Facebook is going the route of Google and constantly tweaking their algorithms in an attempt to provide a better consumer experience. By doing so, as we’ve all noticed, our news feeds are always changing. Adam Mosseri, the VP of Facebook’s Product Management says, “The goal of News Feed is to show people the stories that are most relevant to them.” He goes on to then explain why people will now see more posts from friends and family, and less from publishers and advertisers.
The User Experience
Their biggest reason for this is customer satisfaction, they believe that with the influx of so much information on a daily basis, that people leave dissatisfied by missing a lot of the things posted by the people closest to them. Facebook is trying to get back to their roots of being a platform where friends and family could connect even across vast distances by using their service and seeing posts regularly appear on their news feed. Their research has also told them in no uncertain terms what people want in a news feed, which is information which is meaningful to them, and entertainment.
What About My Reach?
There’s more news about this which can be read from all over the internet as people are trying to find new ways of being heard in Facebook groups, and as marketers and advertisers. The problem is obvious, if people’s news feeds will be dominated more by friends and family and less by advertisers, then how will anyone see boosted posts which are supposed to gain ‘x’ amount of reach? This just means that marketers must be more savvy about how they post and when they post to ensure the majority of people capable of seeing the post actually do. (read more here)
The Power of ONE
Prestigious newspaper company, The New York Times has plenty to say on the subject. Considering the fact that this change affects private news publications also, it’s in their best interest to be at the forefront of its evolution and to respond appropriately and quickly. So what are marketers and publishers to do? They suggest that since the change affects only those things published from companies which might fall under advertising purposes, that posts be aimed at individual people instead. It will have a much lesser impact on the stories getting shared by users and commenters individually than those promoted by the company itself.
Just last year Facebook unrolled something called Instant Articles, which helped a business making Facebook posts, to post articles directly to Facebook to provide a better experience for users. Facebook is also paying publishers and other businesses to create broadcasts to help them get the word out more about Facebook Live, which is their new streaming product. All of these features can be expected to take a hit from their new algorithm. The media moguls might be fine even after the change as people seek out their content, but smaller posters may have to change how they do things.
Right now, Facebook Live is a big deal to Facebook. They want people to use their service, and for that reason they’re more likely to promote things that are using it. Though it is expected to be hampered a bit by the change, using live streams for business purposes might be the way forward for now. Other ways to reach people are by sharing things to an individual Facebook account, rather that from a business account, where the post is then shared with others connected to them, and to those connected to everyone else.
Why Go Live?
Facebook Live is a new thing to adapt to, and it allows people to post live streaming content from their mobile devices. Live Video is the way to do so from a PC using existing software/hardware and it’s specifically for Pages to use. It’s a very easy service to use and Facebook has outlined the steps here. By doing so, you’re creating a much larger reach than with a static post, and Facebook – for the moment – seems keen on keeping people using it. If the people posting lose the reach, there would be little reason to keep using the platform, so there’s no real downside to transitioning to a live feed.
What To Do LIVE
There are many different things you can use the live feed for, you can show how to do something you’re selling, you can talk about feedback that has been given about a popular topic, trend, news or fad, you can hold a live contest, and nearly anything else you can imagine. If you’re not great in front of a camera, consider using note cards you’ve written on to hold up one by one to tell your story. Like it or not, things like Facebook Live are the way the future of social media is going, and as marketers we’ve got to adapt quickly and have a rapid response to the changes.