Earlier this year. Mark Zuckerberg announced a change in Facebook users’ newsfeed. The social media giant said that more posts will be seen from friends and people they know and less form pages and brands.
The news that Facebook would yet again reduce post reach for brand pages was no surprise. It’s been an ongoing trend for 3-4 years. Facebook claims they’re making the change to better reflect the purpose of Facebook, bringing people closer together. According to Adam Mosseri, head of News Feed, “Facebook was built to bring people closer together and build relationships. One of the ways we do this is by connecting people to meaningful posts from their friends and family in News Feed. Over the next few months, we’ll be making updates to ranking so people have more opportunities to interact with the people they care about. Mark outlined this in a post today”.
Whatever Facebook’s reasons there are 65+ million business pages, with owners wondering what to do now. This won’t be news to everyone. Many page owners have been noticing the squeeze on their post reach for some time. Some have already adapted and were adjusting their strategies to get in a better position prior to January’s announcement.
Facebook remains a highly attractive platform for business owners. The algorithm change Facebook announced does not mean the end of organic business advertising on the social network.
If you want to continue marketing on Facebook without resorting to “pay for play”, you will have to optimize your posts. Some of the things you can do to make sure your posts get seen are quite simple. It’s just a case of creating the right type of content that Facebook wants to promote. With the right strategy you can still get Facebook to work for you, without having to pay and here’s how.
How to adapt to Facebook’s algorithm update
1. Create content people find valuable
Try to quality create posts that solve some sort of problem or that give value to your fans, not just sales text.
2. Create content that encourages a response
Part of the reason Facebook has made these changes is to make it easier for people to have more meaningful conversations with people they care about. Sales posts or content that doesn’t prompt a response is not what Facebook wants to promote.
If your fans do add to the conversation, be sure to respond to their comments too!
3. Always include images/video
Posts containing media including video and images always get seen more than plain text posts. Try to mix up your posts with a variety of media.
4. Encourage fans to subscribe
An easy way to ensure delivery of your Facebook updates is to encourage fans to subscribe. By subscribing to updates fans will get a notification each time there’s a post on your page. A lot of consumers are aware of the changes being made to Facebook and might respond if they want to continue seeing your posts.
5. Change follow settings to “See First”
Fans who are following your page can also change their settings to “See First”, this will help to ensure they see posts from your page.
6. Create a group
Groups encourage the type of activity that Facebook wants to promote. They are usually places for likeminded people to discuss a common interest. Groups tend to promote greater activity such as comments and likes, as such posts from groups tend to appear in the timeline more often.
Plenty of businesses set up non-promotional groups as a companion to their business page. They provide the group as a place for people with a common interest to interact and occasionally use it to promote their business interests. But the focus of the group is keeping it active with content people are interested in.
7. Utilize Facebook Messenger
Since Messenger separated as its own standalone app, businesses have been finding new ways to engage with fans. Many users now split their time between Facebook and Messenger, with some only using Messenger.
It’s important to remember that Facebook’s limitations don’t currently extend to Messenger. Businesses can freely communicate with their audience without restriction.
8. Add a chatbot to your page
Messenger chat bots have been popping up a lot over the past year. It might seem complex but there are actually several free services like Manychat which make it easy to set up a chat bot. Once set up your chat bot can be used to answer frequent questions, promote and broadcast special offers (so long as fans subscribe).
All these strategies are free to use. If pay to play is a strategy you want to consider, Facebook advertising has perhaps the best demographic targeting of any advertising network. With Facebook’s huge audience it’s relatively easy to target exactly the type of people who would be interested in your product or service.
About the Author
As SEO Manager for Elvin Web Marketing, Oliver Neely has a passion for local SEO and helping small and medium businesses get the most from their web marketing.