If you haven’t heard, Facebook is reportedly limiting how content reaches fans of brand pages.
First things first, here’s what we know: Time Magazine, among others, is reporting:
“Over the past several months, Facebook has been reducing the organic reach of Pages. Even if a person Likes a company or organization on the social network, they’re unlikely to naturally see that Page’s content in their News Feed. In a recent study of more than 100 brand Pages, Ogilvy & Mather found that companies’ posts dropped from reaching 12% of their followers in October to just 6% by February. The tech blog Valleywag reports that Facebook is planning to dial reach down to 1% to 2% of followers eventually.”
What does that mean? We know that Facebook will continue to tweak its algorithm to emphasize paid posts. What doesn’t that mean? Brands don’t need to put dollars behind every post to reach their audience.
While you’re sorting out how this change impacts your page(s), here’s a short-term plan to make sure you don’t lose momentum:
Let the data be your guide. Measure the performance of every piece of content you share on your page to track network growth, content reach, and engagement and conversions (these should be specific to your brand). Then, let the data inform what you deem “high-quality content.” This should be a mix of what your brand sees as high-quality (What will spark engagement with fans?) and what Facebook deems as high-quality.
Share is the new like. (Thanks to Jason Falls for that one!) If we assume these reports are true and organic reach is less, that means you’ll need help getting more eyeballs on your content. The most effective, cost-efficient way to do this is through shares. From now on, review your content calendars through a “sharing lens” — are you creating content that people will want to share with their personal networks? By increasing the number of shares, you’ll naturally increase the number of people who see your content.
Strategic advertising needs to be incorporated into your content plan. It’s no secret that Facebook needs to make revenue, which means advertising is a critical part of their business model. When you have critical content that you think people MUST see, incorporate advertising to ensure it doesn’t get buried.
I have a little hypothesis that we’re testing in the next week. If I’m right, we’ll report back our findings. In the meantime, what else are you doing to improve your page’s reach? Let’s discuss in the comments.