Facebook Pages in decline – here’s how to overcome it!
Your Facebook Page will be seen less – why?
Most people will have seen the Facebook Page announcement last week. Hopefully I can shed some light on this for you and help you overcome any reductions in traffic as a consequence. Firstly lets look at what’s changed and then I will give you some tips to ensure that your page can Be Seen!
It all started back in December 2013 when Facebook changed its algorithm to promote “high-quality articles” over “a meme photo hosted somewhere other than Facebook”. Then again, in 2015, when Facebook stated “Our goal with News Feed has always been to show people the things they want to see”. Facebook felt that we users were seeing too much promotional material from Pages, companies and brands so they reduced the organic distribution of these posts.
Then on 12th January 2018 Facebook Pages had even more bad news for businesses with Pages! Facebook now believes that our Facebook experience should be all about “deeper, more meaningful interactions with people you care about.” Essentially meaning that posts from Pages will be seen less in our News Feeds. Person to person interactions will be ranked as a priority on our wall. Those we interact with most frequently will show first (IE: close friends or family members we have liked, commented or shared with regularly). Basically the focus is on people, not Pages.
This is great news for us on a personal Facebook level. Users everywhere will be celebrating that their wall is no longer filled with companies telling us how great they are or what they can do to make our lives better. Apparently Facebook tells us this is “good for people’s well-being“. However, if we stop and put our business heads on then this is terrible! Some marketing professionals are calling this “Facebook Apocalypse” or “Facebook Zero”!
So how do Facebook decide what we should and should not see?
They use a process called “ranking” and will score posts based on what you are most interested in. A historic “Like”, “Comment” or “Share” is Facebook’s best way of knowing what matters to you. Posts with more interactions get higher ranking scores.
What can be done to make sure your Page continues to work for your business organically?
Firstly, don’t panic. Facebook is a business and like any other business they are within their rights to make changes. We have to remember that Facebook only works for business if the users are happy. So if our audience is happy using the social media site they will keep coming back. All we need to do is evolve a little ourselves too.
Remember Page reach won’t disappear completely and people can still use the “See First” feature to see you first on their News Feed. (To use this feature, you go to the Page, click “Following” and then select “See First”.) You can let your audience know about this and you may get some people who use it but more than likely the majority of your Fans won’t.
Mainly, we need to be more creative with our posts and get people taking action on the posts that they see. After all, Facebook still prioritises posts with likes, shares and comments. So, if we can get people to take action on our posts it will continue to be shared and seen in their News Feeds. And although Page post reach may be in decline it’s still being seen. Therefore, when a user visits your Page the content needs to be more engaging then ever! Good content management has never been so important!
The final organic trick is Facebook Live Video – a great tool for organic reach! Film a quick tip, how to guide or fun info-video which your target audience will be interested in – and like, share or comment on! The key here is make it relevant to your ideal customer. If you aren’t sure who to target then use your Facebook insights to identify who your most engaged audience is!
The real response – get a Facebook budget!
If you have been lucky enough to have seen great results from Facebook with out ever spending a penny then hats off to you! However, realistically we are beginning to see an end of Facebook Pages being purely organic, or free! In the future if you really want your customers, or audience, to see you then Facebook ads are the only way. With some of the smartest targeting in the industry it is a great, efficient way to reach your customers. Plus, with the recent changes it is your only certain way of getting your message seen by your existing and future customers!
So ultimately if social media is important to your customers then it is important to your business. Dig deep and think about a daily or monthly budget which you can afford for your Facebook advertising. You can start with a smaller budget, test the results and then increase it once you feel confident it is right for you. But remember that if your budget is too low then you will not get the reach you need for the right customers!
Or if you want to get it right from the start use a social media professional. With over 10 years of marketing experience I’m based in Wakefield, West Yorkshire and here to help local businesses in the Yorkshire area. Whether you need guidance on your Facebook content, strategy or paid advertising I’m always open for a chat! Plus I offer a free social media audit so an enquiry won’t cost you anything!