Facebook Algorithm Updates – February 2018

In February of 2018, Facebook made some massive changes to their algorithms. These algorithms determine how your main news feed works on Facebook. If you are a business owner and use Facebook to market your business, these updates directly affect what your potential customers can see when they log on to their personal profile. What worked a month or two ago to market your business may not be so easy anymore, and it may even be hurting your chances of being seen! So stick around for the next few minutes as we discuss these updates, explain how these changes affect you, and talk about some strategies to help customers see your business once again!

Hey there guys! My name is Eric. I am the client relationship manager at the web design and social media company JC Sweet and Co. As mentioned earlier we will be primarily focused around the news feed updates that Facebook has made in 2018 and how they affect small business owners. This new update to the Algorithms affect both personal profiles and business pages – This is a BIG change that everyone will notice. Adjusting to these changes isn’t just recommended, it’s necessary to continue using Facebook as a tool in your business. So regardless of if you are a Facebook Master, or just starting out, I recommend you stay tuned for the next few minutes to get as much benefit as possible out of your business pages.

As you may already be aware Facebook doesn’t actually show your post to 100% of people who like your business page. Facebook’s #1 goal is to connect people together to have meaningful relationships and conversations. As of Quarter four of 2017 there are 2.13 Billion Monthly active Facebook Users. That is a massive group of people all hoping to connect with people they actually know and care about online. To make this work, Facebook has developed algorithms that sort content based on percieved relevance. Every time that you see something on facebook that doesn’t apply to you, it makes your experience a little less personal. If enough of this happens, you may stop using it in general

In lou of the research experts have done at Facebook concerning the way media is consumed on the News Feed, Mark Zuckerberg, the founder of Facebook, made a public announcement in February 2018. In his post he talks at length about how facebook has gone away from what he imagined for it. “businesses, brands and media are crowding out the personal moments that lead us to connect more with each other.” Because of this Mark announced that they were going back to the basics and revising the news feed to reflect Facebook’s mission.

He went on in his post to say” As we roll this out, you’ll see less public content like posts from businesses, brands, and media. And the public content you see more will be held to the same standard — it should encourage meaningful interactions between people”

So, with that said. Facebook is concerned about providing a quality experience that will promote a user’s well-being. Their studies have shown that genuine interactions between friends is what promotes a strong well-being. Publishers and marketers should look to create posts that will generate back-and-forth discussion among Facebook users. Try including questions in your posts, or write about timely, relevant topics that users are sure to have an opinion on. You can also use the Poll Feature to get accurate data on who thinks what.

More than 90% customers love video-based stories & updates on social media. Videos are considerable for impactful social interactions and this SMM tactic will generate leads for you.

Videos are still favored under the new algorithm, but live videos will be even more important. In his announcement, Zuckerberg wrote that “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.”

This means if you haven’t already invested time and energy into posting live videos on Facebook, you 100 percent should do so now. This is one of the few concrete examples of content that will perform well under the new algorithm included in the announcement, so we would all do well to pay attention to it.

The new Facebook algorithm change also considers when people Like or comment on a post: With this update, Facebook is going to begin looking at when people are choosing to like, comment and share.

If people are engaging with the post right after it is posted, and not as much a few hours later, this suggests that the post was most interesting at the time it was posted, but potentially less interesting at a later date. Based on this signal it is more likely to appear higher in News Feed earlier on and lower at a later date.

Facebook recently introduced a feature called story bumping. Story bumping causes older posts to appear at the top of the news feed when your friends interact with the content. Posts that were lost in the busyiness of the news feed during peak hours are brought back up to the top once a friend interacts with it.

Users not only want to stay in touch with family and friends, but they also want to stay informed on what’s happening within their local communities. Facebook surveyed users to determine which news outlets are most respected and trusted. Tests for this update begin rolling out the last week of January and will continue throughout the year. Pages who have been deemed trustworthy from these surveys may see an increase in distribution, while Pages that were not voted as trustworthy will likely see a drop in distribution and audience reach. This February update builds on that with higher priority falling on local news. If you follow a local news Publisher or if a friend shares a local news story, you may see that post higher on your News Feed.

So now that you’ve heard all of the recent updates to Facebook’s Algorithms, Lets talk about how businesses can shift their posts to adjust to the changes. Here’s a few Quick ideas that may help you create Content that leads to meaningful interactions. Keep in mind these are just ideas, not requirements. You ultimately should decide what the best practices for your business are.

Create a Quiz or Poll around a topic that applies to your audience. Let’s say for example you sell flowers. You could create a post asking your followers which arrangement of flowers they liked better, upload a picture of each option and allow them to vote for a week. To take it a step up randomly select one name from the list and send them that arrangement!

Have a contest – There are a number of ways to do this. But one of my favorites is customer submitted content. Have your customers do something around a specific hashtag and have them add their own photo or video submissions to the post – The randomly selected winner or picture with the top likes from your community will win the prize!

Product Feedback and Suggestions – Give your customers a chance to talk about what they love (Or want to change) about your product. Use this as a way to involve customers in the development process and gain free customer feedback.

Share Customers stories. Did someone post a picture using your product or make a video with it? Give them some credit and share their post to your page with a nice write up about the customer’s experience. They will love the extra exposure for their personal brand and tell all of their friends.

Unfortunately, many people take advantage of this and use content that’s considered spam or can be identified as “LikeBait.” An example of this would be a post that says, “Like us if you love chocolate!” Knowing that most everyone does love chocolate and that Likes gained in such a way don’t actually reflect the quality of the content, this is a practice Facebook is looking to eliminate, Facebook is calling this and similar actions that bait users to share or vote “Engagement Bait” and will demote such posts and pages within the News Feed.

To avoid Engagement bait, create content that is interesting and relevant to your customers. Try to stay on topic to your industry and brand. If you must, Use your personal page for sharing random vidoes and making strong stances on topics that don’t apply to your audience. Keep your page focused towards why your customers followed you, and Create content worth sharing without saying it.

Thank you for taking some time out of your busy schedule to watch this video about the Algorithm updates to Facebook. We covered a lot of information today, so If you have any questions about the recent changes to Facebook, or you’ve discovered something that we overlooked, please leave a comment below so we can all improve together. Have a great week!

 

Sources of Information:

https://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/facebook-news-feed-changes/
https://wallaroomedia.com/facebook-newsfeed-algorithm-change-history/
https://blog.hootsuite.com/facebook-algorithm-change-2018/
https://www.postplanner.com/the-facebook-algorithm-changes-again/
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/01/12/technology/facebook-news-feed-changes.html

How the Facebook algorithm update will change your news feed


https://www.techjeny.org/social-media-marketing-tips/ 2/19/18
https://marketingland.com/facebooks-fight-spam-clickbait-means-advertisers-234415

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