Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Facebook News Feed Updates: How Marketers Should Respond to Story Bump

What is Story Bump?

Facebook announced that they’ve tweaked their algorithm known as EdgeRank to allow stories that are getting more engagement (more likes, comments and shares) to be bumped up in the news feed.
The change is called Story Bumping and has already rolled out to 99% of desktop users and is still being tweaked for mobile users. The Story Bump shows you posts you may not have seen when they were first published.
For example, say you log into Facebook and scroll through your news feed to view 50 posts. The post you miss at position 51 continues to get lots of likes, comments and shares. Four hours later, you check Facebook and that post is at the top of your news feed, even though it’s four hours old.
stories bumped
Stories can get bumped up higher depending on several factors.
The Story Bump is good news for Facebook marketers for several reasons. In tests done by Facebook, there was an 8% increase in likes, comments and shares on stories posted by pages.
The other good news Facebook revealed is they’re going to be more transparent about changes and post them on their Facebook for Business News area. Notice there’s a category tag for posts about the news feed, so bookmark this site.
Let’s dive into the basics of the Facebook news feed and learn more about how to take advantage of the Story Bump with these four tips.

#1: Not Everyone Sees Every Post in Their News Feed

Facebook states the average person has the potential to see over 1500 posts every day. Their job is to help you see the most interesting things.
They do this by watching your behavior and then showing you more of the things they think you want to see. Facebook has stated the things that affect their algorithm are:
  • How often you interact with the friend, page or public figure (like an actor or journalist) who posted
  • The number of likes, shares and comments a post receives from the world at large and from your friends in particular
  • How much you’ve interacted with this type of post in the past
  • Whether you and other people across Facebook are hiding or reporting a given post
To make sure you see posts from certain people or pages, you’ll need to create a Facebook Interest List. Just like on Twitter, people create lists to keep track of the people they find most interesting on Facebook.
You can also encourage your fans to create interest lists that include your page. They get notifications about your page by clicking on the Liked button under the right side of your cover photo and selecting Get Notifications. This is where you can add the page to interest lists.
get notifications
Encourage your fans to create interest lists or get notifications from your page.
Facebook page posts also seem to have disappeared from the Facebook ticker. I’m not sure how many people interact with posts using the ticker and it’s going away with the updated news feed rolling out soon.

#2: Story Bumping Helps the Shelf Life of Your Posts

recent study by Wisemetrics showed that it only takes 2 hours and 30 minutes for a post to get 75% of its total impressions and less than 2 hours to get 75% of its maximum reach. So you have a very short window of time to get engagement.
With Story Bumping, your story jumps back up in the news feed if it gets good engagement.
wisemetrics stats
Without Story Bumping, your post gets 75% of its reach in less than 2 hours.

#3: Engagement Continues to Be Key

I’m sure by now everyone is tired of the “E word,” but it’s more important than ever. How do you increase your Facebook engagement? Be remarkable. Be interesting. Don’t be boring.
The great thing about the new Facebook Insights is they show you exactly which posts are the most engaging, so you can model those types of posts more often.
To get to the engagement rate on each post, go to Insights, select Posts and then choose Engagement Rate from the drop-down menu.
engagement rate
Look at the engagement rate on each post.
The best thing about this statistic is that it factors in how many people actually saw your post, so you get a true measure of engagement.
analyze what worked
Watch your most interesting posts and analyze what worked.

#4: Facebook Page Post Ads Provide an Extra Boost

You can be very effective on Facebook without spending money by focusing on engagement, but you can go farther by spending a little money from time to time.
To take advantage of the Story Bump, advertise your individual posts so they get more engagement through the ad. This boosts the bump the post receives organically.
The Boost Post option has a very wide target if you select “People who like your page and their friends,” which may include a lot of people who have no interest in your Facebook page. If you select “People you choose through targeting” option, you can only target people by location, age, gender and language—not by keyword interests, which again may include a lot of people not interested in your Facebook page.
boost post
Do not use the Boost Post option for re-engaging your audience.
The better way to get more engagement on a post is to narrow your targeting by using the Facebook ads interface and selecting Promote Page Posts.
promote post
Select Promote Page Posts, then choose the post you want to promote in the drop-down menu.
Now in the Targeting section, you can choose to advertise your post to only your own fans or use the Precise Interests area to target the post to people who would be more inclined to like your page and interact with your post.
advertise to your own fans
Choose to advertise to your own fans to re-engage your audience.
The Facebook ads interface also allows you to precisely control your budget and get more for your money. As with any money you spend on marketing, track your results and do your testing. To really go for more engagement, only advertise posts that are interesting and already getting some engagement organicallyso you know they interest others.

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