Were you aware that Facebook has been busy making changes to its News Feed algorithms? If not, grab a coffee, get comfortable and read on, because you may need to review your Facebook marketing approach to ensure that your Facebook business page is still visible to your followers.
First of all then, a quick recap of what’s been going on. Back in April Facebook made three key changes based on feedback and designed to improve the user experience:
1. Facebook users can now see multiple posts in a row from the same source, ensuring that there is fresh content no matter how small a user’s network may be.
2. Facebook algorithms can now determine ‘close friends’, the connections that a user interacts most with, and posts from these sources will appear higher in the News Feed (Top Stories versus Most Recent).
3. Updates on friends liking and commenting on posts will be given less priority in the News Feed.
So what does this mean for you as a small business with a Facebook business page?
On the face of it, it sounds like we all have a harder job on our hands when it comes to engaging with our target audiences, and these changes could potentially impact on referral traffic from your Facebook business page. That said, if you have connections that regularly interact with your page Facebook’s changes will ensure that your content is much more visible in the News Feed for those connections.
And there are things that you can do. Just as Facebook wants to improve the user experience, you should also be working towards that same goal:
• Make sure you are providing content that is relevant and of interest to your audience. Understand which of your posts have the most impact in terms of reach, amount of comments, likes and shares. If certain posts go unnoticed start asking yourself why and look for a new direction to take. Keep testing, tweaking and refining over time. Try posting at different times of the day, different days. Test the frequency of your posts. And always measure the response!
• Don’t just rely on Facebook to foster relationships with your audience. Encourage them to join your opted-in database to receive email updates so that you can engage with them outside of social media. To grow your contacts more you could consider incentivising sign ups by offering a special discount or a free guide to download.
• Wherever you can encourage your existing customers, clients and visitors to your website to share or like your online content. This will make you more socially visible to more people – and we all know that word-of-mouth recommendation is always influential.
• You might also want to consider setting aside some budget for paid advertising on Facebook. If your Facebook business page has 50 likes, a cost effective method is to boost a post. You can choose to boost a new or existing post and an advert will be automatically generated and promoted to your chosen target audience, the extent of which will be dictated by your chosen budget. Posts are boosted for one day, but there is the option to extend to seven days. The Promoted Post (also advertising) has better targeting options and is worth considering. You can create Custom Audiences to target your ideal customers.
These constant Facebook changes are frustrating as a marketer when it makes it trickier to reach your hard-earned audience on Facebook but hopefully these tips can help you make your Facebook business page work even harder!