SOS – How to Handle Facebook’s New Page Algorithm

Facebook’s New Page Algorithm ARRRGGGHHH right? When Facebook’s news feed algorithm change was made public on January 11th, it was a sure sign that marketing strategies would need some serious revision. So, what’s going on and how can we navigate the updates?

Social Engagement and Meaningful Interaction

Facebook wants us all to start communicating with our nearest and dearest in a more meaningful way and is therefore prioritising content from friends, families and groups over companies. Mr Zuckerberg announced: “Pages making posts that people generally don’t react to or comment on could see the biggest decreases in distribution. Pages whose posts prompt conversations between friends will see less of an effect.”

So as you can see, it’s all about engagement. Things that were once considered ‘pretty good’ in the world of Facebook marketing are now being put on the backburner in favour of comments, comments and more comments. The following are now being deprioritised:

  • Content with external links
  • Video content (unless it generates meaningful conversations)
  • Content that explicitly asks for user engagement
  • Branded posts and advertisements from companies
  • Pages that see a low user interaction

The changes are real. They’re significant and it’s no surprise that engagement stats are falling across the Facebook marketing world – but there is room for a comeback.

Taking on the Facebook News Feed Algorithm

While the algorithm might not have been part of your 2018 marketing plan – it’s not all doom and gloom. Facebook has been very clear about what they’re focussing on, so if you still want to be seen on this social media platform it’s important to fall in-line and generate content that people are going to respond to – but remember, engagement baiting is not recommended, so your content has to speak for itself.

Here’s how to create a social buzz and get people talking:

Make the most of Facebook Live

Video is of paramount importance. Indeed, including video on your landing page can increase conversion rates by 80%. That’s impressive, but when it comes to social media, it is ‘in-the-moment’ content which really gets hearts racing.

Facebook stats reveal that live videos get six times more interactions than video content that’s not live, so it’s well-worth bearing this in mind when creating your next social strategy – and don’t just rely on Facebook. With Twitter’s Periscope and Instagram Live you can also streamline your marketing activities and reach your target audience on multiple platforms.

Appeal to people not consumers

When it comes to Facebook marketing, overly promotional content can become irritating very quickly. People are less likely to engage if they’re annoyed by your posts – and this won’t generate the comments necessary to help you succeed post-algorithm – so why not be useful to your followers instead? Find key elements of your brand and repackage them in a way that satisfies the consumer – think ‘how-to’ videos, picture tutorials, life-hack blogs etc as these are likely to be more sharable across the net.

Create Facebook groups

While you should still pay attention to your main Facebook page, creating Facebook Groups is a great way to spark discussions and debates. It’s also the perfect way to generate conversations related to specific industry-related concepts and as Facebook Groups rely on audience engagement they look set to fair well under the new algorithm changes.

Interaction is of paramount importance when it comes to the success of Facebook Groups. As a company, you need to get the ball rolling with a host of interesting conversation starters and monitor the flow of communication.

If you have a dedicated social team, you may also want to explore other channels such as Telegram which is ideal for the finance sector with groups talking ICO and crypto-related content. Continuous engagement and monitoring is recommended but this is certainly one way to extend your marketing efforts beyond Facebook in a relatively easy way.

Talk about or set up events

One of the best ways to excite your target audience and generate comments is to set up an event. Click To Tweet

If possible, target the local community by using location keywords and create as much buzz as possible around the activities that will take place.

Your marketing efforts can be staggered. While you might want to start with a general announcement, you can then move on by posting a series of images, infographics or a promotional video. You could then ‘go-live’ from the event itself and follow up the occasion with a photo gallery or even an entertaining ‘thank you for coming’ GIF.

Supplement organic efforts with paid support

Facebook will now favour posts from your aunt or grandma over promotional content. Fact. Click To Tweet

Sure, there are ways to handle the algorithm but supplementing your organic efforts with paid support could put your mind at ease. If you have the budget, both page and post promotions as well as side banner ads are available with a wide variety of targeting options helping you to reach your specific audience.

If you’re looking to overcome Facebook’s new page algorithm and boost your social engagement, contact the Contentworks team today.

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