Facebook: 3 Features Businesses Should Evaluate In 2019

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Not long and the year 2018 will be over and for sure we will not have to wait long for new social media updates and inventions. However, I was curious what social media trends people can expect in 2019. For that reason a few days ago I started reading various reports about possible social media trends for the year 2019.

 One of those reports was published by a Social media engagement tracking company called Newswhip. However, Newswhips paper with the title: What to know for Facebook Publishing ahead of 2019, not only talks about new trends for 2019, they also give insides on the newest updates from 2018 and how they may affect the following year as well.

Examples of Facebook’s newest inventions/updates

The following features were released in 2018, but Newswhip is certain that they will become even more important or will be further developed in 2019.

Facebook Stories + Highlights

Most people already know Stories from Instagram or Snapchat. Mark Zuckerberg also recognized the hype of Stories and therefore wanted to buy Snapchat. Snapchat, on the other side, was not interested in selling their brilliant feature, which allows users to share images and videos that disappear after 24 hours. For that reason, Zuckerberg decided to copy their idea and used it as a new Facebook feature.

Facebook Stories

Facebook Stories doesn’t offer the extension of leaving comments or likes. Instead, communication happens with the Facebook Messenger. A published Story will appear at the top of the Facebook app and at the top of the right sidebar of the Facebook desktop view.

At the moment Stories are very popular because they offer a new way to engage with the community and allow brands to communicate authentically. Moreover, companies can connect their Instagram account with their Facebook account and start cross posting Stories on both social networks.

In general, we do not recommend cross posting, especially if you have an overlap in followers on both channels. Right now the story format is very similar both on Instagram and Facebook. However, brands often reach a younger audience on Instagram.

Although Facebook Stories are still not as successful as Snapchat it continues to steadily grow. Today, Facebook Stories has more than 150 million daily active users. More and more people change their habit of scrolling through the Newsfeed and turn to the easy accessible Facebook Stories. Therefore Facebook Stories are going to keep growing significantly in 2019.

Statistic of the daily users of various Story providers

At present Facebook is testing a new Story feature called Stories Highlights, letting users decide whether they want to save some of their Stories longer than 24 hours. It is still possible to choose between public or private view. Again a feature which is already available on Instagram.

Facebook Stories notification for the Highlights feature

A/B Testing

In order to get the most of your content, Facebook is giving page admins the opportunity to test different variations of pictures, headlines, and videos. These variations are shown to a diverse audience. Afterwards, the performance is analyzed to see which posting type should be reposted and promoted with more budget. This way businesses can promote their content selectively, which should result in better conversion rates.

A/B testing with different images from ShareThis

We have used this feature before. See Facebook Help center for more information on split tests.

Facebook Watch

The newest Facebook invention called Facebook Watch will remind most people of a combination of YouTube, Netflix, and Facebook. Facebook Watch is a new platform for shows to upload live recorded or pre-recorded episodes similar to the construction of a TV series.

These episodes can be watched on various devices like desktops, laptops, mobile and also on television with the TV app. To never miss out on any new videos of your favorite shows, Facebook Watch is keeping you updated with the ’Watchlist’. However, if you want to discover other videos you can also use the ‘Video search’ magnifying glass.

Screenshot: Facebook Watch – ‘Watchlist’

Facebook Watch offers companies, that are using Watch actively, a new Facebook profile interface. These Watch pages are normal company pages with extensions like episode listings and special playlists.

Company page- Safari Live

These are a couple of Facebook features that will probably play a big part for businesses in the following year. If you want to keep up with other companies you should definitely consider using one of these features in the future. Nonetheless, always keep in mind that the prime importance is your audience and the content you are producing. Neither A/B testing, Facebook Stories nor Facebook Watch will be successful if you don’t know your audience.

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Anica Humpelstetter

Anica Humpelstetter

Social Media Designer at Fresh van Root

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