Facebook Launches Audience Optimization For Publishers

by • February 2, 2016 • FacebookComments Off on Facebook Launches Audience Optimization For Publishers5797

Facebook understands how much it needs publishers – the content that they generate creates most of the organic reach on the platform and keeps it a more interesting place for its users. Facebook relies on publishers to inform, entertain, and thus retain users. So, it makes perfect sense to help them understand their audience much better.

To help publishers reach and engage their audiences, Facebook is replacing Interest Targeting with Audience Optimization – an organic targeting tool with some very cool features.

Also Read: Facebook Launches Local Insights For Local Businesses

Understanding people’s interests, creating content for them and getting them to click on it is one of the main objectives of any publisher. Audience Optimization on Facebook allows content publishers to to just that – It helps them improve the relevancy of posts, providing added information about who is more likely to engage with it. This, is of course a great thing, since it can help increase engagement on posts and on the Pages themselves.

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Audience Optimization provides three features:

Preferred Audience

This feature gives publishers the opportunity to add “interest tags” to their content, thus helping Facebook “connect people with the topics and subtopics that are most likely to engage them”. These tags are not there to limit an audience but rather to prioritise to individual users which content is more likely to interest them.

Audience Restrictions

Audience restrictions allow publishers to “specify which audiences would not find a post relevant, based on their location, language, age or gender”. This already available feature plays a limiting role, giving publishers the opportunity to tell Facebook who they’d like their content to be seen by. It can now be used together with the preferred audience feature and its options.

Audience Insights

This feature gives publishers valuable information on the performance of specific content “down to the post level with breakdowns by interest tag”. It is supplementary to Page Insights. Publishers can then see insights (reach and engagement metrics) for each “interest tag” separately, in order to “understand how different subsets of people are responding” to content.


Companies that have already tried the Audience Optimization tool have been highly impressed with how much their engagement in terms of clicks, likes, comments and shares increased by using it.

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One publisher, The New York Times, wrote that

Our stories generally find a wide audience on Facebook, but some stories can take off thanks to especially strong engagement from niche Facebook communities such as TV show fans, sports fans, etc. The vibrant discussions taking place on some of these posts suggests that this new tagging feature is helping to attract the readers who are most passionate about specific topics.

Others found it very important in terms of “identifying which segments were most responsive to which kinds of stories.”

The tool is becoming available to all English-language Pages within the next few weeks and can be accessed from the page post composer (targeting icon)Graph API (interest tags in your posts), third-party publishing tools (tags and restrictions on your posts in SocialFlow or Sprinklr for example), and Instant Articles (add tags straight to your stories), when creating Instant Articles in your RSS feed.

You can find out more about what Audience Optimization can do for publishers, here but you can get started with the tool here.

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