In social media this week, Facebook introduces audience optimization and changes its news feed algorithm, Instagram gives advertisers longer video and Periscope teams up with Go Pro.
Facebook Audience Optimization
Audience Optimization is a new tool from Facebook designed to help with your organic targeting. Available in all English speaking countries the new tool allows you to focus on 3 aspects.
First you can let Facebook know who your preferred audience are through interest tags which Facebook will use to prioritise your post. Secondly you can say who you don’t want to post to through audience restrictions – if you know your post isn’t going to appeal to a certain age group or gender you can tell Facebook not to show it to them.
Thirdly the new tool also provides additional insights based on your interest tags (additional information is currently only available once your post has reached 100 people). The tool has to be switched on through the options in Settings and the audience optimization option will appear when you post.
From Facebook’s point of view audience optimization is about increasing your engagement rather than your reach but in reality an increase in engagement will also inevitably lead to an increase in reach.
Facebook News Feed Changes
Based on the results from their Feed Quality Panel, Facebook have made some changes to their algorithm. Their recent findings are that the News Feed experience is improved for users when they see stories that they are not just likely to read and rate highly if asked, but that they are also likely to engage with through likes, comments, clicks or shares. The News Feed update will combine both of these signals which should in theory increase the relevancy of the posts that someone sees and the chances of them engaging with it.
From a content creation point of view it makes it even more important that your content is relevant to your existing and potential audience if you want it to be seen and Facebook reiterated this in their announcement. Facebook have said that some Pages will see a decline and others will see an increase in referral traffic so it will be interesting to see in the coming weeks both who and the type of content it impacts.
Instagram announced that they are now running 60 second video advertisements. Previously video ads were only 30 seconds, (regular users get only a mere 15 seconds) but Instagram have now doubled the length.
Starting big with T Mobile and Warner Brothers in the US (with perfect timing for the Super Bowl spot this weekend), Guinness is the first in the UK to use the new format for its “Made of More” campaign. It isn’t available to everyone yet, but the extended ads are expected to be rolled out more widely in the US in the coming weeks. Enticing Instagram users to stay long enough to watch a full 60 seconds will be a challenge so keep watching for some interesting creations.
Periscope links up with GoPro
Periscope have taken their live broadcasting a step further and have linked up with GoPro. Periscope users can now broadcast live directly from their GoPro HERO4 with a couple of taps. With the announcement a couple of weeks ago that Periscope Live broadcasts would now autoplay in Twitter feeds, without the need for a Periscope account, GoPro users can now stream live on Twitter and expand their reach to a potentially new Twitter fan base.