Mark Zuckerberg, the creator of Facebook, recently announced changes to Facebook’s newsfeed algorithm – specifically how it decides what posts to show people. With these changes, posts from personal profiles will now be shown more, and content from brands and news outlets less. Therefore, users should expect to see less passive reading material in their newsfeed and more posts about their friend’s vacation or what they ate for lunch.
Why is this happening?
Zuckerberg is trying to put the “social” back in social media. That is, he wants Facebook to foster relationships between people rather than act as a content source. The logic behind this, as Zuckerberg put it, is that, “time spent connecting with people leads to overall feeling of decreased loneliness and overall wellbeing”. He went on to also state that, on the other hand, “passively reading articles or watching videos — even if they’re entertaining or informative — may not be as good”.
So, how will this affect you and shape your efforts to connect with your audience on Facebook? Here are a few things to expect:
1. Your Organic Reach Will Probably Decline
Organic reach is the number of unique Facebook users that see a social media post without the publisher having paid for an ad. For brands, this has actually been declining over the last few years as they have become more competitive and newsfeeds have become overcrowded with brand content, prompting Facebook to respond by decreasing the visibility of this content. With this new algorithm change, you can expect your organic reach to decline even more.
How can you soften this blow for your brand? Read on…
2. The Quality of Your Content Will Become More Important
If your brand shares curated content that you think your audience will enjoy, you’re going to have to rethink your content strategy. According to Zuckerberg, public content posted by brands will be held to the same standard as private content and should “encourage meaningful interactions between people.”
What does this content look like? Well, live videos tend to spark the most amount of conversation on Facebook compared to blog articles, which are generally consumed passively without generating many comments, likes, or shares.
Our advice is to try creating live videos or to encourage comments on your posts by posing questions. The more engagement your post gets, the more likely it is to show up in someone’s newsfeed.
3. Influencer Marketing May be the Key to Staying Relevant on Facebook
Influencer marketing has long been a popular tactic for brands to get in front of a larger audience by leveraging people that their followers love. Although Facebook is penalizing content distributed by brands, they haven’t announced any intention of doing the same to content posted by influencers.
With this in mind, now might be a good time to start creating a killer influencer marketing strategy
4. Your Ads are Going to Need to be Really, Really Good
These Facebook newsfeed changes mean that users are likely to spend less time on Facebook since there will be less passive content for them to consume. This then suggests that brands will have less screen time to get in front of their target audience with ads, which means that industries that rely on Facebook ads may need to spend more to be seen.
How can brands get around this? The best way to be seen without spending too much is to make sure that your ads are interesting to your target market and are only shown to people who would click on them. The more optimized the ad, the better ‘bang for your buck’ you can expect.
5. You’re Actually Going to Need to Engage on Facebook
While Facebook will be making posts distributed by brands less visible, this won’t affect comments that brands make on other people’s posts. Therefore, if brands engage more in real time with their audience (commenting on posts, posting in groups), they will foster relationships with users and give themselves a new way to become visible on Facebook – regardless of these changes.
For more tips and tricks on how to improve your social strategy, check out our blog, “Don’t Do Social, Be Social”.
Not sure where to begin? Our Social Media team is made up of experts that keep up to date with these changes as they happen. Contact us today to learn more about Facebook and all of the other platforms you should be leveraging!