And finally, the big day arrives. Facebook’s completely revamped News Feed is here… And it’s AWESOME.
Facebook users are notorious complainers. They hate change. They hate every change.
But, dammit, if they complain about this one? You’re just a drag of a person.
Everyone should dig — or at least appreciate — this change.
It’s visually clean and beautiful. Big, bold imagery.
It gives users more control over what they can see.
And finally, it gives brands big, bold ways to stick out.
At the bottom of this post, I provide a collection of reactions from across the web in the form of links and video. Before I get there, a few things you should know…
Note that a few things were clarified after producing this first impressions video (ads apparently will be in the separate feeds, for example).
What is NEW About This News Feed
Mobile Inspired: For much of Facebook’s existence, products for desktop have been developed independently of mobile — seemingly without thinking about how the two might fit together. That changes now.
Design will be consistent across all devices, and this time the desktop experience is actually influenced by mobile design.
Multiple Feeds: Previously, the most active of Facebook users could exhaust the content presented to them quickly. If you were on constantly, there was little difference between Top Stories and Most Recent.
But now, users will be presented with separate feed options that include Most Recent, All Friends, Photos, Music, Following, Games, Groups and more.
Big and Visual: This is the biggest change users will notice immediately. Images are bigger, bolder and amazing. Facebook was clearly influenced by Pinterest, Instagram and even Google+.
Clean: Facebook got rid of every unnecessary pixel. This means no more Ticker (I may be the only one disappointed by this). It means the important stuff — News Feed — takes up a greater percentage of the screen. And even “acebook” has been removed from the Facebook logo.
How it Impacts Users
Control: News Feed is still filtered based on the EdgeRank algorithm. But if users want to see all posts by friends or all posts by brands and public figures they follow, they can do that.
What’s nice is that you could have dozens of lists and feeds available, but Facebook will sort them in order of usage. So if you never use the Photos feed, it will drop to the bottom.
This satisfies one of the biggest gripes that, in my opinion, has been louder from marketers than actual users. Other than the default News Feed view, Facebook is no longer deciding what you want to see for you.
Visually Pleasing: There’s something to be said for a beautiful design that is consistent across devices. Users should love this, and it should improve the overall experience.
Addiction Returns: Remember the days when you felt like you could never get bored on Facebook? When every day, you found a new friend you hadn’t spoken to in years?
That “newness” has been gone for a while, but the feeling of addiction — that you MUST be on Facebook and can’t leave — may be returning for many users with this revamp. There will always be something new to discover.
How it Impacts Marketers
Get Visual: Ever since Timeline rolled out, it’s been a necessity to get more visual. Nice profile photo, appealing cover photo and share powerful photos to News Feeds.
Well, it’s doubly important now.
Photos are bigger. And when users like your Page, the story generated will be focused on the imagery around your Page.
Your cover photo is lame? You won’t benefit from this new News Feed.
Following Feed: Users can now view all posts by brands and personalities they follow with the new Following feed. Brands will be happy to know that all posts will be available in chronological order. If users care about the brands they follow, they won’t miss their content.
Unfiltered (Sorta): Understand that while the extra feeds are unfiltered, the default News Feed remains as is.
Big Ads: Big videos. Big photos. Big ads. Brands can get creative and increase their success with ads as a result. Start taking more photos!
Will Feeds be Used? This is a big one. Facebook regularly rolls out features that can make the lives of its users better, but many of those features go ignored.
If the extra feeds aren’t used, little changes other than a nice facelift with a new list of buried features that no one uses.
Will Brand Exposure Improve? Good question! Marketers have the theory that users WANT to read their posts. Why else would they Like their Page in the first place… right?
Well, here’s a test. If Facebook users gravitate to feeds while ignoring the Following feed, they’re making it loud and clear that they really don’t care that much about our content.
But even if users do embrace the Following feed, will that result in more eyeballs? Maybe not.
Keep in mind that it will be unfiltered. Noise. Before, if you published good content you would be rewarded by EdgeRank (don’t argue with me!). Now, you’re on equal footing with all of the crap content produced every day by other brands.
As a result, your good content no longer stands out. So you may see little or no change in exposure.
What About Ads? Not clear. The default News Feed will still feature ads. Ads on the right hand side are now pushed down and less prominent. Facebook says that ads will go into the other feeds, but it’s not clear how that will happen.
Stay tuned on this one!
Videos About NEW News Feed
Links About NEW News Feed From Across the Web
- What to Expect from Facebook’s New News Feed [3/7/2013 ANNOUNCEMENT + GUIDE] – ShortStack Blog
- What Facebook’s New News Feed Means for Marketers – Mashable
- Facebook Stresses High-Resolution Images, Bookmarks To App Developers For New News Feed – AllFacebook
- Facebook Unveils a Radically Redesigned News Feed – Mashable
- Facebook Updates Its Photo Experience To Be More “Immersive” In News Feed, Timeline And Albums – TechCrunch
- Facebook’s Focus On Mobile-Inspired Consistency Is All About Getting Facebook “Out Of The Way” – TechCrunch
- 3 Things You Need To Know About Today’s Facebook Announcement – Likeable Media
- How Brands Should Approach Facebook’s New News Feed – AllFacebook
- Is Facebook the New Google+? – Mashable
- Facebook reveals mobile-inspired News Feed with more options for filtering content and giving users ways to see all posts – AllFacebook
- Facebook Gets Simpler, More Complicated – Mashable
- Facebook’s Revamped News Feed Aspires To Be A Personalized Newspaper – AllFacebook
- Hands-On With The New Facebook And Its Boredom-Killing Feeds [TCTV] – TechCrunch
- An Early Sneak Peek At Facebook’s New News Feed [Gallery] – ReadWrite Social
- Facebook Updates News Feed With Dedicated Feeds, Bigger Photos – ReadWrite Social
- How to Get the New Facebook News Feed ASAP – Mashable
- Get to Know the New Design for News Feed – Facebook Developer Blog
- How ads look in the new News Feed layout – InsideFacebook
- For Businesses, Facebook’s Redesign Means Bigger Ads, A Pages Feed, But A Friends-Only Section Too – TechCrunch