No social media platform consistently makes as many changes as regularly as Facebook does.
Every month, this post is filled with new features and updates coming to the platform in huge numbers.
This month is no exception!
We’re getting a lot of changes that are mainly driven by how users and marketers are utilizing the platform.
How are Facebook user behaviors changing? We’ll look at this in the first section, and we’ll also focus on how Facebook’s team is changing with them.
We’ve got everything from big roll-outs of already-released features to new insights for marketers, so this is one update you don’t want to miss.
In this month’s edition to our Facebook Updates post, we’re going to look at a lot of big changes happening to Facebook and what they mean for businesses and marketers on the platform.
- Watch Party & Creator Studio Roll Out Globally
- Admins Can Now Pixel Groups
- Canvas Ads Get an Overhaul
- New Tracking Events Rolling Out Soon
- Stories Ads Come to Facebook
- Advertisers Given More Information About Ad Placements
- Facebook Snooze Is Here
But first, let’s give a look at some numbers!
Facebook Users Are Changing Behaviors
Facebook has been under a lot of scrutiny this year, and that’s contributed to some changes in user behavior that have shifted quickly.
The Pew Research Center polled 4500 people to determine what exactly these changes were, and here’s what they found:
- More than half of users over the age of 18 have adjusted their privacy settings in the past year
- 42% of Facebook users have taken a break from Facebook in the past year, with up to 26% even going as far as deleting the app from their phone
- 74% of users have either modified their privacy settings, reduced how often they check Facebook or deleted the app from their phone.
- Younger users (ages 18 to 29) were most likely to have deleted the app from their phones
While these numbers don’t look great, there isn’t a cause for panic. Facebook still has around 1.47 daily active users, and mobile usage is still increasing across the board.
Ultimately, creating mobile-first content is still important, and mobile ad placements are still driving results.
As Facebook earns back trust and users adapt to further changes, these behaviors may shift again, after all. We’ll keep you updated.
And now let’s dive into a whole lot of Facebook updates for September 2018.
Both Facebook Watch and the Creator Studio are rolling out on a global basis.
The Creator Studio is available through the Business Manager, and allows users to manage their content and social presence for ALL Pages in one place. Do everything here from check your Page’s insights to make video publishing just a little easier.
Facebook Watch launched a year ago in the US, and it compiles videos from Pages and creators that you follow into one place for users.
Users will be notified if the Pages and creators they follow have new content available in the Watch tab, encouraging them to head over and view it.
This places a bigger emphasis on video content, and it’s a good reminder to step up your video game if you haven’t already.
If you don’t have these features yet, you will soon. The rollout is happening now.
Admins Can Now Pixel Groups
Groups have been growing importance and in popularity on Facebook as community building and the desire for valuable content both increase. Plenty of businesses (AdEspresso included) have their own exclusive groups to build relationships with and help their customers in some way.
Now, thanks to a new update, Admins of groups with more than 250 members are going to be able to get real and quantifiable data about how their groups are driving specific actions.
They’ll be able to track their groups with the help of a pixel and see information on user growth, in-group activity, and engagement with their websites.
This will be a big enhancement on the data we get from groups, and being able to get on-platform insights about off-platform actions will make it just a little easier to determine how our groups are affecting our actual businesses.
Canvas Ads Get an Overhaul
Canvas Ads have been renamed “Instant Experiences,” and with the new name comes new capabilities.
The full-screen, interactive mobile experiences are now going to have several new ready-made template options, some of which will have new functionalities. They include:
- Instant Forms, which is brand new and works like lead gen ads, allowing users to fill out a quick form to learn more about your business.
- Instant Storefront, which allows businesses to display products in a grid-format, making them easy to view and purchase
- Instant Lookbook, which makes it easier for businesses to show use cases of the product
- Instant Customer Acquisition, which prioritizes driving specific actions by featuring clear CTAs and showcasing different offerings
- Instant Storytelling, which focuses on using images and videos to tell your brand’s story
Note that all templates are fully customizable, and you can completely rework, add, or delete components in each to create the exact Instant Experience you think will convert best.
Canvas Ads weren’t used frequently by a lot of businesses, so the rebranding could be an attempt to change that. Easily the biggest news here is the new Instant Forms template, allowing advertisers to add a lead form to their experience.
Since these ads are designed to be immersive and engaging, following it up with a lead form instead of just asking users to purchase outright is a huge advantage that will allow more businesses to use them in diverse ways.
Looking for some ideas on how to use these ads? Check out our Tips for Creating Amazing Facebook Canvas Ads in 2018.
New Tracking Events Rolling Out Soon
Facebook knows that its tracking pixel is an invaluable tool for many marketers who use it to understand user behavior and to make very big (and very expensive) marketing decisions. To help even further, they’re rolling out eight new standard events that advertisers and businesses can add to their tracking code.
These new standard events are:
- Customize Product
- Find Location
- Start Trial
- Submit Application
These new standard events are going to be a huge asset to many businesses and reduce the number of complicated custom events you need to create and keep track of. They should be rolling out within the next few weeks.
In the same update, Facebook also reported that they’re going to be replacing cost metrics for on-site activity with cost metrics that reflect actions happening in omnichannel selling all across the globe.
Together, these two updates are going to provide more big-picture views that will help you to make better and more informed marketing decisions moving forward.
Stories Ads Come to Facebook (it’s for real, now!)
It’s what we expected early on: Stories Ads are a huge part of Instagram, and now they’re coming to Facebook, too.
Matt Navarra shared on Twitter the email Facebook was sending to some of its marketing partners to offer their clients the ability to test Stories ads on the platform so they can get everything up and running.
The first feedbacks from the companies who tested Facebook Stories ads are very positive.
Wallaroo Media, which first began testing the format about a month ago, found that some of its Facebook Stories ads within its $20,000 ad spend have outperformed other ads in other placements.
Simon Lejeune, head of user acquisition at flight-booking service Hopper, told Digiday he’s paying $2.3 per thousand impressions compared with around $5 for Instagram Stories during the same time period, for similar targeting and creatives.
Hopper test had such good results that they are prioritizing designing ads for the Stories format, then adapting them to the other formats.
To make it easier for business to modify their assets for vertical video, Facebook is creating a button that will convert their existing video ads to the Stories ads format (vertical video).
We don’t know when Stories Ads will be coming to Facebook yet, because testing is still in early stages. But keep a close eye for Ads in your Stories. Facebook typically releases features relatively quickly after testing begins, so they may be rolling out on a wider basis by the end of the year if not sooner.
Advertisers Given More Information About Ad Placements
When you choose to run ads for the newsfeed or in Stories, you know exactly where they’re going to show up– in users feeds, on your own. When you opt for other placements– like those in in-stream videos or the Audience Network– however, there can be a bit more of a gamble.
Your ads will show up alongside other content, either in the middle of another video or on another site, so it’s harder to ensure you’ll find the right audience or have a placement that you want to associate with your business.
As it stood before, advertisers did have the option to block their content from appearing in certain “sensitive” categories or alongside specific publishers.
As of this week, advertisers are going to be able to see a complete list of possible placements where their ads could appear when they’re creating the campaign.
Once the ad has run, they’ll also be provided a full list of what placements their ad actually did show up on.
This kind of visibility will be a huge asset. If you’re particular about where you do and don’t want your ads to appear, having that list will let you know if you’re ready to go full-steam ahead or if you want to restrict placement and targeting options a bit more.
Facebook Snooze Is Here
Early this summer, we talked about a feature that Facebook was testing that would allow users to snooze certain content.
Now, we’re seeing a slow roll out of the feature to users in the US, UK, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia.
As it exists now, the new Keyword Snooze feature allows users to temporarily hide posts by choosing keywords they don’t want to see. Only posts containing the exact word or phrase will be hidden from the user. Content from feeds, groups, and Pages containing the keyword will be hidden for 30 days.
Facebook is serious about ensuring that users are only seeing content that they really want to see, so much so that they’re now letting them opt out of specific topics through keyword elimination.
So far, Facebook has noticed two trends of keywords that are snoozed frequently. T
he first is “copy and paste,” to eliminate those awful somehow-go-viral posts that tell people they’ll find the love of their life or be violently murdered if they don’t share (there’s not often a lot of in between).
The second is keywords that are seeing a sudden spike overall related to trending news.
With this information at hand, the best bet to maximize reach is to create valuable content that users want to see and to not worry too much about big trends.
Facebook users are changing how they use the platform, and Facebook itself hasn’t missed a beat.
All of the new updates are reflecting big moves to focus more on the types of content users want to see, including video and community-building while giving them the option to opt out of what they don’t want to see.
Simultaneously, we’re getting new features and gaining more information about what’s happening with our marketing content and the actual real-world effects they’re having.
Everyone is getting new features that will improve their experience on the platform, making it a better fit for us all.
What do you think? Which Facebook updates are you most excited to get our hands on? Have you gotten any of the new features yet? Which do you think will be most beneficial? Share your thoughts and questions in the comments below!
Top Facebook Updates – August 2018
In recent months, most of the new Facebook updates have focused on increased security for users and transparency from the Pages they’re exposed to. Facebook has since tackled a lot of the loopholes some Pages were using and found new ways to improve the platform for everyone involved.
That’s why, even if it is not strictly marketing oriented, we’ll start this edition of our updates with one of the biggest Facebook investigations (at the moment) and consequent removal of more than 650 Pages, groups and accounts on both Facebook and Instagram.
Today we removed multiple Pages, groups and accounts for coordinated inauthentic behavior on Facebook and Instagram. They used similar tactics by creating networks of accounts to mislead others about who they were and what they were doing. We’ve investigated some of these campaigns for many months and we will continue working to find out more. We’ll update this post with more details when we have them, or if the facts change.
We ban this kind of behavior because we want people to be able to trust the connections they make on Facebook.”
Nathaniel Gleicher, Head of Cybersecurity Policy at Facebook, explains that they removed 652 Pages, groups and accounts that originated in Iran and targeted people across multiple internet services in the Middle East, Latin America, UK and US.
The investigations started this past July, when FireEye, a cybersecurity firm, gave Facebook a tip about “Liberty Front Press,” a network of Facebook Pages as well as accounts on other online services. By analyzing publicly available website registration information and the use of related IP addresses and Facebook Pages sharing the same admins, Facebook identified several accounts and Pages fromLiberty Front Press network and the connection of this network to Iranian state media.
Accounts and Pages linked to “Liberty Front Press” typically posed as news and civil society organizations sharing information in multiple countries. They mainly posted political content focused on the Middle East, the UK, US, and Latin America. In 2017, they increased their focus on the UK and US.
The first network of “Liberty Front Press” accounts Facebook found were created in 2013. In total, they had 74 Facebook Pages, 70 accounts, and 3 groups on Facebook, as well as 76 accounts on Instagram. They invested more than $6,000 in Facebook and Instagram advertising, paid for in US and Australian dollars. The first ad was run in Jan 2015, and the last in August 2018. Some ads might still be visible, but most have been blocked since the launch of Facebook political ads transparency tools.
Another set of accounts and Pages, the first of which was created in 2016, not only they posed as news organizations, but they also engaged in traditional cybersecurity attacks, including attempts to hack people’s accounts and spread malware. Apparently, they didn’t advertise on Facebook or Instagram.
The last set of accounts and Pages that facebook’s investigation uncovered, largely shared content about Middle East politics in Arabic and Farsi. They also posted about politics in the UK and US in English. The first account was created in 2011, in total the network had 168 Pages and 140 accounts on Facebook, and 31 accounts on Instagram for a total of 813,000 followers. They totalized more than $6,000 in spending for ads on Facebook and Instagram, paid for in US dollars, Turkish lira, and Indian rupees. The first ad was run in July 2012, and the last was run in April 2018. Facebook’s review of the organic content coming from these accounts is still in progress.
We’re working closely with US law enforcement, and we appreciate their help. These investigations are ongoing – and given the sensitivity we aren’t sharing more information about what we removed.
- Facebook Adds New Creative Tools in App’s Ads Manager
- Mentorship In Groups
- Watch Party Rolls Out to All Groups
- Updated Video Ad Metrics
- New Ad Solutions for Gaming Marketers
- New Look for Mobile
- Facebook Follows Through on App Shut Downs
- Workplace Focuses More On Team Building & Collaboration
- New Tap to React Feature in Stories
- Facebook Acquires VidPresso Team & Tech
Are you ready to start?
Marketers who are frustrated with needing to edit and add creatives to images before uploading them to the ads manager (which often requires multiple tools or apps) will be thrilled to see the newest creative tools available in the ads manager app.
The ads manager mobile app now lets users edit their photos in-app, including cropping, utilizing templates, adding color filters, and slapping on new shapes, stickers, and even logos.
There’s also a really handy text overlay tool that allows you to add text to an image, and then immediately check to make sure it isn’t violating the 20% rule.
If you’re using the Ads Manager mobile app, there’s a good chance that you need to create content on-the-go and don’t want to use multiple apps to edit your images before creating campaigns.
This will speed the process up significantly and reduce the number of tools brands need to use before running their ads.
Make sure to get good use out of that text overlay too, too; that will work in your favor.
As someone who uses professional groups on Facebook a lot, I can attest that they’ve long been a resource to partner up mentors and mentees.
Facebook is catching on, and they’ve developed a fantastic Mentorship program for Groups.
This program allows group admins to create mentorship programs, like “how to start a freelance writing career,” and having program steps like “make a website” and “pitch a client.”
Interested users can sign up as a mentor or a mentee, and then they are paired together. They go together through the group’s guided program, so the group is staying relevant and central to all this, but get one-on-one help from each other.
These programs can be for personal or professional development, and they’re going to be an incredible asset to groups who use them well.
They’re a fantastic community-building tool, and it keeps learning and growing within your group and makes it even more valuable.
Watch Party is a feature that rolled out quietly and still seems to be underused as a whole.
It allows admins and moderators in a group to select any public video that is hosted on Facebook, to share it in the group, and then to host a “watch party” where everyone watches the video in synch and adds commentary in “real time.”
Watch Party is now rolling out to all Facebook Groups, and according to Tech Crunch, it’s coming with two new features for everyone.
- Users will be able to suggest videos, which will give admins and group moderators new ideas for engaging content their audience wants to see.
- It will be possible to have more than one co-host, allowing multiple people to add new videos to the queue and facilitate discussion.
Watch Party may be coming to Pages eventually, but this isn’t going to be happening right away and it’s still in the earlier stages of testing.
If you run a lot of video ad campaigns, you may have already seen some of these changes, which are rolling out globally now.
Facebook is updating their current video ad metrics to better align with how users actually watch video ads on the platform, focusing more on how much total time a video is watched.
Facebook notes that these changes are made after looking at how users are watching different types of video across the platform.
These changes include:
- Measuring unrepeated sections, which give a more accurate look at newsfeed ads (which allow you to rewind) compared to non-skippable ads (which don’t). This will also give businesses a better idea about how much of a video users actually saw.
- How many times a video actually plays, which is different than an impression.
- The elimination of video percentage watched and the 30-second view.
These video metrics aren’t a huge game changer, but understanding what these new metrics mean exactly and how they’re different will allow you to better track your ad data across the board.
If you have a game app you want to promote, or you love playing games on mobile apps, keep reading. If not, you can go ahead and skip to the next section.
Facebook has just released new ways for gaming marketers to connect with potential players.
One of the coolest (in my opinions) new options is the ability to let users test out your game in an in-app preview before they download it.
They’ll see a quick video demonstrating the game, and a “Tap to Try” prompt.”
Users will be able to play the game just long enough to be able to get hooked, and you can then send them to the app store to encourage them to download.
Whether your app is paid or costs money, getting users interested in playing before asking them to download is effective.
There’s also a new feature for retention optimization (which will roll out later this year), which will let marketers choose to optimize their ads for users who are most likely to be long-term, engaged players of the game– including those who are most likely to purchase.
When this rolls out, we’ll let you know, because being able to target the right audiences is everything, and can help you find the audience members willing to spend on in-app purchases.
Mobile users are going to be seeing some big changes in certain parts of the interface. This includes a newly redesigned navigation bar, which will show “shortcuts” to the items that users are accessing most frequently.
Depending on the user’s personal usage of the app, this includes additions of shortcuts to their own profile, friend requests, Groups, Watch, or Marketplace. These will be joining the News Feed, Notification, and Menu icons that are already there.
This will be rolling out to users over the next few weeks if they don’t already have it.
What matters marketers the most, is that Facebook Pages are getting a new look for mobile users.
Recommendations are going to be more prominent so that mobile users (who are on the go and more likely to need these reviews urgently) will be able to access them immediately.
It’s also going to be easier for users to interact with these businesses, including booking appointments or viewing menus from the business’s Page on the mobile app.
This aligns with a new “Local” feature, which will allow users to browse local businesses in the area to see what catches their eye.
The new Page redesign is significant for businesses.
Make sure that your CTAs are optimized to send users to tools that can put them in touch with you quickly.
You should also make an effort to collect more reviews if you don’t have a lot of them now that they’re more prominently displayed, especially since they can give you an edge in the “Local” listings.
This past May, Facebook mandated that all apps undergo an app review process by August 1st. Well, August 1st has passed, and Facebook actually held up their end of the bargain.
All apps that weren’t submitted for the review process have had their access removed.
This was done in an effort to increase transparency, and to make sure that the apps that had access to user data weren’t using it in any way that violated Facebook’s terms of service.
If you haven’t submitted your app for review, it’s not too late to do so; do it now.
The removal hasn’t affected apps that are still in the queue to be removed and filed their status before the August 1st deadline.
It’s also worth noting that Facebook has restricted third-party scheduling of posts to personal profiles.
This is only for personal profiles, however; you can still use third-party scheduling apps like Hootsuite to post to business Pages.
I always joked that one day Disney was going to rule the world, but maybe it’ll be Facebook instead, at least when it comes to the communication world.
Facebook’s Workplace has made a lot of changes in the past month, releasing new features that are focused on team building, collaboration, and personalization all at once.
Team members can have individual profiles on Workplace, which will contain work anniversaries, birthdays, and personal details that are approved by the admin, allowing team members to get to know each other a little better.
There’s also a new one-click connection that allows team members to quickly chat with each other, made even easier with the new directory search feature to find anyone in the team that you need to.
Workplace also recently acquired Redkix, which is a Slack-competitor email startup that combined calendar, messaging, and email all into a single app.
Long-term, we might see Workplace try to replace Slack as a business’s communication hubs.
Facebook Stories is testing a new sticker type, which will allow users to “tap to react” when viewing them.
This is another way to increase engagement on Stories, which can give you a better gauge of how users are perceiving and viewing your content.
Engagement rates, after all, are better than simple views, because you know that users aren’t just happening to see the Story but actually paying attention.
We’ll let you know more details when this one rolls out for everybody.
Vidpresso was a social video company containing 7 people and technology that makes live videos more interactive on multiple platforms, and Facebook recently acquired the team and the people (but not the actual company).
We’ve had a lot of false starts along the way . . . We finally landed on helping create high quality broadcasts back on social media, but we still haven’t realized the full vision yet. That’s why we’re joining Facebook,”
the Vidpresso team writes.
This gives us the best opportunity to accelerate our vision and offer a simple way for creators, publishers, and broadcasters to use social media in live video at a high quality level . . . By joining Facebook, we’ll be able to offer our tools to a much broader audience. Eventually, it’ll allow us to put these tools in the hands of creators, so they can focus on their content, and have it look great, without spending lots of time or money to do so.”
The last lines of Vidpresso’s announcement shed some light on Facebook’s intentions.
Facebook Live is already a staple for many businesses, so having more interactivity potential will be a major development that could make it easier for brands to go live more often and increase viewer retention rates while doing so.
This acquisition could give Facebook the edge it needs to offer the most compelling live video platform, with increased interactivity like on-screen polling, graphics, and more.
If your head is reeling from this list, don’t worry– it’ll be here if you need to come back and check it!
It’s a long list, and each one of these updates can affect businesses and brands in some way, even if it’s small.
Take note of any changes that you need to make immediately (like checking how your business Pages look on mobile), and prioritize those to tackle them first if changes are needed.
What do you think? Which of these new updates are you most excited about? What do you want to see on Facebook next? Share your thoughts and questions in the comments below!
Top Facebook Updates – July 2018
This month, we’re seeing a large number of diverse new features coming at us all at once.
We’re seeing small but helpful changes like a crosspost to Instagram feature and much larger ones like the testing of augmented reality ads.
- New: Info & Ads Feature for Pages
- New: Crosspost to Instagram
- New: Facebook Tests Augmented Reality Ads
- New: Facebook Workplace for Good
- New: Fundraising Tools
- In Prototype: “Your Time on Facebook” Tool
- In Testing: Tools to Make Facebook Less Intrusive
- In Testing: Subscription Groups
And now let’s start digging in, and if you’ve missed a few months, you can check out our past updates towards the bottom of the post, too.
Facebook recently released a new Info & Ads feature for Pages.
This allows any user to view all the ads any Page is currently running– even if they aren’t following that Page or a member of the ad’s targeted audience.
This will help with transparency, and it also gives users the ability to see the general history of a Page.
Facebook recently dropped a new feature that allows Pages to crosspost single-image posts directly to Instagram.
You must upload a single image, or the cross post option won’t be available to you.
This is convenient and easy, which is always a nice benefit.
That being said, you shouldn’t rely exclusively on this feature to manage both profiles.
Keep in mind that Instagram and Facebook have different sets of best practices, including hashtag usage and even potential peak usage times.
If you want to properly create carousel ads or crop images to fit your Instagram properly (or have different text at all), you’ll need to upload the content separately. (Go Back To July Summary)
At the 2018 F8 Developer Conference, Facebook announced that they’ll be testing augmented reality ads in Messenger with select brands, and this week they announced that something similar would be showing up in users’ feeds.
Select advertisers like Sephora, Michael Kors, Wayfair, and Pottery Barn will be the ones getting to test these ads, and the goal is to roll them out to more brands throughout the year.
These ads currently allow users to use Facebook’s native in-app camera to see how products (like sunglasses or a certain lipstick color) would look on themselves.
Augmented reality (AR) has huge selling potential.
It doesn’t require potential customers to invest in technology that many can’t afford like virtual reality currently does.
And, as we all know, dynamic, engaging ads are a great way to capture user attention and reel them in.
This ability being added to Facebook Ads will make the platform even more competitive and effective, especially since users don’t have to leave the app to access the features. (Go Back To July Summary)
Workplace for Good is a new, free version of Facebook’s Workplace that’s been created specifically with non-profit organizations and educational institutions in mind.
This will help these organizations to communicate and organize more efficiently on Facebook. It will be open to anyone with a Workplace account and will help them to create and manage their own online communities.
- HD video calls
- Instant messaging
- High-tech and file-sharing integrations
- Chatbots that can help do everything from access payroll to timetables (Go Back To July Summary)
Nonprofits have more good news, as Facebook has recently rolled out new fundraising options.
After RAICES (refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services) raised more than $20 million in just 11 days, Facebook knew they had to offer new capabilities.
Now, Pages that represent public figures or brands can now donate directly to nonprofit fundraisers. Users can also now make recurring monthly donations to a nonprofit fundraiser.
This will increase nonprofit donations across the board on-platform, which could make it a more appealing option than crowdsourcing sites. Social proof, after all, is a powerful force, and showing your friends that you support a cause you say you do could be a big motivator for more donations. (Go Back To July Summary)
There is now a prototype version of a “Your Time on Facebook” tool, which will show users how much time they spend on the mobile Facebook app.
They’ll be able to see average time spent per day, and total time spent within a 7-day time span. It also will let users set a daily reminder that alerts them when they’ve reached a pre-set time on the app.
This seems oddly selfless for Facebook, but it’s matching digital wellness initiatives that we’ve seen being released by YouTube and tested by Instagram.
We’ll keep you updated when we know more about this one. (Go Back To July Summary)
In addition to the feature above, which could result in users spending less time on the platform, Facebook has released two additional features that are designed to help reduce exposure to certain aspects of the platform.
Keyword Snoozing will let users keep out of their feed posts that contain certain keywords.
This is a huge asset to users, because I know I used third-party tools in the past to keep some political content out of my personal feeds during the elections.
I wish this had been out before the season finale of Game of Thrones, which was spoiled for me almost instantly because now you can even hide keywords like “spoilers.”
When you click on a post’s right hand drop down menu, you’ll be able to choose “Snooze Keywords.” They’ll pull a list of keywords directly from the post’s ext, and you can choose what you want to hide for 30 days. It will keep the content out of your feed, and (hopefully) out of your sight.
It seems like Facebook is also testing a new mute button for notifications, which will work like a Do Not Disturb button.
This could keep users from being sucked into the app when they’re trying to avoid the app, making it less obtrusive.
This could be a play to encourage users to keep the mobile app and not delete it, so it may not be entirely self-sacrificing on Facebook’s part.
There are no confirmations of plans to roll it out, but we’ll keep an eye on this one.
These features likely won’t affect brands much, but if you notice that certain types of posts containing certain words are having non-existent reach, you might want to switch it up in case your followers are snoozing a certain keyword.
Facebook is currently testing a new paid subscription group model that will give admins the ability to create subscriber-only subgroups that grant members access (and exclusive content) for a monthly fee.
Members can sign-up and manage the subscriptions to these groups through the mobile app, and they can leave the groups at any time.
The ability to offer exclusive, paid content to certain groups is a great way to monetize an active Facebook community that you’ve built.
Speaking from experience, several groups that I’m in would be well worth it.
That being said, you don’t want to risk losing a connection with your core customers who are happily engaged but may feel betrayed if you start charging them just for group membership.
It’s something that will have to be tested carefully.
This new group model is being tested by a small number of group admins, so there’s no widespread information about how well this would work or if many users would be willing to pay for access to certain groups.
The test groups aren’t currently being charged any fees by Facebook, though there are payment processing fees that the admin will have to pay.
It will be interesting to see if this stays consistent over time. (Go Back To July Summary)
Now that we’ve gotten more of the security concerns tackled, we’re back to seeing exciting new and groundbreaking features at full speed again from Facebook.
Each of these changes could offer significant new capabilities that could affect how users and businesses alike use the platform, so keep an eye out for these changes coming to you…and on what’s coming next.
What do you think? Which of these new updates are you most excited about? Do you have access to any of them yet? Share your thoughts, knowledge, and questions in the comments below!
Top Facebook Updates – June 2018
In this June edition of our Facebook Updates post, we’re going to discuss all the new changes that have happened in the past month.
- Enforcement of custom audience targeting requirements
- Penalizing advertisers for bad user shopping experiences
- Experimentation for A/B Page posts
- The launch of a central hub for memories
- Monetization of the marketplace
- Introduction of bidding for in-app ads
- Expansion of tools for non-profits
- Instagram-style polling added to Facebook Stories
- Testing new review scores
Enforcement of New Custom Audience Targeting Requirements
Facebook has recently added new requirements for how you’re targeting custom audiences built from customer files and, starting on July 2nd, they’re going to start enforcing them.
Advertisers will be required to specify the origination of their audience’s information every time they upload a new customer file.
The options you have will include:
- Directly from customers
- Directly from partners
- A combination of the two
Now when users click the “why am I seeing this ad prompt,” they’ll be shown exactly why, including how the advertiser got their information.
This will allow users to better monitor and flag brands who don’t actually have their permission to use their information:
Moving forward, if businesses are going to be sharing customer information through partnerships, they must establish an audience-sharing relationship through the Business Manager and agree to Facebook Custom Audiences Terms.
This means if your small business wants to hire an ad agency to run your campaigns for you and utilize custom audiences from your customer lists, you’ll need to set this up.
Aside from needing to share audience responsibilities through the Business Manager, none of this should be affecting businesses much who are following Facebook’s custom audience rules and obtaining those customer lists through white-hat, approved methods.
Crack Down on Users’ Bad Shopping Experiences
Even with Facebook’s restrictions in place, it’s unfortunately still possible for businesses to advertise on the platform and provide a less than stellar experience for the customer after purchasing. Maybe customers never get the products, or it’s substandard quality, or the business has terrible customer service.
Now, users can have a little more power, and consistent bad shopping experiences from customers may cause Facebook to shut down specific ads, limit a brand’s reach, or ban their account entirely.
Facebook has just launched an eCommerce review tool inside the Recent Ads Activity dashboard. Here, users can give feedback on products that are being advertised on Facebook. By clicking the “Leave Feedback” button users will be asked to complete a brief questionnaire to tell Facebook about their experience.
Negative responses will be shared directly with the advertisers, giving them a chance to make changes if needed.
If Facebook continues to get the negative reviews, though, the untrustworthy ad account will be at risk.
Here’s Facebook statement:
We share feedback directly with businesses that receive high volumes of negative feedback and give them a chance to improve before taking further action. We give businesses guidance on how to improve customer satisfaction and better meet customer expectations. This could mean setting clear expectations about shipping speed upfront or providing more transparency about return policies. If feedback does not improve over time, we will reduce the amount of ads that particular business can run. This can continue to the point of banning the advertiser. We believe this tool will give people more confidence in the businesses they interact with and help hold businesses accountable for customer experiences they provide”.
Keep in mind that almost all businesses will have some negative reviews at some point. Facebook isn’t going to penalize you for one unhappy customer out of a thousand. If the patterns are consistent and flagrant problems aren’t rectified, however, that’s where you’d be in a world of hurt.
I’m pretty confident that most of our readers here have no interest to hoodwink customers, trying to run scam campaigns to make a quick buck; they care about customers and want to make them happy. Stay focused on that mindset and be open to feedback, and this tool could actually help you solve problems within your business that you didn’t even know where there.
A/B Testing for Page Posts (rolling out now)
We all know the importance of split testing in Facebook Ads, so the recent discovery of Facebook’s experimentation with a new A/B testing tool for Page posts is great news.
The feature has only been spotted– not formally announced— but it still has the potential to be a big deal so we wanted to talk about it now.
Facebook’s new currently-being-tested tool will let Admins post two different variations of a single post to two different audiences and evaluate how each performs.
We all know the value of split testing through ads (and if you don’t, you’d better click on the link we just provided and check The Evergreen Guide To Facebook Ad Optimization), and being able to show different audiences different organic posts is an excellent learning opportunity.
New Central Hub for Memories
Facebook has recently released a new “Memories” section on the platform, which it describes as
A single place on Facebook to reflect on the moments you’ve shared with family and friends, including posts and photos, friends you’ve made, and major life events.”
Now, all those “on this day” memories posts will be consolidated in one place for you, and this is basically an expanded version of those posts. You’ll be able to look back on the current day from the previous year (and all years prior) to see new friends made, interesting posts, or big life moments.
Monetization of the Marketplace
It was only a matter of time before Facebook worked to monetize its on-platform marketplace, which lets users post products, goods, and services with the hopes of selling them to other users. Selling was never processed through Facebook, only listed there, so their means of monetizing the marketplace is with new ads and boosted listings.
Ads can be created by anyone with an ad account. These ads will be a new placement option to show products and services to people while they’re actively shopping. The placement has been tested with select larger brands, and so far there’s evidence of increased purchase and year-over-year returns on ad spend, which is significant.
Within the next few weeks, audiences in select locations will be able to run these ads using the conversions, traffic, video views, reach, and product catalog objectives. These locations include the US, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia.
This is an excellent opportunity to connect with users who are in the frame of mind to do some shopping. They’re looking for something, and they’re ready to buy, making them a prime audience. Another placement option also means a lot more placements are opening up in general, which makes the system just slightly less competitive and helping us to get a little more ad reach.
Audience Network Releases In-App Bidding
Facebook’s Audience Network is now going to support bidding for in-app advertising. This will allow ad networks to engage in bidding amongst themselves in real-time, competing for available ad impressions. This was done with the goal of increasing efficiency of app monetization and solving the problem of only 30 or 40 cents of every ad dollar going to the publisher. Previously the placement would go to the user with the highest average CPM instead of who was actually willing to pay the most for that specific placement.
Ad publishers and developers can now establish a more fair marketplace for their ad placements, which will ultimately be better for everyone involved. Publishers maximize the value of their ad content, and the advertisers who want the placement most will be more likely to get it. Since users want more free content with less ads, this is a great way to make that happen, benefiting everyone involved.
Some advertisers may find that this means needing to spend slightly more on CPMs or CPCs in order to get those placements, but since audience network placements generally cost less than most others, there’s still a good chance it will be relatively affordable.
Expanded Tools for Non-Profits
One of the biggest tools that Facebook has given non-profits is their donation and charitable giving tools, allowing these organizations and causes to raise funds, support, and publicity through the platform.
Users can share causes important to them, and “donate their birthdays” to certain causes in order to leverage more donations for these organizations.
This alone was a valuable tool, but now non-profits are getting access to expanded features.
Personal user profiles and live broadcasters were given these capabilities last year, and now brands and public figure pages can promote and organize causes and fundraisers, too.
Non-profits can also create their own fundraisers for causes thanks to this extension, as most exist on Facebook as Pages.
Users can now invite up to three friends to create, organize, and manage a fundraiser, making it much easier to manage the campaign while also significantly expanding the network of supports up front.
Instagram-Style Polling Stickers
One of my favorite features on Instagram Stories is their polling ability, which allows you to ask users a question and provide them with two different answers. The answers can be “yes or no,” or more multiple choice like “hot or cold.” This feature is now available on Facebook through their Messenger Stories’ poll stickers.
Today, we've launched Polls in Messenger Stories so you can easily get feedback from friends on anything that comes to mind like what to name your new puppy 🐶 and other ❓. pic.twitter.com/Td2ZBo5Fxv
— Messenger (@messenger) May 30, 2018
You’ll be able to see users’ answers in percentages in real time, giving you instant feedback and another metric when considering how engaging your on-platform content is.
To see the results of your Stories’ polls, just swipe up on it and you’ll see the users who voted and how they voted.
Poll stickers are an excellent way to drive engagement and get actual social proof through your Stories.
They can also help you get a better idea of how your followers are responding to your stories, and how closely they’re paying attention to it.
According to what Facebook’s Chris Cox declared during Facebook F8 developer conference (in May), Stories are set to surpass the News Feed as the primary way to share content on social some time this year.
Facebook Reviews Now on a 1–10 Scale (Beta Testing)
Facebook’s current rating system allows customers to leave reviews and rate a business out of 5 stars. Reviews are powerful, but under the current system, those numeric ratings can cause a big hit on a business’s first impression quickly, even if there are plenty of good reviews overall.
Facebook understands that sometimes a 5-star rating system doesn’t quite cut it, so they’re testing a new system that would allow businesses to turn on “review scores” instead of the current rating system.
The new system will be based on a 10-point rating scale, and it will weigh ratings, reviews, and recommendations users made of your business.
Facebook is not just doubling the 5-point score to get the new 10-point ranking—Facebook own algorithm is taking into account more data for calculating these newfound scores. In fact, on the new review page layout, there are two things to note: below the score, it now says, “Based on the opinion of xxx people,” and “Recommended by xxx people.”
This could be great for businesses, especially those who have overall positive interactions on the platform but one negative review weighing them down a bit. Some users, after all, won’t leave a review or even interact with your Page, but will recommend you to their friends.
Writing this, I realized I’ve done that with my accounting firm– I’ve referred them to other people at least five or six times on Facebook but haven’t liked their Page or left a review. (I’m going to fix that as soon as this post is done).
This feature is still in testing, but if it sounds like something you’re interested in, keep an eye out. I think this could be a good one for businesses.
I wasn’t kidding; there were a lot of changes this month, and I’m sure we’ll continue to see bigger-than-normal changes in the coming months, too.
Right now we’re still being fueled by the data breaches all while Facebook is continuing their typical pace of adding new features to the platform.
That means it’s a little chaotic, but don’t worry– check back in here monthly and we’ll give you all the info you need about what’s happening and what it means for you.
What do you think? Which of these new updates are you most excited about? Which ones do you think will have the biggest impact on you? Share your thoughts, knowledge, and questions in the comments below!
Top Facebook Updates – May 2018 Edition
At the beginning of this month, Facebook celebrated a slew of releases through the Facebook Developer Conference (also known as F8). These included things like their new dating option, the ability to clear your ad history, and enhancements around AR and VR.
Our team was even there to take part in the breakout sessions!
While the number of updates announced isn’t high, each one is packed with serious value for marketers. From Facebook live updates to political and issue ad rollouts, we’ll cover them one by one to give you the info you need to know to survive in the ever-changing ad landscape.
Here’s the list of the Facebook updates we are going to cover in May:
- Facebook Live: Crossposting
- Stream Keys and Live Rewind
- Video Retention Metric
- Video Best Practices
- Updates to Issue Ads
- Facebook Publishes Enforcement Numbers
Oh and just in case you were wondering if we really were at F8, this picture puts both AdEspresso and Hootsuite teams at the scene of the crime:
Updates for Facebook Live: Crossposting
While going Live is easier than ever, some problems still arise around the ability to share these posts on other pages you might manage.
So far, once you have ended your Live video on your page, you’d have to share it across all other pages manually.
If you only have one or two Facebook pages, this might not seem like too big of a problem. But if you’re a large business with multiple pages, you can see how this would be time-consuming and… a bit of a hassle.
With the new addition of Live Crossposting, all Pages can now easily publish a single Live broadcast across multiple Pages as an original post – meaning more Live viewers and a bigger potential audience.
Only broadcasts created via the Live API (Publisher Tools and facebook.com/live/create) are eligible for Live crossposting. Broadcasts originating from mobile cannot be Live crossposted.
Before you can start to Live crosspost you need to establish a crossposting relationship with another Page, and that Page will also be able to choose how your Page can crosspost their Live videos. Creating a crossposting relationship covers both VOD (video on demand) and Live broadcasts.
You can establish both Manual and Automatic Crossposting Relationships. In this second scenario, all of the Page’s broadcasts which enable Live crossposting will automatically publish on your Page. Facebook suggest selecting this option only for trusted Pages. Anyway, if you don’t want a specific crossposted Live broadcast to appear on your Page, you can delete it.
If you have an automatic Live crossposting relationship established with a Page and each broadcast has different targeting, Facebook suggests using manual crossposting. Both for Manual and Automatic Crossposting, you should edit the broadcast’s metadata as soon as the original broadcast automatically goes Live.
Expiration has no impact on crossposted broadcasts. If the original Live broadcast is deleted, all of the Live crossposts will also be deleted. If the broadcast is deleted after the Live broadcast has ended, only that specific broadcast is deleted. All other crossposted Live broadcasts including the original broadcast remain available for playback.
Ready to start crossposting? You can check out the setup guide here.
Updates for Facebook Live: Stream Keys and Rewind
The second part of this update is to Stream Keys (and it’s a tad more technical so, if you want, you can skip ahead to the next Facebook update!).
Before this update, Stream keys were random and meant that a new key had to be added each time you wanted to go into production.
Facebook has now released permanent keys, meaning the key can be sent in advance of a shoot, making it easier than ever to stream to your fans.
This means if you’re a publisher or creator that goes live regularly, you now only need to send one stream key to production teams, and because a Page’s stream key is permanent, it can be sent in advance of a shoot — making it easier to collaborate across teams and locations for live productions. Broadcasters can also save time by using the same stream key every time they start a new Live video.
Does this still sound obscure? Gaming creator Darkness429 (in the video), who goes live every weekday at the same hour, explains how using a persistent stream key has made this easier:
Streamers want to get their content out to their fans as quickly as possible without having to worry about going down a checklist of things to do, and with Facebook allowing streamers to have a persistent stream key, it gives the streamer the ability to quickly and effortlessly start streaming while also giving them less to worry about before starting their stream.” – Darkness429
'Sploding Away your Monday Blues with Fortnite!100k FOLLOWERS HYPE!————————————————👥 Squad up in my Discord: https://discord.gg/darkness429————————————————🐦 Follow me on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/Darkness429📸 Follow me on Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/Darkness_429————————————————☕Drink Madrinas: Save 40% off your coffee order when you use "TIMMEH" at checkout https://www.madrinascoffee.com/timmeh————————————————🎞️The Capture Card I use: http://e.lga.to/Darkness————————————————-💻Use “DARKNESS” at checkout and receive $50 off any new XIDAX computer. If your build is more than $1299 chat with a XIDAX rep and mention Darkness429 for a 5% discount! http://mbsy.co/ldbRR————————————————🎤Like of the sound of that Blue Microphone? Use discount code "TIMMEH" and get one yourself: http://bit.ly/2GkydZ1
Posted by Darkness429 on Monday, April 9, 2018
Last but not least, Facebook is starting to test the ability for viewers to Rewind Live videos from Pages while they’re still live.
This is gonna be a true game-changer for some businesses. Read what CrossFit Games, one of the first beta tester, said:
Video Retention Metric
It’s no secret that video is one of the best ways to grab a user’s attention on Facebook.
In an effort to help advertisers better track how their audience is interacting with their videos, Facebook has announced a new update on video retention metrics.
Soon Page admins will be able to access the following new metrics in their video retention graph:
- Followers vs Non-Followers: Breakdown of audience retention by people who follow your Page and people who don’t follow your Page.
- Audience Demographics: Breakdown of audience retention by gender.
- Zoom Chart: Zoom into the chart to get a closer look at the data, so you can better visualize the engagement throughout the video to see how key moments affected viewership.
The new chart will look like this:
Video Best Practices
In addition to the recent updates for Facebook Live and Video Retention Metrics, Facebook has also released an updated guide to video best practices and even included a few thought-provoking questions to ask yourself.
Among the recommendations, 3 seem to stand out and reconfirm Facebook’s ultimate goal of connecting people:
- Create content that is likely to drive discussion. Focus on content your audience will connect and engage with. While shorter, meme-related content can often see more shares, this content may not necessarily encourage deeper interaction among people around that content.
- Look closely at engagement around each video. Eyeball and evaluate the volume of reactions, shares, and conversations. You can also use tools like CrowdTangle to identify what’s working and what’s not.
- Encourage your social team to communicate directly with your audience. Respond to comments, ask your fans what they want to hear about, solicit feedback, and source topic ideas. Help your fans get to know you by introducing yourself directly.
You can find a full list of their recommendations here.
Updates to Political and Issue Ads
On our last update, we mentioned the increased transparency on political ads, but another new update has come into view – this time around ‘Issue Ads’.
Axios has recently released a new list of issues which will have the same increased transparency requirements as political ads. This list includes:
- Civil rights
- Foreign policy
- Government reform
- Social security
Any businesses planning to post political or issue ads (like the list above) will need to verify their identity via mail, in addition to disclosing who paid for the ad.
You can find the new verification requirements here.
Facebook has also finally released their newly updated format for political and issue ads.
In addition to mentioning the sponsor of the ad, they also prompt you to view other ads from that advertiser as well as their active times.
For those of you who are running these ads, the format will look like the above.
Special care must be taken in terms of image and ad copy. Our own Adespresso customers are reporting recent escalated activity in disabled ad accounts for violating the new policies – a sure sign Facebook is taking the recent Cambridge-Analytica scandal quite seriously.
Facebook Publishes Enforcement Numbers
Post-Cambridge Analytica, Facebook has been overwhelmed by a negative media blitz, citing fake users and troll accounts and Zuckerberg’s inability to prevent these accounts from being created.
In response, Facebook has decided to publish their enforcement numbers for the first time. For example, take their numbers on fake accounts:
While the numbers for fake account removal are positive, it seems Facebook is still struggling with other nuanced user behavior, like hate speech:
All in all the changes being made are positive, but as you can see Facebook still has a long way to go before they can deem this project a success.
For full results, you can read their report here.
What does this mean for advertisers?
We can bet that as the algorithm continues to be improved that this will also start to affect ads in the same way.
Evidence of this can be found in the increased transparency and procedures around issue ads, engagement baiting, and the well-known Facebook banhammer.
If you have never taken the chance to read Facebook’s full Ad Policies, now is the time to do it to prevent your account from being disabled.
Big changes are on the horizon – both for Facebook as a company, and for us as advertisers.
With increased transparency around sensitive subjects, how Facebook reports on data, and hard questions raised around privacy we’re sure to see some more interesting news as the year continues.
As always, we’ll be here to help you digest every bit!
Top Facebook Updates – April 2018 Edition
Facebook has made a lot of big changes lately, and it’s generated a ton of conversation and questions from both users and businesses on the platform wondering exactly what this will mean moving forward. The short answer: these changes are very good, even if they feel a little inconvenient while we adjust to them.
Ultimately, they’ll improve Facebook Ads for users and marketers alike, creating a win-win situation for everyone involved.
In this special edition to our Facebook Updates post, we’re going to be taking a look at the new “Facebook 2.0” and what it means not only for users but for the advertisers trying to connect with them. We’ll have some of our top experts weighing in on the potential impact and how to prepare for it.
To keep users’ information safe and secure, Facebook is changing the way advertisers can target their adverts. We are in full support of these changes because we believe they are critical to maintaining trust between advertisers and Facebook users.
Some of these changes will impact your Facebook advertising strategy, so our Facebook round up this month focuses just on the recent updates that affect marketers.
Note that these changes are actively happening and are a work in progress, as you can see from the infographic below, so we’re going off the information we have now. We will, of course, update you as we know more.
These are the big Facebook updates we’re going to go over that you need to know:
- New Privacy Protections to Everyone
- Facebook launches data abuse bounty
- Restricting Data Access For Apps
- Making Political and Issue Ads More Transparent
- Making Pages More Transparent
- Privacy Tools Easier to Find
- Facebook Removed Partner Categories
- New tools against misinformation in News Feed
It’s not shocking that Facebook’s biggest concern right now is privacy with all the chaos happening. Now there will be new privacy protections extended to everyone, no matter where you live (which previously had affected certain privacy features).
- Asking users to review how Facebook uses their data to display ads and giving them the option to opt out of targeting like partner categories or personal profile information like relationship status or political affiliation.
- Allowing users to turn off face recognition technology on Facebook
- Special protections for teenagers, which will include limiting ad categories that can be displayed to them
- Updated terms of service that correlates with the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
Not sure what all this means? Here’s what our in-house expert Paul Fairbrother had to say:
GDPR is an important topic for marketers as it’s essential for advertisers to be compliant before it’s rolled out on 25th May 2018.
Although GDPR only covers the rights of European citizens it applies to companies worldwide if they have customers or prospects in Europe, therefore for a global platform like Facebook it’s good news that they are now compliant.
Most users will accept the current settings so it should be business as usual for advertisers. Giving users more control of their own data is a far better option than governments imposing restrictions on advertisers so the privacy check that Facebook is rolling out should be welcomed”.
Facebook is proving exactly how much they want to shut down data sharing that violates their policies by offering bounties to users who report data abuse.
They’re primarily looking for:
- instances where data that was “legally” obtained was then stolen, sold or misused
- 3rd party companies who are obtaining user data in a way that violates Facebook’s terms of service
They’re offering actual cash rewards if your information leads to significant impact. The actual reward will depend on how significant the lead was, but they’ve paid up to $40,000 for information that led to bug fixes in the past.
Want to learn more about the program? Check out their FAQ here.
Here’s Paul’s take:
Ever since Facebook has allowed ads to be targeted using custom audiences there has been a game of cat and mouse where unscrupulous advertisers have developed tools and apps to scrape user data and Facebook has been doing it’s best to shut these down. With the new changes Facebook will now be in the driving seat, this means that ethical advertisers will no longer be at a disadvantage to the spammers, creating a level playing field will help a majority of advertisers. As always, if users have trust in the ads they see this will increase the effectiveness of ads”.
One of the first announcements that came out regarding the privacy changes was that Facebook was putting a hold on app reviewing. This makes sense, since apps are an easy way for users’ information to be accessed without their full knowledge.
Moving forward, Facebook will be restricting data access to apps on Facebook. These changes include:
- No longer allowing apps to view the guest lists or posts of events users attended or hosted.
- All third-party apps will need approval from Facebook directly and a group admin before being able to access a group’s members list, and other information they could access like conversations is being kept off the table.
- Apps will need Facebook approval before being able to access the Pages API, which allowed them to read posts or comments from any Page.
- Facebook will need to directly approve all apps that request information like check-ins, likes, photos, posts, videos, events, and groups. They’ll also forbid apps from getting information like user religious or political affiliation.
- Instagram’s API is being deprecated, taking a few steps back on the changes they’d recently made making it more accessible.
- Search by email and phone numbers has been disabled: Until today, people could enter another person’s phone number or email address into Facebook search to help find them. However, malicious actors have also abused these features to scrape public profile information so Facebook has disabled this feature. They’re also making changes to account recovery to reduce the risk of scraping as well.
- User call and text history will be limited, and Facebook confirmed it does not collect the content of messages and that logs older than one year are deleted.
- Targeting through partner categories has been shut down.
- Ease of app review is being put in place so that users can easily see which apps can access their information, and quickly remove those they don’t want.
Here are Paul’s thoughts regarding these changes:
This doesn’t affect advertisers but could have a large impact on third party apps used for Facebook and Instagram management (though their functionality for other platforms will remain intact) while we see where the chips fall“.
In all of these changes, Facebook is directly addressing one of the biggest issues they’ve faced: the political controversy.
Now, they’re testing a feature that lets users see all of the ads a business is running on their Page, even if they’re not in the ad’s audience. This is designed to increase transparency.
This was meant to help protect users with political ads in particular, but it could end up applying to all ads and Pages, and here’s what Paul had to say:
This is already being tested in Canada where users can see all ads a page has run, not just political ads. Feedback so far has been minimal, it doesn’t seem to have had any major impact for either advertisers or users”.
Facebook is also requiring that individuals who manage pages with large follower count are verified by Facebook, making it much more difficult for people to use fake accounts to admin big Pages. This is designed to protect user identity and increase identity further, and yes, prevent election interference.
These features will still apply to non-political Pages, too, however, extending the protection to all users.
“People who manage Pages with large numbers of followers will need to be verified. Those who manage large Pages that do not clear the process will no longer be able to post. This will make it much harder for people to administer a Page using a fake account. We will also show you additional context about Pages to effectively assess their content. For example, you can see whether a Page has changed its name.”
Here’s our expert’s comment:
The important thing to note here is it’s the page admins not the page that needs to be verified. For legitimate advertisers this is a good move, the more trust there is in Facebook pages the more users are likely to trust and engage with Facebook advertisers. However, many companies use fake personal profiles as an easy way to administer company profiles.
As a priority it’s now time to use real profiles and instead use Business Manager to keep business and personal profiles separate”.
One of the biggest complaints users had about Facebook’s privacy settings was that they were too difficult to find. Unsurprisingly, Facebook has made changes to this, making it easier for users to find and adjust their privacy settings.
The new Privacy Shortcuts menu is a menu where you can control your data in just a few taps, with clearer explanations of how our controls work.
The goal of Facebook was to create an experience is now explicit, more visual, and easy-to-find. Specifically, they’ve redesigned their entire mobile settings layout so that it’s simpler and faster for users to find what they’re looking for.
Instead of having the settings spread across 20 different screens, they’ll now be located all on one. There will also be a new privacy shortcuts menu, which will be highly visual and simple to navigate (as seen in the screenshot below).
This will include the ability to:
- Control who sees your profile information
- Make your account more secure, like adding two-step authentication
- Review what you’ve shared in the past, and delete it if you choose
- Control the ads you see by choosing what information Facebook can use to show you ads
Paul believes this is actually an excellent opportunity for advertisers.
This makes it easier for users to update their ad preferences. Although some users might opt out of advertising that is targeted using their data it’s just as likely that users will take the opportunity to tidy up their list of interests, this makes advertising more relevant for them and makes interest targeting more accurate for advertisers”.
The “Partner categories” targeting feature has previously allowed advertisers to use info obtained from third-party data companies to target users through Facebook Ads. Now, Facebook is shutting down partner categories.
If advertisers want to target certain users, they’ll have to use Facebook’s behavior targeting, interest targeting, or custom audience, with email addresses obtained “Facebook legally.”
Fortunately, most advertisers don’t use Partner Categories, so this won’t affect too many of our users. According to Paul, this likely won’t be too big of a deal for that exact reason.
Partner categories are not a key component of targeting for most advertisers, with lookalikes and interest targeting often providing better results. Data partners such as Experian and Acxiom are focused on the US market so outside of the US the effect of removing partner categories will be negligible”.
Facebook is taking big steps to protect users against misinformation that has a tendency to spread like wildfire on most social media platforms. Satire has been misinterpreted as fact, and unreliable sources can look like they’re credible.
Last year, Facebook tested a feature that gave users more knowledge about the publishers of the information they’re seeing, and now they’ll be rolling that out to everyone in the US.
People will be able to see that the Onion is a satire site, for example, so they quickly know not to take it too seriously. Users will also be able to see which of their friends have shared the article.
Facebook is also testing a new feature that will let users find out more information about an article’s author so they can evaluate the credibility of that exact article in addition to the publication.
People will be able to click the article’s author in Instant Articles to see what else they’ve written, giving users more context.
I was thrilled to see this news, and our expert agreed that this was good news.
Clickbait has been around on Facebook ever since the platform has allowed business pages and more recently this has evolved into fake news. Facebook have a fine line to tread as banning all fake news could be seen as censorship, that’s why they’d prefer to let the reader make their own judgement.
Previously this has been hard for users to do as checking various third party sites – especially on mobile – is time consuming so a solution within the newsfeed is welcome.
With Facebook looking to create a newsfeed with less sensational content this is a good time for advertisers to evaluate their style of ad creative.
Advertisers relying on clickbait style ads will find that their ads will look more and more dated and out of place in the newsfeed. Consider moving to a content first approach where useful information is given in the ad itself so that users can decide whether it’s worth clicking on to learn more”.
That’s a lot of information that we just dumped on you, and it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. Don’t worry, though, because Paul’s final thoughts on the changes are positive:
Facebook advertising doesn’t have a set price. Instead, the platform uses an auction for every ad served. Simply put, this means that if demand for advertising falls then ad prices also fall. would attract more advertisers, and ad demand would quickly stabilize.
For every advertiser that decides to leave Facebook, another will see this as an opportunity to take their place”.
Last but not least:
The other conclusion from recent events is to move away from micro-targeting and instead build funnels. Cast a wide net at the top of the funnel, by starting with an audience of approximately 1 million people the CPM (cost per 1,000 impressions) is low and from this build custom audiences of engaged users to retarget.”
What do you think? How do you feel about the latest changes? Which are you most excited about? Share your thoughts, knowledge, and questions in the comments below!
Top Facebook Updates – March 2018 Edition
Just like Spring is nature’s way of saying, ‘Let’s party!’, today you’ll be partying with a bunch of Facebook updates that will make the spring sprung in your next Facebook ad campaigns!
For example, now you will be able to use richer and higher-quality 3D Posts, or you can take advantage of more sophisticated targeting options to make the most out of your campaign’s performance!
And there’s something special for women too.
International Woman’s Day is just behind us, and we want to celebrate it mentioning #SheMeansBusiness, a project started in 2016 that, on March 8th, launched Community Finder – a new way of bringing people (Women in this case) together using the power of social connections to create a powerful and future-oriented community.
Before seeing in detail this amazing project, here’s a summary of the Facebook updates we selected this month for you:
And now let’s see them in detail!
In 2017, International Women’s Day was the #1 most talked-about moment of the year. It not only shared light on empowering women but also settled the stone for all the 2018 movements (that still continue without signs of slowing down). March 8th is the right day to celebrate women leading the way in their communities, #SheMeansBusiness among them.
It’s a program established by Facebook in 2016 to support women-owned businesses. This year they are launching Community Finder, a tool that will give female entrepreneurs the power to connect with their peers all around the globe and share questions, advice, resources, and support to help them grow their businesses.
You only need to choose the wished Country and the type of information you need (Business Advice, Financial Advice, Networking and Marketing Know-how) and the system would suggest you the right community to join!
Visit shemeansbusiness.fb.com for more information.
With their content popping off the screen 3D Posts bring the interaction with digital objects to the next level, leveraging users engagement.
With the newest Facebooks’ releases, richer and higher-quality 3D content can now be shared with Facebook supporting the industry-standard glTF 2.0 file format with 3D posts. With glTF 2.0 compliance comes support for textures, lighting, and realistic rendering techniques; this means shining, soft and detailed 3D posts to grab the user’s attention on the Social Media.
The new Graph API endpoints with 3D Post support enables developers to build seamless 3D sharing into any app making it easier for people to share interactive objects or scenes directly to Facebook with just a click. Using the new Open Graph tag, developers can enable 3D content from their website to automatically appear in 3D when shared on Facebook.
Let’s dig deeper and see how a 3D Post is created!
There are actually four ways to get a 3D asset that meets Facebook’s asset requirements to appear in a Facebook Post:
- Create a 3D Post programmatically with Facebook’s;
- Share a link to a web page that has Facebook’s Open Graph Sharing metadata tags;
- Share a local asset on an Android device using Android’s native Sharing action;
- Drag and drop your asset into Facebook’s Post composer and publish it;
If you are creating a 3D Post via drag and drop:
- Click within the composer window to make sure it has focus before dragging and dropping an asset into it. Once you drop your asset into the composer, it will take a few seconds to generate an interactive preview;
- Once you are able to see the preview you can create your Post;
If you’re testing and don’t want anyone to see your Post, you can set its visibility to “Only me” and change it to “Public” when you’re ready. Please make sure that you view the Post in your Feed using the mobile Facebook app to see how your asset renders on iOS and Android devices.
As some of you may have noticed, Facebook does not allow advertisers to ask for users’ gender preferences anymore (the “Interested In” field in Advanced Options). Facebook started last year removing the possibility only for European countries, while now they have removed “Interested in” targeting for everyone.
This choice applies directly all advertisers who use ‘Interested in Men’, ‘Interested in Women’, ‘Interested in Men and Women’, or ‘Interested in Unspecified’ while building up their targeting.
For all the new campaigns to be created after this change, the recommendation is to use ‘Relationship Status’ Interests for targeting. These campaigns can also leverage ‘Relationship Status’ Interest targeting as an alternative.
Existing campaigns using “Interested in” targeting will continue to run until their end date; however, these targeting options will no longer be available for new ad creation or duplication. Additionally, any existing campaigns using the “Interested in” campaigns that require editing, will have “Interested In” removed and will need to update their targeting.
How are those campaigns managed in AdEspresso?
Due to the change introduced, if you had used anything else other than “all” in the interested in section at Step 3 of campaign creation, your campaign would fail
What to do next? You should click on “Edit Campaign” and re-open the campaign that could not be published, and click on proceed until you get to the third step. From there, make sure that the “Interested in” section looks similar to this:
You also will need to confirm at the pop-up between step 3 and step 4 that you are not running a test on “Interested In”. This is what the pop-up will look like without Interested In selected for a split test:
Once you have fixed your campaign settings, you can proceed to publish your campaign successfully!
Facebook is full of ads showing travel destinations, but what if they could now be really addressed to people planning to travel but haven’t chosen their destination yet? This Facebook update is just about that!
Trip consideration helps travel advertisers reaching people who have expressed intent to travel but have not yet decided where to go. With trip consideration, you can showcase deals and popular destinations to encourage people to book their next vacation at a specific destination.
For example, let’s say a University student has shown interest in visiting Ireland on St. Patrick’s day -by browsing travel related pages- but has not yet settled on a specific location. Travel advertisers can now deliver ads promoting flight or hotel/hostel deals to inspire the student to book his or her trip.
The benefits this brand-new feature are countless, here just a few perks it gives you:
- Simplified setup (no catalog is required);
- Creative flexibility ;
- Optimization for intent;
- Enhance your existing audience (this feature can be combined with other audience targeting options);
The only requirement to use the trip consideration feature is having a pixel implemented (Not yet installed? Learn more here about setting up pixel for dynamic ads for travel hotels, flights, destinations).
Let’s see how we can set it up!
- In Ads Manager select the Conversions objective.
- At the ad set level, select Audience to define who you want to see your ads and select your Placements.
Note: You can add audience targeting on top of campaigns that use this feature. When you use targeting, the targeting parameters act as an audience filter. After the targeting parameters (filters) have been applied on the audience, we will optimize for people who have travel intent within that audience.
- Select Budget & Schedule.
- Underneath Optimization for Ad Delivery, choose how you want us to deliver ads to people based on what you’re trying to achieve. Select an option from the drop-down menu.
- Toggle on the option to Prioritize delivery to people who plan to travel.
- Continue filling out your Optimization & Delivery options.
- At the Ad level, select your Identity, Format and Links.
Note: We recommend using creative to showcase top travel deals, popular destinations/inspirational destinations, or brand-building creative.
- Click Review to see your selections or Confirm to place your ad.
Et voilà! You’re all set.
Facebook’s aim of connecting people around the world has been further developed and pushed beyond its borders this month through the partnership with Warner Music Group (WMG) announced on March, 9th 2018:
When Facebook and music come together, we have the power to bring people closer together. Music brings to life the happy, the sad, the throwback and the funny in all the moments and messages we share with friends. We are delighted to partner with Warner, its artists and songwriters, and welcome them to our platforms.” (Tamara Hrivnak, Head of Music Business Development and Partnerships, Facebook).
This partnership includes licensing agreements covering the music company’s recorded music and music publishing catalogs for use in social experiences such as videos and messages.
The deal paves the way for fans to create, upload and share videos with licensed music from their favorite artists and songwriters. Under the partnership, WMG and Facebook will continue to work together to develop new products that enable users to personalize their music experiences across Facebook, Messenger, Instagram, and Oculus.
Above “enhancing the user experience across Facebook, Instagram and Oculus, and enabling people to communicate and express themselves using the music they love.” (Ole Obermann, Chief Digital Officer, Warner Music Group), this partnership also bears positive and important implications for advertisers as it opens the chance to add Music to shared Memories and Moments.
<h2><a id=”FbUpdates2018March6″></a>The Major League Baseball goes on Facebook Watch</h2>
<p>It’s not only Music that brings people together and creates Communities, but sport also plays a key role in the process. This is the exact reason why the second great deal to be celebrated at Menlo Park this month is the Major League Baseball streamed on Facebook Watch. With 1.4 billion active daily users, the world’s biggest social network is also still growing, in contrast with conventional TV networks that have been losing viewers and advertising. Facebook’s ad revenue last year totaled $40 billion. The deal marks the first time a major U.S. sports league has granted exclusive rights to <a href=”http://variety.com/2018/digital/news/blackberry-sues-facebook-instagram-whatsapp-patent-infringement-1202719360/”>Facebook</a>. It’s also the biggest bucket of rights from a big league to go exclusively to a streaming-video platform.</p>
<p><a href=”https://techcrunch.com/2018/03/09/facebook-has-signed-a-deal-to-stream-25-afternoon-mlb-games/”>Image credits</a>: Tim Bradbury / Getty ImagesIf passion and commitment through a shared aim are the best ingredients for a winning recipe, which better way than representing it through a sport? But far more than a mere metaphor “This partnership with Facebook reflects the ongoing commitment of Major League Baseball and our clubs to connect with people around the world,” (Tony Petitti, MLB’s deputy commissioner of business and media). This is the winning move pushing Facebook towards the future and leaving conventional TV Networks a step back.</p>
<h2><a id=”FbUpdates2018March7″></a> Helps to connect People and Local Businesses</h2>
<p><i>Bringing people together</i> is given a brand-new shade this month with Facebook helping people not only to connect with friends and family but to find the job of their dreams. Since introducing job postings on Facebook in the US and Canada last year, they have built new features for businesses like the ability to create job posts on mobile, manage applications, and schedule interviews. Job-seekers can also set up job alerts for the type of roles they’re interested in.<br />
Making people <a href=”http://www.facebook.com/jobs”>apply to jobs directly on the platform </a>in more than 40 countries, Facebook becomes a central role-player in the Business field helping local businesses hire the right people on one side and bringing people closer to the job of their dreams on the other.<br />
Let’s see how it works:<br />
<b>Job seeker</b>: Finding a job is quick, easy and free. You can find jobs in the Jobs dashboard at <a href=”http://www.facebook.com/jobs”>facebook.com/jobs</a> and the “Jobs” option in the “Explore” section on mobile, by clicking the Jobs icon in Marketplace, or visiting the Jobs tab of a business’ Page. When you’re ready to apply for a role, you can create an application, which will populate with job history and other information in your Facebook profile. You can edit your application before you submit it. Once you finish applying, a Messenger conversation will open with the business’ Page so you can have direct contact with the employer and confirm when your information has been received. Businesses will only be able to see information you provide them directly, and what’s available publicly on your Facebook profile. To stay on top of the type of job you’re interested in, you can also subscribe to alerts.<br />
Grouping with Warner Music Group, Facebook not only recognizes the value that music creates on social networks but it also empowers songwriters to reach audiences around the world.
This partnership also bears positive and important implications for advertisers as it opens the chance to add Music to shared Memories and Moments.
It’s not only Music that brings people together and creates Communities, sport too plays a key role in the process. This is the exact reason why the second great deal to be celebrated at Menlo Park this month is the Major League Baseball streamed on Facebook Watch.
With 1.4 billion active daily users, the world’s biggest social network is also still growing, in contrast with conventional TV networks that have been losing viewers and advertising. Facebook’s ad revenue last year totaled $40 billion. The deal marks the first time a major U.S. sports league has granted exclusive rights to Facebook. It’s also the biggest bucket of rights from a big league to go exclusively to a streaming-video platform.
Tony Petitti, MLB’s deputy commissioner of business and media, commented:
This partnership with Facebook reflects the ongoing commitment of Major League Baseball and our clubs to connect with people around the world.”
This is the winning move pushing Facebook towards the future and leaving conventional TV Networks a step back.
Bringing people together is given a brand-new shade this month with Facebook helping people not only to connect with friends and family but to find the job of their dreams.
Since introducing job postings on Facebook in the US and Canada last year, they have built new features for businesses like the ability to create job posts on mobile, manage applications, and schedule interviews. Job-seekers can also set up job alerts for the type of roles they’re interested in.
By enabling people apply to jobs directly on the platform in more than 40 countries, Facebook becomes a central role-player in the Business field helping local businesses hire the right people on one side and bringing people closer to the job of their dreams on the other.
Let’s see how it works:
- Job seeker: Finding a job is quick, easy and free. You can find jobs in the Jobs dashboard at facebook.com/jobs and the “Jobs” option in the “Explore” section on mobile, by clicking the Jobs icon in Marketplace, or visiting the Jobs tab of a business’ Page.
When you’re ready to apply for a role, you can create an application, which will populate with job history and other information in your Facebook profile. You can edit your application before you submit it.
Once you finish applying, a Messenger conversation will open with the business’ Page so you can have direct contact with the employer and confirm when your information has been received.
Businesses will only be able to see informationsyou provide them directly, and what’s available publicly on your Facebook profile. To stay on top of the type of job you’re interested in, you can also subscribe to alerts.
- Business: Businesses can attract the right applicants and hire quickly, easily and affordably.
Page admins can create job posts directly from their Page with details like job title, job type (full-time, intern, part-time), salary and more. Job posts will appear in multiple places on Facebook, including on a business’ Page, in the Jobs dashboard, in Marketplace, and in News Feed.
Businesses can also manage their applications and communicate with applicants, including scheduling interviews and sending automated reminders, directly through Messenger.
… And that’s all for this month folks, see you in April!
We hope this has been interesting and would help you a lot in your Advertising strategy and if you would like to better improve it, check out also What Cats can teach you About Facebook Ads! Quick Recap:
- 3D POST
- Changes to Targeting Availability for ‘Interested In’
- Trip Consideration to Reach Travelers
- Warner Music Group and Facebook Team Up
- The Major League Baseball goes on Facebook Watch
- Helps to connect People and Local Businesses
As always, let us know if you notice any other change in your feed! See you next Month 🙂
Top Facebook Updates – February 2018 Edition
The merging of Power editor and ads manager in a new Facebook Power Editor is probably the news that is directly affecting many of you, and we’ll cover it, along with the improvements to Page Insights, the so much awaited “downvote” button and, of course, Facebook Fourth Quarter reports and full year 2017 results.
If you want to take a look at what we did to make your Facebook advertising easier and improve your business results you can click here (and give us a Like, please!).
If you are impatient to read what’s new on Facebook, just keep on reading. There are a lot of Facebook updates this month! Here’s a quick recap of what we selected:
- Facebook Power Editor and Ads Manager have been finally put together
- Facebook is improving Pages Insights
- Facebook is improving privacy and data protection for users
- More Local News on Facebook
- From iOS Paywall to Breaking News on Watch: how Facebook Is taking the quality News challenge
- Facebook Community Leadership Program
- Facebook is testing the “Downvote” button
- Fourth Quarter Reports
Let’s dig in now.
All advertisers know the struggle of using two different tools at the same time, luckily enough, this is a situation that you won’t face ever again!
Power Editor and Ads Manager have been merged together and are now a thing! Let’s see what you will find in the new Ads Manager.
- Default creation flow
Here are the details.
1. Default creation flow
Some of you may be more used to the Power Editor creation workflow, while some others prefer the Ads Manager one instead.
Facebook will give you the possibility to choose between the two via the top right button:
“Quick creation” gives advertisers the freedom to set up the campaign, ad set and ad elements in any order.
Quick creation is a good choice for advanced advertisers familiar with Power Editor’s ad creation workflow.
“Guided creation” will guide you through all the steps of the flow.
Advertisers should choose this option if they are less familiar with all the components of Facebook advertising campaigns, or if they preferred the previous Ads Manager’s guided creation flow.
One of the very useful features inside the Power Editor was the automatic save of drafts.
This feature has been brought into the new Ads Manager, where your work will be automatically saved when you’re creating a campaign/ad/adset.
You will be able to review and publish the elements you left as a draft at any time you wish!
Previously, Power Editor and Ads Manager offered different reporting capabilities. Advertisers would sometimes need to switch between tools to create their reports.
The new Ads Manager combines all the reporting features of Power Editor with breakdowns and summary rows, date benchmarks, exported insights reports and the ability to customize columns – all features that previously only existed in Ads Manager.
Now advertisers can create, view and manage their results in only one easy-to-use interface.
After the changes made to the algorithm, you may have noticed a drop in the reach of your posts. This is not a “real” drop, so don’t panic!
Facebook is making two big updates to Page Insights to help businesses better understand how their Pages are performing.
- Updating reach measurement to capture post views
- Redesigning Page Insights for mobile
Here’s the details:
1. Updating reach measurement to capture post views:
Reach counts will now be based on viewable impressions.
On Pages, Facebook was previously defining reach as a person refreshing their News Feed and the post being placed in their feed. While for paid ads, they have moved to a stricter definition that only counts reach once the post enters the user’s screen (“viewable impressions”).
I think this change will definitely be helpful for us, since everyone, at least once, has been puzzled while seeing the big difference between organic and paid reach.
This is a change in the way that we measure reach, not a change in News Feed distribution, and other engagement metrics will remain the same. This will provide page owners with a more precise measurement of their audience and offer a more consistent measurement methodology across both our paid and organic reach reporting. Since this is stricter reporting, some pages may see lower reach figures than before”.
So, this means that the way Facebook reports organic reach will change from February, 12th 2018, therefore you should expect those numbers to drop.
But the number of people who actually see and engage with your content should not change at all!
Facebook states it clearly in the same blog post that announced the update
This will provide Page owners with a more precise measurement of their audience and offer a more consistent measurement methodology across both our paid and organic reach reporting.”
The goal of these updates is to make the insights businesses care most about more easily accessible. For example, a page owner can use the redesigned Page Insights to create a new post based off previous posts that have gained the most traction, or create new ad campaigns reaching people in their most engaged demographic. So far, page owners testing the redesign have found the updated Page Insights to be more valuable than the old version.”
2. Redesigning Page Insights for mobile:
It’s always critical for businesses to have simple and quick access to their Page reporting.
Facebook is redesigning Page Insights to make it easier for us to find the most important information at a glance on mobile directly.
With this redesign, Facebook will put the most used metrics at the top:
- General Page metrics, such as number of likes, reach and engagement;
- Results of actions recently taken, such as recent posts performance;
- Preview of new Page engagement such as demographic information on new followers;
The purpose of this change is to make those insights businesses care most about more accessible than before.
For example, a Page admin can use the redesigned Page Insights to directly create a new content based on previous posts that have gained the most traction or create new ad campaigns reaching people in their most engaged demographic.
Facebook has a lot of information about us. Luckily, they work very hard to protect these data. And now they’re working even harder.
Waiting for the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) to become effective (as of 25 May 2018) Facebook, Instagram, Oculus, and WhatsApp, will take all the necessary steps to make sure that their products and services comply with the GDPR (a regulation that creates consistent data protection rules across the EU).
As Facebook recently announced:
At Facebook, preparations are well underway to ensure that our products and services comply with the GDPR. Besides being committed to transparency, control and accountability, we’re also expanding our Dublin-led data protection team to support these efforts, and will hire a Data Protection Officer.”
What will change for businesses owners?
Nothing! Businesses will keep on using Facebook services in the same way they do today, but just as they are responsible for compliance with the laws that apply to them today, companies are responsible for ensuring their own compliance with the GDPR.
Thus, there are some key instances, listed below, in which Facebook may serve as a data processor. In these cases, businesses are responsible for ensuring that data they share with FB complies with the GDPR.
- Custom Audiences: When Facebook matches your CRM data to their user database and creates a Custom Audience for your advertising campaigns, Facebook is the data processor.
- Measurement and analytics: Facebook processes data on your behalf in order to measure the performance and reach of your ad campaigns and provides insights about the people who use your services, and report back to you.
- Workplace: Workplace allows you to collaborate with your colleagues using Facebook’s tools. Facebook, in this case as well, processes personal data in order to provide this service to you.
Oh, if you think that you’re not involved because your company is not based in the EU, you’re wrong. The GDPR applies to companies based in the EU as well as companies around the world who provide or offer goods or services, and who process data from or about, people in the EU.
We already talked about the changes that are being made to the News Feed in our blog last month, but that wasn’t all.
In a recent post, Zuckerberg remarked the importance of displaying topics that have a direct impact on users and their community and discover what’s happening in their local areas.
This change of focus on local news is taking effect in the US, and Facebook is planning to expand it to more countries this year.
Just a quick reminder: you can always choose the news sources, including local or national publications, that you want to see at the top of your feed with the See First feature.
We identify local publishers as those whose links are clicked on by readers in a tight geographic area. If a story is from a publisher in your area, and you either follow the publisher’s Page or your friend shares a story from that outlet, it might show up higher in News Feed.”
This infographic will make it crystal clear:
Two of the guests of the Recode’s Code Media conference in Huntington Beach, on February, 12, were Campbell Brown, Facebook’s head of news partnerships, and Adam Mosseri, Facebook’s head of News Feed.
During this conference, Campbell and Adam talked about the direction Facebook is taking, with all the improvements and changes that have been recently made to the News Feed and the algorithm itself.
Two of the most relevant news they mentioned are the creation of a news section in Watch to feature breaking news, and the tests for news paywalls on iOS.
This first move, announced by Campbell, is part of a broader evolution of Facebook’s news strategy.
Facebook launched the Watch platform back in August actually, as a way to compete more directly with other video distribution platforms online.
“By hosting original programming, Facebook could boost ad revenue and give people a reason to frequently return to the News Feed for content they can’t get anywhere else.
Watch features personalized recommendations of live and recorded shows to watch, plus categories like “Most Talked About,” “What’s Making People Laugh” and “Shows Your Friends Are Watching.” Publishers can also share their shows to the News Feed to help people discover them. A Watchlist feature lets you subscribe to updates on new episodes of your favorite shows. Fans can connect with each other and creators through a new feature that links shows to Groups.”
As for the second one, instead, it’s official: starting March 1st, news publishers will be able to use their paywalls inside Facebook’s iOS app. Facebook started testing paywalls on Android in October, but at the time it couldn’t come to an agreement with Apple about how subscription revenue would be taxed, they said.
If you wish to know more about this, you can watch the full interview here.
During Facebook Communities Summit Europe, they announced the launch of “Facebook Community Leadership Program”, a global initiative that invests in people building communities.
Facebook will commit tens of millions of dollars to the program, including up to $10 million in grants that will go directly to people creating and leading communities.
More than 300 community leaders from across Europe came together today in London including Blind Veterans UK, an advocacy organization that provides practical and emotional support to blind veterans and their families; Donna Mamma, a support group for mothers in France to share advice and information; Girl Skate UK, which celebrates and brings together the female skateboarding community; High Society PL, a group of sneaker enthusiasts who bond over their shared passion; and Berlin Bruisers, Germany’s first gay and inclusive rugby club”.
The program aims to empower leaders who are building communities through the Facebook family, and it will include:
- Residency and Fellowship opportunities: offer training, support and funding for community leaders from around the world.
- Community Leadership Circles: bring local community leaders together to meet up in person to connect, learn and collaborate.
- Groups for Facebook Power Admins: which are currently run with more than 10,000 group admins in the US and UK, and will be expanding to more members to help them share advice with one another and connect with the Facebook team to test new features and share feedback.
As we already mentioned, Facebook is releasing more and more features and updates to encourage meaningful interactions between users.
And who, if not the users themselves, can make a difference in choosing what’s relevant and meaningful for them?
This is why Facebook is rolling out the “Downvote button”, aiming to downvote inappropriate comments in order to hide them.
The motivation behind the downvote button is to create a lightweight way for people to provide a signal to Facebook that a comment is inappropriate, uncivil, or misleading.
It won’t be a “dislike” button, but more a way for people to give feedback about comments on public page posts (in fact, this is running for a small set of people in the U.S. only, for the moment).
How will it work?
When tapped, the downvote button hides a comment, and gives you the possibility to choose additional reporting options like “Offensive”, “Misleading”, and “Off Topic”. Those could help Facebook figure out if the comment is objectionable, a form of “fake news”, or just irrelevant.
… Last but not least, some numbers!
For those of you who are truly passionate about numbers, we have got Facebook Fourth Quarter reports and full year 2017 results!
You can download the whole report in Pdf by clicking here!
There have been lots of rumors about these numbers and the possible implosion of Facebook. There’s nothing to fear tho, as one of our experts, Paul Fairbrother, said:
There are too many clickbaitey articles around at the moment which make it sound that Facebook is going to implode at any minute but that just isn’t the reality. Facebook ads is the place to be for anyone doing digital marketing. 89% of Facebook ad revenue is from mobile. Data from 17 markets shows mobile accounted for 69% of online conversions on Black Friday and 64% on Cyber Monday”.
Here’s what Zuckerberg posted on his profile when sharing the financial results:
And that’s all folks!
We really hope this has been useful for you, and, as always, keep us updated about any changes you may notice in your feed!
- Facebook Power Editor and Ads Manager have been finally put together
- Facebook is improving Pages Insights
- Facebook is improving privacy and data protection for users
- More Local News on Facebook
- From iOS Paywall to Breaking News on Watch: how Facebook Is taking the quality News challenge
- Facebook Community Leadership Program
- Facebook is testing the “Downvote” button
- Fourth Quarter Reports
Good luck with your campaigns, groups, businesses and, of course, see you next month!
Top Facebook Updates – January 2018 Edition
Let’s dig into what happened this month at Menlo Park, Facebook’s headquarter.
The revolutionary decision announced by MarkZuckerberg to change Facebook News Feed algorithm to prioritize news from friends and family at the expense of public content, news publishers, and marketers, is “The Thing” everyone is talking about.
In the age of social media, the old say “New Year, New Me” has become “New Year, New Facebook”! At least for MarkZuckerberg, whose New Year’s resolution is to fix Facebook. Seriously.
In a post published on his profile January 11 at 4:28pm (PST) Mark writes:
We’re making a major change to how we build Facebook. I’m changing the goal I give our product teams from focusing on helping you find relevant content to helping you have more meaningful social interactions.[…] As we roll this out, you’ll see less public content like posts from businesses, brands, and media. And the public content you see more will be held to the same standard — it should encourage meaningful interactions between people. […] If we do the right thing, I believe that will be good for our community and our business over the long term too.”
- Facebook News Feed algorithm revolution: what changes for marketers
- New measures to fight Engagement Bait on Facebook
- Facebook temporarily removes reach estimates for certain types of Custom Audiences
- Building Community Together With Music
- Facebook is rolling out Campaign Budget Optimization
- Facebook is testing a city-specific section of its app
In the last 10 days, you’ve heard a lot of “rumors” on how the Facebook algorithm changed and how this will affect your News Feed.
But how does the new algorithm work?
Here’s the explanation of Marc Hull, director of Product Management at Facebook:
Basically, today Facebook uses signals like how many people react to, comment on or share posts to determine how high they appear in news feed. In the next few months, Facebook will also prioritize posts that spark conversations and meaningful interactions between people.
So, Facebook aims to offer users a more “vibrant” experience, but what about brands and advertisers?
These changes in the algorithm will have a significant impact on Pages, advertisers, and marketers since it will basically become more difficult to reach your perfect audiences and their attention. This is not a disadvantage, it doesn’t mean you’ll have a hard time with your ads.
Actually, it highlights the importance of creating really relevant and effective campaigns and how well built and interesting contents can make a big difference when addressed to the right audience.
Interviewed by CpcStrategy right after Zuckerberg announcement, one of our top experts, Paul Fairbrother, commented:
One thing is for sure, ad prices and competition in the newsfeed is only going to increase so the days of posting any old ad and relying on cheap distribution to get results are over.
With ad prices at a premium all marketers have to get more sophisticated with their sales funnel and lead with a content first approach.”
To wrap it up: for what organic content is concerned, Pages may see their reach, video watch time and referral traffic decrease. The impact will vary from page to page, depending on different elements, like the type of content they produce and how people interact with it. [Source]
If you need to adapt your Facebook ad strategy to the new rules, just take a look at the ideas we collected here.
Quite predictably, this second update is a direct consequence of the first one.
No one likes spammy posts on Facebook, especially the ones that ask you for a certain action, like “comment & share this post” or “like this post if you are xyz”.
Here’s some examples:
And there’s more:
This tactic, known as “engagement bait,” seeks to take advantage of our News Feed algorithm by boosting engagement in order to get greater reach. According to the updated algorithm, this kind of posts should appear more often in our feed: luckily, this won’t happen.
Why?… Machine learning!
Facebook is working for us, they have reviewed and categorized hundreds of thousands of posts to create a machine learning model that can detect different types of engagement bait. Posts that use this tactic will be shown less in News Feed.
Together with the penalization of clickbait headlines and links that lead to low-quality web pages, this action takes Facebook one step closer to their real mission: improve user experience, offering meaningful and authentic interactions between people.
These last weeks you may have noticed something weird happening to some of your Custom Audiences: the audience size -1
or “Not Available”.
What happened? A bug!
After identifying a technical issue with reach estimation for Custom Audiences that could potentially allow misuse of the functionality, Facebook is -only temporarily!- removing the ability to see audience sizes or potential reach estimates for newly created or edited Custom Audiences.
Specifically, you may not see reach estimates for:
- Custom Audiences from a customer file
- Offline conversions Custom Audiences
- Website and mobile app Custom Audiences if using advanced matching (via the API)
Note: Website or mobile app Custom Audiences that do not include customer data and engagement Custom Audiences are unaffected by this update.
What will happen to your Custom Audiences? Will you still be able to create campaigns and use your Custom Audiences in the targeting?
The answers are “Nothing!” and “Sure!”
You will still be able to create Custom Audiences, as well as ads using any type of Custom Audiences in your campaigns. Ads delivery and reporting will remain unaffected by this change, so you shouldn’t expect any consequences.
We understand this solution may affect your campaign planning. To minimize disruption, we are currently investigating solutions to restore these reach estimates in our interfaces. We appreciate your help in keeping our platform safe.”
Facebook recently announced their partnership with Universal Music Group, and then the agreement with the largest major music publisher in the world, Sony/ATV.
These partnerships will create new music-related experiences on Facebook and the other platforms for both users, artists, and songwriters and they will help build stronger and more connected communities around music.
This is what Tamara Hrivnak, Head of Music Business Development and Partnerships at Facebook, has to say:
Facebook’s mission and music share something special — at their core, they both bring people together, enable stories and emotions to be shared, and forge bonds.
Together, Facebook and the music industry are bringing the songs you love into the way you express yourself on Facebook, Instagram, Oculus, and Messenger.
This means more ways to share, connect, find your fans and be your favorite artist’s biggest and best groupie.”
Last week, it has also been announced that Global Music Rights, Irving Azoff’s US Performing Rights Organization, and Facebook have entered into Global Music Rights’ first-ever user-generated content deal.
Irving Azoff commented
Our partnership with Facebook reflects that when music is valued properly, it’s easy for both sides to view it as a win-win.”
In a nutshell: this is a great update, as the agreements will allow users across Facebook, Instagram and Oculus, to use Universal Music in the videos they upload and share.
Actually, this is something that Facebook already announced back in November, but tests have been quite slow, so the feature is being gradually rolled out to some Ad Accounts (go and check yours!)
What is Budget Optimization?
The process is similar to what Facebook already does with your ads inside the same AdSet: depending on the ad’s performances, it will allocate more budget to the “winning” ads.
Basically, you can now decide to do the same with AdSets too, setting the budget for the entire campaign and specifying that you wish to optimize it:
Campaign Budget Optimization, according to Facebook, may be a good solution under these conditions:
- Set a campaign-level budget and have some flexibility in how that budget is spent across the AdSets in the campaign;
- Get the most results possible from your campaign;
- Simplify campaign set up and save time by reducing the number of budgets you have to manage manually.
This new feature may be interesting for every publisher that focuses on local!
Facebook is testing a new area of its app called “Today In,” a mix of city-specific events, announcements and local news.
At the moment, the test is being only rolled out for some markets, and the chosen cities are New Orleans (Louisiana), Olympia (Washington), Billings (Montana), Binghamton (New York), Peoria (Illinois) and Little Rock (Arkansas).
Users in test markets will be able to access the feature through the bottom-right menu button (the three horizontal lines) in the core Facebook app.
Today In isn’t prominent enough to be designed as a News Feed replacement or anything so radical, though it could be surprisingly promising, especially if we consider how local realities are being developed inside the platform (think about the Marketplace for example).
Wrapping it up
As you could see, the list of updates for January 2018 is not long, but they are for sure some huge improvements and we’re really eager to see what’s going on next!
A quick recap:
- Facebook News Feed algorithm revolution: what changes for marketers
- New measures to fight Engagement Bait on Facebook
- Facebook temporarily removes reach estimates for certain types of Custom Audiences
- Building Community Together With Music
- Facebook is rolling out Campaign Budget Optimization
- Facebook is testing a city-specific section of its app
Did you already notice some change in your News Feed and your social campaigns? Let us know in the comments!