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ü Oughta Know – Facebook changes and changes; Do you have their attention?

Neon change sign

ü Oughta Know is a combination of digital crib notes and marketers’ cheat sheet, bringing you important – and occasionally weird — stories and trends from digital marketing news. Each week our hope is to help keep your knowledge sharp while providing a delightful craving of classic Alanis Morissette.  Here’s what you oughta know:

Facebook makes (more) changes

Facebook announced recently that is rolling out changes to pages aimed at making it easier for page administrators to access the tools they need. The announcement comes on the heels of an announcement a week earlier that they were tweaking the News Feed so it looked the same across platforms. As AllFacebook points out, that announcement came about one year to the day they announced a complete redesign of the News Feed. The most recent change puts more emphasis on pictures, but essentially keeps the old layout and navigation. Yes, keeping up with Facebook’s changes can be a little dizzying. The newest announcement (unless it’s superseded by a newer newest announcement) is that the right side of the timeline will contain all your posts in one column (that’s a plus); the left side of the timeline will have the information about your business (but since you already know your business’s address and phone number, as a page administrator, it’s no big whoop). The feature that will be appreciated by page administrators is one that allows you – no matter where you are on the page – to be able to see info on ads you’re running; new likes; unread notifications and messages. Navigation has been added to the top of the page so you can easily access insights, settings and the “Build Audience” link. Another helpful feature is “Pages to Watch,” which, if you don’t already have it, will be opened up to all page administrators. “Pages to Watch” will allow administrators to make a list of Facebook pages similar to theirs and see how those pages perform compared to their own. It’s always good to keep an eye on the competition, and this should help. Facebook screenshot The changes are being rolled out now. If you haven’t yet, you will soon see a message on your admin page that will invite you to be waitlisted to try it out, as you can see above.

The new metric – Attention

We wrote a couple of weeks ago that people are forwarding content without actually reading it. That bomb was dropped by Chartbeat CEO Tony Haile, who took the next step last week in a fascinating piece. Haile notes that for a very long time (long, at least in the world of the Interwebs), click-throughs were THE measure of success. The problem is, he says, too many people are now confusing what people click on with what they actually read. So here’s a useful statistic from Haile: 55% of people spend fewer than 15 active seconds a page. 15 seconds.
Cat at attention
Do you have their attention?
What’s important, Haile says, is what happens between the clicks. It’s time and attention we’re vying for and publishers from the New York Times to Upworthy are catching on. They’re starting to look at new metrics, attention-focused metrics, to getter a better sense of whether they’re actually capturing peoples’ attention. Haile says that Chartbeat found that someone who stays on your page for three minutes is twice as likely to return someone who stays for one minute. “Those writers living in the Attention Web are creating real stories and building an audience that comes back,” Haile writes. What that means is mediocre content simply isn’t going to cut it anymore. The signs have been there for people who have been paying attention (Hummingbird, anyone?), so it shouldn’t be a surprise. Marketers need to believe it:  If you want to get someone’s attention, you better put out some quality content. Otherwise, you’ll simply get lost in the growing sea of meh, where all mediocre content goes to die.
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