Facebook keeps working to fine-tune its News Feed to accomplish two goals: to make the social site more appealing to advertisers while not killing the golden goose (its massive audience).
Now Facebook will begin testing what it calls “Reactions,” an extension of the Like button that gives people more ways to share their reaction to a post in a quick and easy way.
“We are beginning to test Reactions. We’re excited to start this test, but understand that this is a big change, and one that we want to make sure to get right,” explained Chris Tosswill, a Facebook product manager who penned the blog post. “So we’re starting by offering Reactions to Ireland and Spain, where people will be able to react to any post across Facebook — a post from a friend, advertiser, publisher, or business.”
While Tosswill said Facebook’s goal “is to show you the stories that matter most to you in News Feed,” many of those stories will be native advertising content provided by marketers from major publishers and brands to local advertisers.
How does it work in practice?
“Initially, just as we do when someone likes a post, if someone uses a Reaction, we will infer they want to see more of that type of post,” noted Tosswill. “We will spend time learning from this initial rollout and iterate based on findings in the future.”
And again, about the advertisers …
“We see this as an opportunity for businesses and publishers to better understand how people are responding to their content on Facebook,” Tosswill concluded. “During this test, Page owners will be able to see Reactions to all of their posts on Page insights. Reactions will have the same impact on ad delivery as Likes do. We will spend time learning from this initial test and use that feedback to improve.”