Facebook has started rolling out its newest algorithm change, and your business page is likely suffering because of it.
In an effort to improve users' experiences on the site, Facebook is beginning to prioritize family, friend and group posts in news feeds. (Over the past week, you might have noticed seeing more photos of your former neighbor's new puppy and fewer posts from your favorite coffee shop.) These changes aim to give people more of what they want — the ability to keep up with everyone from their cousins to their sorority sisters and from their colleagues to their old high school rivals.
Although the algorithm changes should drive more people to visit Facebook more frequently, they also will decrease your business page's organic — or unpaid — views. As a result, your post interactions — likes, comments and shares — likely will plummet. So how can you make sure more people see your posts?
1. Ask Your Followers to Opt In
The simplest way to get more Facebook views is to ask. Facebook allows users to select the content that's important to them, so they see it first in their news feeds. Publish a post similar to this to encourage your followers to opt in to your page's updates:
Because of some recent Facebook changes, you might see fewer updates from us. But you can make sure you don't miss any of our helpful info or special deals by changing your settings to see our posts first. (It's quick and easy, we promise!)
1. Simply go to our page and click the "Following" tab under our cover image.
2. Select "See First" under the "In Your News Feed" section.
3. Enjoy — maybe even "like" — seeing our updates in your news feed every time we post!
Feel free to borrow the screenshot we included above. And to make sure people see the post, boost it. (More on that later.)
2. Encourage Interaction
As part of the algorithm change, Facebook will prioritize posts with significant interaction, specifically in the form of comments. For example, if a friend comments on a page's post, it's more likely to show up in your news feed. More people will see a post as it draws more comments, so it's essential to generate this interaction.
To encourage comments, tweak your posts. Make sure you're providing valuable content that makes people's lives easier or more enjoyable. You know when you tag your friend in post's comments because you know he'll love it? That's the type of post you're going for. Those get the views.
Also, encourage interaction by asking questions and posting fill-in-the-blank statements. For example, if you're a dermatologist, you could say:
The best skincare tip I ever received was ______.
When you post curated content, don't just post the link. Start a discussion around it. Ask a question about the topic to prompt people to comment.
(Disclaimer: The Facebook algorithm is smart. The interactions have to be authentic, not baited. For example, you won't see the same benefits with a post that says, "Comment 'touchdown' if you love football.")
3. Give Posts a Boost
To gain traction with your Facebook page — especially if you don't have a lot of followers — boost your posts and promote your page through Facebook ads. Historically, we've been spoiled with organic, free Facebook exposure. But that's changing. To get a significant number of views on Facebook, you'll need to pay.
Fortunately, Facebook ads are relatively inexpensive, especially when you consider the value of the platform's ability to provide such a captive, targeted audience. With that said, be strategic when creating your Facebook audience for paid promotions. If you have an email list, upload it to create a custom audience and lookalike audience. If you don't have an email list, use the ad targeting features to really home in on the people you're trying to reach.
Also, be smart about what you boost. Don’t boost everything you post. Instead, focus on your top priorities — a lead-generation offer or promotions for a sale or special service, for example. Or if you've published a post that's already high-performing, boosting it is a cost-effective way to get even better results.
4. Consider Creating a Group
Along with family and friends' posts, Facebook is prioritizing groups in news feeds. In addition, members automatically receive notifications any time there's a new post in the group — an added benefit. Because of this, it's worth considering creating a group.
Groups are ideal for subsectors of your audience — extreme brand enthusiasts or people interested in discussing a particular product or service you provide, for example. Need specifics? An auto repair company could have a group dedicated to high-performance cars, or a dermatologist could have a group centered on managing psoriasis.
Regardless of the topic or audience, the primary purpose of a Facebook group is to have ongoing discussions. As the admin, you should facilitate these discussions and answer members' questions. A Facebook group shouldn't be another version of your business page. Before you start one, make sure you can support it with strategy and consistent monitoring.
If you have questions about how to boost your Facebook results or would like help managing your social media accounts, schedule a consultation with us today.