Image via Owen W Brown, used under Creative Commons License
Facebook rolled out what it calls a "small test feature" last week that is actually huge for Facebook marketers. The feature puts users more in charge of their news feed, with the ability to highlight their favorite friends and pages, so that they always see posts from that entity. To give a page or person this distinction, a user has to navigate to the profile or page and change the 'following' or 'liked' status to 'See First.'
There are already plenty of brands asking their followers to make the switch. This will get them in on a much more intimate and consistant basis with their followers. Page administrators have not been quiet about their frustration with having to pay to reach all of their page 'likes', and this feature could alleviate some of that frustration.
The interesting thing to watch will be if people use this incredibly personal feature to get more branded content. Are people are dying for more posts from businesses and brands on an already highly commercial social media site? Time will tell, and new content strategies will need to be put in place. Thankfully, guides and instructions are already being published in an effort to inform the public on how to utilize the feature, so we should be seeing the results of this change very soon!