Beating the Facebook Algorithm in 2014
So say the cries of small businesses on the news that organic reach is going to become much harder to achieve. Some Facebook pages have been discarded already, and as businesses watch their reach dwindle, it can be hard to fight the feeling to do likewise. However, there is still a lot of value in having a regularly updated Facebook page, even if you can’t afford the advertising.
The Godfather of Social Media
Despite the rumours flying that Facebook is ‘dying’, it still remains the largest social media platform around. At ten years old, it is one of the longest running social media sites too, but it’s still going strong. Currently Facebook has around 1.19 billion active users, with 728 million of them using it on a daily basis. So with this many people at your finger tips, you’d be a fool to abandon ship.
Focus on Other Numbers
Reach is not the only number you should be looking at, instead, focus on engagement rates and click-throughs. This is what really matters to your business. It might be exciting that thousands of people saw your post, but if no one clicked on it, or interacted with your brand, then it essentially fell flat on its face.
This Moz post argues that pages that have frequently used meme content and calls to action in the past have been punished for doing so with this algorithm update.
Encouraging Engagement and Community
Building community is important to your business – interacting with your fans builds the likability factor. Few brands answer questions and add comments, which mean that they’re missing a trick when it comes to increasing engagement.
A great way to encourage engagement and build a sense of community is to pose questions about your fans – after all, who doesn’t love talking about themselves? Encourage the more timid users through specific, closed questions and either/or questions. These types of questions mean that users don’t get it wrong, and they’re not putting themselves at risk of ridicule. As your fans become more confident in talking to you, you can begin to ask more open questions that expect more input.
Experiment with New Features
Facebook is forever creating new features that might just be a way to success. A bit of experimentation never hurt anyone, and as long as you learn something from it, it will be useful. For instance, you could look at using your personal profile and the ‘follower’ function, or using Facebook and Instagram in conjunction.
Don’t Put All Your Eggs in One Basket
It is widely agreed that if your brand only uses Facebook, then this algorithm update means that you’re in trouble. So, like lots of other things in life, diversify. This means using different social media platforms, but should also refer to your marketing mix as a whole. Make sure you have a range of marketing channels, including things that you pay for, like ads; things that you own, like a website or blog; and things that you earn, like social media.