KIMP’s Picks 15th December: Weekly Highlights In Design, Marketing, AI, & More

It’s Friday! If you regularly follow our blog, you know well that this means one thing – time for KIMP’s weekly social media roundup! In the KIMP’s Picks 15th December edition, we bring to you some exciting updates and interesting discussions in the realms of marketing, AI, and design. And we also have a brief round-up of some of the social media algorithm updates and new feature rumors. So, are you ready to grab your weekly dose of inspiration? Let’s get the ball rolling! 

In the Marketing Realm 

A reminder to monitor topical themes 

Breaking the ice and initiating engaging conversations with their audience is a major challenge for several brands on social media. Monitoring and leveraging topical themes is one way to tackle this. This is where the X Data page can be a great source of inspiration. This is a great place to find topics that are trending on X. The two posts they shared this past week summarize this. 

The first one is about the Golden Globe nominations theme which reportedly garnered about 200M post impressions on December 12. And the next one is about NBA-themed posts gaining nearly 25 billion impressions. So, there you have it – two trending topics as conversation starters if your target audience encompasses a segment that will relate to any of these topics! 

Google’s Year in Search 

Another great place to find ideas on what to post is to look for what people are searching for. Google’s Year In Search is something that several marketers look forward to because it helps them understand the trend-shaping moments from the year. The gamified approach makes the Year In Search presentation even more exciting and engaging. 

Google also shared their most searched moments of all time because Google turned 25 this year! The video they shared here feels like a time travel while also celebrating the brand’s journey! 

Steps to perform market research with LinkedIn 

Do you use LinkedIn as a market research tool? If not, then the below post will inspire you to start. Social Media Examiner is a great place to find some of the most insightful social media tips and updates. 

Their below post on LinkedIn lists 7 effective ways to perform market research with LinkedIn’s built-in tools. From monitoring Company Page Audience Insights to hosting polls, the post delves into many practical measures for brands to make the most of their LinkedIn pages. 

Post more videos to reach more unique audiences 

Video Reach Campaigns are known to be effective in extending a brand’s reach through Google Ads. YouTube recently announced that In-feed and Shorts videos will also be part of Video Reach campaigns. By adding more formats to this category, the idea is to deliver better reach with a relatively lower CPM. So, if you are struggling with reach on social media, now is a good time to start investing in video content for Google Ads. 

About advertising on X 

At a time when brands are elevating their holiday advertising game, X shared the below post about the trends of advertising on X. Reportedly, advertising on X turns out to be even more effective during the holiday season when the platform usage is expected to surge. 

According to the post shared by X the efficiency of ads on X increases in Q5 (mid-December to mid-January). And this brings down the cost per conversion by about 27% which can be a huge benefit for small businesses looking to explore X for holiday advertising. 

McDonald’s makes Big Mac a celebrity in the truest sense 

McDonald’s Big Mac is perhaps one of the most recognized items in the global fast-food segment. Its celebrity-like status inspired McDonald’s to create a campaign to make it one in the truest sense. For this McDonald’s Sweden invited Big Mac fans to create a signature for the iconic burger. From the 256,000 ideas received and with the help of AI, the brand then created a signature for Big Mac. 

American advertising trade publication, Adweek shared the below post highlighting this creative McDonald’s campaign. 

This campaign depicts how engaging offline campaigns can be used to turn customers into fans. And it is an example of one of the many ways in which brands can leverage AI. 

Understanding social media engagement rates 

Most brands struggle with getting the intended engagement on social media. But did you know that not all industries get the same kind of engagement on different social media platforms? 

Social media management platform Hootsuite shared the below post discussing the engagement rates for various industries on various platforms. What works for one brand might not necessarily work for another. And different brands have different social media goals as well. But the engagement rate figures summarized here are a good starting point to understand if you are on track. 

In the Content Marketing Realm 

Guest posting for brand awareness 

Content marketing is constantly evolving. Amidst this, guest posting has remained a strategic and effective component in content marketing for a long time now. It is particularly effective in building brand awareness. If you are new to guest posting or if you are looking to improve your guest posting strategies, then this post shared by Search Engine Journal is for you. It discusses the benefits of guest posting and some useful tips for brands. 

Making seasonal content work 

New York-based creative agency We Are Social shared the below post detailing practical ideas for brands to collaborate with creators to create content for seasonal moments. 

From starting early to steering clear of hard selling, the post discusses a bunch of useful steps. So, if you are looking to revamp your creator marketing strategy this year, start planning creator-driven campaigns to effectively leverage seasonal moments

In the Design Realm 

Meet the newest update to Adobe’s design system – Spectrum 2

Adobe announced Spectrum 2 and shared a post giving an overview of what this update brings. Reportedly, this is a comprehensive update meant to enhance the experience across all Adobe tools. 

Some of the Spectrum 2 features are already available across Adobe Acrobat web experiences. And the upcoming features are focused on simplifying the design process on Adobe tools more user-friendly for professionals and beginners alike. 

How and where to use Canva’s AI tools 

Canva shared a glimpse of the many applications that their AI tools can now perform in the below post. It highlights the key AI features introduced along with Magic Studio and in other places within Canva. If you have still not started exploring the AI side of things on Canva or if you are looking for inspiration to improve your Canva design process, then this post is for you. 

Holiday card inspiration 

A holiday card is a timeless element in a brand’s holiday marketing strategy. These direct mail marketing designs create personalized conversations with your customers while also sharing the festive spirit. Looking for some inspiration to create your brand’s holiday cards? Then this post shared by the advertising and marketing tech news company Ad Age is sure to benefit you. 

The post throws the spotlight on the holiday card design for the U.K. agency Isobel. The vintage aesthetics incorporated in these cards evoke a sense of nostalgia that feels perfect for the holiday season. 

Looking for ideas in retro styles to create your holiday posts? Then check out our previous blog on retro aesthetics

Trivago’s mascot stands out as the best thing about its refreshed identity 

Popular branding agency DesignStudio has introduced a revamped brand identity for the popular travel company Trivago. This includes a friendly and memorable door-hanger mascot called Hank. For those seeking creative inspiration, It’s Nice That offers some of the best resources. They shared the below post discussing the new mascot design for Trivago. 

The mascot is quite catchy and easy to remember given the instantly recognizable connection with the brand’s niche. The whole identity including the colors and visual styles has been cohesively built around this mascot. Rebranding campaigns like these reiterate the fact that mascots are still very relevant and effective in branding. 

Brand identity inspiration 

The endless resources shared by The Brand Identity are a great source of inspiration for marketers and designers alike. They shared the below post emphasizing the effectiveness of the new brand identity for an East-London-based brand, Mochiya. 

The design draws inspiration from the popular Japanese snack called mochi as a nod to the brand’s Japanese origin. The identity is built around a wordmark logo featuring a soft curvy font. The logo animation further emphasizes the textures subtly integrated into the design to replicate the soft texture of the mochi. Designs like these that help users visualize and emote are the ones that stick to their minds for a long time! Therefore, core branding designs like logos require such emotional depth! 

In the AI Realm 

OpenAI opens new doors to AI in journalism 

OpenAI announced its recent partnership with Axel Springer as a part of exploring the merits of AI in journalism. This partnership focuses on delivering news more conveniently through ChatGPT. In other words, users browsing for information or looking for answers on ChatGPT will be able to access news summaries from a variety of credible media publication sources thanks to this partnership. 

AI in the news broadcasting sector 

Take a quick look at the video below and see if you can tell whether the anchor is a real person or AI-generated. Channel 1 has surprised the world with a series of videos like the one below featuring AI news anchors. The videos show how the recent refinements in AI make it possible to create human-like expressions and message delivery which are critical components in news broadcasting. The benefit of these AI anchors created based on real images is that they can deliver news in various languages. 

Grok is now available in more countries 

We spoke about ChatGPT; so it’s time to talk about its recently popular rival, Grok from X. Last week X announced the availability of Grok to Premium+ subscribers in the U.S., and this week, they have announced their expansion. This new generative AI tool which has been receiving a lot of positive reviews is now available in several more countries. The below post from X lists the countries where the tool can now be accessed. 

Google’s AI Studio is here 

In the KIMP’s Picks 8th December edition we spoke about Google’s announcement of their most powerful generative AI model Gemini. Following this Google also announced Google AI Studio, their web-based platform designed for developers to gain access to their generative AI tools. 

Developers curious about exploring Gemini will be able to access its API through Google AI Studio. Currently, Gemini is available in the Pro, Ultra, and Nano models to cater to different generative AI applications. 

You can now generate 3D objects with AI 

Stability AI announced Stable Zero123 – their new tool for the AI-powered generation of 3D objects from a single static image. According to Stability AI, this new generative AI model is based on Stable Diffusion 1.5. But remember that currently, the tool is only available to generate designs for non-commercial use. Tools like the Stable Zero123 are proof that AI models are evolving rapidly and now have a better three-dimensional understanding of objects in images. 

Google launches Imagen 2 

Another big announcement in the generative AI realm is Google’s Imagen 2. According to Google, this is their most advanced text-to-image model yet. 

Currently, users can access the model through Google Cloud Vertex AI. Imagen 2 is designed to deliver photorealistic results with nearly accurate human-like subjects and better perceived natural settings. All of these come with the tool’s ability to understand captions better.  

The EU has taken a step toward AI regulations 

Recently, the European Union passed a set of rules to regulate the use of AI technologies and tools. This is the first set of regulations announced globally ever since generative AI started taking over the tech realm. Given the rising confusion about the fair usage of AI and the intellectual property disputes arising from AI-generated designs, regulations like these will help bring order. WIRED shared the below post that discusses the new regulations. 

Social Media Feature Updates and Algorithm Changes

X will soon bring Video to Spaces 

X News Daily is a one-stop destination for all X-related updates. They shared the below post giving a preview of an upcoming feature on Spaces. Reportedly, Video will soon be available on Spaces. With Spaces gaining a lot of popularity in recent times, adding a video will make a big difference. 

The Video feature on Spaces is likely to be similar to most conferencing interfaces where the speaker’s video automatically takes precedence and users get to toggle video on or off. 

WhatsApp now supports Pinned Posts 

Pinned posts are popular on various platforms including Instagram. These let users pin important posts and announcements to the top of their Feeds so that the information does not get lost. Meta has now introduced this feature on WhatsApp as well. So, you’ll now be able to pin messages within a conversation so that the one little detail you always seem to be searching for is always in sight. Business accounts can use this to pin important messages about orders, for example. 

Instagram has a new AI-powered image editing tool 

Rowan Cheung, founder of a popular AI newsletter, The Rundown AI, shared the below post discussing a new AI-powered image editing tool introduced on Instagram. 

Currently, this image editing feature that lets users edit backgrounds and add new ones based on text prompts is available only in the U.S. But it looks like a big leap to the image editing capabilities on the platform. 

Snapchat has a new generative AI tool as well! 

The AI feature on Instagram (discussed above) is for image editing. But this next feature we’re discussing is for image generation. Popular news website Mashable shared the below post discussing this generative AI feature coming to Snapchat. This generative AI feature on Snapchat allows users to generate images with text prompts and is currently available only to Snapchat+ subscribers. 

Time to conclude! 

That’s all we have for this week’s social media roundup. A truly overwhelming mix of updates and insights, don’t you agree? So much in just a week! Yes, that’s how quickly the tech world is progressing. Wink and you miss a million discussions on social media. But fear not for you have the KIMP’s Picks posts to summarize the week for you! Stay tuned and we’ll be back with another round-up that brings the best of marketing and AI news and inspiration.