Facebook today announced the winners of its Facebook Studio Awards for creative work done by agencies and brands on Facebook. Oreo won the blue award for its Daily Twist campaign by 360i and Draftfbc.
Other winners included Graubunden Tourism, TNT, Allstate, Nike, AT&T, Ford, Universal Studios, Grey Poupon and more.
Oreo and a number of other brands won for campaigns that focused on using page posts rather than applications. Brands and agencies seem to be recognizing that Facebook users spend their time in the News Feed, not in page tabs, and that consistent, high-quality page posts can be more effective than costly single-use apps. The introduction of Timeline and users’ shift to mobile, where page tab apps don’t work, seems to have pushed companies in this direction.
“Last year, brands tried to push the technical limits of Facebook, and digital platforms overall,” said Mark D’Arcy, Facebook’s Head of Global Creative Solutions, in a blog post. “Now, in just one year’s time, we were pleased with the renewed focus on the craft of great storytelling through publishing.”
Facebook today released a new mobile layout for business and fan pages, which gives users more actionable information up top but pushes unpinned page posts further down the screen.
The redesign better optimizes pages for the mobile use case, for instance, looking up a store’s location or hours, viewing a restaurant’s photos or seeing reviews and friend recommendations. The layout, with a top row of buttons and a prominent map and recommendations module, is similar to the design Facebook had been using for its local search product Nearby. The image below shows the new look for a brand page with multiple locations, an individual location page and the admin view of a page.
[Update 4/24/13: We've learned that the addition of "watched" and "want to watch" buttons on Page Like Sponsored Stories, as seen in the image to the right, was a temporary bug and this ad type will not have these buttons going forward. Facebook says advertisers were not charged for these clicks. We've removed parts of this report to reflect our new information.]
With the launch of the new Timeline sections, Facebook users have new options to engage with paid and organic stories about movies, TV shows, books and music in more authentic and structured ways, including being able to indicate that they “want to watch” a film.
However, there are still limits to which actions advertisers can pay to promote and the data they receive about these new engagement types.
Facebook has brought its Promoted Posts feature for pages to its mobile apps for iOS and Android, as well as m.facebook.com. At the same time, the company has begun testing different targeting options for page owners using the desktop version, in some ways limiting the control people have over their ads.
Previously, Promoted Posts could be created through the Pages Manager mobile app, but not from the main application or mobile site. Now, however a user accesses their page, they’ll have a way to easily increase the reach of their posts.
On desktop, some page owners are finding that Facebook has changed who they can target Promoted Posts to. Earlier this month some page owners lost the ability to promote their posts only to current fans. The post has to reach both fans and friends of fans. Some page owners might be frustrated by this since they may want to ensure their message is only being seen by the most relevant audience. However, these page owners can still use the main self-serve ads tool to create more targeted ads to fans only if they want.
Facebook today announced a deal with Rovi Corporation to use Rovi Video, a database of information about movies, TV shows and celebrities that can be used to improve search and discovery across its platform.
Rovi’s data helps power experiences like on-screen TV guides, iTunes, Flixter, BestBuy.com and many others. Facebook has been building out its “entity graph,” which are all the people, places and things that are represented with pages. Users primarily connect to these objects by Liking them, but now Facebook is making a push for users to do so through actions like “watch/want to watch,” “read/want to read” or “listen/want to listen.” Improving the metadata associated with these objects could give Facebook new opportunities when it comes to search, News Feed relevance, recommendations and offering new features for developers
Before the Rovi deal, Facebook used Wikipedia and Freebase to populate information about movies, TV shows and other entities, for example for the module on the “Star Wars: Return of the Jedi” page below. However, those sources are community-curated and not necessarily as reliable as what Rovi provides for many of the largest companies in the world.
Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg told us last year that serving small business is “just as important” as helping large advertisers achieve their goals. Since then we’ve seen the company make a number of changes to simplify Facebook marketing and advertising tools and conduct more outreach to help small and medium-sized businesses find value in the platform.
Today Dan Levy, Director of Small Business at Facebook, shared new stats about growth in the SMB market. There are now more than 2 billion connections between people and local businesses in the U.S. There are an average of 645 million views of these pages and 13 million comments on them each week. Facebook says about 70 percent of all monthly active users in the U.S. and Canada are connected to a local business on the social network.
Facebook is testing a homepage module that recommends a recent engaging post for page owners to promote and reach more people with.
Reader Matteo Gamba says he saw the “Get More For Your Budget” prompt, shown right, next to his News Feed today beneath a summary of his current ad campaign. It identified a well-performing post and linked to a page where he could buy additional reach through a Promoted Post.
Specifically, Facebook noted that his post was getting 85 percent more engagement than other recent posts on the page. This is something that many Preferred Marketing Developers are building into their platforms to provide marketers with data they can act on and recommendations on how to allot their ad dollars.
When companies have an engaging post, best practices suggest that they capitalize on this by applying some paid media to increase its distribution. Some might initially think the opposite: that they should pay to promote their posts that aren’t doing so well. However, Facebook and third-party ad providers say to focus on what’s already working and amplify it. The money spent on promotion will go further if the post is already naturally engaging and leading users to interact with it or share it with friends.
For now this module seems like a small test to increase Promoted Post sales, but if Facebook expands this into an actual product as part of an update to Insights, there could be less incentive for marketers to use some of the software that third-parties are developing to make these sorts of observations and suggestions.
Two of Facebook’s own fan pages continue to top the list of most popular pages on Facebook in April 2013, followed by mostly entertainment pages.
Bob Marley has fallen out of the Top 25 and Will Smith entered at No. 24 after seeing an acceleration in growth at the start of this month. The rest of the list is mostly the same but with a few place swaps.
The No. 1 through No. 7 pages in the PageData Top 25 are the same as the ones in January 2013 when we last covered the most popular entities on the platform. We compile this list quarterly using our PageData tracking tool.
|| Daily Growth
|| Weekly Growth
|| Facebook for Every Phone
|| Texas HoldEm Poker
|| The Simpsons
|| Harry Potter
|| Michael Jackson
|| Lady Gaga
|| Cristiano Ronaldo
|| Justin Bieber
|| Katy Perry
|| Family Guy
|| Linkin Park
|| South Park
|| Leo Messi
|| Lil Wayne
|| Will Smith
Facebook is testing new language to encourage page owners to buy Promoted Posts. Instead of “promote,” some users are seeing a “boost post” or “advertise post” button on their page content.
This seems to be purely a language change. No functionality is different. Facebook could be testing other versions of the button, but so far we’ve only seen “boost,” “advertise” and “promote.” [Update: Readers tell us they've also seen "Get more reach."]
Promoted Posts are page posts that get additional paid reach in News Feed among fans and friends of fans as a result of using a button on the page. Part of their appeal is that they don’t require page owners to create campaigns through the more complex ads create tool or Power Editor. With Promoted Posts, page owners pay a flat rate to reach a given number of users. For Sponsored Stories, Page Post Ads and other Facebook ad types, advertisers pay per impression or per click.
Facebook has added API support for its new commenting system that allows users and pages to reply to specific comments on a post.
The social network last week made the new comments — with threaded conversations and a ranking algorithm meant to put the most relevant and high quality comments first — an option for all pages and users with more than 10,000 fans or followers. Now it has updated the Graph API to allow developers to incorporate comment replies.
This is a necessary addition for Preferred Marketing Developers or anyone building page management tools, and it’s somewhat surprising Facebook didn’t introduce API support for the feature when it initially went live last week.
Social media customer service platform Conversocial says it has already integrated the new commenting system, less than 24 hours after the API launched. Other companies are likely to follow soon, which should help large brands that use third-party software to manage their pages and could benefit from the new threaded comments, which better organizes conversations.