Nick Verlaney, a social media strategist at DEG, co-authored this post. 

In a predictable move, Facebook is updating its News Feed algorithm again to advance its promise to prioritize human connections. This focus will ultimately decrease the reach of public, media, and branded content and instead focus on showing more posts from friends and family.

As a result of this update, Pages may see a general decrease in reach, referral traffic, and video watch time, with implications varying from page to page, depending on the type of content they produce and how Facebook users engage with it. You can read the full details on Facebook’s News Feed update here.

Our social media experts can help you capitalize on every moment you have with your customers—here’s how.

These changes mean marketers may have to readjust their social strategies in order to effectively reach their target audiences. Here are some of the main points brands will have to keep in mind moving forward:

The intersection of organic and paid social is undeniable

If you have separate strategies or teams working against paid and organic social, it’s time to reevaluate your approach. Integration of the two strategies is essential to success. Objectives might still be different (say, ecommerce conversion vs. awareness/engagement), but the average Facebook user doesn’t see a paid ad or an organic post. They just see branded content. Understanding and defining how the two strategies need to work together should be a key focus in 2018.

If you have separate strategies or teams working against paid and organic social, it’s time to reevaluate your approach.

Don’t forget that social media is a community

The beauty of social is that it’s not just a marketing channel to broadcast to your audience. It’s time to rethink your community engagement strategy if that has been taking a backseat to content creation. Find ways to authentically connect with your customers in the moments that really matter—whether it’s a comment on an owned page, a post found through proactive social listening, or a complaint—these one-to-one interactions are going to be more important than ever. Facebook cares about two-way conversations happening on the platform.

It’s time to re-think your community engagement strategy if that has been taking a backseat to content creation.

Focus on creating stories worth sharing

Engage your audience in topics that matter to them, prioritize quality over quantity, and create content that truly connects with people.

Think about Messenger

If you haven’t defined how you’re using Facebook Messenger, it’s time to get to work. Brands are using Messenger to broaden the ways in which they engage their Facebook audience. For example: interactive gift guide experiences, customer service, news notifications, content distribution, and entertainment gaming.

Find favor in Facebook Groups 

On the topic of communities, consider creating or connecting Facebook Groups to your corporate or local pages. There may be passionate sub-communities who want to stay connected on a specific topic. For example, HBO has a group specifically for fans of its Big Little Liars series. Brands can act as a great facilitator for relevant conversations to their mission. Publishers like The New York Times, BuzzFeed, and the Today Show have all launched special-interest groups on the platform in the past few months. Facebook has also launched Group Insights for communities of more than 250 people, which provide great insight on topic performance and engagement.

Brands can use Facebook Groups to facilitate conversations relevant to their missions.

Interested in learning how your business can use the Facebook News Feed update to its advantage? Contact us.

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