Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, recently announced some major changes to how your Facebook news feed will start to be displayed – there will be more prominence on seeing content from friends, family and groups, and less visibility from brands and media outlets.
Zuckerberg noted that the amount of video and content from businesses and publishers has grown exponentially, and it has started to dominant user’s news feed where it can start to feel like a bombardment of advertising and sales. The aim seems to be to bring back a more personalised experience from spending time on Facebook – and going back to the original drive of connecting and keeping in contact with people.
But what about the wider implications from a business and commercial perspective for companies that spend money advertising with Facebook? Here at CandidSky we look at what our team thought:
Nazma Noor, Digital Strategist, said, “We’re marketers – we’ll adapt! I’m actually looking forward to seeing how this plays out. I like the idea that it’s going to encourage brands to think of different ways to reach audiences, with messages that resonate and get people talking about them. It’ll become even more important to really know your audience and hone in on that targeting.”
Henry Smith, Junior SEO Executive, commented, “Brand awareness and users actively talking about a brand will inevitably become more important as Facebook roll out their proposed changes. For most brands, it will become more important than ever to integrate their marketing channels. Moreover, I believe that the use of niche Facebook groups (communities) will have a greater share of importance moving forwards in an effort to retain organic visibility.
In my opinion, the changes will greatly affect large media publishers, such as UNILAD and LADbible, who experience significant exposure from videos – this was something specifically mentioned by Zuckerberg in his post. On the other hand, it could be the case that video’s which are shared by friends are still displayed on our timelines due to Facebook deeming them ‘personal’.”
Sam Sheppard, SEO Executive, said, ” I think the change has three benefits to Facebook (but they’ve only marketed one of those benefits, for obvious reasons):
1. Evening out the balance between Facebook as a news site and a social network (the balance has been skewed towards news for years now)
2. Pushing publishers towards paid promotion of their content, as the chances of appearing organically will become even smaller than they are currently. This will likely be fine for those with big budgets, but smaller businesses may struggle to keep pace. Similarly, anyone who relies solely on Facebook for their business may need to change their tactics slightly (guess this includes some of the biggest Facebook publishers too, UniLad etc..)
3. I assume this is also part of their solution for tackling fake news, which they’ve been under intense pressure to do recently. Of course anyone who so wished could pay to promote their fake news, but it’ll certainly help a little at least.
Elena Stagg, PPC Executive, thought, “I think its a good thing – for clients like John Ryan By Design who are putting together thoughtful, useful content and providing a service to their customers, it means that their content will be given precedence over cute cats clickbait content. It also gives marketers an incentive to create genuine, original content and build discussions with their customers. Facebook has played an important role in elections in the UK & US so it makes sense that Facebook are cutting down on fake news and clickbait content.”
It is an interesting move from Facebook and we will watch this space to see how the changes span out and how brands react.
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