How can you use Instant Articles as part of your mobile distribution strategy to give your brand a boost?
By Rebecca Bennett
Facebook leads in reach and share of users seeking social news content, almost the same as YouTube and Twitter combined, the two next leading platforms. Out of the 64% of adults in the U.S. using Facebook, half of them use the site to follow news stories according to research done by the Pew Research Center. “Instant articles,” Facebook’s new news platform, improves the experience of news seeking users, as well as inspires more user interaction and sharing. The good news is that Instant Articles was just made available to all publishers at Facebook’s F8 conference this week.
What is Instant Articles?
Instant Articles allows publishers to create articles that load natively inside Facebook’s mobile app instantly rather than sending users off to the Web, which can take an additional 8 seconds to load. This new feature allows you to deliver an incredibly fast and immersive reading experience for Facebook users on their iPhone or Android device.
(Provided by Facebook)
- It’s 10 times faster than standard mobile web articles.
- 20% more Instant Articles are read on average.
- 70% less likely to abandon the article.
- 30% more likely to share than mobile web articles on average, amplifying your reach.
Brands already using instant articles.
Major publishers, such as The Washington Post, have already started using Instant Articles to reach consumers. The ROI was felt immediately by the Post, already having significantly increased engagement on the site, according to Julia Beizer, director of mobile products for the Post.
- Quick article loading
- Ability to move photos to see the full image
- Map zoom out capability to see the geographic locale where the photos were taken
- Phone tilt reaction
- Videos that auto-play as you scroll to them
- Audio captions and in-line commenting on individual parts of an article
- 100% Ad Revenue.
Facebook is offering publishers 100 percent of ad revenue from Instant Articles (for now).
- New Format Gets Same Attention As Your Other Links.
Facebook says that its algorithm won’t promote the new format over traditional links so you can still maintain cross-over into your site.
- CMS Integration.
Instant Articles is compatible with WordPress and other content management systems (CMS), meaning that you can easily share your articles from your website to your Facebook news feed. This also means that you can make changes to articles in your feed through your CMS, which saves you the time of editing content in multiple places.
Instant Articles provides reporting as granular as by the hour which allows publishers to identify peak times for different types of content which can help to inform their future content rollout strategies. As a plus, its data can feed into Google Analytics, Adobe Omniture, or comScore.
- Brand Template Consistency.
Instant Articles mimics the style of your brand template, such as color scheme and formatting, allowing you to keep your brand image consistent with your other platforms.
How to get started
- Login to your Facebook page
- Apply to be an Instant Articles member
- Download the Instant Articles toolkit (business.facebook.com)
- Claim the domain that you want to publish content on
- Claim an entire domain, which permits you to syndicate articles from any part of your site or,
- Claim a single subdomain, which won’t allow you to publish from the root domain.
- Grab your developer and create your first article.
- You’ll need to use HTML code/tags. You can copy and paste the necessary codefrom this page to perform the next 3 steps.
- Create your article header: title, subtitle, author and date and publication time
- Format the body of the content
- Embed multimedia content
- Publish it.
- Share it through a secure RSS feed usingthis guide.
- Verify that your articles are being syndicated to your RSS feed.
Need help troubleshooting? https://developers.facebook.com/docs/instant-articles/troubleshooting
Facebook. Instant Articles. https://instantarticles.fb.com
Sui, Eric. “Leveraging Facebook’s ‘Instant Articles’ for Business Growth.” April 12, 2016.
LOPEZ, NAPIER. “Facebook Instant Articles are Now Available to Any Publisher.“ April 12, 2016.