Things are changing. FAST. Facebook recently announced one of the biggest changes to its newsfeed algorithm. And it affects everyone. Here’s what you should know about it, and what you can do.
In its latest update, Facebook is making changes so users see more posts from friends and family in their newsfeeds and less from brands and publishers.
According to Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, they started making changes last year based on research that indicated the platforms users were looking for more ‘meaningful interactions’. The roll-out will take months according to him and will begin with the above stated update to the newsfeed.
Previously, signals such as the number of likes/reactions, comments and shares a post received were used to determine whether it would show in a user’s newsfeed.
Now Facebook will also take into account the two-way interaction a post generates. If it incites more discussion and participation, it is more likely to show in a user’s newsfeed. These could be posts that seek advice or recommendation from friends and family, a news article, a video or even a poll – anything that perks up interest levels.
Impact on Brands and Publishers
Typically posts from friends and family incite more interaction and take precedence over those from brand pages and publishers. This update means the latter’s appearance in newsfeed is more likely to decrease.
So yes, starting sometime this year, expect a lower organic reach for your posts. But, this is true only for those brands that do not produce content that generates strong engagement (measured in likes, shares and comments).
What Can You Do?
While the full impact of this change is not totally clear, there are some actions you can take now to make sure the impact to your business is minimal.
- Produce quality content. The kind of posts that drive social engagement and get people talking. Not every post needs to be ‘produced’ by you – share posts by others. You should avoid overtly asking people to comment as this type of behaviour will result in your post being deprioritised. Remember good content doesn’t always have to be highly polished. The goal is to come up with something that will ‘wow’ your audience into engaging with the content.
- Utilise offline & other online platforms to spark conversations. Facebook will be prioritising posts shared by friends. Encourage your customers to upload photos or videos when they have experienced your product or service and to tag your Facebook Page. Use your website, other social channels and point of sale collateral like newsletters or brochures to encourage user led content creation.
- If you’re not already doing so, invest some time and money in With organic reach likely to decrease with changes to the news feed algorithm, brands should (if they are not already) look at utilising Facebook Ads to reach their Facebook audience.
- Leverage larger networks on Facebook. Create content that larger publishers such as tourism boards or influencers will be willing to share. Develop promotions that involve multiple brands and improve sharibility. Look beyong your page – be social.