This week, we're showing you how your (and your customers') updated Facebook News Feed will work, a look at Foursquare's quest for profitability, Instagram's killer video feature, and SMBs embracing mobile. Let's jump in.
How Facebook's (New) News Feed Works
As we reported last week, Facebook held a press event on Tuesday where they revealed some insights about how the News Feed (and more importantly, its filter system) works. Here are a few key takeaways:
- The average Facebook user has about 1,500 posts filtered through their news feed, but they only see 20% of them.
- Each post is scored for each user, and scores are based on the relationship you have with the user who posted it, the number of comments, the number of shares, and the number of likes that the story has accumulated.
- Previously, new posts jumped to the top of the feed. Now, old posts whose scores are higher will be ranked (and placed) above newer posts.
- This new ranking system has led to a 13% increase in stories read, and a 5% increase in interactions (Likes, shares, comments).
Instagram Video Adds a Killer Feature
We've written about Instagram before, and since we wrote about it, the service has only grown as a tool for brands to connect and engage with fans and promote brand messaging. When Instagram launched video capability, many saw it as a response to the growing popularity of Vine, a video-only social app where users share 6-second videos with their network of friends. Instagram just upped the ante, by allowing users to post videos from their library, whereas Vines must be recorded and edited in-app. The subtle difference is that brands can now upload videos edited outside of the app, allowing them to put more production value into them. This could mean that brands could effectively create short commercials as a means of engaging on Instagram. We look forward to see how brands will utliize this new feature and see who comes out on top.
Dennis Crowley's Quest to Get It Right
FastCompany's Austin Carr takes a fascinating look at Foursquare CEO Dennis Crowley and his efforts to make Foursquare profitable, which appears to merely be a means to keep attacking the problem he set out to solve a decade ago, and not an end. The thing is, Crowley isn't really a profit-driven entrepreneur. While this article reads more like a profile on Crowley than a exploration of Foursquare's model and future, it reveals part of the challenge for smart, mission-driven entrepreneurs, and his mission is to help people make sense of their surroundings. The challenge in today's startup culture is that a good idea can accumulate millions in funding, but if it can't make money to pay back those millions, its future is not guaranteed. This piece is an interesting look into the mind and history of Crowley and Foursquare's challenges - past, present, and future.
Report: Mobile Being Embraced by SMBs
A new report from research firm BIA/Kelsey shows that small/medium businesses (SMBs) are increasingly embracing the growing market of mobile - both in mobile payment services like Square, PayPal Here and mobile POS systems, as well as in mobile marketing, turning to Facebook, Twitter, and Foursquare with their oft-limited marketing budgets.
As businesses continue to adopt mobile services, we are excited to see how customers and brands will engage with one another in person and on mobile at the point of sale.
That's it for this week, but tune in next week for another roundup of what's catching our attention in the digital marketing world. Alternatively, sign up below to get these roundups delivered directly to your inbox every week!