Previously, Facebook relied on the News Feed algorithm; Edge Rank to determine who got to see what. However, not many marketers never mind businesses or brands had even heard of Edgerank – and its principles – and the consensus was that it wasn’t transparent and potentially a little too complex.
Now, Facebook hopes to eliminate some of the mystery behind our Newsfeed’s by using new signals to organise feeds. These signals include; who people interact with, what they like, and the kinds of stories they interact with most.
This is all part of Facebook’s goal to “make the best personalised newspaper for our users,” highlighting the hottest stories it assumes users will find most interesting, so that users are more likely to engage with them!
The new feature determines the posts you see when you next visit, and the relevant posts that you missed the last time you checked Facebook.
So what is Story Bumping?
Facebook said that every time someone visits their News Feed there are on average 1,500 potential stories for them to see. And with more than 700 million people using Facebook’s News Feed daily, you’re hardly likely to have the time to see every story.
With so many stories, there is a good chance people would miss out on something they wanted to see – therefore Facebook are using their algorithm to determine the importance of each post (such as a large number of comments and likes), and this is called Story Bumping!
Instead of seeing the latest photos, links and status updates, you’ll see a mix of the latest posts as well as older ones, that you may have missed the last time you checked Facebook.
“Now organic stories that people did not scroll down far enough to see can reappear near the top of News Feed if the stories are still getting lots of likes and comments.”
Facebook looks at what stories have been published since someone last looked at the News Feed and all of the relevant stories that the person hasn’t seen. So now, when you log in, you’ll see all kinds of stories that are important to you!
This works using the News Feed algorithm that responds to signals from you! Which depends on:
- How often you interact with the friend, Page, or public figure (like an actor or journalist) who posted.
- The number of likes shares and comments a post receives from the world at large and from your friends in particular.
- How much you have interacted with this type of post in the past.
(In fact, this is pretty much the same way in which Edgerank has always filtered and organised information – but the fact that highly engaged stories still stick around regardless of how old they are, is the key difference).
How will it benefit you?
This change has already resulted in a “5% increase in the number of likes, comments and shares on the stories people saw from friends and an 8% of those they saw from Pages.”
Additionally, potentially visible stories read rate has increased from 57% to 70%, meaning that people are now seeing more content.
So, what does this mean for brands?
Before, posts got the bulk of their engagement in the first few minutes of being posted. Now, those successful posts have a better chance of staying in more people’s news feeds. The “bumping” feature bumps those posts to the top (despite being older) therefore raising engagement rates.
Good content will always reign – so be sure to produce good content, share it through your relevant channels and hope that people will engage.
So what do you need to know as a marketer?
- Every post counts
With the new Story Bumping feature (which resurfaces older posts that you may have “missed” to the top of the News Feed), you have more opportunities for your content to be resurfaced to your Fans (that is if it’s good content – with high levels of engagement).
- Engagement is key
Facebook cares more about people actually interacting with your Facebook content; this gives businesses even with a small following an advantage. So post good relevant and purposeful content, focus on engaging people with your posts, and you should appear in their News Feeds more often.
To recap, the general rule for all content creators is to not be boring – the more people interact with your content, a higher volume of people will see it! Think about your audience and what matters to them. Also – be human!
With all of these changes, be sure to test what works with your Company Page and your Fans – it may be a lot different from one business to another. So get testing – and with the right data, you’ll start increasing your Facebook engagement and leads in no time!
Kat West is Social Media Executive at Carvill Creative – the online visibility experts. A digital marketing and design agency based in Maidenhead, Berkshire.