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How Social Platforms are Responding to COVID-19

Now more than ever digital advertising is the most efficient way to reach consumers. During these abnormal times, many social platforms are making updates that enable companies to engage with consumers in new ways. Here are some of the helpful changes and newly added resources made in the last few weeks.

Instagram – Co-watch, social distance, repeat.

Connecting with consumers is essential, especially during this time. With this, Instagram is encouraging users to take that connection to the next level through video chat. Instagram’s new co-watching feature allows users to video chat with up to six people and screen share liked, saved, or suggested posts.

Begin Instagram co-watching in 3 simple steps:

  1. Start by clicking the airplane icon in the upper right corner to access your direct messages
  2. Then either create a new conversation or choose an existing one
  3. Finally, click the video icon in the top right corner to initiate co-watching

After starting the call, click on the media icon to share posts with the co-watching participants. Take advantage of this new feature to increase engagement and build customer relationships through personalized conversations.

You can read more about Instagram’s latest platform updates here.

Facebook – Live video updates and Messenger Rooms

Facebook has seen an increase of live steams via Facebook Live, which motivated the platform to add updates to this feature that increase accessibility. Now, every live stream video comes with automatic closed captions, an audio-only mode that gives you the option of listening only, as well as the ability to tune into a stream off-platform. There have been many updates that help content creators as well, including new revenue streams for smaller producers and a “live producer” feature that will allow better editing to the streams. These updates are aimed at making Facebook Live easier to use and easier to consume.

The platform has also recently announced a new feature, called Messenger Rooms, allowing anyone up to 50 people (even those who don’t have a Facebook profile) to join a video call. You can join from your computer or phone, with no login required. This new feature will probably see an increase in AR sponsorship opportunities for brands.

Stay up-to-date on Facebook’s response and updates here.


YouTube – Lifts monetization ban on COVID-19 Ads

YouTube recently lifted the monetization ban on videos related to or in reference to COVID-19, which allows companies to show ads on these videos. By leveraging the most-searched topic on the internet, companies can reach consumers and show how their products or services are combating issues during the pandemic.

Keep abreast of YouTube’s ongoing updates on COVID here.

As this situation continues, there will inevitably be more platform updates, changes, and adjustments made for the mutual benefit of consumers and companies. Ultimately, companies who take advantage of these new features will have an edge over those who do not quickly adapt to the changing digital marketing landscape.


Follow Overdrive on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter as we continue to cover how social platforms and other digital marketing tools and resources respond to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis.

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