In the digital marketing world, we’re all trying to get more attention, gain more fans, and increase our social media footprint. Facebook, the largest consumer data vault in the world, is a crucial element to any digital marketing strategy for your business. In the past, sharing your “40% Off Christmas Decor” sale or newest product promo video on Facebook helped increase traffic to your website and brought in new customers. Sadly, those days are numbered.
Last Friday, Facebook announced that it will change the rankings of posts made by marketers to reduce the number that appear in News Feeds. For businesses, this means they will see less of their <free> promotional content being shared with their fans.
Why did this happen?
Facebook conducted a survey for hundreds of thousands of people to learn more about their opinion on the content in their News Feeds. They responded that they would like more stories in their feed from friends and less promotional content. Facebook says this change will increase relevancy and quality of stories that people see in their News Feeds.
What should businesses do?
Facebook still cares about your business and wants you to share content! Keep posting consistently, and target your posts if you want to reach a specific group of people through Facebook’s Post Targeting and Privacy settings. Make sure your post includes an image and relevant text, and create posts that are meaningful and will attract engagement. But, because of Facebook’s new algorithm change, if your post is solely to get people to buy a specific product, download an app, or in any way promote something, you’ll want to pay for it through ads if you want it to be seen. Facebook says that targeting users based on geographic location or interests are a better way to reach customers, and that advertising offers better results tracking than page posts.
Want my opinion?
Overall, I understand the importance of hiding “spammy” posts on a consumers feed and appreciate that Facebook wants our News Feed to have more relevant content, but shouldn’t it be up to the consumer to decide what they want to see? As an online marketer for businesses, we’ve spent time and money trying to grow our base of followers, only now to have our posts be seen significantly less. As a consumer, I hope that I won’t be missing out on content I deem important. There’s a reason I followed a business in the first place, so I hope their content will still be shared. I would like to see Facebook better educate consumers on adding Interest Lists and notifications, or go back to when posts/pages naturally fell off your feed if you did not show interest in them through your actions.
In the end, because of this change some businesses might focus more on other social platforms, but realistically, no business can afford to ignore Facebook. I’m eager to see what will come of this change.