Published on February 7, 2018 by Adrienne McLean
Mike Stelzner, Founder of Social Media Examiner is an expert on everything to do with social media. Here is his overview with an important analysis.
Mike outlines (comprehensively) the new FacebookNews Feed changes, what they mean for your future marketing, and what you can do now about these changes.
Mike has been tracking the News Feed updates for almost two years.There is extensive feedback from the Social Media Examiner community along with their own research from thousands of marketers.
This change WILL impact you. Here’s what you need to know:
On January 11th, Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook‘s CEO) said that Facebook‘s mission is to bring people closer together.
He went on to say, “but recently we’ve gotten feedback from our community that public content–posts from businesses, brands, and media–is crowding out the personal moments.”
Mark then dropped the bombshell, “Based on this, we’re making a major change to how we build Facebook.”
Then Facebook‘s Head of News Feed (Adam Mosseri) outlined the coming changes. Adam also made a public interview and posted in media groups (which I belong to).
Some refer to this change as Facebook Apocalypse and others as Facebook Zero.
What I will bring you below are the facts, as presented by Adam.
Fact 1: Adam said, “space in News Feed is limited.”
Fact 2: “We’ll show less public content, including videos and other posts from publishers or businesses,” he said.
Fact 3: “Pages may see their reach, video watch time, and referral traffic decrease,” said Adam.
My opinion: It’s been my experience that historically they have said, “may or may not.” I interpret this may as a “will.”
Fact 4: “Over the next few months, we’ll be making updates to ranking,” said Adam.
Mark clarified, “We started making changes in this direction last year, but it will take months for this new focus to make its way through all our products. The first changes you’ll see will be in News Feed.”
Mike’s opinion: He’s heard reports from people in our community that they are already starting to see a different type of experience. It’s anticipated a wide scale change as early as February.
So here is what we know so far:
#1: Video will get less watch time. Inference: you’ll see less video in the News Feed.
#2: Links to external pages will get less visibility. Thus, they won’t be showing as many links to blog posts, news, and so on.
Now at this point, you might be wondering, “are you kidding me?” You might be thinking, “how could it get any worse?”
There’s more data to share.
#3: ALL posts from people and pages will be impacted. In Facebook‘s News, Media, & Publishing group (which I belong to), Adam said the following, “The update applies to all post types, from pages and people.”
So if you’ve been thinking, “I use my personal profile. This doesn’t apply to me,” think again.
If you’re thinking of starting a group and hoping that will allow your posts to be seen, that’s not the solution. Those are still posts from people and the content itself is still subject to the News Feed algorithm.
So what are the important ranking factors?
Facebook will “prioritize posts that spark conversations and meaningful interactions between people,” said Adam.
In a recent Wired Magazine exclusive interview, Adam said, “we’re going to be (weighing) long comments more than short comments,” and that “comments are more valuable than likes.”
So, actual “meaty” dialog between people (not pages and people, see the language distinction) is critical for News Feed exposure.
Now to video. Adam said, “video is, primarily, a passive experience. You tend to just sit back and watch it. And while you’re watching it, you’re not usually liking, or commenting, or speaking with friends.”
Mike believes this means a lot fewer shorter videos, a lot fewer Tasty-style how-to videos, and a lot fewer video animations.
At this point it should be very clear that your strategy has got to change.
Here’s some of Mike’s advice:
Step 1: Scale back your frequency of posts. Less is more here.
Step 2: Figure out how to create content that will get people talking to EACH OTHER, not just you.
Step 3: Up your live video game plan.
Adam said, “live videos often lead to discussion among viewers on Facebook–in fact, live videos on average get six times as many interactions as regular videos.”
Step 4: Avoid engagement bait. These are posts that encourage people to comment. Adam said Facebook will “demote these posts in News Feed.”
Step 5: Master Facebook ads: This will be one of the only reliable ways you’ll be able to drive traffic off of Facebook.
Step 6: Learn Messenger Chatbots: Moving conversations into Messenger and using bots will be a huge trend that will allow you to nurture leads and sell.
A lot of the above steps will likely require a complete shift in your current Facebook strategy. If it helps, share this email with your boss, clients, or friends.
For more valuable advice from Mike Stelnzer – see Social Media Examiner