Facebook is at it again and this time the changes are expected to rock the way businesses have used Facebook.  On January 11, 2018, Facebook made a formal announcement about changes that will be coming soon to the algorithm.  After facing major criticism over the last few years with fake news, toxic topics, and more, Facebook is working to combat these issues and ultimately make a better experience for the user.

What to expect?

Facebook Algorithm ChangesFacebook will be rewarding content and posts that promote interaction and engagement.  This means that static content and article sharing will not get as much natural engagement.  Many brands and business pages rely heavily on this type of content, and therefore this news can be a little alarming to some.

As we make these updates, Pages may see their reach, video watch time and referral traffic decrease. The impact will vary from Page to Page, driven by factors including the type of content they produce and how people interact with it. Pages making posts that people generally don’t react to or comment on could see the biggest decreases in distribution. Pages whose posts prompt conversations between friends will see less of an effect.  – Mark Zuckerberg

No Big Surprise

If you’ve been watching the changes that Facebook has made over the years, you’ll see that they are always encouraging the live interaction with social content.  We’ve seen video, and live video specifically outrank any other type of content for almost two years now.  Stories emerged that rival the day-of content like that of Snapchat.  Ultimately, all of these strategies are focused on bringing human interaction to the forefront.

So, what to do?

I’ve said this before, and I’ll say it again:  social media is constantly changing.  That is why you have to be ready to pivot and this, my friends, is a moment to pivot.  If your social media strategy has stayed a little stale over the years, NOW is the time to change that.  It feels a little Darwinian to say, but you need to evolve or die.  Social media is changing and this is one major example of it.

So, as you consider pivoting your strategy, here are a few things to consider bringing into the mix:

  1. Live Video:  Facebook specifically mentions Live Video in their announcement.  This is a no-brainer folks!  They are literally spelling it out.  That said, live video needs to have a strategy surrounding it, and a social media strategist can help you be successful at this.  Video Blogging will also become more prominent.
  2. Facebook Advertising:  More and more we’re seeing great results with Facebook advertising, and now that will only continue to be relevant.  If you want to get your message to your ideal target prospect, Facebook Advertising can do that – and it doesn’t matter how many followers you have on your Facebook business page to be successful with this.
  3. Facebook Events:  Local businesses that create events for milestones, launches, or special events can gain more interaction and exposure.  Instead of just announcing a Super Bowl party with specials, a restaurant could make it a separate “event,” which could garner more focused interaction.
  4. Personal Facebook Profile:  We all use our personal profiles for different reasons, but if you are friends with a lot of referral partners or clients, your personal profile could be a great resource for you to interact and share about your business without as much filtering compared to that of your Business Page’s content.
  5. Diversify:  I’ve been saying this for years, but just as your retirement savings is diversified between low and high risk investments, your social media strategy needs to be diversified.  If you are carrying all of your eggs in the Facebook basket, this big announcement could be troubling to you.  However, if you are focusing on building audiences on other core social media networks, building your email list, and pushing people to your own website, this recent Facebook algorithm change won’t affect you nearly as much.

The time to pivot is now.  And there’s never been a bigger need for a social media strategist by your side, helping you navigate the constant changing scene of social media.