August 16th, 2012
Search Engine Optimization
One of the most undervalued benefits of social media marketing is the way that social content flows seamlessly (for the most part) between the desktop, tablet, and mobile worlds. Twitter, YouTube, and LinkedIn function very similarly across platforms, but Facebook’s experience is very different depending upon device, OS, and the exact features being used. Considering this, and the fact that 50% of Facebook’s traffic is generated via mobile, let’s examine a few ways to optimize content posted to Facebook so that it will be desirable across as many platforms and devices as possible.
OK, so you don’t have to really embrace it, especially if you are still clinging to the pre-Timeline days, but you do have to accept that mobile and tablet interfaces were one of the primary contributors to the layout and function of Facebook’s Timeline design. Mobile devices and tablets view content in swiping vertical columns and layers, not left to right or with rich media.
After embracing the “vertical and layered” mindset, it will become more and more natural to use images, videos, and questions to drive interaction–the core recommendation here. Taking advantage of mobile-friendly platforms like YouTube, WordPress, and Vimeo is certainly the best practice, but also be willing to experiment with other major platforms like Pinterest, Tumblr, and Instagram to post content that all platforms will be happy to display.
First, it was text messaging that placed character limits into the consciousness of tech users, then Twitter that made character limits cool across the web. When optimizing Facebook posts for mobile, a good method of thinking is to limit your characters to about the same length as a tweet. This allows nearly all phones to display the majority of the message and also preserves precious screen space. If you can’t say something in less than 160-180 characters, it’s probably not optimal content for mobile devices.
Despite the fact that nearly every modern marketer has a smartphone, very few actually go through the effort of testing their Facebook posts and content on mobile devices. Further, most offices have owners of two or three major operating systems and devices that can be used to ensure cross-compatibility before launching a full campaign. If you are trying something new or about to push the green button on a big-budget strategy, take the extra fifteen minutes to make sure that all major devices can achieve the desired action.
If you are a social media manager, ask your paid search team about exploring mobile advertising to drive traffic to your brand’s Facebook page. Basic methods include purchasing Google AdWords mobile ads that direct users to your page, as well as Facebook’s own mobile ad system that allows you to target users by interest and major demographic characteristics. Due to the fact that the overall mobile advertising ecosystem is still evolving, now is the time when savvy marketers can use paid mobile tactics to drive social engagement before it becomes more costly.
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