What is it?
As with Apple’s News, Facebook Instant Articles was built to overcome the problem of slow loading times for pages on the mobile web.
It includes features such as auto-play video and tap-to-zoom picture galleries.
Should you use it?
The idea is, as we covered in Chapter 3 of MMJ, to reach audiences that won’t find you any other way.
Facebook has possibly the largest online audience in the world
Like Apple, Facebook promises you total control over the look and feel of your articles, and offers what it calls “a rich suite of multimedia tools to create dynamic, interactive stories.”
Keep all the revenue from your direct-sold adds, or monetise content through the facebook Audience Network
Use your own web-based analytics systems or use third-party providers
How do you publish on it?
Here’s a summary of the steps involved:
- Log in to your Facebook account and click the link facebook.com/instant_articles/signup
- Select the Facebook page you want to publish on (it has to be a page, not just an account)
- Claim your url
- From the settings tab of the Facebook page, click on Instant Articles
- Connect your WordPress (or other) site to the Facebook page
- Add your team and give them roles
- Create style templates for your instant articles with the style editor
- Create and format articles
- Submit at least five articles for approval
- Await approval, then start publishing
Points at which you might need tech help
To connect your site, and to claim your url, you need to add some code to the <head>tag in your website’s html, so you’ll need access to it.
You’ll need to either use Facebook’s UPI, set up an RSS feed, or use the WordPress plugin to funnel articles to Facebook.
Using the WordPress plugin for Facebook Instant Articles
Download the plug in
Once installed, open the plugin and follow the instructions to configure it for story style and analytics.
There’s also a step-by-step guide from Buffer here.