Week 6 & 7: Facebook


Required New Media Apps this Week:

  • If you do not wish to use your newly created account or an already existing account for purposes of this class, then you may create a Facebook page for your website. Please be aware, that Facebook requires users to sign up for a personal Facebook account prior to creating a page for your website. You are under no obligation to develop your personal page however.

Required Readings this Week:

  1. Read Best Practices for Facebook Journalists.
  2. Read how to get readers from your Facebook outpost to your website.
  3. Read Leah Betancourt’s tips about Facebook sources, leads and ethics on Mashable.

Quick Facts for Journalists using Facebook

  • Personal analysis is effective: Posts that included at least 5 lines of the journalist’s analysis and personal reflections had 20% more referral clicks than that of an average post.
  • Posts with questions received 2X more comments and 64% more feedback overall than an average post.
  • Photos received 50% more likes than non-photo posts. (Source)


Look at the post from CNN about Beyonce. Notice the anatomy of a great Facebook news post:

  1. It contains a picture. In this case, it is a still from a video.
  2. It contains a Facebook hashtag to help others find similar topics. The well thought-out text leading up to the link, encourages readers to click.
  3. It ends with a hyperlink directing traffic to CNN’s website. Notice the link is a shortened URL; read how to shorten the URLs when posting on new media.


Now let’s look further into what make for a great Facebook post and great Facebook status updates.

6FB Infograph

Ideas for Facebook Status Updates

  1. Post an interesting fact
  2. Share a tip
  3. Endorse content
  4. Ask a question
  5. Inspire action
  6. Use images with text
  7. Post photo and ask others to write a caption
  8. Hold a contest

To find out other ideas, please look at the infographic below.


Lab Assignments:

        1. Create a Facebook account. You may, if you wish, use an account you already have, or you may create a new page for your site. If you wish to create a new page for your site, you will need to
          1. Create a new e-mail account. You may wish to choose a name that reflects your beat. For example, my beat covers the NFL. I have created an an e-mail account “nflnews@mail.com”.
          2. Once you have a new e-mail account, you may then register for a new Facebook personal account, which will then allow you to create a page for your beat.
        2. Find what you think is a great Facebook post related to your beat. Create a new post or page and tell us why you like the Facebook post related to your beat. What was its main use? Was it creative? Why do you think so? How did it help drive traffic from the Facebook post to elsewhere (another website, a twitter account, etc.)? Remember, if you need a reference as to what makes a great Facebook post, look at CNN’s post with Beyonce on this page. Also, include a hyperlink on your class web site to your Facebook page on this post.
        3. As you know, most people receive their news from Facebook than any other social media outlet. So I would like you to create a new, original article that focuses on analysis of a topic  in connection to your beat. To create a new article that focuses on analysis, you will need to:
          1. Find a news article on the Internet in connection to your beat in which you either support or disagree with the position in the article.
          2. Create a new page on your website and provide it an effective title.
          3. Begin the article by placing a relevant photo at the top of the page, before you even start writing. Remember to write a caption for the photo and credit the source of the photo.
          4. Now write your analysis of the news event. Begin by objectively summarizing the article in a few sentences; answer the reporters’ questions.
          5. Once the article is summarized, offer your analysis of the news event. You should either support or disagree with the content in the article.
            1. State your opinion briefly in the fashion of a thesis statement, then elaborate in the body of the article.
            2. Give opposing viewpoint first with using quotations and facts.
            3. Now state your position. Give a realistic solution(s) to the problem that goes beyond common knowledge.
            4. Never use first person “I” or second person “you”.
            5. Format your article properly: short paragraphs, consider using a box out to highlight key points, etc..
        4. Now promote your new article on Facebook. Be sure to display all of the attributes that make a post effective in your post. Please use the hashtag #dccs225.
        5. Once you have completed the above, create a “Top 10 Interesting Facts” list about your topic. Conduct research. Make it interesting. Have fun with it. Include pictures as needed and promote on Twitter and Facebook using our course hashtag.
          • Now let’s focus on your blog. Go to your dashboard and create a new page where readers may ask you questions pertinent to your beat. Zachary Zane has labeled his page “Questions?” However, you may use any page name you wish: Q & A, FAQ, Questions and Answers, etc. Add the new page to your menu.
          • Next, go two classmate’s sites and ask him/her a question about the beat topic. Ask a question in the “comment” area of his/her newly created “questions” page. The question you ask may could be about anything related to his/her beat. Remember, please ask a question of two classmates; if you see that a classmate already has two questions, then please find another classmate’s site.
          • As comment moderator for your own site, please answer the questions you received about your own beat. Moderate any comments that may have been made.
          • Remember if you used outside sources to gain knowledge to answer the questions, then you must cite the source in your blog. I will show you how – just ask!
        6. Here is a checklist of where you should be at this point in the semester: website accomplishments.
        7. If you complete the above, please continue to produce content for your website.