There’s been a lot of buzz in the past week about Facebook throttling back publisher content in News Feeds. Facebook’s explanation of the change is that “friends and family come first.” Some will complain that the change is another attempt to move more businesses over to paid posts. But, it was revealed this spring “that Facebook has been struggling to reverse a 21% decline in “original sharing.” If your it was your job to reverse that decline, wouldn’t you consider increasing the number of posts people see in their News Feeds from friends and family in hopes of getting users to post more often?
Of course, continuing to move content publishers from the News Feed free-ride to paid positions has to be a priority for Facebook – it IS a business first and foremost. At NuVoodoo, part of our business is getting clients the best possible placement within Facebook and its eco-system (which can now include Instagram and partner mobile apps that comprise the Facebook Audience Network). We use the best-in-the-world targeting capabilities of Facebook to pay to reach only your station’s best prospects and to combine that with our first-party proprietary research data to increase the likelihood that we reach the prospects you care about most: ratings participants.
Facebook says their “community depends on authentic communication.” So, their algorithms give greater exposure to posts that resonate most with users. And, while paying for exposure on Facebook overcomes this barrier, we know that the paid posts Facebook users find more relevant get better exposure – meaning more impressions for fewer dollars. Conversely, ads that Facebook users don’t like pay higher rates for their exposure (Wouldn’t it be great if your station could charge more for bad spots?). NuVoodoo places millions of dollars of advertising on Facebook, so we have extensive knowledge on best practices to increase the relevance of station paid posts.
With Faceboook relevance scores of 3 and 4 (on their 10-point scale), our client’s posts were already performing above the norm for radio station videos.
But, our client seized the moment when Prince passed away and switched their videos to creative, topically-relevant, on-strategy content. Their Faceboook relevance scores shot up to 9 and their views exploded, even though their budget was the same every week.
While topically-relevant, on-strategy opportunities don’t necessarily present themselves every day, following NuVoodoo’s playbook of best practices helps lift engagement, to get the biggest bang for a station’s marketing budget – in pursuit of increased exposure with likely ratings participants within their target.
“Our success is built on getting people the stories that matter to them most,” according to Facebook. They work to determine which posts their users will find most interesting throughout each day. Music radio does the same, trying to determine which songs most listeners want to hear minute-to-minute through the day. In the manner that Facebook observes that the stories users would choose as most important to them should be the ones served in their News Feeds, the top-testing songs for your station should be the ones getting the most exposure each day.
Facebook continues to iterate, soliciting feedback, looking for ways to improve – just as savvy music programmers audit music logs against their research to ensure that the station’s music really does reflect audience preferences. It’s far too easy for Selector rules to punish exposure of a title or hot artist, ending up with a top-testing song getting only middling exposure. Ultimately, it’s about selecting the best-possible content throughout the day for users – whether it’s Facebook or radio.