Jon Thomas
Jon Thomas
Communications Director

Facebook’s New Admin Features and What They Mean For Brands

In the last few weeks Facebook has rolled out a number of new features that Page Administrators have been clamoring for (at least we at Story have). However, unlike the Timeline rollout that featured a billboard at the top of your page notifying admins of the new features, some of these latest updates have flown under the radar.

As I’m sure you’ve come to expect, we at Post-Advertising would never leave our readers in the dark. We not only took an in-depth look at the new features, but discussed what they mean for community managers and how they can be effectively implemented (or avoided).

Here’s a breakdown of the newest features and what they mean for your brand.

Page Administrator Roles

Historically, all page administrators had full access to a brand page. Facebook now provides 5 different role based access categories, each with different abilities.

When setting up a page, all admins are managers by default, so make sure to promptly adjust the role if necessary. Only page managers can change the roles of other admins.

What it means for brands:
Many brands have a variety of stakeholders who want access to the Facebook page, but until now, admins had to be very careful whom they provided with access. Now, brands can provide limited access in order to keep a better handle on who can and can’t (and who should and shouldn’t) post content to a page, respond to and delete comments, etc. This is especially useful for agencies that want to provide access to their brands in order to see insights and ad performance, but don’t want to run the risk of inadvertently posting content, which could have major repercussions.

Post Scheduling

One of the major advantages of some third-party social media management tools was the ability to schedule a Facebook post. Facebook has finally brought this in-house and now offer Page Administrators the ability to schedule a post for a future date and time. The feature is not overt, however, and can go easily unnoticed.

Until any bit of content is placed in the status box (text, photo, etc.) the schedule icon (a small clock in the lower left of the status box) is invisible. Start crafting your post to make the scheduling feature available.

Click on the icon to open the scheduler. Then simply choose the year, month, day and time that you’d like the post to appear. If you choose a date in the past, the post will appear immediately at the appropriate place on your page’s timeline.

What it means for brands:
As we noted in our most recent Post-Advertising Survival Guide on audience management, it’s critically important to be an always-on presence for your community. Of course, few brands can commit real-life admins to monitor a page 24/7. So the ability to schedule Facebook posts in its native format (vs. a third-party tool) can help bridge the gap for community managers that need to post content relevant to a specific date/time but might not have access to a computer.

Promoted Posts

Have a post that you really want to make sure your audience sees? You don’t have to cross your fingers anymore and hope that it doesn’t get lost in the clutter of your audience’s news feed. Promoted Posts help increase the people you reach for any eligible post, for a price, of course. The post appears in your audience’s news feeds with the “Sponsored” tag at the bottom of the post. Contrary to sponsored stories or ads, these posts show up directly in the news feed, just like any other brand post would.

When crafting a post, you’ll see the Promote button just to the left of the privacy settings (usually “Public” by default). By clicking on the button, you’ll be given a variety of prices to choose from. The more you pay, the larger the estimated reach is. You’ll also have the option to promote any post within the last 3 days.

According to Facebook, friends of the people who have interacted with your post will also be more likely to see the story in their news feeds for up to 3 days from when the post was first created.

Here’s an example of this in the live from Gary Vaynerchuck’s page.

What it means for brands:
Promoted Posts is a useful feature to gain maximum exposure for reasonable cost. But being ever-present in your audience’s news feed isn’t always the best approach. This can be a powerful tool for very specific posts—announcing an important news item, promoting the latest release of your product—but utilizing this feature often (if your brand has deep pockets) may result in content overload and lead to an unlike. Even if you’re posting frequency is the same, if you’re continually showing up at the top of the news feed it may be too much for fans with quick unlike trigger fingers. Be responsible with your content.

Post Statistics

Facebook has made it a bit easier to see exactly how each of your posts is performing without having to enter into the Insights dashboard. At the bottom of each post are two new statistics: number of people reached and percentage of people reached.

Hovering or clicking on either of the hyperlinked statistics will generate a popup with more information. The # of people reached link will show you a breakdown of your organic reach (number of people who saw your page post in news feed or ticker, or on your page timeline), viral reach (number of people who saw your page post in a story from a friend), and paid reach (number of people who saw your page post in an ad or sponsored story).

The x% link will show you a graphical representation of the percentage reached, plus a breakdown of how many saw it organically versus paid promotion.

What it means for brands:
On a post-by-post basis, brands have the opportunity to see what’s working and what’s not. If one post seems to have reached a larger number of people than normal, try to find out why. What type of content did you post? How much was it shared by others? How many comments did it get? Why? Was it more viral than most other posts? Keep this information in mind as you develop and refine your content plan. If your audience seems to respond well to a specific type of content, make sure to increase the frequency of that content in your mix.

Have you been using these features? What kind of success have you seen? What have you learned?

  • Chris Denman

    very nice breakdown. As someone who’s email inbox is constantly clogged with newsletters, I haven’t had a chance to go through any of these new features yet. Looking forward to experimenting with some sponsored posts! 

  • terry doyle

    Preesh the knowledge, yo. Cant’ tell, you on board with this? Feels like high-cost/paid SPAM to me at first blush. Am I missing something? 

  • Jon Thomas

    Thanks Chris!

  • Jon Thomas

    Are you referring to the Sponsored Posts? It could definitely come off as SPAM, if it’s abused. But everything on Facebook is opt-in. We “Like” pages because we want to receive their content (in theory). They’re just paying to make sure it’s seen by you, since the signal to noise ratio is poor. You won’t see any Sponsored Posts from pages you haven’t already Liked. But if I log-in and every day I see a Sponsored Post from the same brand, I’ll be far more inclined to unlike them. 

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