May 2, 2013

5 ways to dominate Facebook’s new news feed

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Great images boost your place in the news feed

Target audience: Nonprofits, cause organizations, foundations, NGOs, social enterprises, businesses, marketers, Facebook page administrators and users.

John HaydonFacebook launched an enhanced news feed that’s rolling out to all users in the next weeks on both mobile and the Web.

The enhanced news feed now allows users to tailor and focus more easily on specific feeds:

  • All Friends: a feed that shows you everything your friends are sharing.
  • Photos: a feed with nothing but photos from your friends and the pages you like.
  • Music: a feed with posts about the music you listen to.
  • Following: a feed with the latest news from the pages you like and the people you follow.

Newsfeed

What does this mean for your nonprofit?

The enhanced news feed means that you’ll have more engagement, but you’ll also have more competition.

More engagement: One of the biggest changes in the enhanced news feed is the size of photos. They are huge! This will create more photo views, comments, likes and shares.

There is also a new following feed that allows Facebook users to see all of the updates from every page they follow. I personally doubt many Facebook users will view this feed, but people who do use this feed will be more intentionally engaged with the updates.

More competition: Up until now, photos were competing against text updates and links in the news feed (in addition to other photos). Photos, which have 39% more engagement than text-only updates, had a clear advantage. But now those same photos will be competing for attention with other photos in the photos feed.

Here are five things you can do to compete for attention more effectively in the new news feed:

Post better photos

1The photos feed means that you need to post photos that are even more remarkable and relevant to your audience. This will allow you to stand out against other pages that are also posting photos.

One way to instantly improve your photos is to make sure they all tell stories, like this one:
charity:water

Promote your best photos

2Go to your Facebook Insights and filter your page posts by photos, and rank them by virality. Every couple of days promote one of your top 10 photos to fans — yes, it costs a bit of money, if you can afford it. This will give your top photos even more likes, comments and shares, which will in turn generate more organic viral reach, which is way better than paid reach through Facebook ads.

Newsfeed Stats

Make your page beautiful

Animal Society

3Whenever Facebook receives a new coat of paint, users tend to explore a lot more, which can give your page a fresh burst of new visitors in the short term. Make sure you upload a new cover photo, fill in gaps in your milestones, and weed out boring content. This will increase the likelihood that visitors will engage even more with your page content.

Be useful and present

4Because users can now view all pages they’ve ever liked in the “Following” feed, unlikes will spike in the short term, especially for pages that boosted likes with fan gate contests, but failed to be useful. Make sure that you publish content that is useful, and also work hard to create useful discussions within your posts by replying to commenters.

Build a stronger fan base

5Leverage your email list, your website and other social media channels to build a stronger, more engaged Facebook fan base. You should also promote your Facebook page as a secondary action for new donors and subscribers. This strategy will always win out in the long term, regardless of how Facebook’s news feed changes.

What do you think about the new news feed?
John Haydon delivers social web strategy solutions for “the quick, the smart, and the slightly manic.” Curious? Then visit the John Haydon blog, follow him on Twitter or leave a comment.

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One thought on “5 ways to dominate Facebook’s new news feed

  1. Very helpful and interesting tips you got here! Must try them on my pages. Thanks, great job!