Insightful Social Media: Demystifying the 2018 Facebook Changes
Insightful Social Media: Demystifying the 2018 Facebook Changes
This topic is different to what I normally write about (millennials, mindfulness, coaching strategies and self-care). It's also written differently as it contains (mostly) bullet-point notes from a webinar I attended that I found so useful I decided the information needed to be shared. As a small-to-medium business owner or as an individual who uses social media to connect with others and/or potential customers and clients, the upcoming changes to Facebook (and later in 2018, Instagram) are important to know about.
This blog post contains a summary of the notes I took from a Marketing Academy for Small Business webinar I attended on 20th February 2018 called '2018 Changes for Facebook & Instagram'. I'm happy to share these notes with you as part of my work involves helping individuals and SMEs have authentic and insightful connections with others - whether in person or online via websites and social media :)
Changes are coming to FB – Mark Zuckerberg calls them the "most massive changes that have gone into effect on FB to date".
What can individuals and SMEs do now? Essentially: be aware of the upcoming changes AND put practices into effect now so when the changes roll out you're doing the right things - including having a good marketing strategy in place. This blog post details what the upcoming changes are and how to prepare for them.
First, some statistics: Where are my customers?
- 62% of consumers use Facebook to engage with small businesses
- 12% Pinterest.... 11% Twitter .... 9% Instagram
The 'OVERLY-PROMOTIONAL POST' Rule
Facebook does NOT push the following out into the Newsfeed:
- Posts created for the sole purpose of pushing people to buy a product etc
- OR posts that push people to enter promotions, giveaways or contents
- OR posts that re-use the same content from ads...
If you create posts like these Facebook does NOT push these out into the Newsfeed (now or when the changes are rolled out)
Jan 11, 2018 Update
- Currently only 1.6 - 2% of our network see our business posts....
- CHANGE: Focus will be on what friends and family share (personal profiles)
- CHANGE: De-emphasising posts from Business Pages and Groups (!)
What does this mean?
In Oct 19 2017 Facebook started testing dual-news feeds across 5 European markets - (1) for businesses/advertisers ('EXPLORE'), (2) for friends/family
For a small business owner what does this mean?
- Organic reach dropped by more than two-thirds
- Four times drop in engagement
Changes for Instagram coming in LATE 2018
So, how can we be at the top of the 'Explore' tab??
One of main things you can do: Improve Organic Reach on Explore Page. HOW?
- Preference to video with high completion rates (45-60 secs in length AND people consuming at least half of that content)
- Preference for authentic and timely posts
- New features to improve interactions with your audience
You can already do the above with your current news feed. Then, when FB switches over to the 2 feeds, your chances of being up the top of the 'Explore' feed will be higher!
What can you do RIGHT NOW?
- Facebook Live = preference in news feed
- Longer videos with higher completion rates will rank higher
Create Authentic Posts
- Facebook penalises posts with negative feedback -- they don't want people to unlike page, hide posts etc
Create Timely Posts
o Immediate interest
o Current events
o Trending topics
1. Targeting for Individual Posts. You can select a subset of your followers to see your content. FB wants your content to be relevant to your audience. If more people out of the 1.6%-2% of your page folowers like your post, FB will increase the reach (e.g. up to 3%) etc. CLICK on 'BULLET' icon
2. New placements and visibility options: Messenger Communication
- Chat functions
- Full-Screen experience
So what's a business owner supposed to do?? - Best Practices
- Schedule posts directly through FB!!
- NO outbound links (seen as overly promotional in nature)
- Upload videos directly to FB!! ... NO YOUTUBE LINKS! = more organic reach
- Create content that encourages interaction:
---- Remember: your customers want to share content that puts them in a positive light
---- Hot news
---- Motivational or inspirational
No More Boosting Posts!
Paid advertising or content that delivers value to customers is preferred.
- Consumers logging into FB AT LEAST 15 times per day!!!
- 58% of consumers interact with a FB or Instagram ad at least 1x before engaging with a small business
So What's the Solution?
- You want to show up at the top of the Newsfeed and start preparing for the change to Explore Pages, starting TODAY... Spend $1 at a time to allocate to your FB marketing/ads budget
How can you STAND OUT in the newsfeed?
- 'Value Offer' e.g. How-to video
- PDF cheat sheets: great for service-based businesses!
- Create High Converting Ads: when creating images the images should show EMOTION, MOTION and COLOUR (you want to pop out in the newsfeed)
- Control Timing: you want Facebook users to stop and view your ad. Key: have an engaging image
Start the relationship with potential customers/clients
Option 1: With the 'value offer' you can capture customer information. You can capture the lead's information on a capture form/landing page (so you can deliver your free offer to the potential customer/client). It's important not to ask for too much information. Make sure the information from the advertisement (what the client clicked to get to the landing page) and the landing page are consistent so the user knows they're in right spot.
Info to collect: First name and Email address
Option 2: Messenger
- Link your ad directly to Messenger
- When a user interacts with you, they receive a message directly from you with link to FB ad
Nurture the relationship
Why nurture the relationship ?
- 85% of in-store customers don't purchase on same visit... 95% with online customers!
- Building meaningful relationships
- Close the SALE at higher rates
- Top of mind!
- Build momentum - allow potential customers to have a great experience from the first time meeting you on FB etc
Was this information useful to you? How will you apply the information to your personal or business Facebook page? Let me know in the comments section below! And, if I can help you make sense of the changes or help you create a social media strategy that takes into account the upcoming changes, please don't hesitate to let me know :)
Sources: ON24 Consumer Report; Business 2 Community Report
Notes taken from attending webinar run by ‘Marketing Academy for Small Busines