Like most of us, Facebook started 2018 with a new year’s resolution to put family and friends first. Whilst for most of us, that translates to family and friends being bothered a little bit more, Facebook wants your family and friends to be bothered a little bit less – by you.
In one of Facebook’s biggest shakeups, businesses and brands will see less prominence on people’s newsfeeds, resulting in some pretty big changes for users and for businesses.
Bringing People Closer Together
Reminiscent of Nokia’s connecting people, Facebook wants to bring people closer together by ensuring that time spent on Facebook, “is time well spent”. This is going to be achieved by promoting content that has “more meaningful social interactions”, specifically:
- Ensuring that users see more posts from Aunty Debbie and fewer posts from Uncle Advertising;
- Ensuring quality news, from trustworthy sources (as rated by Facebook users); and
- Prioritising local news, to bring communities together and encourage civic engagement.
Recently, there has been a lot of focus on how social media can affect our health and happiness in a bad way; and Facebook has taken note. Commissioning some of its own research, Facebook found that passive social media makes us feel lonely and disconnected, whilst social media then encourages us to connect with people makes us happy and healthy and Facebook wants to promote that.
What’s Been The Reaction So Far?
Less time on Facebook. Facebook’s showed that since the change, users have been spending less time on Facebook. 50 million hours less per day, to be precise. That about two minutes per user.
What Does This Mean For You & What Can You Do?
You are likely to see a decrease in reach, referral traffic and video watch time and you’ll have to work harder on your Facebook posts. We’re still waiting to see the full implications of the change but following these good practice top tips, will help you to minimise the impact and promote the meaningful interactions that Facebook is after:
Post engaging quality content
Ask questions, divide opinion, seek comments — posts that spark interactions, conversation and debate will be promoted by Facebook. It is important to understand your audience and know what will capture their attention and make them interact with you. Embrace the changes to deliver innovative, diverse and share-worthy content: Don’t be passive!
Do not use engagement bait
Like this post if you like pizza!! This is not the way to get around the new changes. Engagement bait annoys users, annoys Facebook and will result in your content being demoted. Plus, FYI, we all like pizza.
Remind your audience that they can still follow your page and that, if they want to see more of your engaging quality content and fewer photos of their sister’s cat, they can, by selecting See First in their newsfeed preferences.
Create a Group
Since July 2017 pages have been able to create Facebook Groups and since Facebook Groups centre around discussions by super-fan, if they’re appropriate for your business or brand, they’re appropriate for being the perfect way to engage with your users.
Work on your Facebook ads
Understanding how Facebook ads work and properly targeting your posts to the right audience is more important than ever. Organic reach will decrease so using your Facebook ad spend strategically will help put you in front of the right people.
Facebook is still all for the video, especially Facebook Live, which they say leads to six times as many interactions as standard videos. Facebook’s announcement suggests that videos will see more promotion than posts so if you haven’t delved there yet, consider it an important part of your 2018 marketing plan.
Instruct an expert
Anyone can write but writing quality and engaging content can be difficult, especially when your social media prominence relies upon it. Don’t stare at a blank post screen – speak to someone who knows.