Facebook recently announced a major change to their algorithm that impacts businesses and content publishers directly. For those unaware, the change is part of Facebook’s ongoing effort to ensure the content shown to you is content that you actually care about. As a result, Facebook is prioritizing posts from friends and families over business pages and media publishers. The full post announcement from Mark Zuckerburg can be read here. The changes are said to be rolling out over the next few months.
What This Change Means for Your Business
The biggest change businesses can expect to see is a decrease in organic reach for their posts. The algorithm change will be showing less business page posts to users overall, therefore decreasing your overall organic reach. Part of this effort is to get businesses to invest more in Facebook ads, further pushing companies in a “pay to play” model for social media.
Companies already investing in Facebook ads may an increase in costs for traditional social metrics like CPM (cost per thousand impressions), clicks, and conversions. The reason for this is due to Facebook’s auction-based buying system for ads. Simply put, more competition = higher bids.
Better Engagement Equates to Better Reach
One of the main points called out by Mark Zuckerburg in his announcement was business pages whose posts do not start a conversation between friends will see the biggest impact. Previously likes, clicks, and shares for posts and pages impacted overall organic reach. This will slowly change with the focus being on comments.
Pages who previously tried to game the system with posts that encouraged users to share or like the post will need to adjust their methods quickly. Facebook has made it quite clear that the primary metric going forward will be comments and conversation amongst friends within the comments section.
Good Content Still Remains Undefeated
The overall strategy for businesses should still remain the same: create meaningful content that your users actually care about. If your audience cares, they are more likely to comment and positively impact the post. Businesses who do this correctly will likely see a very positive impact in organic reach for their posts.
Trying to game the system and tell users to “comment below” won’t work either… Facebook has said the new algorithm will look for these phrases and negatively impact those posts and pages. Only good authentic content that strikes up a conversation will be positively impacted.
What You Need to Do
Let’s face it… there are a lot of topics in our industry that aren’t necessarily going to start a major conversation within the comments section. Businesses need to strongly evaluate the content published on their business pages and determine if their audience cares.
Businesses also need to accept the reality that investments into social ads must be considered if they want to have a social presence. There are plenty of upsides here outside of overall reach. Our article on how B2B companies can use Facebook Ads gives a great overview of how to get started.
What We Are Doing
Over the next month, we are focusing on more topical content for our clients. We are doing a deep content evaluation, and working to move social content towards trends and current events in their customer’s industries. By helping our clients become a voice, we will help drive conversations about things that are important to their clients.
Internally, we are working to become more of a voice within our industry. We are shifting much of the content we create and share to be less about our industry, and more about your industry (the IT channel). We plan on bring transparent about this change and sharing the results over the coming months…so stay tuned.