Facebook Hones Publishing Tools & Updates Insights For Publishers

Publishers can target subsets of users with specific content and hide outdated posts. Larger publishers can optionally have Facebook auto-post stories that are popular on the network.

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Facebook today announced several new targeting tools and Insights improvements aimed at media publishers.

The new targeting tools will allow publishers to serve content to specific subsets of people who like their pages, pull down time sensitive posts to avoid displaying outdated content and, optionally, allow Facebook to automatically post articles that are already popular on the social network.

The auto-post feature is available only for a select number of large media organizations, but Facebook said it hopes to make it more broadly available in the coming months.

The first two targeting tools are available to all Facebook Pages that have turned on the Targeting and Privacy setting, meaning that any marketer using Facebook can take advantage of them.

The Insights update is in Domain Insights, giving publishers more detailed information about how content is performing on Facebook.


Here’s Facebook’s rundown of the new features:

Interest Targeting – To help you reach precisely the right people, we now offer the ability to target posts to a subset of the people that like your Page. For example, a publisher can use Interest Targeting to post a story about a sports game that will only be shown to people that like the teams playing.

Post End Date – Post End Date allows Page admins to specify a day and time to stop showing a post in News Feed. This tool prevents people from seeing out-of-date posts in News Feed, but posts will continue to appear on your Page. For instance, a publisher can use this to remove yesterday’s weather report from News Feed.

Smart Publishing – Until now, it has been challenging for large publishers to predict which stories will resonate with their audience. Smart Publishing is a new, optional tool that identifies and publishes stories that are popular with people on Facebook.

Once you enable the setting, frequently shared links to your website can appear in News Feed for people who like your Page. Those posts will not appear on your Page, but you’ll have access a new dashboard in Insights to see analytics, moderate comments and choose which you want to post to your Page.

Insights – We’ve added a new Top URLs section, which displays URL-level reporting and shows when other Pages and influencers share a post you’ve made to Facebook. For example, if a celebrity shares one of your URLs, you’ll know why that URL may have reached more people than other URLs. We also made the interface more intuitive and provide a way to segment data for specific time ranges, including hourly.

We also recently fixed a bug that caused many third-party analytics tools to undercount the percentage of their organic traffic from Facebook. In the past, referrer data was missing from some of our outbound mobile clicks. This issue has been resolved for iOS, with a fix for Android coming soon. Publishers may see an increase in iOS mobile traffic from Facebook and a decrease in undefined sources or direct traffic.

“These new tools will help publishers better understand, target and optimize how their content gets delivered on Facebook,” chief product officer Chris Cox wrote in a Facebook post. “Our hope is that this will help the whole industry — from big institutions like the BBC in London to small news magazines like the Irrawaddy in Chiang Mai — distribute the right stories to the right people at the right time.”

Opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily MarTech. Staff authors are listed here.

About the author

Martin Beck
Martin Beck was Third Door Media's Social Media Reporter from March 2014 through December 2015.

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