This Week in Social: June 13 – June 17

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Happy Friday everyone! In this week’s social media recap we take a look at Microsoft’s purchase of LinkedIn, Twitter’s Emoji Ad targeting, and Twitter’s SoundCloud investment. As always, don’t forget to share, and let us know what you think in the comments. Have a great weekend!

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Microsoft Buys LinkedIn for $26.2 Billion

Early this week, Microsoft announced it had purchased professional social network, LinkedIn, for $26.2 Billion. Pegged as one of the largest tech deals of all time, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, says the deal will transform businesses’ and workers’ productivity worldwide. In a letter to LinkedIn employees, LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner, explains how Microsoft will work with LinkedIn moving forward and how the companies will compliment one another. Weiner goes on to explain how the LinkedIn social graph could be integrated into Microsoft software, such as Outlook, or how recently acquired Lynda.com could be integrated into Microsoft products. This is an incredibly interesting deal on many levels but the most notable, is a possible look into the future of social networks. With LinkedIn’s acquisition, YouTube being owned by Google, Tumblr by Yahoo, and Instagram by Facebook, Twitter and Facebook are the last large social networks that still own themselves, but for how long?

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Twitter Advertisers Can Now Target Users Based on Emojis

Emojis have become even more important to social networks this week with a new addition to the Twitter ad program. Advertisers can now create targeted ads based on users’ emoji usage. This should come as no surprise seeing as how 😂 was named the 2015 word of the year by Oxford Dictionary. Twitter emoji based ads opens up a really unique opportunity for advertisers to more closely define their targets based on an all new metric. We’re interested to see how advertisers use emojis to target and hope to see Twitter introduce unique strategies like this moving forward.

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Twitter Invests $70 Million Into SoundCloud

This week, Recode reported that Twitter made a $70 million investment in SoudCloud, based on its $700 million valuation. Less than two years ago, Twitter had plans to buy the music streaming service before backing out. Twitter’s CEO, Jack Dorsey, says the new investment is part of a show of support for creators who use Twitter, as well as SoundCloud’s partnership with the network over the years. SoundCloud has had an integral part in launching the careers of many musicians and has served as a home base for many of the top podcasts, so why are they looking for funding? While successful from a user basis, SoundCloud consistently runs into the common “start-up problem” of the initial massive growth and the nagging struggle to monetize its user base. We’re interested to see what other investments are made by the Twitter Ventures team as the social networks works to spur growth.

Honorable Mention: