In this episode of Actionable Marketing In Minutes we discuss Facebook instant articles and how you can use them to enhance your social marketing campaign!
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On May 12, 2015, Facebook released a native way to distribute the content that publishers were already producing for their own websites called Instant Articles—and in February, 2016 Facebook opened Instant Articles to publishers of all sizes.
Instant Articles was created to solve the problem of slow load times on mobile devices. The service works for any type of article, from short daily coverage to long, to in-depth feature stories. When a publisher selects an article for Instant Articles, users browsing Facebook on the mobile app can see the entire article right in the app itself.
Instant Articles leverages the same technology used to display photos and videos quickly in the Facebook app. This results super-fast load time, but the benefits also include:
* A 30% increase in sharing over mobile web articles on average
* 20% increase in articles being read on average than non Instant Articles
* Users are 70% less likely for users to abandon the article.
Josh Roberts, Product Manager at Facebook explained more about the format in a post on the Facebook blog:
Facebook’s goal is to connect people to the stories, posts, videos or photos that matter most to them. Opening up Instant Articles will allow any publisher to tell great stories, that load quickly, to people all over the world. With Instant Articles, they can do this while retaining control over the experience, their ads and their data.
Using this service is easy – here are the 6 Steps to get started: Step 1: Join – The first thing you need to do is sign up to join the program! You can do this at instantarticles.fb.com.
Step 2: Choose your Facebook Page – after signing up you’ll be given the chance to choose the page on which you’d like to activate articles.
Step 3: Claim your URL – Once you’ve selected your Facebook Page, you’ll be asked to provide the URL you intend to use for articles. This URL will serve as the basis for the URLs of all your posts (in most cases, this will be your blog URL).
Step 4: Hook it together – Articles can be published directly from your Content Management System — there’s no need to re-create articles within Facebook. There are several great options, and you can sync your blog with Instant Articles via Facebook’s publishing tools, an RSS feed or by using an API.
Step 5: Make it your own – Customize your look by uploading your logo, and selecting the
fonts you want to use.
Step 6: Submit for review – Your final step is to submit your feed to be reviewed by Facebook to verify that all articles generated from your website are properly formatted. Facebook generally reviews all submissions within 24-48 hours.
Since Facebook changed its algorithm to favor quality content 2in 2013, it has become one of the top 10 referrers to news sites and blogs. In the Summer of 2015, traffic analytics company Parsely revealed that Facebook had overtaken Google as the number 1 referrer of traffic to news sites3. That means that your users are going to Facebook for their news multiple times a day! With Instant Articles you can be there with a quick load and branded information, right where they are looking.
In addition to driving qualified traffic to your site, when someone shares an Instant Article by email or on Twitter, they also are sharing a link right to your website and Instant Articles even allows publishers to track reader-engagement with Facebook’s content analytics tools.
We hope you’ve found this information helpful. Please connect with us on Twitter @DirectiveGroup or on LinkedIn. Let us know what you think and what you’d like to hear about next. And if you like our podcasts, please share it with in your networks using hashtag #actionablemarketing. Join us next time for more actionable marketing in minutes.