Facebook Director of Design Julie Zhuo announced several updates to its News Feed to provide: “… a richer, simpler, more beautiful News Feed – on both desktop web and mobile. Focused on the things you care about. What your friends are saying. What your network is sharing.”
The new News Feed has not been released to all Facebook users, but users are able to sign up to be put on a waiting list to receive the new News Feed. Facebook does not want to release the updates to all users in order to receive feedback if changes need to be made.
Three major changes of the new News Feed:
1. More emphasis on image content
Photos will now take up roughly 50% of the News Feed content. Everything about the News Feed is more visual, including ads run by brands. Videos are also going to be more prevalent. Videos will be displayed in the News Feed the same way as the new photo posts.
2. More control and organization
There is now a menu that enables users to select different feeds with different content types. Users can now choose a feed that just displays photos, all friends’ posts, close friends’ posts, or brands’ posts, as well as a feed for music and games. The founder of Facebook, Mark Zuckerburg, referred to the new News Feed as the “best personalized newspaper in the world.”
3. Consistent desktop and mobile experience
The look and feel of the News Feed will be compatible among desktops, mobile devices, and tablets. Improvements are also being made to mobile chat.
Three ways to adjust to the new News Feed:
1. Post more visual content
Since the News Feed is putting such an emphasis on visuals, text-based posts will receive less traffic than posts with images. Cover photos are now more important than ever. When a user likes a brand’s page, the brand’s profile picture and cover photo is displayed on the News Feed. Marketers must decide how they want company products portrayed, what the company values, and what message the company wants to send to their Facebook friends.
2. Focus on key influencers
Since the News Feed is being broken down into categories of feeds, the organic reach for brands is going to decrease. Brands’ must produce content that their most engaged users are likely to share in order to reach a greater audience. The relevance of the content is more important now than ever. Posts should be about quality and reaching the target audience rather than the quantity of posts made.
3. Increase “likes” on brand page
When a user likes a brand page, the cover photo and brand philosophy is displayed on the News Feed. This allows users to have a visual perception about what the brand does and what the brand stands for. When users see that their friends “like” a brand page, that user is more likely to “like” the page as well.
Facebook executives stated that there is no structured timeline for the complete release of the new News Feed since Facebook wants to receive user feedback; however, the new News Feed is expected to be released to all users within the year.
To signup to be on the waiting list for the new News Feed go to www.facebook.com/newsfeed