Facebook’s New Algorithm and What it Means for Your Business

Social Media Marketing | Tips for Creating the Perfect Facebook Post

By: Brianna Harr, SRM Local Account Manager

Facebook has long prided itself in being a community, not a media company, and has made changes in the past to reinforce this idea. Recently, the social media giant has released a statement announcing another change to its newsfeed algorithm, one that will directly affect the reach of your business’s Facebook page. As a marketing agency, we have been following the changes and wanted to put a few tips together for any business currently struggling with changes in the algorithm.

Up until this change, Facebook promised to “help you find relevant content” by showing posts from pages you might like and prioritizing posts from pages you like and follow. The new goal is to help to foster “more meaningful interactions” with friends and family. So, rather than your feed being dominated by content from brands and businesses, your feed will be comprised mostly of posts from friends, family, and groups you are a member of.

What Does this Mean for Your Business?

Pieces that spark conversation will be more important than ever before. However, Facebook will not be as lenient with what they call “engagement bait”, posts using language like “tag and share”, and will penalize pages who utilize that strategy. This means there will be a stronger push for more engaging, quality content from brands and businesses, accompanied by a need for them to really listen and pay attention to what their audiences are interested in. Focus on originality over repetition in every post.

Social Media is First and Foremost “Social”

With these changes going into effect soon, how should you adjust your social media strategy to counteract that inevitable drop in engagement?

Be sure to approach the customer in a tone and style you would use face-to-face. No one wants to engage with something sterile or generic. Find your voice! While doing this, take advantage of the real-estate Facebook provides. Facebook is one of the only platforms where your characters aren’t very limited. In fact, there are 63,206 characters up for grabs! While this may seem like a daunting number, have no fear. You don’t need to use every single one. In fact, you shouldn’t even come close.

Keep it Short and Sweet!

Writing a six paragraph post will have your readers’ eyes glazing over before they finish the first one. You can throw in a #hashtag here and there, but be careful with how often you use them! Ask questions, encourage feedback, start a conversation. Use links where an engaged user can learn more. Just don’t backload the links in your content! Make sure relevant content is shown first. It is best to use two links at most and try to use link shortening trackers, like Bit.ly, to avoid wasting visual space.

Pictures are Worth a Thousand Words

Including images or videos in your posts is a sure fire way to get people’s attention. Posts with images receive the highest amount of engagement (50% more than those without!) and tend to be more noticeable than those with just text. In fact, you should be sure to use only enough text to get your point across with video or an image. The focus will be on that media and not reading the text as people have a tendency to skim their newsfeed.

In line with Facebook’s algorithm change, live videos will also be prioritized a little more as they are seen as “authentic and engaging” pieces of content. In fact, Facebook states that live videos receive 6x more engagement than non-live ones.

Keep Things Positive!

If you see someone constantly posting negative updates, you’re less likely to pay attention to them. This same principle can be applied to your business page. While some Facebook “rants” do see a good bit of engagement, this isn’t the type of message you want to associate with your business. Happier posts tend to attract meaningful responses, something Facebook will be looking for when prioritizing posts in your newsfeed.

Positivity breeds engagement!

Timing is Everything

Pay attention to the times at which you are posting your content. Studies show that the best time to post on Facebook is between 12 pm to 3 pm on weekdays and noon and 1 pm on weekends. People also tend to be happier on Fridays, with funny or upbeat content performing best on that day. These peak times tend to see the highest click-through rates. Don’t just post during business hours, either. Pay attention to when your audience engages the most. By doing so, you can pinpoint exactly when to send your next update to get the most feedback from your customers!

Be Engaging!

Most importantly, be sure to engage with your audience! By responding to comments, something that should be done in a timely manner, you start to build a close relationship with your clients. This also plays into the push for more meaningful interactions!

Conclusion

This isn’t the first time Facebook has made a change like this and it certainly won’t be the last. Rather than looking at this as a hindrance, use this as an opportunity to change direction with your social media strategy. Pay attention to what your audience is looking for and push for more quality content, and your engagement will be on the rise again in no time.

Need a marketing agency to give your social media content and syndication a boost? Contact us today!

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