It was only a matter of time. Facebook unveiled plans to overhaul some of its key features which will roll out over the next week. We’ve detailed the ones that will have the most impact on Tourism businesses and users alike.
The main Publisher bar “aka. Status Update Field” has three new changes entitled: Tags, Location (places), and Control (privacy).
“[Just] because I share an experience with them doesn’t mean I want to be Facebook friends with them.” – Facebook Product Manager, Kate O’Neill
You can now tag any Facebook member, whether they are your friend or not. This enables photos of groups to be tagged in their entirety. Concerned that you’ll be tagged without your knowing? If you’re not a friend of the person who tags you, you’ll still have to formally approve their request before it displays. On a related note, if you are friends with someone who has tagged you, you can now turn off the “require approval” feature of tagging.
Three new features have been rolled our regarding Untagging including: untagging yourself from a photo, asking the photo uploader to remove the photo, and blocking that person on Facebook.
The GPS restriction of Checking-In to Places has been removed in the latest smartphone application update. This enables users to check-in to places retroactively and is now accomplished from the Status Update field (instead of the old ‘places’ menu). This also MAY enable businesses to setup Places without being at their physical location, but we are still waiting on this confirmation.
No doubt following the Google+ launch of Circles, Facebook has reorganized how and with who you can share content with (for the record, we think Circles is much sexier). In the Publisher Bar, the former Padlock icon will change with the type of sharing. A posts visibility may also be retroactively updated. New sharing categories are:
- Custom (for Lists or Groups)
Additionally, the Privacy Settings have been given their own button on every screen (simplifying the process in navigating to the bulky privacy menu). A handy “View Profile As” button has been added as well, to see exactly what your different permission levels look like.
While the Facebook’s Privacy updates have stolen the show, Facebook Ads have rolled out a new feature in the targeting of ads. Last month, Facebook Ads added a new target set called “Precise Interests” in which advertisers could target specific Likes and Interests that users have posted to their profile. For example, I’ve Liked the W Hotels fan page, and low-and-behold, I now see ads for W Hotels!
The new feature launched today is within Precise Interests and is called ‘Topic Targeting.’ It allow advertisers to target Topics relating to that specific interest, in order to pick up a relating audience. Displayed with a ‘#’ symbol, Topics cover both the Precise Interest AND relating Interest. For example, if I were to add the topic #Ritz-Carlton, it would include interests such as Ritz Hotels, Ritz Carlton Hotels, and the Ritz Carlton Hotel Group. Optional category Interests are also displayed that may be applicable to my target market. Using the Ritz Carlton example, optional category interests would include the #Starwood Hotels and #Hilton Worldwide topics.
Instead of only targeting the 20,00 fans living in the US who Like the official Ritz Carlton Fan page, my reach using the #Ritz-Carlton Topic has increased to 73,000. Longer reach = better target exposure.
What’s your opinion? Good improvements or not?