Symphony is an all-in-one dashboard to publish, schedule, and manage your content on Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin.

Carousel Post Support on Symphony

The Symphony team is excited to officially announce our Facebook Carousel post feature!

source: facebook.com

Carousel posts are a great way to grab a user’s attention, optimize screen space, and maximize the information a user sees at first glance.

Given Facebook’s large, and increasing mobile audience, usage of screen real estate is more important than ever. This is where the Carousel post excels. Let’s look at a normal post, showing your audience one picture, one caption, one label, and one description:

posted normal

Now, a Carousel post:

posted carousel

Even if the user does not scroll through all the images, they get a glance of multiple things.

In addition to increased info, because publishers are not taking full advantage of this feature, Carousel posts tend to stand out. It’s no wonder why viewers engage with Carousel posts more.

Creating a Carousel Post from Multiple Links

Let’s walk through making a Carousel post of super bowl articles from The Ringer, a sports and pop-culture blog. First, copy & paste a link into the Crosspost window. If you’re using the Crosspost browser button, then just click that button and it’ll pick up the link of the page you’re on. Once you paste the link, Crosspost will scrape it and fetch the article title and images. You’ll see something like this. Notice that the preview on the right side doesn’t show a Carousel post yet. This is the standard post style:

Single Image Post

Converting the Post into a Carousel Post

When you paste the second link in the Crosspost window, the post becomes a Carousel post. The first link pasted is the first item in the Carousel, and the second link is the second item. The first item here is about Falcon’s QB Matt Ryan, and the second link and item is about the Patriot’s Tom Brady:

Two image post

BAZINGA! That is how you create a Facebook Carousel Post with different links.

Creating a Carousel Post from One Link, and Multiple Images

To create a Carousel of multiple images that use the same link, paste a link into the Crosspost window, then add your own image to convert the default post into a Carousel post. Click on the image icon in the bottom left side of the window. This will reveal the built-in image search feature. Here you can find public domain and Creative Commons images that you can attach to your post directly. Or if you want to use an image from your computer then just drag & drop it over the Crosspost window.

one link and image selection

Now both items in the Carousel use the same link.

Edit Labels and Captions, and Remove Links

Every part of a Carousel item is editable. If using a link, you can scroll through thumbnail images that Symphony automatically scrapes from the destination. Carousel item labels and descriptions are also editable, just click on it to edit. Here you can see the second item has a different label and description, and the post has a caption (the author seems to appreciate a good logo):

one link one image edited desc and post caption

You are now a space optimizing, attention demanding content expert!

Carousels have proven to be more engaging than regular posts, and as you have seen, they allow you to show the viewer more information at a single glance. In one of the next few posts, we will be outlining the data behind the increased engagement. We will also be covering very exciting 360 degree video support, stay tuned!

Start Optimizing your Social Media ❯

Share Blog Posts as BIG Pictures on Facebook

Symphony Crosspost, the publishing tool within our suite, lets you share your blog posts as big pictures. Different than copy-pasting your blog link directly into Facebook, which shares the post as regular link along with a thumbnail picture, Symphony publishes the link as a big picture and adds the text in the caption.

Bloggers understand that their blogs need to be interesting and engaging in order to attract and retain readers. While it is the content and context of each blog post that keeps readers coming back, adding images to accompany each post is an important part of attraction.

The same principles apply to using social media to attract readers. Social media is all about headlines and images. If both are not unique and/or compelling, no one is going to click on them to read more. On Facebook, considering their updated news feed algorithm, if your posts aren’t drawing engagement, it’s actually better not to share them at all. But that’s a different conversation altogether.

How to Select Blog to Share on social media

People are more likely to click on a post with a picture than one without a picture. People are also more likely to click on a big picture that a small one. Sharing your blog as big pictures on Facebook can help increase your click-through-rate (CTR).

post blog as BIG picture on facebook

Because we know writing strong, sharable blog articles take considerable time, we made adding the pictures incredibly fast. If you haven’t found that perfect image for your blog post yet, but still want to get it out on social media, our tool will suggest a picture for you based on the content.

Spend your time writing great posts, not figuring out how to share it on social media! Give Symphony a 30-day free trail and watch your readership grow.

 

How to Win the Social Media Attention War

Do you think you could fully describe the majesty of the Grand Canyon to a stranger who has never seen it in less than ten seconds?  Most would agree that ten seconds would not do the Grand Canyon justice.

Image editor in social media management

Studies have shown that on the Internet, you have a mere three seconds to capture a viewer’s attention before they move on.  Like trying to describe one of the seven wonders of the world to a stranger in ten seconds, it would seem just as impossible to convey all the benefits of your business in three fleeting seconds.

Or is it?

To be successful in the crowded social space, you must find ways to capture your viewer’s interest and give them a reason to want more. In mere seconds, your potential customers must be able to see the benefits and values your business or service is offering. Do your social posts pass the blink test?

On Facebook, we recently posted an image of a mountain range with overlaid text that read, “describe this image with only text.”  58% of the comments were one word replies such as “beautiful, gorgeous, breathtaking, sublime, and enchanting.”

While certainly quick and accurate, none of those words alone, however, can truly describe what they really look like. Would anyone use the word “awesome” to describe their entire business model to someone who had never heard of it before?

The solution to the attention war is the same today as it was hundreds of years ago. Combining strong visuals with the right text helps show what makes you or your business special.

According to published research by Princeton University, people form an opinion on whether they can trust someone in one-tenth of a second. Likewise, you have three precious seconds to help your visitors make a decision on whether or not they feel comfortable enough with what you are offering to give you more of their time. Posts that embrace the “less telling and more engaging” method have proven to be the most effective way to earn trust (even if it’s short lived) on social media.

Symphony Facebook ad

Make sure you are winning the social media attention war by using strong visuals that complement your message.  Businesses need pictures to help show why they are awesome. Symphony is the best tool for using pictures to say what words can’t explain.  You have three seconds. Use them well.

PS – We just released a big update. Now you can edit images in our publisher. Read more about it here.

 

 

How to Make Facebook’s Recent News Feed Update Work to Your Advantage

On Tuesday, Facebook announced an update to its news feed algorithm and finally answered the mysterious question of “how the news feed actually works.” The concept behind Facebook’s news feed update is simple – the posts with the most likes, comments, & shares will be displayed more frequently in the news feed .

Lars Backstrom, the engineering manager for Facebook’s News Feed ranking, said “The goal of News Feed is to deliver the right content to the right people at the right time so they don’t miss the stories that are important to them. Ideally, we want News Feed to show all the posts people want to see in the order they want to read them.” Facebook performed a recent study that found that this new ranking system led to a 13% increase in stories read, and a 5% increase in interactions (Likes, shares, comments).

What is Story Bumping?

The purpose of the updates to Facebook’s news feed is to highlight stories users find most interesting. Story Bumping allows for the stories you may have missed in your news feed earlier in the day, a chance to be displayed to you later on, if that story is “popular.” Before the update, every time a user refreshed their feed, all the newly created posts were automatically moved to the top. The Story Bump process now enables the older posts (stories that may have been posted earlier but never actually scrolled through) to join the new stories at the top of your feed.

What is Facebook story bumping

Another change to the algorithm, Last Actor, looks at the 50 people you most recently interacted with on Facebook – such as viewing someone’s profile or photos, and liking their stories. If you spend the morning looking through all of your best friend’s recent camping trip photos, you’ll see more of his or her posts in your feed later in the day.

How Do the Facebook News Feed Updates Affect My Page?

Facebook’s updates will effectively eliminate boring, non-engaging stories from the news feed. As a personal user, this is an awesome update. Show me the stuff I actually want to see, right? However, as a marketer managing a fan page, this update is a little worrisome.

For A LOT of brands with Facebook fan pages, the barrier to reach their audience just became way more extreme – because their pages are, well, boring. For the brands with thousands to millions of followers, even the slightest decrease in “reach” can have a huge impact on their exposure over the social network and in many cases, even affect revenue. The average Facebook user only sees 20% (or less) of the 1500 potential stories filtered through their news feed every day. To stay in that 20% of what the users actually see, brands are either going to have to create much more engaging content or pay up to promote their posts. If someone engages frequently with your page, that person will see a lot more of your content so one-off engagement is not going to cut it anymore. Brands need to interact with their users on a regular basis to stay relevant.

How to Make Facebook’s News Feed Update Work to Your Advantage

Don’t let the update to the Facebook news feed have a negative effect on your brand. In fact, it should inspire you! Now, more than ever, you need to ask yourself, “how can I make my posts more engaging?” The short answer is – use visual content.

Visual content is exploding on social media. Posts with photos get 53% more likes, 104% more comments, and 84% more click-throughs. Social media data expert Dan Zarrella tracked and analyzed more than 1.3 million posts from the 10,000 most-Liked Facebook pages and found that photos drives the most engagement, followed by text and video. Below is a snippet from Dan’s infographic.

Using photos will increase fan engagement and, in-turn, help make your posts more popular on Facebook. Read 7 more reason marketers should use images.

Photos get more engagement

Facebook is giving stories that may not have been seen during a user’s first scan of their news feed, a second chance to resurface – make sure your story is one of them!

It’s come down to A) Be more engaging or B) Dish out the $$$ to be seen.

How do you plan on making your posts more engaging?

7 Reasons All Marketers Should LOVE Images

380 billion images were taken last year alone, making it clear that every marketer needs to embrace, and yes, LOVE images in social media. If you’re not sure why you should love images, these 7 Reasons will help clear things up.

image memes have high share %1. Photos get 53% more likes, 104% more comments, and 84% more click-throughs

These numbers alone should be the only indicators a marketer needs to start using images in every single one of their social media posts. Images grab attention, tell stories, and convey emotional elements, which make them resonate with users longer, stimulating engagement, and maximizing shares.

Facebook news feed utilizes images

Facebook news feed highlights images

2. Facebook fans are 40-150 times more likely to engage with your content in their news feed than on your fan page

Facebook’s Edgerank algorithm, which determines what users see in their news feed, is based on the activity and engagement your fans have with your content. If your fans are not engaging with you, they are not going to see most of the things you post. Using photos in your social media posts will increase engagement dramatically.(Refer back to #1). BONUS – if you are engaging your current fans, you will tap into “friends of fans” and increase your reach up to 34 times over.

images are most viral psot type on facebook

Hey Girl

3. Images are always the most viral post type on Facebook

No matter what social media platform you are using, getting your posts seen by your fans should be your top priority (if it’s not, you shouldn’t be on social media). Even if you are in a time crunch, simply posting some text to get a new message out will no longer cut it. Find an image that ties in with your message. In fact, 90% of information transmitted to the brain is visual content. Research conducted by Pagelever revealed that the “average post” only reached 7% of its fans daily. Increasing your engagement with images in social media posts will increase your visibility. People prefer visual content and consequently Edgerank prefers visual content.

use images in posts for better engagement

Tiffany & Co. uses quality images to increase likes

4. Photos make up 93% of the most engaging posts on Facebook

Follow in the footsteps of big brands with lots of fans. Companies that are utilizing images in social media posts are seeing HUGE results. One month after the introduction of Facebook timeline for brands, photos saw a 65% increase in engagement. See how many posts you can find on Oreo’s fan page that DON’T include images – it will take you a while.

 

Post larger photos to facebook

Bigger pictures are more engaging

5. Bigger IS better

Link previews are not engaging. Link previews pull thumbnail images that are small and hard to see – making them easy to overlook in the news feed. If your goal is to drive traffic, you need to be noticed! Highlight your posts by using large images to showcase your content. When choosing your image, make sure to choose something that is intriguing on it own, relevant to what your content is, and will instantly grab the attention of whoever sees it.

Bad Facebook post

This post doesn’t look compelling at all

6. Links with photos receive 2 times more likes than text posts and link posts combined

In a study of their own Facebook posts, Hubspot found that posts that contained a photo and a link received 84% more link clicks than the “regular” text and link posts that had no photo. There are plenty of royalty free, creative commons images out there to choose from, so don’t sweat it if you don’t have your own image to use. Symphony has an exclusive built-in image search feature that suggests images when you don’t have one or can’t find one you want – saving you from ever having an ugly post again.

Customers love images

Selfie!

7. Your customers LOVE images

People prefer consuming visual content. Those same people are your potential leads and current customers. When is the last time you have logged into Facebook and not seen a SomeEcards image? Pinterest now boasts over 70 million users and Instagram has 120 million + monthly active users who post 45 million photos a day. Facebook users share 300 million images each day. That’s a lot of people connecting with images!

Symphony, the best social media tool for image lovers, was developed to help you maximize the power of your social media presence. Not only does Symphony have exclusive features to help make every one of your posts more beautiful and engaging, it’s an an all-in-one dashboard to curate, publish, monitor, and manage all of your social media content. Join our community of image lovers and make your online presence your most powerful marketing asset.

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