How Slate doubled Facebook referrals in less than a year


A case study on Facebook's new media portal looks at Slate's rocketing Facebook traffic over the past year. Psychology explains some of the rise: "Slate’s stories frequently have provocative, attention grabbing headlines," Facebook notes. But publishers without Slate's gift for those can benefit from some of the other tips in the study:

It puts "share" and "like" buttons in a couple of places: One up by the headline, another at the foot.

The share dialog prompts a user to add a comment to the article, creating a strong signal back to Facebook. story pages have both Share and Like buttons prominently visible, so readers can choose how they want to post the story to Facebook.

It makes calls to action: "The descriptive comments from Slate editors often directly solicit feedback from followers."

Here's a recent example:

It optimizes Open Graph tags. If you don't know what that means, print out this page for your Web folks.

Related: How journalists can measure engagement | How news orgs are reaching millions through Facebook's new apps

  • Andrew Beaujon

    Andrew Beaujon reported on the media for Poynter from 2012 to 2015. He was previously arts editor at and managing editor of Washington City Paper. He's the author of the 2006 book "Body Piercing Saved My Life," about Christian rock and evangelical Christian culture.


Related News

Email IconGroup 3Facebook IconLinkedIn IconsearchGroupTwitter IconGroup 2YouTube Icon