Facebook has undoubtedly been busy over the past few weeks. With several announcements and feature roll outs and updates, it can be a struggle to keep up with the changes. Here’s a list of the updates and how marketers can potentially take advantage of them.
1) #Hashtags Roll Out
Taking a page from Twitter’s book, Facebook rolled out hashtag capability. Look for hashtags to facilitate more cross channel integration, real time conversations and expand Graph Search functionality. Don’t be the annoying marketer that abuses hashtags. Think of hashtags as your keywords, being strategic and specific with their use.
2) Photo Comments
Ever wanted to reply to a Facebook comment with a photo? You’ll notice a new camera icon in the comments field that allows you to do just that. Take advantage of this additional way to showcase visuals. Personally, I’m looking forward to full conversations that take place via memes.
3) Plans to cut half of ad options
Facebook announced they will be eliminating over half of its 27 ad options over the next six months. The hope is to simplify the process for both advertisers and consumers and focus on ad types that produce optimal results. The controversial Sponsored Stories, where ads were generated in the News Feed based on a friend’s interaction with the brand without consent, will no longer be offered.
4) Redesign of Pages Insights
With Facebook’s first update to its analytics tool since October 2011, Insights now gives marketers clearer, more actionable data. The goal of the update is to give page owners a better idea of what is and isn’t working on their Pages so can they can adapt appropriately. There will now be a single scorecard for individual post performance combining all interactions and stats surrounding the post. The Insights update began rolling out on June 19, though no date was specified for all Pages to have access.
5) Video comes to Instagram
In a special press event on June 20, Mark Zuckerberg announced that video will be arriving on Instagram. Videos can range from 3 to 15 seconds and will operate similar to Vine though the videos will not loop. Of course Instagram Video wouldn’t be complete without filters. Users will a choice of 13 filters to apply to their videos. You’ll also be able to select a thumbnail that will be the cover image of the video while it’s not playing.
6) Ability for Page Admins to Sort Comments
After unveiling the Reply function for Page Admins, the next item on the wish list was the ability to sort comments. Page Admins can now sort by “Top Comments” or view in chronological order. For Pages with high volume content, this added functionality will prove invaluable to community managers.
Any other changes minor or major that you’ve noticed? Feel free to alert us on Twitter at @anvilmedia.