In the past, Facebook has been responsible for the growth of thousands of businesses, due to the way it allowed brands to reach a massive audience organically. Now it’s changing. Mark Zuckerberg announced that the new algorithm would de-prioritize posts from brands, to show people more personal content from friends and family. How will that impact you and your social media marketing strategy?
- Consumer engagement is more important than ever for digital marketing.
This first thing to realize is that you can still make Facebook work very well for your business if you know what you need to focus on. Instead of getting SEO keywords right, you’ll now need to focus on engagement to boost your social media marketing. People will now be more likely to see a post, photo, or brand message that a friend has commented on or liked, rather than a “viral” post that strangers have made popular. Getting more people involved with your content will mean you can still cast a wide net.
- Messages with positive, “feel good” slants will be prioritized.
Zuckerberg said that he wanted to “refocus the system” to be more about things that are “good for people” in the Facebook post he made regarding the new changes. This means that brand messages that also focus on things that are good for people – which, according to Zuckerberg, include being more connected with real people rather than content, being healthier and happier in the long run, and feeling less lonely – will stand out more to the algorithm over brand messages that promote the same old consumer points. Notices about upcoming sales probably aren’t as likely to get a good reach as an inspirational photo that encourages getting out into nature, and happens to include your product in the photo, for example.
- Present yourself as the leader of a community of interested fans, rather than a brand out to sell things.
Zuckerberg also said that Facebook wants to focus on helping people build relationships and facilitating “meaningful interactions.” The more you can build your community on Facebook through an active Group page that is clearly far more than a brand talking to consumers, the better your chances will be of continuing to be promoted. You must create a community on Facebook, not just a convenient customer service portal. Try to encourage conversations among your consumers on your page, get them involved with weekly Q and A sessions, and more.
At the End of the Day…
While many businesses are panicking about these changes, there is one very good way to look at it. With the new changes to Facebook, businesses are now more likely only to be displayed to those who would actually be interested, based on reviews from friends and family, or a heavy involvement in a related community. This means that your social media marketing efforts are being displayed to people who have a legitimate need or desire for your product or service in some way. Rather than being blasted to a huge audience that may not be interested, you can narrow your focus to your ideal consumer base.