Times they are a-changing! Facebook announces news feed changes.
Turmoil this week as everyone mulls over the latest Facebook changes!
However, we do need to remember that Facebook is always evolving and it should! Their reasons are two fold. firstly, increasing our experience when interacting with our friends and family and secondly, to make money via their advertisements. So, getting businesses to buy into their advertising options is always going to be somewhere near the top of the list of things that will evolve.
If you have a business page, Facebook will be hoping you will eventually need to buy into their advertising. They continue to make it really easy for you with access to a number of page options to showcase your products and services, push e-commerce, gain reviews and post engaging content.
To date, advertising has always been optional and if you have enough ‘Likes’ on your business page, you could count on your at least some of your followers seeing your organic posts in their daily feeds. However, the latest changes will swerve these possibilities.
Their latest announcement – “Facebook Announces Coming News Feed Changes Which Will Reduce the Reach of Page Posts” means that:
Friend to Friend is now the primary focus. Your news feed will allow more of the posts from your “friends” than from business pages. This means it will squeeze out a lot of those business posts.
Long and thoughtful replies get a boost. This was the second half of the announcement, and it seems to be a significant pivot. The focus on recorded videos will change as they will not get nearly the weight they once did. Passive scrolling and low-quality engagement are now considered bad. Posts that get long, thoughtful replies will get priority in your newsfeed.
So, what does that mean for your business?
Facebook’s Head of News Feed, Adam Mosseri offers some suggestions:
“Page posts that generate conversation between people will show higher in News Feed. For example, live videos often lead to discussion among viewers on Facebook – in fact, live videos on average get six times as many interactions as regular videos. Many creators who post videos on Facebook prompt discussion among their followers, as do posts from celebrities. In Groups, people often interact around public content. Local businesses connect with their communities by posting relevant updates and creating events. And news can help start conversations on important issues.”
From Adam’s statement there is a hint that creating “live” video will get you more visibility in news feeds. If you are not comfortable or able to do live video on Facebook, should you dump your page? We don’t think so!
You might need to tweak your strategy a little, but there are still plenty of reasons to have a Facebook Business Page:
People still search for businesses on Facebook. If they Google you and find your page comes up, they will still click through and find out all they need to by searching your page, your products, services and take a look at your reviews.
You could consider making your posts more relevant to your business and look at upping your content creation. You can showcase your blog, your podcasts, webinars or events to help make it more relevant for readers.
Consider changing your “Call to Action” button to: Sign up for My Newsletter or Visit My Website, rather than Call Me or Email Me. Your visitors may only visit your Facebook page once, so get your best value and send them where you want the traffic. You can also ask them to tag the option to see your page first in their news feed. Your local customers will probably not hesitate to do this.
Think about your posts and reduce the click bait! Don’t ask for crazy likes and shares – make them more meaningful and it will benefit your business by getting the right people following you.
You could think about creating a Facebook Group with your business page and provide a community for your followers to interact with each other. With you being the leader, you can announce workshops, webinars or when you have a lead magnet to share. This is one to think through as it does potentially mean a little more time on Facebook, but obviously if a lot of the visitors to your site or your customers come from this source, it is worth considering.
Boosting your posts is still a relatively cheap option. If you have a specific post you want to reach your followers, you could consider ‘Boosting’ it
Buying Ads. You can still use your business page to buy advertising. They can still be very targeted and therefore, effective. Just make sure you optimise your audience as much as you can. You are effectively renting a new contact list! The key is to get them to sign up for your own email marketing list and make them your contact. However, just be aware that you are likely to have to increase your budget if you do use Facebook as one of your marketing tools.
Here is Mark Zuckerberg’s announcement of Thursday, January 11th from Facebook: