What changes are being made?
Zuckerberg wants Facebook to facilitate more authentic interactions and build personal connections between users. The algorithm that controls who and what you see in your news feed will be focusing more on the people you interact with most frequently (and not in a “like and scroll” kind of way).
They’ll be placing more weight on posts from people you know as well as comments, conversations, shares and likes, instead of posts that don’t receive any interaction.
In addition to these changes, Zuckerberg also announced that the frequency of public content from business and brand pages will be reduced and held to the same standards as posts from private users.
The company predicts these changes will reduce the amount of time people spend on Facebook. Because of this, Zuckerberg wants to maximize the connections made during this shorter timeframe
“The research shows that when we use social media to connect with people we care about, it can be good for our well-being. We can feel more connected and less lonely, and that correlates with long term measures of happiness and health. On the other hand, passively reading articles or watching videos -- even if they're entertaining or informative -- may not be as good.” – Mark Zuckerberg
What does this mean for your business?
To be blunt - your numbers will drop and fewer people will be seeing your posts. This change is going to be rough for businesses; especially small and medium-size businesses that have a limited advertising budget. There will be two ways to go about the algorithm change:
- Spend more on ads.
- Create better content.
Sharing blog articles and new web pages won’t be enough to keep your business in news feeds. You’ll need to step up your game and give users more of what they want to see.
How do you stay afloat?
Here are a few tips to keep your content from getting washed out to sea.
- Remember that social media is just that – social. You’re dealing with people, not wallets, so don’t make everything a sales pitch. Create content that positions you as a trustworthy source and expert in your industry. Your audience can sense when they’re being sold vs. educated.
- People want to purchase products from people, not companies. Highlight your staff, managers and sales team. Let your audience know who is on the other end of the order form.
- Social media relies on visual, so include infographics or photos in all your posts. The first priority is to entertain and engage, directing people to your website should be second.
- Facebook assigns weight to every type of post. Facebook Live happens to rank at the top of this scale. Hosting an event? Let people attend from their couches. Want to establish yourself as an expert? Host a weekly Q&A or film a tutorial video.
- Get out into the community more. Create a small budget for donations or time for volunteering with a non-profit organization. You can then post pictures (or even stream a Facebook Live video) or your staff volunteering.
- Utilize the business features that Facebook offers. Create events and offers, publish jobs, create polls, and more.
HERE’S THE BIG ONE…
Converse with your audience. Ask questions, respond to comments and reviews, and ask for feedback. Because the new algorithm heavily relies on engagement, this is an absolute necessity to keep your business in the news feed of your targeted audience.