We weren’t the only ones making bold New Year’s resolutions this year. Facebook kicked off 2018 by announcing plans to make significant changes to their newsfeed algorithm to prioritize content from family and friends over Facebook business pages.

So, what does this mean for your brand’s Facebook page this year?

First and foremost, less public content will appear in your followers’ Facebook feeds. Less visibility means pages should expect to see a drop in organic reach and interactions as well as video views. Rather than ranking content consumed from company pages, Facebook will start prioritizing posts that spark conversation among friends and family. Followers can expect to see more content from people in their network and less posts and videos from the pages you follow.

While this sounds like bad news for company pages – and perhaps for people with family members who like to share everything – public posts will still have a home in your followers’ feeds. The nature of that content, however, will change. The last few years have seen videos reign supreme. But winter is coming. As Facebook rolls out new changes, video content will likely be dethroned in favor of posts that “spark conversations” and “meaningful interaction.” Articles or videos that prompt people to interact and discuss will take their place on the iron throne as Facebook’s top priority.

Public posts will still have a home in your followers’ feeds. The nature of that content, however, will change.Click To Tweet

As we prepare for Facebook Zero, brands can take a couple of steps to arm themselves for the impeding social apocalypse:

  • Start the Conversation. It seems obvious, but creating engaging content will be more important than ever. Posts featuring a call-to-action that compels your audience to comment and interact with each other will be far more valuable than posts exclusively driving to external sites. Goodbye, boring white papers. Hello, humorous industry memes!
  • Stop Fishing for Engagement. While engaging posts will take priority, be wary of falling into the “engagement bait” trap. Facebook considers posts asking followers to “LIKE if you’re an engineer” or “SHARE with 10 friends” akin to spam and unlikely to foster authentic engagement. Focus instead on developing quality content that resonates with your audience rather than baiting them with cheap gimmicks.
  • Live in 3, 2, 1… That’s right. Those notifications that brands have gone live are working. Live video has proven to be more relevant and engaging to viewers than organic, evergreen videos. According to Facebook, people spend 3x more time watching Facebook live video compared to pre-recorded videos. Additionally, live videos average 6x as many interactions as regular videos. As the news feed evolves, look for opportunities for your brand to double the amount of love emojis and build relationships through live video content.
  • Start Advertising. While a majority of the Facebook Zero changes will affect content posted organically to the news feed, it’s unclear how these updates will affect paid content. However, as less public content appears in the news feed, we can expect to see more brands turning to advertising to drive traffic to their websites. It’s time to pull out your Mr. Miyagi cards and prepare your brand by mastering Facebook advertising.

Social channels are always evolving, but an effective social strategy should be able to adapt to changing rules and come out stronger in the end. Still not sure your social media strategy is ready for 2018? Let us know. We’re here to help.

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