Facebook Hints at Major Changes Coming for Businesses
What You Need to Know & What You Should Do
Mark Zuckerberg, on his personal Facebook (FB) page, posted late last night a potential bombshell for businesses, brands, and publishers. This post talked about what users will, and will no longer be seeing when they view their news feed after logging in. You can read the post for yourself here. Here’s our quick breakdown.
“…posts from businesses, brands and media – is crowding out the personal moments that lead us to connect more with each other.”
In other words, Zuck is saying, “If you’re not creating value, or a meaningful experience for people when you post, no one will see you.” He actually said exactly that later in the post.
“As we roll this out, you’ll see less public content like posts from businesses, brands and media. And the public content you see more will be held to the same standard – it should encourage meaningful interaction between people.”
What Should You Do?
- Don’t freak out.
- Wait to see what happens.
- Continue to provide value.
This really isn’t anything new, and we’ve been talking about doing things on Facebook to effectively build your brand for years. Almost two years ago, we blogged about how to be great on social media, where we basically outline how to get other people talking about your business and your brand. We also wrote about being seen on FB by paying for meaningful impressions, because it’s a pay-to-play world now. In other words, we talked about how to stop wasting money on Facebook.
6 ½ Things You Need to Do (or Continue to do) to Stay Relevant on Facebook
Continue to provide value as mentioned earlier. What does this mean?
(1) Don’t be annoying.
The number one reason people unfollow brands on social media is because they post too many promotional messages. Create content that answers people’s questions, and sparks a conversation. This can actually best be done by our #2 suggestion.
(2) Create a Facebook group for business.
Mark Z mentioned this in his post:
“The first changes you’ll see will be in the News Feed, where you can expect to see more from… groups.”
Don’t rush into this. You’ve really got to give it some thought. Contact your account manager at Oozle Media to define a long-term content strategy that supports the group’s goal.
Here’s the ½ of this list. The leadership in your company needs to take a more personal and active role in FB groups. People will get to know who you are, what company you’re with, and when you’re providing value in these groups, they’ll know what company to go to for answers to their problems. Be a problem solver, and a face to your business!
(3) Go live.
Do more Facebook live. Video is the future of social media. Zuckerberg also mentioned this in his post.
“We’ve seen people interact way more around live videos than regular ones. Some news helps start conversations on important issues.”
Again, don’t rush into this. Your account manager will help you develop a roadmap of topics, when and how to do this to further your brand.
(4) Encourage “See First.”
See First on Facebook is where individuals can opt to see your posts so they don’t get lost in FB’s algorithm. If you can encourage your followers to select this option, it’s a good chance your content won’t be missed, but again, follow #1 in this list. 🙂
First you visit the business page, click “Following”, and then click “See First”.
(5)Continue to put emphasis on platforms you can control, i.e. your website, email / SMS lists, in-store (at location) events, podcasts, etc.
Many news outlets are now charging a monthly fee for their content. If it’s good enough, people will pay for it, and you get to control it. Be the master of your own domain. All roads lead to Rome on the internet, and Rome should be your website.
(6) Pay-to-play to be seen on Facebook.
The update that is coming shouldn’t affect your Facebook ads, although the ads platform has an algorithm to weed out ads that also don’t provide value. In a recent interview with the Facebook employee who oversees the News Feed, Mosseri reiterates this point. Knowing this, you should only pay to promote content that will actually provide a good experience to your targeted audience, because if they’re not clicking, commenting, sharing, liking, watching, or interacting in any way, you will end up paying big bucks to be seen, and worse case scenario, your ads won’t even get impressions. Facebook won’t take your money if it provides a bad experience for its users.
In summary, don’t panic, don’t fake people into engaging with your brand with clickbait or engagement bait, instead create content (video, especially) that provides value. As you do this, you’ll build trust, and people buy from people they trust. Start to think about how you can truly get your current customers, or clients to talk about you on their personal social media outlets. People on Facebook are looking for recommendations, and when it’s something you offer, your advocates will speak up!