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What Does the Facebook Rocket Icon Mean? By Becky Mann

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Over the last few weeks, people may have noticed Facebook users sharing rare sightings of the lesser-spotted Facebook rocket on their social feeds, calling for the community to confirm its purpose on their timeline.

For those not yet in the know, Facebook has introduced the rocket icon to just a handful of users as part of its test for a second, complementary News Feed concept. Hoping to introduce people to fresh new content they wouldn’t have otherwise accessed, this customised feed is filled with videos, stories and articles that Facebook algorithms believe the user will be interested in.

Whilst Facebook is already suggesting content based on what users have previously engaged with, it’s thought the new feed only provides content from pages that are unknown to the user as well as items that their friends and family have reacted to. As a result, it allows users to connect with content they won’t have seen to date – broadening their social horizons!

But what does this mean for PR and content creation?  Whilst it’s not yet known at this stage whether the rocket icon will be rolled out to all Facebook users, or the final details of how the second feed would work, the one thing we believe here at Rich is that customising content will only increase in importance as these explore-style functions continue to pop up across social channels.

When developing content briefs, it’s often tempting to set out trying to please as many audiences as possible in order to maximse your reach, your budget and ‘spread the net’ as far as you can. Knowing your specific audience and daring to tailor make content and promotional plans for their needs, rather than creating for the masses, can be more daunting than you’d think but it’s certainly necessary to ensure success. There’s a big difference between people seeing content and openly engaging with it. And, as more and more emphasis is placed on engagement through algorithms and dedicated exploration feeds, we’ll need to be more pinpointed with our content than ever to ensure we’re saying something relevant to the right people in order to inspire that all important reaction that will get your content noticed and shared.

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