Facebook Reminds Marketers: Content Rules

As media marketers, or marketing managers, we rely very heavily on social media networks today.  Facebook, of course, remains one of the giants.  So, we closely watch for changes or alterations to the service, and make an effort to employ those that work well for our companies. However, watching the actions of social network companies, like Facebook, can also teach us a bit about the current marketing trends.  After all, Facebook executives want to make money, just like we do, and so they react to trends, just like we do, adjusting their products or services to the needs of their customers, just like we do.  In Facebook’s case, the ‘customer’ is not quite as straightforward, but the principle remains the same.

Facebook’s new Instant Articles is a prime example of the company taking steps to rise to the current trends and the evolving needs of its users.  Facebook has allowed advertising and promoted posts for quite some time now.   The longer a use lingers on Facebook, the greater the likelihood that he or she clicks on one of that advertisements.  Of course, when the user clicks, Facebook makes money.   However, when a user sees content of interest and follows a link to an external site, any ad he or she happens to click on will add nothing to Facebook’s revenue.

So, the company develops Instant Articles, and allows content to be embedded directly into Facebook.  Therefore, the user doesn’t have to leave Facebook’s realm, and any adding clicking remains a profit-making venture for the executives.

Now, we read Facebook’s marketing on this new service, and we see that this could prevent the long content load times on mobile devices, which makes it more likely that our niche audience actually interacts with- and shares the content.  However, that is not the only message that we should take away from this release.  Facebook’s action was a direct result of users devouring content.  So, the message hidden between the lines is that, if we hope to profit from Facebook, just as they profit from us, we must continue to create desirable content.

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