Whether you “like” it or not, Facebook is a place for businesses to advertise everything from watches to whisk(e)y. Can you emoji-ne what a more delightful experience your news feed might become if less of those pesky business posts got in the way and you were able to see more of the posts you like? Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg can, and that’s exactly the plan with their latest algorithm change. The theory is that with fewer sponsored and paid posts getting in the way, users would have more meaningful interactions with the people they care about. Maybe Facebook really wants you to see more of your cousin’s cat memes, but maybe there’s more to it (hint, money is involved)…
The truth is that Facebook has been slowly limiting organic business posts for years and is finally going public with the message. They’re also following the same pattern with Instagram, gradually burying unnecessary and low-quality ads to “improve the user experience,” they suggest. What does this actually mean for your business’ social media feeds?
1. Open Wallets = Facebook Exposure
You read that right. Facebook is a business, and they are following a pretty reliable path to success – the same one Google used years ago when it started out in a garage as “just a search engine” before blossoming into a company worth nearly $800 billion. Google was originally all organic and free, then they implemented their Adwords system for pay-per-click, then an auction system within Adwords, and those ideas were right on the money, literally and figuratively.
Less organic exposure means more companies will need to pay for ads, more demand equals less supply, which means that ad space on Facebook (and Instagram) is now going to cost you more and there will be more companies vying for each space. You’re going to spend more per click, and especially per conversion, because it’s going to take more resources, management, and creativity to generate leads that, as of right now, are easier and cheaper to capture. This does not mean your business should stop posting or no longer advertise. Rather, it means you should continue to post with reasonable expectations of exposure, and advertise heavily while prices remain a relative bargain. A great team can drill down on your paid campaign to maximize efficiency so you can remain profitable even as prices rise slowly in the coming years.
2. What’s up, Zuckerberg?
None of this makes Facebook or Mr. Zuckerberg a bad guy. It’s business and capitalism at work, and smart business at that. Organic business posts aren’t going away, but they are going to be seen less often unless boosted and in some cases gently marinated in the bowl full of your co-workers’ political rants, religious ramblings, and I’m-also-a-self-help-guru posts. And yes, get ready, as it’s going to require more buck for the bang. To that end, you can no longer afford to live in a fantasy world where it’s assumed that if you post it they will see it.
The landscape of social media marketing is evolving on a weekly basis – keep reading our newsletters to be the Facebook Live and not the now-defunct Vine. And if you don’t know what that means, or need help with social media marketing and management GetTheScoop@iScreamSocialMedia.com today.
Stay tuned-in for next month’s newsletter for more tips on how you can combat this trend against organic engagement.