Facebook Trending: What It Means for Your Cause

The Facebook Trending Feature was launched for all users in January 2014. Similar to Twitter’s Trends feature, Trending lists the topics and hashtags that have recently spiked in popularity on Facebook. Clicking on a trending topic will show you more content on that subject. Facebook organizes this content into five categories.

  1. Articles shows you how news organizations are covering the story
  2. In the Story shows you posts from people who are part of the story
  3. Friends and Groups shows you what people in your network are saying
  4. Near the Scene shows you posts from people near where the story is unfolding
  5. Live Feed shows you a real-time stream of reactions from people around the world

Only public posts and posts from your network (like updates from friends or groups that you belong to) will be shown in trending.

How does Facebook determine what topics are trending?

According to Facebook:

“The list [of Trending topics] is personalized to show you relevant stories based on a number of factors, including

  1. Pages you’ve liked
  2. Your location
  3. What’s trending across Facebook.

For each trend, posts from verified sources or from people or Pages that you’re connected to will appear higher in the trending feed.”

Facebook Trending on Andriod

Recently the Trending feature was expanded to Andriod users in the US. Service for iOS and other countries is reportedly on the way.

The mobile version follows all the same rules as desktop and has full functionality.

Facebook trending

How do I use Facebook Trending for my cause?

There are a few ways you can leverage Trending for your cause. All three strategies listed below have the power to increase the reach and engagement your content enjoys on Facebook.

1. Generate content ideas

The Trending feature can give you great insight into what people are talking about and what they’re interest in. With this one go beyond simply what is trending and look at what kinds of content are trending. In other words look for patterns. Are there subjects or themes that seem to keep trending over time? Is it usually news stories or videos? Finding these patterns and using them can work to your advantage. This could give you a better idea of what content resonates best with Facebook users empowering you to reach and engage more people.

2. Join the Conversation

Share trending content that matters to your organization and ask your audience for their thoughts. If a subject is already being talked about, why not bring that conversation to your page? This is likely to increase your page’s reach and audience engagement. It could also connect your audience to each other, strengthening your supporter’s network. When doing so pay attention to what hashtags are being used around the topic and be sure to use the right ones. Hashtags connect your post to the larger conversation.

3. Use Trending Content in your Actions

Actions on trending topics and current events trend to perform really well, reaching and engaging a greater number of people. If you notice a trending topic that relates to your cause be sure to create an action around it. This strategy is the most time sensitive of the three. To get the most bang for your buck try to create and post the action as soon as possible as trends could come and go within a day or two.