7
20
Yvette Pistorio

Facebook Updates the News Feed

By: Yvette Pistorio | March 27, 2013 | 
43

Facebook Updates the News FeedFacebook updates never seem to end.

We all cry and moan every time they make changes, but then settle into what’s new like a kid at Christmas.

Fair warning: Facebook is at it again.

This time they are messing with the news feed.

At a big media event earlier this month they launched content-specific feeds for photos, music, and more.

According to TechCrunch, the new feeds are sorted by how often you check them, so it’s easy to sort and see  your most visited feeds.

They include:

  • All friends shows only posts from your friends in reverse chronological order.
  • Music shows what friends are listening to, new album releases, and recommendations of artists you might like.
  • Just photos, including those updated straight to Facebook and photos shared from photo apps such as Instagram.
  • Games.
  • Close friends.
  • Interests or friend lists.

Some other news feed changes:

  • The size of photos and ads will be increased.
  • Check-ins to places have a larger map to show people exactly where you are.
  • Pinterest posts are more vivid.
  • Videos appear larger.
  • If multiple friends share the same posts, you’ll see their faces to the left of it.
  • Links shared will have longer blurbs to preview.

They started to roll out the changes on March 7th so when they come to a page near you, you’ll see a button to switch at the top of your page.

What Do Facebook Updates Mean for Business Pages?

  1. Larger photos and videos in news feeds keeps with the PR and marketing industry’s focus on visuals when driving audience engagement. Now that cover photos will be pulled into the news feed, it’s even more important brands have an eye-catching image that provides context around their brand and grabs the attention of Facebook users.
  2. There is more consistency between mobile and desktop experiences. Videos, interactive games, contests, and apps already occupy much of mobile users’ time and they will be more important to brands who want to stand out.
  3. Mobile and desktop consistency also makes Facebook ads more prominent so if you choose to invest money to market on Facebook, the new news feed should help you get a bigger return.
  4. Fan engagement is even more important! The” following” feed allows users who like a brand to see posts by that brand’s fans, even if those fans aren’t friends of yours.
  5. One thing I’ve enjoyed about Twitter is the ability to categorize different feeds. Facebook attempted to do this with their lists, but it never really took, for me at least. With the new Facebook update, users can separate their updates into music news, pictures from top friends, and news from brands they follow.
  6. You can finally inclue calls-to-action in your cover photo. This means you can legally (some companies were doing it illegally before) offer discounts, promote paid content, or just better track conversions.

This is a double-edged sword for brands because it makes it easy for users to tune out their content. However, it can also lead people to pay more attention to the brands they choose to follow, which, in a perfect world, will mean more engagement.

About Yvette Pistorio


Yvette Pistorio is the shared media manager for Arment Dietrich. She is a lover of pop culture, cupcakes, and HGTV, and enjoys a good laugh. There are a gazillion ways you can find her online.

43 comments
ginidietrich
ginidietrich moderator

Hope you don't mind I added #6 for you. I thought it was timely and that news came out after you submitted the post. I always love it when Facebook makes changes (though I wanted to scream when they wanted me to take a tour of Graph Search every time I logged on). I hope the mobile experience will be better, too, with these changes.

 

adammbsmith
adammbsmith

Hooray for calls to action in cover photos!I never understood why companies were allowed to include their slogans, but not call to actions - because aren't these essentially the same thing? 

PattiRoseKnight
PattiRoseKnight

The changes in Facebook since it started are amazing.  This is good to know.  

belllindsay
belllindsay

I'm so glad you write posts like this Yvette - I can NEVER keep up with all the shiny new additions and changes to FB and every other platform out there! LOL You are a veritable wealth of information, context and knowledge.

Howie Goldfarb
Howie Goldfarb

Great post @yvettepistorio I am really curious how this will pan out. On the last two Beancast podcasts the consensus was that most brand will be tuned out and that Facebook is really just going to be for Brands with paid advertising budgets. This would be good for users not so good for small businesses.

 

I also just saw a review of the new ad size and videos on AllFacebook which called it spam-like. Which they feel will hit Facebook with less time spent and a lower share price. I have always viewed Facebook as only two things. 1] A free bulletin board for customers for customer service and retention. 2] a massive banner ad network like Yahoo. Allfacebook took my second view and felt that Facebook will be less like Facebook and more like Yahoo.

 

Curious how this pans out. I am ok if facebook dies 8)

Dayngr
Dayngr

@SpinSucks My pleasure to do it! Loving all the content and I'm a subscriber. :)

yvettepistorio
yvettepistorio

 @ginidietrich I don't mind at all :) You know that already though. I think the mobile experience will be better I just wonder how it will...wait for it...affect brands. And I still probably used that word wrong.

yvettepistorio
yvettepistorio

 @adammbsmith I'm excited about calls to action too, I just hope brands are still creative with their photos.

yvettepistorio
yvettepistorio

 @HowieG Thanks Howie! I'm curious how it will pan out too. I still don't have the new news feed yet (or graph search for that matter...hmph). I hope it's the latter, because that would make my job a little bit easier, but we'll see.

 

I'm semi OK if Facebook dies. Some people I know (I won't give out any names) only communicate with me via FB...guess they haven't heard of a phone yet.

SpinSucks
SpinSucks

@NancyCawleyJean Haha!! My pleasure...with Facebook, you have to embrace change or else you'll just be pissed all the time ;)

PattiRoseKnight
PattiRoseKnight

 @yvettepistorio You are getting me spoiled....when I hear about changes coming to Facebook I just wait for your summary :)  Good information and not too long...my favorite two things in a blog :)

KenMueller
KenMueller

 @yvettepistorio  @HowieG I wouldn't be me if I didn't take the contrarian viewpoint on this. I see this as better for small businesses that know what they are doing, on the organic level with no ads. And it really favors the push aspect of mobile which doesn't get included in the "time spent" numbers. Remember, Facebook exists beyond the four walls of Facebook, which is something they do better than anyone else.  And I think this is good for users in that way.

Latest blog post: The Power of One

SpinSucks
SpinSucks

@NancyCawleyJean I know, I haven't even started to look into that. Maybe it'll be a future post??? Stay tuned :)

howiegoldfarb
howiegoldfarb

@eveypistorio every so often I find someone like you that I talk with often enough and learn I am wasn't following you apologies.