How Facebook’s New Changes Will Affect Small Businesses

On January 11, 2018, Facebook announced sweeping changes to the way it will display results on its news feed. Long-time users of Facebook know that Facebook has made numerous tweaks over the years, both on the page and behind the scenes in places like its ad manager. But these are the most significant changes in years.

Facebook has more than two billion members and is a primary advertising vehicle for countless small business, nonprofits and news organizations. OVer the next few weeks users will see less viral videos and news articles shared by media companies. Facebook is instead focusing on showing more content shared by a user’s family and friends. That means a photo or comment by a family or friend, with an emphasis on one that has been commented on more times, is what will be emphasized.

Facebook head honcho Mark Zuckerberg says the move is meant to maximize “meaningful interactions.” We think marketers might have a different view of what “meaningful interactions” are, am I right!? He also said that he believes people will spend less time on Facebook as a result of these changes. Zuckerberg said he wants to provide users with less “passive content,” which he considers to be videos and articles that the users just passively scrolls through rather than actually interacting with.

From our standpoint, deemphasizing posts from media outlets, nonprofits and small business (like ours! Like yours!) will hurt us. What are we to do?

Here are our recommendations . . .

Reconsider videos.

Zuckerberg says “video is such a passive experience.” He’ll display less of them on feeds.

Experiment.

This is the best advice Zuckerbergcould give when asked how it will affect marketers. He said, “experimenting . . . and seeing . . what content gets more comments, more likes, more reshares.” That may be what you have to do.

Avoid quick-hit, low-quality content.

Think twice about what you’re posting and curate it so that it is as meaningful to your audience as possible.

Take a baseline now. In order to experiment effectively, you need to know where you’re starting from. Get to know your ad manager and demographic data and begin taking note of what time of day your page visitors are on your page and what is clicked on. Start working within those top times and top content to dial in your efforts. If you don’t know how to find this information or how to understand it, this is something Limelight Department can help with.

Optimize your website and your sales funnels. If you’re getting less leads from Facebook, then it’s even more crucial that the ones you do get perform the desired action once they reach your website. Limelight Department specializes in marketing-optimized websites and sales funnels. The investment to begin making the right choices in marketing is a lot less expensive than continuing to market to the wrong people.

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