The idea of social media started out as a way to keep up with friends and family while sharing interesting stories from your own life. Now, 12 years since the launch of Facebook, social media has become a vital source for news, ranging from international politics to local stories. People are starting to skip more traditional sources, even publishers’ web pages, as they find news tailored to their interests on their news feeds.
According to a study from the Pew Research Center, 63 percent of Facebook users were treating Facebook as a news source in 2015. That number is up from 47 percent in 2013, and is only expected to keep growing. The percentages do not discriminate across gender or age, either. Men and women of all ages are increasingly getting their news from social, instead of traditional, news sources. And with innovations like live streaming video for all users, Facebook continues to expand on what it can offer its users that most traditional sources cannot.
The realization that mobile is becoming the place to go for news, especially for younger generations, is another major aspect of Facebook’s push to become that place. To help with the transition, Facebook introduced Instant Articles, which allows content to be housed on Facebook and cuts down significantly on load times. At last week’s F8 conference, Facebook announced that users are sharing Instant Articles 20 percent more frequently than mobile Web articles. Users are also 70 percent more likely to stick with an Instant Article, because they need to spend little time waiting for the content to load. In fact, to get more specific, research has shown that 40 percent of consumers will leave a page if it takes longer than three seconds to load.
The bottom line is that users want news tailored to them, and they want it fast. Opening up a social app on your phone isn’t only about seeing what your friends are up to, but what the world is up to. Facebook is becoming a hub for content from all areas, and, with Instant Articles, it’s getting faster and easier to obtain.
So how can publishers get the most out of Facebook and take full advantage of Instant Articles? Marfeel is offering a new solution to support Instant Articles, helping publishers make their entire archive Instant Article compatible. Marfeel provides a comprehensive approach to this transition, and publishers don’t need to alter their monetization strategies in the process.
Speaking with TechCrunch.com, Marfeel client Richard Metzger of Dangerous Minds said, “Being that most of our traffic is driven by social media, the solution Marfeel has delivered for easily getting up to speed with Facebook Instant Articles is a huge advantage.” Keeping up with trends in this age of rapidly advancing technology shouldn’t be a burden to publishers, large or small. This kind of innovation helps publishers stay up to date with today’s standards and make content more appealing to readers, while making sure it’s not cutting into the ad budget.