Facebook’s latest algorithm changes will transform the way your business utilizes social media, and to get the best results for your company, you’ll have to adjust your marketing strategy accordingly.
Essentially, the changes mean:
- Your fans may not see your latest business page post because it was bumped to the bottom of the newsfeed.
- You must include trending topics on your page in order to stay relevant.
- User attention, interaction and engagement are more important than ever.
We’ve taken an in-depth look at what this update means for your business.
Things you need to know about the Facebook algorithm
There are three main facets to this algorithm: trending topics, timing and social interaction.
- Hot topics lead the newsfeed
Don’t expect information about your latest promotion or blog post to have the same reach and engagement as it did under the old algorithm. More attention will be given to trending topics that spark conversation.
According to Facebook engineers, the changes will help users see content that is most relevant at that particular moment in time. The algorithm change discourages older posts that are no longer pertinent.
This also means that newsworthy headlines on current events will not be given the same priority as trending topics that spark immediate interaction.
So if, for example, more people are having conversations about the Golden Globe Awards instead of U.S. foreign policy, the awards program will trump political articles.
- It’s not what they like; it’s when they like it
The timing of your readers’ engagement determines where your post is placed in the newsfeed.
Comments registered shortly after you’ve published it will give the post a boost in the newsfeed.
Facebook theorizes that if a post has a lot of interaction immediately after posting, it is more relevant. This is of paramount importance to the new algorithm. For best results in the newsfeed, reactions should occur minutes after the post is published.
- Putting the social back into social networking
In press conferences, Mark Zuckerberg was very clear: the main purpose of Facebook is to bring people together, not fill newsfeeds with articles or business posts. As a result, expect to see a lot of traction from the posts about the football game your friends just attended.
Posts from businesses or publishers? Not so much.
The algorithm update is a reminder that the point of social media is to be social—e.g. speaking with your customers and not at them. Encouraging this interaction helps reinforce your brand and foster customer loyalty; two elements that are vital to marketing success.
Three ways the algorithms will impact your business
Are you nervous yet? Thinking of revamping your entire social media strategy? There are several things you should consider in response to these changes:
- You can no longer afford to ignore trending topics.
Scheduling posts weeks or even months in advance never got the same amount of traction that trending topics did—and Facebook’s new algorithm makes that even more so.
- Those who like your business page may never see your posts in their news feeds.
Failure to use a topic that spurs conversation and interest can cause your promotions and other information to be overlooked.
- Response time to comments, criticisms, etc. is now more important than ever.
Interaction is key to getting Facebook’s attention and improving your placement in the news feeds.
Not sure where to begin? These are some of the simple changes that can help you make the most out of Facebook’s recent algorithm change:
Examine the best way to utilize video.
Video has always been an important component of an effective marketing package. However, the latest changes may require that you look at video in a different way. Ask yourself: does this video spark engagement, or is it merely self-promotion? Am I providing a topic that is useful and timely? How is this relevant to my followers?
Stay abreast of the latest trends.
This means you’ll have to adjust your social media strategy more often. Be aware of what people are talking about. When possible, try to leverage the topic to your advantage. For example, if you’re a medical practice and the recent flu outbreak is all over social media, create a post that directly addresses some of the misconceptions you see. Perhaps a lively discussion is going on that the flu shot causes the flu? Respond with a post that addresses that concern.
Spam = death.
Okay, we’re being melodramatic.
But not by much.
Too many “salesy” posts have always been a bad idea. They are too quickly dismissed as spam, even if you’re pitching them to followers who may be interested. Now, more than ever, Facebook is taking careful aim to make it harder for self-promoting posts to get into the coveted top positions of the news feeds.
Carefully evaluate your content’s performance.
Which posts are getting the most likes? The most comments? The most shares? This is your window into your target customers’ social network. Examine what they find interesting and gear your content schedules to that purpose.
You can read more about the algorithm change on Facebook’s online newsroom.
So… is this latest Facebook change good news or bad news?
Algorithms are always changing; this is nothing new. Software giants like Google and Facebook and You Tube are constantly transforming how they receive and process information. This goes to prove what we “Proclaimers” have said all along:
When it comes to digital marketing, there is no such thing as “set it and forget it.”
Now, more than ever, success depends upon always remaining on the cutting edge of the latest developments, and we understand that can be incredibly challenging when running a business. Contact us to learn more about how we can help amplify your message.
Since its inception in 2000, Proclaim Interactive has combined excellence in design and think-out-of-the-box digital marketing to become one of the most award-winning firms in the region.
Proclaim Interactive provides website design, social media management, SEO and general marketing services designed to amplify clients’ messages. For more information, send us an email or call 910.795.4143.