If you haven't already heard, Mark Zuckerberg recently announced a big change to the Facebook newsfeed. Going forward, Facebook users will see less news articles and marketing content in their newsfeeds and instead more videos and photos from friends and people they know.
What brought on the change to the Facebook newsfeed?
Over the years, Facebook has made the shift from being a forum that connects friends and family to one of the biggest distributors of news and advertisements. CEO Zuckerberg said that the influx of marketing messages and news articles is taking away from the ability for people to be able to connect with each other.
Although Facebook is the social media giant, research shows that the amount of time that users are spending on Facebook is slighting declining. The reason for the small decline could be related to users being inundated with advertisements and marketing messages. Instead of being bombarded with content that they don't care about in their Facebook newsfeeds, they're choosing to use other social media platforms to connect with friends in a less crowded space.
Another reason why Facebook may have decided to change its newsfeed is related several controversies that the social media network has had with news media outlets over the years. One of the biggest of these controversies happened during the 2016 presidential election when the social media platform supposedly failed to prevent the spread of misinformation. These issues have created a lot of headaches for Facebook over the years, so it makes sense that the company wants to revert back to being a social network that connects friends rather than a media company.
How will your business be impacted by the change to Facebook's newsfeed?
With the update to the Facebook newsfeed still being so new, the verdict is still out about how marketers will be impacted by the change. It does appear that Facebook has decided to put the user experience ahead of the businesses that pay the social network to advertise, though.
In order to have a visible presence on Facebook, it's anticipated that marketers may actually end up spending more money to advertise on the social media platform. While organic Facebook content will still be necessary, the change in the Facebook newsfeed will likely lead marketers to place more emphasis on paid social advertising.
Even though this move shows that Facebook wants to revert back to being a social sharing network for friends and family, it's critical that your business still has a presence on Facebook. Facebook is by far the most widely used social platform with 2.07 billion monthly active users. Research shows that Facebook influences 52 percent of consumers' online and offline purchases. With these statistics, your business can't afford to walk away from Facebook.
What can your business do now to stay visible in your customers' newsfeeds?
A big takeaway from this Facebook update is that your business needs to make user engagement a priority. When creating organic Facebook content, focus on ways to humanize your brand. When users engage with your social posts, reply to them to keep the conversation flowing and show them that there is a face behind your business.
Listen to your audience. Which types of content perform best with your Facebook fans? Knowing which types of content create the most engagement will help you to remain visible in your fans' newsfeeds.
Use Facebook's live video feature to your advantage. Research shows that live video is six times more engaging than traditional video.
In summary, be sure that you budget to include a mix of organic and paid social content in your Facebook marketing strategy. The businesses that will come out on top from this change will be those that create engaging organic content and use paid content to amplify positioning.