Thumbs Down? Facebook Testing Star Ratings For Pages

Stars-Facebook Turns out that the Facebook 'Like' that we've grown to love just might not be descriptive enough. The like is binary data that indicates whether or not a user is a fan, or not, but not much else. TechCrunch spotted the usage of star ratings (5 possible) on desktop versions for some pages. This isn't the first time Facebook has used stars as a data point. Users have been rating places with 5 stars when providing a recommendation: This implementation makes complete sense for places pages as Facebook could make a run at Yelp, Foursquare and Google+ Local in the local review market. [...]

Facebook: 20 Million Small Businesses Have Pages, Small Fraction Are Advertisers

facebook-pages-open-featured Facebook has reached another milestone: 20 million small businesses are using Facebook Pages. But only a small fraction of those are spending money on any of Facebook's ad products. That's the word from Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, who shared the data during today's Q3 earnings call. The company's report focused, as it is usually does, on mobile and user growth, but small business growth is no less important and -- from a business perspective -- perhaps more important. Sandberg also revealed that Facebook had about one million advertisers during Q3. "It's really hard to get small bus [...]

Facebook Begins Testing New “Stories To Share” Feature For Media Sites & Publishers

share-featured Facebook announced a new "Stories to Share" feature today, a tool that allows media sites to post suggested content on their Facebook page directly from the Insights Dashboard on the admin panel. According to Facebook: Stories to share makes it even easier for media sites to find the most engaging content they might want to post on Facebook. For instance, TIME can see suggestions of stories they have published to but they have not yet shared to their Facebook fans. Facebook says the "Stories to Share" feature is being tested by media sites and publishers, and not currently availa [...]

Doug, Ford’s Hilarious Spokespuppet, Is Missing From YouTube

dougfacebook Ford created my favorite YouTube campaign of all time. It took place in 2011 and starred an orange, irreverent puppet named Doug and his reluctant co-worker, John. The two appeared in several videos about the Ford Focus. The campaign was brilliant and had all the elements you want in a video campaign. Each video was unique, branded, provided value propositions, and made the viewer smile. Ford released a new video each week, and I was always excited to see the new adventures of Doug the spokespuppet. Before the campaign officially launched, a few random YouTube users posted videos of a pu [...]

Study: Hashtags On Facebook Don’t Help To Garner More Exposure

facebook-hashtags-featured Early this summer, Facebook released hashtag support for users and brands that wanted to be "part of a larger discussion." According to Edgerank Checker, a Facebook optimization company, hashtags not only fail to be part of the larger conversation, but that they also may hinder engagement and reach, #uhoh. Over 500 pages were tracked with over 35,000 posts during this study and the results were staggering.  Overall the median viral reach and the median organic reach of posts were lower if they contained a hashtag. Viral reach dropped from 1.30% to .80% when a hashtag was present, engagemen [...]

Facebook Says Run Your Promotions From Your Page, No Contest App Required

facebook-pages-logo In an about-face, Facebook announced it is doing away with the requirement that contest and promotions be run through apps. Up to now, page administrators were required to run all promotions through an app. However, "illegal" contests run from page timelines were fairly rampant. Starting today, page administrators can opt to run a promotion from their page, from an app, or by using both. The following practices, once banned per Facebook's Page Terms, are now permitted: Collect entries by having users post on the Page or comment/like a Page post Collect entries by having users m [...]

EdgeRank Is Dead: Facebook’s News Feed Algorithm Now Has Close To 100K Weight Factors

facebook-newsfeed-featured The next time you tell a client how Facebook selects and ranks the content that shows up in the News Feed, you'll need to do it without using the word EdgeRank. EdgeRank, Facebook's original News Feed ranking system, is dead. Facebook hasn't used the word internally for about two-and-a-half years. That's when the company began employing a more complex ranking algorithm based on machine learning. The current News Feed algorithm doesn't have a catchy name, but it's clear from talking to the company's engineers that EdgeRank is a thing of the past. During a phone call this week, Lars Bac [...]

Facebook Updates News Feed Algorithm With New “Story Bumping” & “Last Actor” Factors

facebook-newsfeed-featured Facebook is changing the way it ranks organic posts that are eligible to show up in its users' News Feeds. The company announced two new factors -- "Story Bumping" and "Last Actor" -- during a media session today, and also promised more transparency in the future about how and why certain posts show for certain users. The changes are emblematic of Facebook's ongoing challenge to make the News Feed a "personalized newspaper" for each user. Facebook's user base continues to grow, those users are making more connections, more brands are creating Facebook Pages and pushing content, etc. -- m [...]

Facebook Has Almost 18 Million Business Pages, Adding 1M Per Month

facebook-pages-open-featured There are now nearly 18 million business pages on Facebook -- a stat shared during today's earnings call by Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg. The 18 million figure counts as of the end of Q2 -- June 30th. It represents a growth rate of about a million new pages each month over the past three month. Let's turn back the clock a bit: Early March 2013: Facebook said there were 15 million pages. July 2012: In its Q2 2012 earnings call, Facebook said there were 11 million business pages. In other words, over the past year, Facebook has added about 7 million Pages. But about three million [...]

Study: Brands Using Hashtags In Facebook Posts Show No Signs Of Higher Engagement Levels

facebook-hashtags-featured Analytics firm Simply Measured conducted a study of the Top 100 Interbrands on Facebook and discovered that even though the usage of Facebook hashtags by brands has increased nearly 20 percent between June 12, when hashtags went live on Facebook, through the end of June, hashtags are not resulting in any additional engagement. The study analyzed the Interbrand Top 100 Brands on Facebook between May 1 and June 30, 2013 to see how brands are leveraging the social media network, and to identify which brands and industries are experiencing the most success on Facebook. According to the findi [...]

“Get Notifications” Prompt After Liking A Facebook Page Test Has Ended

facebook Yesterday, there was a bit of a hullabaloo around the fact that a user was shown a "Get Notifications" prompt after a page was liked. The text stated "Don't miss updates from PageName" and had a button that allows users to get all notifications. While it appeared that the prompt may be a new feature that was being pushed live, we confirmed with Facebook that it was just a test, a test that has now ended. A Facebook spokesperson gave us the following statement. "Confirming it was a test to help people stay up to date with Pages they're interested in; though we're no longer testing it. [...]

Invasion Of The Community Managers

photos-with-kerry-henderson On many evenings, walking down the street in uptown Kingston, NY, you'll feel the sidewalk vibrating to the beats of music emerging from the BSP Lounge, a popular venue for independent contemporary music. If you happen to stop in on an evening when the audience turnout is thinner than hoped, you'll find BSP's marketing chief, Mike Amari, sitting at the bar with his laptop, personally giving people "love taps" on Facebook. "I like having a post that's kind of saying, 'doors are open now,'" Amari explains, "especially for people who may already be out and are scrolling through their news feed [...]

Social Media Use Growing Among Fortune 500 List With 77% Tweeting & 70% On Facebook

social-media-colors-featured An annual report from University of Massachusetts Dartmouth evaluating the social media activity of Fortune Magazine's Fortune 500 list found that 34 percent of this year's Fortune 500 companies are now actively blogging, 77 percent maintain active Twitter accounts, 70 percent have Facebook pages and 69 percent have YouTube accounts. This year marks the largest increase in the number of Fortune 500 companies currently blogging since 2008. According to previous reports, only 16 percent of Fortune 500 companies were blogging five years ago. Now, 171 companies on the Fortune 500 list publish a [...]

Picture This: Facebook Pages Get The Ability To Comment With Photos

facebook Facebook users have had the ability to comment with photos for just about one month now. Now Pages will have the same ability to comment with imagery. Facebook Pages will now see a camera icon to the right when entering a comment. The camera icon will prompt that the user uploads an image file from their machine. Once an image is selected, the Page admin can preview the text/image combo before they push the post live. Photo comments could open the doors for engagement for many brands, allowing them to respond to questions with products, troubleshoot problems or to  simply have f [...]

Handcuffed No More: Facebook Page Admins Now Able To Upload Images For Link Posts

Upload-Image-Button It's a new chapter for Facebook Page Administrators. Gone are the days of furiously tweaking image sizes, open graph tags and image ratios. Today, Facebook Page Admins will have the ability to upload their own image for any link posts. Article images have been a troubling issue for many brands as an improper image would many times pull alongside the shared link. All Page Admins will now see an "Upload Image" link underneath the images that are pulled along with the article. The link will prompt the user to upload a file from their computer to replace the auto-generated photos. For thos [...]

Toss All The Text You’d Like On Facebook Covers, The 20% Rule Has Been Lifted

facebook A longstanding anti-text-heavy term has been lifted from the Facebook Page terms. Dubbed the 20% rule, Pages were forbidden from using more than 20% text across their Facebook Page covers. This was one of the only changes that were maintained in the large Page cover shifts that occurred this March. New Page Terms of Service were launched on July 1st, and the 20% rule was absent from the list of regulations. Brands can now feel free to stop guessing at what percentage of text (company names, URLs, contests, etc) made up text and can run free with their font sizes. The rule made sense for [...]

Facebook Changes Ad Policy, Promises To Keep Ads Off Controversial Pages & Groups

facebook-pages-featured Starting Monday, Facebook will use a new review process to decide when it's okay to show ads on Pages and Groups -- a process that will expand the company's list of Pages and Groups that are restricted from showing ads because of the content they offer. The new policy comes in response to recent complaints from advertisers whose ads were showing up on controversial Pages and Groups, as well as additional complaints about Facebook's overall content policy. In today's announcement, Facebook says it'll remove ads from the expanded list of restricted Pages and Groups by the end of next week. [...]

Facebook Ads Manager Reports Update Gives Advertisers More Control

Facebook is following up on its recent efforts to streamline its ad products and revamp Page Insights with an update to Ads Manager Reports designed to make it "easier to use and more actionable." The biggest change to Ads Manager Reports is the ability to select the ad metrics you want to include in a report, rather than being tied to the specific set of Report Type templates that exist now. In the new interface, there is much more flexibility to view and break out the data how you want it--in one report.   The Cost per Action area in the Metrics menu (shown in the screensh [...]

Why Do Consumers Become Facebook Fans? Study Says It Depends On The Brand

facebook-like-logos Consumers may be a bit more sophisticated than the conventional wisdom would lead us to believe. According to a new study from Syncapse, there's not a single dominant reason that consumers choose to become a brand's Facebook fan. Instead, there are numerous different reasons it happens -- and, what's more, the biggest "fan-drivers" depend on what brand you're talking about. This is something that brands and marketers have been trying to sort out for several years. When I wrote about it in 2010 on Small Business Search Marketing, two separate studies both suggested that coupons and deals [...]

See What’s Been Censored From Facebook Pages With “Hidden Post Explorer” Tool

Feature-Image Don't like something posted to your Facebook wall? Feel free to hide it. However, it should be known that the censorship of the post is not inherently private. A new tool from ZoomSphere is now shining a light on what was previously hidden. The tool, Hidden Posts Explorer, allows users to search for a specific Facebook page and then view all of the comments that have  been "hidden"  by the manager. Here's a look at what we've hidden here on Marketing Land as an example: So why is this important? Users can see now what you are specifically censoring off your page. This type of data [...]

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