Recent changes to the Facebook Newsfeed have thrown business owners, and marketers, for a loop. These changes will lead to a continued decrease in organic reach and referral traffic for many businesses, but there are some steps you can take to keep your posts appearing in your fan’s feeds.
On August 4th, Facebook announced they would be reducing the number of misleading and spammy posts that appear in the News Feed. They plan to achieve this by penalizing Facebook business pages that utilize phrases typically associated with clickbait. Facebook considers clickbait to be headlines and link titles that leaves out crucial information, or misleads people, forcing them to click to find out the answer.
This change comes on the heels of the June 29th announcement indicating that content posted or shared by a user’s friends will be given preferential placement in their News Feed. This change has left businesses scrambling to earn a coveted a spot in that same feed.
What can you do to protect your Facebook Page from the newest Algorithm changes?
- Create content that benefits your users. Remember, Social Media Marketing is a conversation. Nobody likes chatting with someone who only talks about himself or herself. Be a good friend to your audience by posting valuable content that educates or entertains.
- Make your posts shareable. What we share personally on Facebook sends signals to our friends and contacts. Think about your audience, what sharing your post would communicate about them? From what you know about your ideal client, how do they want to be viewed? The more closely you can align your ideal client's goals with your content; the more likely they are to read and share your posts. Finally, don’t forget to include share buttons on your blog!
- Avoid clickbait. Up until now, click-baity headlines such as “When She Looked Under Her Couch Cushions And Saw THIS… I Was SHOCKED!” were hard to ignore. Going forward, using these types of phrases in your Facebook messaging will ensure you are ignored by significantly reducing the number of people who actually see your posts. It isn't worth it. In addition to causing you to lose rank on Facebook, clickbait seriously damages your reader's trust. Instead, give users a clear and honest understanding of what your link is about.
- Consider utilizing Instant Articles to share blog content. Facebook has an interest in keeping users on their platform. So it is not surprising that Instant Articles tend to receive preference in the News Feed, ranked above linked articles that drive users to another site. Because Instant Articles are housed on Facebook's platform they open more quickly. This can reduce your abandonment rate and increase the number of users who actually read your content after clicking on it.
- Invest in promoting your content. When we opened Rooted Marketing in 2012, we were still in an age where you could simply set up a page and see incredible reach and traffic without purchasing ads. Since then, more companies have joined the party, algorithms have gone through many changes causing organic reach to become increasingly elusive. Brands that ignore the opportunity to promote their posts through paid ads and sponsored posts are going to face increasing difficulty in the months ahead.
Not everything that has worked before will continue to work in the future. Facebook ad costs are bound to go up in response to the policy change, so you may need to adjust your budget and tactics accordingly.
Keep an eye on your stats. As Facebook continues to evolve, you’ll want to keep an eye on your results and adapt as needed. Be sure to monitor your Facebook Page Insights, which provides information about your page including how well your posts are performing, your audience's demographics, and more. To access Page Insights, click Insights at the top of your Facebook business page.