What You Need To Know About Facebook’s Latest Product: Trending

Posted on April 24, 2014 
Filed Under Brand Building, Content Marketing Strategy, Facebook, General, Internet Marketing, Marketing, Social Media, Social Media Marketing, Social Networking, Social Networks, Twitter

We are all familiar with what Facebook is all about. It is a space where people from all over the world come together every day to share their thoughts and participate in real-time conversations from the Premier League standings to Facebook acquiring messaging service, WhatsApp in a $19bn deal.

Facebook Trending Topics Vs Twitter Trending Topics

On January 16, 2014, Facebook announced a new trends section, which will directly compete with Twitter’s popular trends. This new feature is designed to surface the most popular topics of discussion on Facebook, in effect helping users find the best content from across the social site. Till last month, Trending was still being rolled out and is not yet available to everyone.

About Trending

To the right of your News Feed on Facebook, you can now find a list of topics. It’s only available on desktop at the moment. This list shows you the most popular topics and hashtags that are being talked about on Facebook but that’s not all. Unlike how Trends work on Twitter, this list is personalized based on things you’ve expressed an interest in. Each topic is accompanied by a headline. The headline briefly explains what is trending. For example,

facebook-trending

Clicking on any headline will redirect you to stories from people and Pages who have shared them with you or have shared them as Public and you will be able to see what people are saying about a particular topic in one place.

It’s pretty obvious that Facebook is on a mission to become the go-to destination for finding out what’s hot on the Web. Previously, real-time social networks like Twitter was the site of choice for social network users to read on which topics are hot on social media. With Trending, Facebook has now joined the game. If it proves to be successful, Trending will most likely make the jump to mobile at some point in the near future.

Facebook Takes on Twitter Once Again

Yeah, that’s right. This is not the first time that Facebook has found inspiration in Twitter. Previously, Facebook introduced hashtags allowing its users to tag topics, a feature that Twitter pretty much pioneered.

With Trending, Facebook is taking one of several initiatives to become the home of news on the web. If sources are to be believed, Mark Zuckerberg’s next big product will be to launch a newspaper app that brings together content from various publications. Combine this with the real-time news factor that Trending has now brought to Facebook and the social site is well on its way to become the network of choice for people to learn about the hottest topics of the moment.

And with all the talk about Facebook losing popularity among the younger crowd, this new market could well be the sustaining force to make sure that the social network keeps its current users and add new ones. As mentioned before, Trending is currently being rolled out in several countries and as with the other Facebook features we’ve seen over time, continuous improvements will make perfect.

Trending is Annoying; How Can I Get Rid of it?

Ever since Trending has been introduced, one of the most asked questions about it is how users can get rid of it. Here is the thing though: Facebook does not currently allow users to disable the trending box.

Facebook users have gone so far as to file a petition on Change.org asking Mark Zuckerburg to at least give users the opportunity to choose whether or not they want to see the Trending box but Facebook is yet to publish a response.

But if you really hate the Trending box that much, there are two things you can do to make it disappear. Both solutions work appropriately in a variety of browsers.

1. Using Adblock Plus to remove the Trending box by treating it like an ad

Follow this link

2. Using the FB Purity Extension

Follow this link

So, while you can’t disable Trending through the native Facebook interface, you can make it go away.

In Summary

How many times have you seen topics trending on Twitter and you had no idea why? For example, currently on my Twitter home, the top four trends are:

1. mexicanproblemsnight

2. GangstaBroadway

3. GoldenGodsAwards

4. beforeiwasinafandom

What about mexicanproblemsnight? What about GangstaBroadway? It seems that Facebook not only found inspiration in Twitter; it improved Trends as we know it from the micro-blogging site. The Trending box is a good addition to Facebook’s user experience.


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