind through active account monitoring. Read more

TikTok Ban in Montana: A Wake-Up Call to Avoid Reliance on Single Platforms
Montana’s governor has signed a TikTok ban into law, set to take effect in January 2024. The ban prohibits TikTok’s operation in the state and imposes fines of $10,000 per violation per day on companies enabling app usage. The governor cites concerns about privacy and data harvesting by the Chinese Communist Party as the rationale behind the ban. Read More

You Can Finally Schedule and Publish Instagram Stories via Third-Party Apps
Instagram just upped its game with the addition of Stories to the Graph API. Now, social media managers can empower businesses to share their engaging Stories through third-party platforms. It’s a win-win for everyone—more exposure, more interaction, and a vibrant Instagram experience. No extra app review needed, so let the storytelling begin!

TikTok Challenges Google as a Search Engine for Business and Discovery
TikTok aims to rival Google in search. By prompting users to tag locations and share experiences, the app seeks dominance in cafe, hotel, and tourist spot searches. This offers new business opportunities and strengthens TikTok’s role as a search engine for the younger generation. Read more

From FAQs to GIFs: Adapting to Instagram’s Community Engagement Evolution
Instagram gets a GIF makeover, bidding farewell to serious analyses and welcoming a world of animated wit. Meta spreads the joy globally, tapping into Giphy’s vast library. Let the laughter-filled comments begin with the new GIF button, now available to all users.

So What? How should you prepare for this?

As the community engagement game shifts on the platform, brands and businesses better get their act together. Here’s are a few things you need to do to stay ahead of the curve.

1 – Prepare a Frequently Used GIFs list 

Curate a Frequently Used GIFs list: Similar to having FAQs for community management, develop a resource containing preapproved GIFs for your community managers to utilize. A good sense of humor and community understanding are now more crucial than ever.

2 – Create your own branded GIFs to use

If you haven’t already, consider establishing a brand page on Giphy and crafting custom GIFs that can be used in Instagram comments. Take inspiration from successful examples like McDonald’s and Expo 2020 Dubai

3 – Embrace user-generated GIFs

Encourage your audience to create and share their own GIFs related to your brand. User-generated content adds an authentic touch to community interactions.

4 – Engage with trending GIFs

Stay up-to-date with the latest trends and popular GIFs circulating on the platform. Incorporate them strategically into your conversations to resonate with your audience.

5 – Monitor and respond to GIF usage

Keep an eye on how your audience utilizes GIFs in their comments and responses. Take note of recurring themes or sentiments to inform your brand’s messaging and engagement strategy.

6 – Give your community managers room to expirment

You will have to trust your communtiy managers to understand the community they are leading and make their own judgement calls. 

Remember, embracing GIFs as a new form of expression opens up exciting opportunities to connect with your audience in a more engaging and playful way.


Brand Watch

McDonald’s Qatar Does The Bumping Into Each Other Marriage Trend

McDonald’s Qatar does the “Bumping into Each Other” marriage trend from TikTok and nails it with their own mascot. In a brilliant move to jump on the viral trend, McDonald’s Qatar showcased their creativity and brand personality by ingeniously incorporating their iconic mascot into the popular wedding dance challenge.

With a touch of humor and a dash of playful charm, McDonald’s Qatar turned an ordinary trend into a captivating and memorable moment. By putting their own spin on the trend, they not only caught the attention of social media users but also effectively strengthened their brand presence.

Do check it out here (TikTok)