Over the past decade, the Facebook News Feed has been one of the tools used primarily by most businesses and startups, and it looks set to continue that way—for now, at least. With new changes to the Facebook algorithm, 2018 is demanding marketers change their digital strategy plan. Before looking at these changes, let’s explore how Facebook Pages have evolved up to this point.
As it stands, with just a Facebook Page, a small business can operate and facilitate an entire day’s work through the social media platform’s collection of amazingly-useful features.
These features allow Page’s to optimize content for the Facebook News Feed to automate social media marketing strategy. For instance, the Scheduling feature allows Page Admins to plan a month’s worth of content, in advance.
It helps keep your Facebook Page continually updated without you having to post all the time, and you get to serve your fans with fresh content—even when don’t have time to post updates.
Likewise, the Shopping feature allows you to integrate e-commerce functionality into your Facebook page and sell your products/services to your fans. It’s a fact: with billions of users, Facebook is currently the largest social media platform, and that makes it a suitable place to get more leads—and ultimately, sales.
Aside from products, service industry leaders enjoy the appointment bookings feature to help streamline their customer service.
Additionally, most Facebook Page’s will ultimately rely on the power of paid social content, or Facebook Advertising, which is an incredibly fresh market that is affordable and comes with a unique set of targeting options for audiences.
This is especially true moving forward, as Facebook has announced it will reduce the amount of organic content, appearing from Pages, will actually make it to the News Feed.
2018: New Year, New Facebook News Feed?
Of course, in 2018, Facebook shocked business pages and news outlets with an algorithm change.
The announcement introduced the concept of how many users were disappointed in the News Feed; mainly because it lacked real social content, and instead, was replaced with sales posts or news articles. Facebook users lamented that their News Feed had become saturated by generic, boring content.
So, to ensure that they keep up with the demanding pace of the Internet industry, Facebook is shaking the News Feed up a bit.
In February 2018, Facebook changed how it would factor organic reach for a post. Reach will be based on viewable impressions, which is a much stricter definition if you follow the analytics of your Page. However, Facebook ads already rely on this definition to define reach, so this is a move towards consistency. Managers can expect a 20% decrease in their post’s organic reach.
The number of people who see your post or ad won’t likely change, however, the frequency probably will, allowing News Feeds to once again flourish with personal content from individual accounts. Implying users would see more content from user accounts than page content.
If you have also noticed, Facebook has installed an alternative feed, the Explore Feed, which would focus mainly on posts from people and pages not associated with users’ profiles—essentially a discovery-style feed.
This freeform content stream is designed for users explicitly looking to “explore,” as the name suggests.
Although Page content will make it to the main News Feed, the Explore feed will primarily feature page content and posts from other people.
The downside? Ultimately, Facebook is trying to make it harder for Pages to get organic content in front of potential leads. Whether this change affects your Facebook Page(s) or not, you should try to have a good idea of how to take advantage of these changes.
Here are some helpful tips for surviving the Facebook News Feed update that will help you stream your content to the best audience:
1. Get More Positive Reviews to Increase Brand Awareness
Yes, you must have asked yourself several times, “Is there anything I can do to get back into the News Feed?”
Pause for a moment; you forgot something significant here—reviews and ratings! These mentions are absolutely the first thing you need to focus on, positive reviews.
It is essential that you provide your customers with high-quality products and outstanding services through Facebook.
Doing so will increase the odds of your customers sharing their experience. Now, this is a two-way street, and you win both ways: they rate your Page and share their knowledge for other users to see, and they also post it to their timeline.
You know what this means, right? You don’t need to struggle with the seemingly-difficult News Feed; your customers help spread the word, and other users get the posts in their own News Feed.
So, when you provide your customers with the best products and services, there’s a good chance that they won’t ignore you.
Reviews especially take importance on Facebook’s recent Local app, which is an extension of many of the local and nearby features available through Facebook Mobile.
This app features a content stream of events and reviews, two things that will get your Page noticed by customers.
Word-of-mouth (by proxy) is powerful, after all.
2. Stop Asking for Likes and Comments to Gain Reach
Getting more likes and comments will increase the ranking of Facebook Pages, and that is likely to remain true.
However, Pages asking for likes and comments will suffer in the News Feed.
Facebook wants to enhance the quality of our work and focus on providing better content to users.
Keep posting visual content. Videos are still great. Videos will increase user engagement and in turn boost your posts’ reach.
By doing this, you’ll get their attention, and without asking, they’ll engage with your posts.
You’ll then be able to maintain a higher ranking on Facebook News Feed, regardless of any change.
3. Change Up Your Organic Posting Strategy
Organic content is free-to-create, is purely permission-based (which is why your content must be optimized to convert exceptionally well); on the other hand, paid content, rings “interruptive” (you have to pay to interrupt users’ activities to pass across your message).
While you should have a paid strategy, there are things you can do to increase your organic post reach:
- Post informative, non-promotional content.
- Post about your company culture and create content that is truly social.
- Use the Facebook Audience Optimization post targeting tool to engage the relevant audience and analyze what they’re interested in can help, if you have a large page following.
- Post native Facebook videos to boost your reach.
- Share your Facebook Page posts to personal timelines. You can also promote your content on other Facebook Pages or through paid partnerships with Branded Posts.
- Create a hashtag campaign and encourage users to use it, too!
- Start a Facebook Group surrounding an engaging interest.
4. Chase Leads with Engaging Content and Click-Worthy Posts
It is essential Page’s pursue leads instead of comments and likes. When Page’s share high-quality content, users won’t be able to ignore it.
The Facebook News Feed update is all about prioritizing quality, top-notch content, and if Page’s focus on improving the quality of our content, organic reach doesn’t have to suffer.
Also, it is essential your posts are highly engaging; this will give your fans a reason to come back on your Facebook Pages and anticipate similar content.
5. Create Meaningful Content Which is Truly Social
Virtually all Page owners have heard this a lot of times but instead opt for generic, dull content. Content should always be evergreen.
If you decide to do the same thing, especially after the recent changes in the Facebook News Feed, there’s a good chance that your Facebook Page’s reach and engagement will drop.
It’s essential that you focus your content on a target audience that you’ve researched, so you can pass the right message to them, creating a conversation with a specific, target audience.
This way, your posts share with the people interested in your products or service. This effort will increase engagement and generate leads.
6. Use Facebook as a Communication Platform
If you build a healthy relationship with your customers, it will go far to increase your posts’ engagement. Rely on traditional marketing roots and build relationships.
Also, you should try to respond to messages and inquiries on time; if you do, you’ll see that customers will show a better response in return by engaging more and leaving likes and positive comments on your posts.
You should take at least 1 hour and spend it interacting with your customers on a more informal, personal level; you’ll instantly see the results when you post additional content.
You might not have the time, but it is essential that you stay connected with your potential customers so as ensure that they don’t go over to your rivals.
7. Boost Your Posts and Contribute More Ad Spend to Facebook
Naturally, organic content is getting tubed because Facebook’s best interest is with their users.
They don’t want to enable other businesses to use their platform to make money, without giving something back to the social media platform. Facebook Ads is how they generate this incentive, and every year, the advertising platform has grown significantly.
We’ve already determined ads on Facebook are not as likely to be impacted by the Facebook News Feed change.
An excellent strategy to get your content in front of your audience is to take your typical organic posts.
After they have been posted initially, after a few hours, “boost” the posts to increase reach.
This, essentially, turns the post into an ad. For as a little as $2.00 and 24-hours, you can expand the reach of the post.
By setting each post into a boosted post, for a minimal amount, a Page can significantly increase total reach and engagement, over time.
In an experiment with this technique, the Facebook Page posted once a day for two weeks.
During this period $2.00 boosts ran on each post intended to be an organic post.
By targeting Page followers, and friends of Page followers, this strategy increases Page reach significantly.
This can help offset any negative side effects a Page may be experiencing due to recent changes.
And there you have it, seven tips to reduce the impact of Facebook’s New Feed Change in 2018.
Give them a whirl.