Marketers are users and readers too, and sometimes we let our own personal user experiences shield us from spotting potential marketing blindspots. Take the Facebook Messenger app roll out last year, when users were forced to download the standalone app if they wanted to continue sending text-based messages through the social network. Users were outraged, but very quickly it became the top fifth app, with a reach of 43.1 percent.
Done for the benefit of users, so that each app could offer a richer, more focused experience, it turns out those high numbers have affected the overall usage of Facebook's flagship app. And, with the addition of Facebook's video calling feature, introduced last week, keeping eyes on content is becoming harder and harder to maintain.
Here are some ways to keep audiences engaged with your content before and after they've jumped through to a conversation on Facebook Messenger:
Use strong images and video to stand out from the crowd in the News Feed
The days of plain-text status updates are long gone. If you want content that transacts, you want people clicking through to your content and taking actions. Photo posts receive 84% more click throughs on links than text-based posts (Kissmetrics), and with videos getting the highest organic reach in the News Feed, you'd better start thinking of your video marketing strategy.
Make sure your image posts:
Don't contain too much text (Facebook thinks this looks spammy, which is why images that have more than 20% text break it's ad guidelines-good rule of thumb in general)
Connect to your content (status, headline, or description), narrating a story
Make sure your video posts:
Are uploaded directly to Facebook, ensuring a seamless user experience
Lead with imagery, since videos auto-play silently in Feed
Post exclusive video content to your Page to reward audiences
Include the Facebook custom call to action invite people to visit a destination of your choice after viewing your video
Make sure your blog content is optimized for mobile
When users click to read your content, they're taken to a new window within the Facebook app. Based on the images below, which user experience would invite someone to read the content, or potentially save the link to look at later?
Facebook isn't the only place you need to consider when thinking mobile, especially since Google recently released a significant new ranking algorithm boosting mobile-friendly pages in Google's mobile search results. If you have questions about making your website mobile friendly, check out the Google Developers page as a great resource for getting started.
At the end of the day, the goal is to either keep audiences on your content, or to get them back. There will always be updates in technology creating hurdles for marketers, and in this specific case, its in that crucial moment where a user swipes or clicks away, maybe never to return.
I hope you'll follow the guidelines above, giving your content the best possible opportunity to survive the constant distractions of a typical Facebook user. Have any additional suggestions? Drop a comment below.