Like it or loathe it, Facebook is the big beast in the social media jungle. With 900 million users across the globe, and updates to its services coming thick and fast, it is the social network to which we often find ourselves paying most mind.
So here are the five Facebook topics that I have learned more about this week, I hope you find them useful.
1. Facts and figures
According to The NonProfit Facebook Guy, FB is on track to chalk up an astounding 1 billion users by next year. Just think of it: a billion, that’s 1000 million people, or about a ninth of the entire world’s population.
For a more detailed breakdown of those figures across different countries, check out the Social Bakers site. (Apparently there are 60 FB users in the Vatican City… who knew?).
While the user numbers are going up, it’s interesting to note that the number of video views on FB appear to be going down. All Facebook gives more details, including comparison with other video viewing platforms.
2. Monitoring tips and tricks
Whatever you’re doing on FB, you need to make sure that you are keeping track of how well you’re doing it, so this clear and sensible explanation from All Facebook about what you should be monitoring is very welcome.
If you’ve been struggling with Insights, then All Facebook gives a breakdown of the new, live data you can collect.
3. Boosting engagement
Making sure that we are putting our efforts into our FB pages in the right way is obviously really important, and the blogosphere has been chattering lately with some more guides and things to consider.
Mashable has some good advice about targeting your updates on the days on which your followers are most active. A further excellent article from Mashable talks through what we should be posting to our pages, and the damage we may do by posting uninformative or repetitive updates. All Facebook also has a few simple suggestions for getting more likes for your page.
You’ll also want to see this infographic from All Facebook which gives some tips on using Facebook most effectively.
For those organisations wanting to really respond to your customers, service-users, colleagues or supporters on Facebook, then you should also take note of the eight pieces of advice that Mashable have put together.
4. Under the bonnet stuff
Facebook is always tweaking the way it works (or so it seems to me!) so it’s lucky for us that various explanations about how the mighty FB is working usually follow fairly swiftly.
If you’ve been toying with getting a FB ad, then you’ll be interested to learn that All Facebook reckons the reach of such adverts is 35 times greater than similar ads on Google.
For greater clarity about the best ways of using pinning or highlighting on your FB timeline, All Facebook has some excellent and detailed advice.
Speaking of pinning, the new kid on the block, Pinterest, has been such a success story that Mashable even has some advice about how to make your humble FB timeline look more like the online corkboard.
5. Facebook and social sharing
Having got your Facebook page and updated it regularly with interesting and engaging content, answered queries and generally been the life and soul of the party, you want your fans to share your stuff to bring it to an even wider audience.
All Facebook reveals that FB is thinking about introducing a ‘promote’ button for smaller pages to move content more easily into sponsored stories. (If you’re not entirely sure what sponsored stories are, or how they compare to ads, then check out The NonProfit Facebook Guy).
A variation on sharing comes from the new Facebook app for people experiencing metastatic breast cancer, or MBC. As Mashable explains, it is aimed at boosting a sense of connectedness and community, the app has been created by Genentech.
How much do people typically share from FB anyway? Well, pick your stat here as on the one hand All Facebook thinks that only a meagre 2% of posts are shared, but on the other hand All Facebook also reports that people who are using FB at the same time as doing their online shopping are nine times more likely to share some of the content they’re seeing… I wonder if this relates in any way to voluntary sector sites?
Got a FB plugin on your website that lets people log in using their Facebook password? Well, the good news is that this system may keep visitors to your sites stay longer and look at more pages… or, so All Facebook reckons.
Right, off for a cuppa and a lie down…