And get some sage advice on the new Facebook algorithm
If you’re a brand on Facebook, you’re probably aware of the Facebook Apocalypse, the major changes that are coming to the newsfeed. The Facebook Apocalypse! Intense, right? Cue the lightning bolts and thunderclaps.
But, let’s pump the brakes on this whole social media end-of-times narrative. As Socrates once said: “The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new.” This is a better mantra for taking on the challenge of the new algorithm. There is no point in complaining or trying to game the system. Instead, it’s time to focus on building a new social media strategy because you have two options: Change or disappear from the newsfeed.
In case you live under a rock
Brands that once relied on tactics like contests that required commenting and sharing, engagement by GIF, or posts celebrating lame fake holidays (National Pet Rock Day, anyone?) will have to throw away their playbook. The newsfeed adjustments will now require marketers to develop killer content that engages the audience. Imagine that?
This is one of Facebook’s most drastic changes in the history of the platform and it’s important to understand the full impact. Mark Zuckerberg made it clear that brands, businesses and publishers were going to be significantly cut from the newsfeed as the algorithm will now focus on person-to-person interaction. This makes engaging content critical. Content that simply generates likes will no longer get the job done.
Change creates opportunity (and new strategy!)
As everyone begins adapting to the new newsfeed style, here’s a list of practices that you should start and stop doing as you move forward with your Facebook content.
Producing meaningful content. Your goal should be to inspire conversation between Facebook users. The longer and more detailed comments will be given more weight and relevance.
Encouraging your audience to add you to their “See First” selection. This is a way to ensure your audience doesn’t miss your content.
Leveraging the power of Facebook Live video. There is speculation that even general video will take a dip with the changes coming to the newsfeed, so be sure to leverage this and encourage your audience to get involved by commenting on the video.
Focusing less on frequency of posts. Spend more energy on engagement and attainment when developing content.
Exploring potential ways to leverage Facebook groups. A great example would be a nonprofit like Boston-based LuMind RDS Foundation and how they are using a group for their runners program fundraising efforts. This is a way to communicate directly with program participants as well as foster a community of encouragement, one that’s led by the group and not the organization.
Developing a deep Facebook paid advertising strategy. This should include custom audiences and retargeting.
Incorporating Facebook features like Messenger. Get these tools into your social media marketing plan and engage your audience in a one-on-one setting.
Engaging with your entire staff on social media. If the individuals on your team are engaged and personally driving the conversation, it could have a meaningful impact on your content engagement and reach.
Posting to check the “post complete” box each day. Trust us, it shows when you are just phoning it in! You are better off not even posting at all.
Attempting to foster engagement through click-baiting. 1. This is annoying and 2. It isn’t effective. Don’t try to grow your audience by posting click, like or “share if you agree” content.
Producing content that does not elicit conversation. Stop with the “quote of the day” or simple links to your latest blog. Again, this does not drive conversation and will no longer be relevant.
Using the Facebook platform as a way to blast out your information. Save that for your email marketing. Social media should generate engagement rather than force-feed your audience information.
Focusing on your brand. The focus should be on your audience. The new algorithm will focus on conversations and individuals. That’s why it’s important to inspire engagement.
Don’t panic… produce
These changes are going to require not only a significant mental shift by marketers, but also an incredible increase in effort and analysis. But if you commit to creating inspired content that starts conversations and increases engagement, you will be able to handle the adjustment in stride.
If your organization is feeling overwhelmed and doesn’t know where to start, we can help. Just give us a shout. You don’t even have to send us a friend request.
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