Facebook News Feed update 2018: What it means for Brands, Businesses and Marketers

Image of Mark Zuckerberg CEO Facebook announce Facebook Newsfeed update- samsteve
(credit: cnet.com)

It’s no longer news – Facebook is updating her algorithm which will impact the kind of contents that get shown on users’ news feed. Mark Zuckerberg made this announcement on his verified Facebook page. And from what we know brands, pages and marketers are at the receiving end again.

According to the Facebook Chief, the social media platform was created to connect families and friends, but over the years, contents from brands and businesses have taken over the news feed; making it literally difficult for users to see contents from their loved ones.

All this is about to change, he said. In the coming weeks and months, changes will be rolled out that will significantly alter the kind of contents that get displayed on users’ feeds.

He went further to hint on the type of contents people should expect on their news feed: Contents from family and friends will take priority; then contents from pages that are relevant and pulls high engagement and interactions.

In a nutshell, Facebook is returning to its root of connecting people with contents they care about.

How does this Facebook News Feed update affect Businesses?

Marketers are scratching their heads concerning this new change; most are going over their Facebook marketing strategies to see how they can work around this new update.

The challenge is, no one is sure yet how this is all going to play out.

But, one thing is certain, exposure for contents from marketers and publishers is going to take another beating; and this time it’s likely going to be bloody (pardon the pun).

The thing is, Facebook sits on a massive amount of traffic with over 1.98 billion active users on their platform – this traffic is just too significant to ignore; hence Facebook marketers are resigned to play by the new rules.

Having said all that, to make sense of the changes and how it might impact your business, let’s go back to the message by Mark,

One of our big focus areas for 2018 is making sure the time we all spend on Facebook is time well spent.

We built Facebook to help people stay connected and bring us closer together with the people that matter to us. That’s why we’ve always put friends and family at the core of the experience. Research shows that strengthening our relationships improves our well-being and happiness.

Just as I mentioned earlier, Facebook is going back to it’s core – which is connecting friends, families and people.

But recently we’ve gotten feedback from our community that public content — posts from businesses, brands and media — is crowding out the personal moments that lead us to connect more with each other.

It’s easy to understand how we got here. Video and other public content have exploded on Facebook in the past couple of years. Since there’s more public content than posts from your friends and family, the balance of what’s in News Feed has shifted away from the most important thing Facebook can do — help us connect with each other

Here’s the problem: contents from brands are crowding out the news feed and making it harder for users to see contents from their circle.

Based on this, we’re making a major change to how we build Facebook. I’m changing the goal I give our product teams from focusing on helping you find relevant content to helping you have more meaningful social interactions… As we roll this out, you’ll see less public content like posts from businesses, brands, and media

Facebook’s solution is to cut back on the amount of exposure contents from pages get on users’ feeds.

My Thoughts on Facebook News Update

Having read and thought deeply about the import of these new updates; here are my thoughts on what this might mean for brands, marketers and publishers.

  • Pages should be prepared to see their organic reach cut even further.
  • Marketers that use clickbaits to drive traffic will be penalized with less exposure
  • High interactive and engaging contents will win
  • Facebook is pushing for more businesses to leverage Facebook Live
  • Ad spend is likely going to go up

My two tips for businesses to survive this new changes

  • Focus on producing contents that trigger interactions like comments and reactions from your audience.
  • Building a Facebook Group is going to take center stage

Wrapping it all up

Though, it’s still early to predict what the impact of this latest update will be; however, one thing is clear, publishers and marketers will have to work harder to earn their place in users’ news feeds, either by producing contents users will love or paying their way through.

Here’re some links for further reading:

Facebook announces algorithm changes

Facebook feed changes sacrifices time spent and news for wellbeing

Facebook changes to favor person to person interactions

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