Three Things Facebook Is Trying to Make Happen in 2020

As brand marketers on social media, we typically play by the “rules” of whichever platform on which we’re looking to distribute our message, with the rules in this case being the algorithm, updates being rolled out, and new ad units the platforms want us to put money behind. Oftentimes, that platform is Facebook given its advanced advertising capabilities and massive audience. As we venture further into 2020, we’ve noticed a few Facebook trends that continue to resurface as key players that Facebook itself is pushing users and brands towards. Read on below for all the details on what Facebook is trying to make happen.

Longform Video Content

For years, the best practice when it came to video content was to keep it short, sweet, and to the point. Now, Facebook is really trying to push the complete opposite, with this notification appearing when uploading video to a Business Page on the platform.

This stemmed from a video ranking update Facebook made last spring, saying that videos that keep people engaged, especially videos at least three minutes in length, will be given more weight in the Feed. Convincing creators and brands to create longform content for the platform is great for Facebook because it gets people to spend more time on their network, but few Pages have the resources to create such content on an ongoing basis. It’s simply not realistic – and completely unnecessary – for some Pages to share a three-minute message when the same thing could be communicated in 60 seconds or less.

There will be some exceptions, of course, but for most brands we still recommend keeping video content to less than a minute to cater to short user attention spans.

Facebook Stories

While the Story format for Instagram took off almost instantaneously, Facebook Stories hasn’t seemed to deliver quite the excitement or desire to use. Despite slow initial user adoption though, Facebook continued to push Story content to the Feed. Since its inception, Stories’ real estate has drastically grown within the app.

This may have worked in boosting daily active users (DAUs) for Facebook Stories, as the network now reports equivalent usage on Facebook + Messenger Stories as Instagram and WhatsApp.

These numbers, however, aren’t deterring Facebook from further pushing Stories usage. Just last week, the platform launched a new test for a Discovery-like page for Stories that would allow users to immerse themselves in a full-screen view of all Story content shared by their friends and Pages they follow.

It doesn’t feel like Stories has quite caught on in the way that Facebook promotes that it has, but this is certainly a format we’ll keep our eyes on as 2020 progresses.

Virtual Reality

Since announcing Oculus Go at F8 in 2018, Facebook has been trying to make VR the next big thing for its users. In 2020, those efforts have all but subsided, with Facebook set to launch a new virtual reality world – Facebook Horizon – early this year.

As explained by TechCrunch:

Facebook Horizon is a virtual reality sandbox universe where you can build your own environments and games, play and socialize with friends or just explore the user-generated landscapes. This is Facebook’s take on Second Life.

Since consumers have not been quick to jump on the virtual reality bandwagon, it’s tough to say whether or not Facebook Horizon will be successful. Down the line, there may be advertising capabilities for brands as the platform develops. If and when this happens, you can count on our team to be there to help you navigate those waters.

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