Facebook strongly encourages app designers to rethink how they share
Sharing, be it on the web or a mobile device, is a good thing – until it isn’t. Games that create a social media post every time you achieve a new level, apps that want to post your status every time you touch them, websites that want to announce to the world that you’ve been here and done that. . .
For me, it’s not about privacy. I don’t care if people know that I’ve conquered Level Six of Where’s My Perry. But I prefer not to alienate the followers I have by loading my social media stream with meaningless drivel. I want them to pay attention when I post. I want my followers to know that if I’m posting something on Facebook, it has meaning; it’s interesting, funny or helpful.
The auto post is out. Facebook says the number of “implicitly shared stories” has declined over the past year. And in a related story, they’ve seen a 75% decline in the number of spam reports. They want to continue down this road, so they’re now strongly encouraging app designers to rethink their sharing options.
The most important step is to make all sharing “explicit” vs “implicit”. Meaning, the user must actively choose to share a piece of content on Facebook. This adds another step to the process, which will lower the number of shares, but it will raise the level of quality shares, and that’s the point.
Another way to increase the quality of the share is to personalize it using the new Message Dialog option. With this gizmo, the user can send a piece of content from an app to a Facebook pal within Messenger.
Nice thing about this tweak is that the message doesn’t end up in the mix with everything else in the newsfeed. If people use it, it’s a nice piece of marketing.
Facebook is also testing a mobile “like” button for one tap sharing and a “send mobile app” tool. With this option, a person on the web will be able to send an app install command to their mobile device with one click. When they open their phone or tablet, they’ll find an install prompt in the notifications. One more click and it’s done. Again, shortening the distance between discovery and use is the way to go.
Right now it’s just a test but if you have an app, you can contact Facebook and ask to be part of the test. Do it. It’s worth the effort to grab a hold of a customer the moment they discover your app.