Facebook released its new policies on Jan 11th 2018 with an intention to bring back the social onto its platform. With this latest update from the social giant, I feel the days of Social Voyeurism are almost done and dusted. The new policies indicate how Facebook intends to refocus more on people and communities instead of pages.
If you are a Social Media marketer, i suggest you go through the updated policies to understand how it will have an impact on your Facebook strategy.
Below i have jotted down a few of my key takeaways.
What is the policy all about
- Stronger emphasis on Content relevance in all forms - video / images / text.
- Every post should be an opportunity for people to engage, interact or connect with each other.
- Content posted should be purpose driven and add value to the people and the community it is shared with.
- The intention is to make the platform a place to have dialogues.
In short, FB is refocusing on people and communities. They don't want you to just view things, scroll down, entertain yourself in SILO. They want you to talk to each other , share things amongst friends and family, Help each other find things, learn , have discussions or debates.
If you are a business then you should take note of this paradigm shift and try to be part of these conversations or dialogues.
How does this have an impact on your social strategy
- Most facebook pages will see drop in traffic based on this new policy. So brace yourself , accept it and let’s work towards generating relevance
- You can no longer expect to show up in a newsfeed just because a person is following you. The new algorithm now makes a prediction whether showing your content in a person’s feed can lead to a conversation or engagement. If not , then your post is most probably not going to show up.
- If your page has a lot of posts with no traffic or engagement, then that will have a very bad impact on your chances of showing up in organic feeds. Therefore, be careful about what you post on your pages ( Hint : Relevance over frequency)
- Apps & Bots that can trigger engagement should be handy marketing tools in the short term.
- Businesses will have to lean on advertisements to get their message visible in their audiences’ newsfeed. However, bringing them to your page / post and failing to have an engaging dialogue as a follow-up might have an adverse effect on the Brand .
- Using more of Live content that leads to interaction amongst viewers and the presenter (business owner | promoter | Influencer) will play an integral role in your Social Media strategy.
- Engagement Baits will no longer work - so stop asking your audience to share your post for a giveaway, or like your post in an effort to score some brownie points.
- Don’t ask for comments on a post unless you know where to take the conversation to.
- For that case, even asking your fans to tag a friend in a post that is not about them is not going to help and will be an absolute red flag..
So what are the immediate actions you can take
- Stop posting content that is not well-thought off or will not stir up a conversation.
- Stop promoting content that is not having any engagement. This content might harm your chances of showing up in the organic feed.
- Decrease post Frequency and focus on relevant content that has social value for your audience.
- Its alright to put lesser but significant content i.e content that has more engagement potential.
- Create more engaging content such as Apps, Bots, Live streams.
"Creating Relevant Content is the key to organic conversations"
In many ways, i really like this update as it's an effort to bring the age old traits of society and communities into the digital space.
The new algorithm learns over a period of time user behavior based on the type of content and the engagement that it leads to. It then predict what piece of content will lead to a user having a conversation with their friends. It is this content that gets pushed organically into the newsfeed.
To sum it up, Facebook wants people to do more on their platform than to just hit the like / share button. It is therefore tweaking its platform to propel its digital communities towards interactions amongst themselves. It's a Paradigm Shift but a necessary one; if we intend to use this digital social platforms as a place to CONNECT with each other in a more meaningful way and above all with a more Human approach.