A Look Back at the Biggest Social Media Updates of 2019

The only constant thing in social media is the landscape is always changing. From revamped features and changing platform restrictions to the rise of a new social network, it’s a challenge to stay on top of it all – let alone adapt and shift your marketing strategy. 

But don’t worry. We’ve sorted through the mountain of social media updates from 2019 and compiled it all just for you. So grab that cup o’ joe and get up to speed on all things social. 


Highly customized ads based on placement – In the past, the only change that could be made based on ad placement (mobile, desktop, etc.) was the media associated with the ad. Now, each ad placement can have unique copy, media, thumbnails, crop, and captions to better optimize your results.

Introduction of cost cap bidding – Instead of choosing between optimizing for cost or optimizing for conversions, cost cap bidding allows you to maximize your intended results (downloads, etc.), while still setting the max of what you’re willing to pay. 

Targeting “top fans” – Reaching an already engaged audience is easier with the option to serve ads to your page’s “top fans.” (Sorry, but this is only available to accounts with 10k+ followers for now.)

New specs for mobile ads – Facebook wants you to get to the point, using less space than before. Copy for mobile ads is now truncated after three lines of text instead of seven, and the maximum height for videos is restricted to 4:5. 

Interactive ad formats – With the introduction of three new ad types – poll ads, playable ads, and augmented reality ads – companies can now encourage participation and purchases from engaged users. 

Addition of “rehearsal” feature – Are you feeling nervous about going live? The new rehearsal feature allows you to run through a rehearsal while keeping the video only viewable by page admins and editors.


More story features – Stories still reign supreme, and Instagram continues the push for more viewer interaction with the addition of the countdown sticker and quiz sticker – both are great for increasing your Story post engagement!

More IGTV features – Consider the “vertical only” policy for IGTV video dropped! Now creators can use landscape format as well as interact with viewers using the new questions feature.

Shoppable looks from creators – It’s now easier for brands to see a boost in sales from influencers showcasing their products. Users can shop looks directly from creator posts, making the buying process virtually seamless.

Hiding “likes” – To help make users less self-conscious of the content they post and reduce bullying, Instagram started testing the impact of hiding “likes”. This engagement will still be visible to the creator but not to their audience.

Promoting organic posts from creators – With the new Instagram branded content tool, there’s now one more way brands can capitalize on content partnerships – by promoting organic posts directly from creators. (Promoted content appears with a “paid partnership” label.)

Posting ads in Explore – Brands can now take advantage of users looking to discover something new by posting ads in the Explore section of the platform. Ads will be served based on interests, but can still be controlled by the user.

Scheduling IGTV and story content – Marketers and busy content creators rejoice! In a move that many people have been waiting for, you can now schedule IGTV and story content up to six months in advance.


Hiding replies – Say goodbye to Twitter conversations that go off the rails. You can now choose to hide replies, which will move them to a separate page (still viewable by other users).

Addition of 6-second ad option – After reviewing survey results from EyeSee, Twitter determined 6-second, sound-off video content created better ad recall and message association.” Advertisers can choose this bid option for promoted video, in-stream video sponsorships, and in-stream video ads for assets 15 seconds or less.


Employee notifications – Wondering how to get your employees engaged in company happenings? LinkedIn’s Employee Notification feature alerts your team members to what’s going on and encourages them to let their network know.

Addition of reactions – With the rollout of five new emoji-style response options, LinkedIn is hoping to give users more tools to communicate and express what they think of posted content.


More monetization opportunities – With additional subscription and tip options, creators can cash in on their content without relying solely on advertising deals. However, YouTube will cash in as well with their cut. 

Changes to terms of service – In a highly criticized move, YouTube has updated its terms of service to state they are “under no obligation to host or serve content,” meaning content and channels can be removed at their discretion.


Instagram-style layout – This widely popular short-form video app skyrocketed in 2019, reaching over 1.5 billion (yes, billion) downloads. But updates to the “For You” page seem to be reminiscent of Instagram, including a new grid-style layout

Suggested users tab – TikTok tested the addition of a “Suggested Users” tab, allowing users to discover new people and creators to get more eyes on their content.

Introduction of social commerce – To become more advantageous for brands, TikTik soft-launched social commerce features that allow select users the option to add links to e-commerce sites to their profile biography and to the content they create. 


Gold star accounts – To help legitimize authentic and top-performing accounts, Snapchat began adding a gold star to accounts of public figures as well as to those with an “active subscriber base.”

3D Snaps – With the launch of a 3D camera mode, snaps take on a more life-like quality. But sorry Android users, while everyone can receive 3D snaps, only Snapchatters with an iPhone X or above can use this feature.

Whew! That was quite a year. Now, what do YOU think were the biggest social media updates of 2019?

Not sure how to take advantage of all these changes? Learn more about how we can help you make sense of it all!

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