Seems like auto and RSS feeds for social media are pretty hot buttons lately. Earlier this week I wrote about the New York Times' Twitter experiment.
Today, there was a really interesting post on the Washington Post about a panel that was moderated by Facebook journalist program manager Vadim Lavrusik recently.
There were three headlines that came out of the panel's discussion on Facebook:
1. Auto feeds to Facebook could be bring in 2-3 times less engagement than actual posting manually.
2. Facebook "questions" could create more engagement opportunities.
3. Big categories for popular Facebook posts include: Emotion, passion, sports and simple questions.
A few short comments about each of these:
Auto feeds: Just don't do it for Facebook. Every time I see a post that's from a newspaper I have "friended" that's just the headline on Facebook that clearly came from their website, I am pretty inclined to ignore it. When the post has some sort of engagement, asks for my opinion or has some other kind of invitation, I will pay attention. But those posts can't all come one after the other, they need to be spread out throughout the day.
Facebook questions: I haven't seen many newspapers actually try this, but the feature seems to have some nice functionality and I would encourage papers to use the feature next time they want to pose a question to readers. I would not encourage newspapers to use this feature for a poll, because there's no benefit back to the newspaper's website if they're using the Facebook poll tool. But for questions to readers on reaction to a story, the "question" feature is a good use.
Categories: Pretty obvious stuff here and it would be good for papers to walk themselves through these topics before they decide to post a story. Just because a story has a lot of readership in your print product doesn't mean that it will do well with a social media audience. Making sure it hits the emotional or passionate test for readers, is a good test to walk through before deciding to post a story to Facebook.