The Entrepreneur Monthly: TikTok For Business & Free Google Ads

The Entrepreneur Monthly June 2020

Hey digital entrepreneurs, we are back yet again with the most recent edition of The Entrepreneur Monthly for June 2020.

In The Entrepreneur Monthly, we’ll break down all the news you need to know from the past month. We’ll cover important news about SEO, social media, WordPress, marketing, product launches, and anything else that might affect your digital business. Then, we’ll share it here on the blog and in our newsletter.

If you want to make sure you never miss an update, subscribe to the Blogging Wizard newsletter via this page to get The Entrepreneur Monthly delivered straight to your inbox every month.

This month, TikTok rolled out its new business tool, giving you another way to reach the youth demographic on social media. Google is also expanding some free advertisement options to help businesses cope with the pandemic.

And oh yeah – you might be Tweeting with your voice soon…at least if you have an iPhone.

This is The Entrepreneur Monthly for June 2020.

Google Shopping Ads will be free in main search results

A few months back, we told you how Google was making shopping ads free to eCommerce stores.

At that time, the change only applied to the “Shopping” tab – it didn’t affect the main Google search results.

As of the end of June, that’s changed and you can now take advantage of free shopping ads within the main Google search results. At least at the beginning, these free ads will appear in the knowledge panels that display buying options for the product that a person searched for.

The change will start rolling out this summer, beginning on mobile results in the USA and later expanding to desktop results in the USA.

To learn more and see an example of what the free ads will look like, check out the announcement post from Google.

Google is also giving free ads in Google Maps

Google isn’t only giving away goodies to eCommerce stores – Google is also rolling out a new freebie for local businesses.

Specifically, Google is launching promoted pins to smart campaign advertisers in Google Maps. Promoted pins let you highlight specific features of your local business, such as pickup, delivery, curbside pickup, takeaway, etc.

If you’re a smart campaign advertiser with a Google My Business listing, you will not be charged for clicks, calls, or generated sales through at least September 2020.

Search Engine Journal has more on this as well as some real examples of promoted pins.

TikTok for Business has arrived

TikTok, the short video app that’s especially popular with young folks, isn’t just for dancing nurses anymore. Now, it’s for business with the launch of a new TikTok for Business platform.

According to TechCrunch, TikTok for Business will “serve as the home for all [of TikTok’s] current and future marketing solutions for brands”.

You’ll be able to choose from a variety of different ad formats including:

  • TopView – The ad that appears when users first launch the app.
  • Brand Takeovers – A three-to-five second ad that can be either video or image.
  • Hashtag Challenges – Brands can invite TikTok users to create content around a certain topic.

TikTok hasn’t been super public with pricing, but you should expect to pay a minimum of $50 per day if you want to advertise on TikTok.

In addition to TikTok for Business, TikTok is also testing a new platform called Creator Marketplace, which will let brands discover and partner with content creators for branded content campaigns.

You can learn more in the full TechCrunch article.

Note: If you’re new to TikTok, be sure to check out our article on TikTok stats & facts to learn more.

Some large companies boycott Facebook Ads

This one might not affect your business directly, but it is an interesting development in the digital marketing space.

A steadily increasing number of companies are halting their Facebook ads because of Facebook’s failure to combat hate speech.

There’s an official #StopHateforProfit hashtag/boycott movement. Already, we’ve seen some well-known companies join including:

  • Honda
  • REI
  • The North Face
  • Patagonia
  • Upwork
  • Dashlane
  • Ben & Jerry’s

Starbucks, the sixth-largest Facebook advertiser, also said it will stop all of its social media advertising (though it’s not clear if Starbucks is officially joining the boycott campaign).

Microsoft, Facebook’s third-largest advertiser, had already stopped its ads in May. Adidas and Clorox are also stopping their ads, though neither company is officially joining the boycott.

This boycott, combined with the general pressure on small businesses, certainly won’t be good for Facebook’s bottom line. It will be interesting to see how things shake out with Facebook Ads and if Facebook will make any changes to its policies.

CNN has a list of companies that have pulled ads and you can learn more about the campaign at the Stop Hate for Profit website.

Google shares information on YouTube search

When most people think about “Google search”, they think about the search engine. But there’s another incredibly popular search tool under the Google umbrella – YouTube! Well, “Alphabet umbrella” I guess.

But how does YouTube search work? How is it different from regular Google search? How can you optimize it?

To help people better understand YouTube, Google created an entire “How YouTube Works” website, including a dedicated section on YouTube search, as well as recommended videos.

For search, YouTube says that it prioritizes three main elements:

  1. Relevance – Factors such as title, tags, description, and video content.
  2. Engagement – Factors such as total watch time.
  3. Quality – YouTube says that its “systems are designed to identify signals that can help determine which channels demonstrate expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness on a given topic.”

On a slightly related note, Google is also experimenting with some potential tweaks to YouTube search. Google might start showing links to regular web pages when people search for popular topics on YouTube.

This feature seems to be in a very experimental phase, so it may or may not stick around and make it to primetime. Search Engine Journal has more or you can check out the original Reddit post from a user who noticed this feature.

People are creating 60% more LinkedIn content than last year

What do people do on LinkedIn when they’re stuck working from home (or unemployed, though we hope that doesn’t apply to you)?

Apparently, they post a lot more and engage in more conversations. Like more than 1.5X more.

According to Social Samosa’s interview with Srividya Gopani of LinkedIn, LinkedIn is seeing a 55% year-over-year increase in conversations among connections as well as a 60% year-on-year increase in content creation.

Basically, whether you’re a business, a freelancer, or just someone looking for a job, there’s a lot of activity on LinkedIn. So – go to where the people are!

You no longer need a Facebook account to advertise on Instagram

This is a small, but welcome, tweak for people who want to advertise on Instagram without a Facebook presence.

As of late June, you no longer need to connect a Facebook account or page to run ads on Instagram.

However, this change only applies to new Instagram business accounts. Search Engine Journal has more.

Twitter experiments with voice Tweets

Here’s an interesting one:

Starting in June, you might not only need to worry about counting characters on Twitter – you might be counting seconds!

Twitter is testing a new voice Tweet feature that lets you capture up to 140 seconds of audio and share it with your followers. People will see your voice Tweets just like others. To play them, all they need to do is click the image.

It will be interesting to see how this one plays out – I can definitely see it creating more of a human connection on Twitter.

For positive conversations, it can help you build a deeper connection with other people. And for negative (i.e. angry) conversations, it might tone things down by adding some humanity. Or it could just make it easier for people to yell at each other – who knows.

Currently, the feature is only available on iOS. For now, only a limited number of people have access, but it will be rolling out to all iOS users soon.

Everyone, no matter their device, will be able to listen to voice Tweets – you just need the iOS app to compose them (for now).

You can learn more in the announcement post from Twitter or this post at The Verge.

Safari finally adds WebP image support

Finally, here’s some good news for web performance fans:

WebP is an image format that offers smaller file sizes without any significant loss in quality.

If you want to speed up your website, using WebP images is a great strategy to shrink the size of your site.

However, while big browsers like Chrome and Firefox have supported WebP for quite some time now, Safari was a notable holdout, which made it slightly more complicated to implement WebP images on your website.

That’s going to change in Safari 14, which will ship with iOS 14 and macOS 11 Big Sur.

If you’re using WordPress, you can easily get started with WebP images with plugins such as ShortPixel or Imagify (from the same developer as WP Rocket).

And that wraps up all the latest news you need to know from June 2020. Check back next month for more great news about SEO, social media, WordPress, blogging, and more.

The Entrepreneur Monthly June 2020