On January 11, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg announced its algorithm was changing, and that change will have a big impact on brands. Zuckerberg said news feeds would soon contain more content from users’ family and friends and fewer ads. Here’s what you need to know.
The Goal Has Changed
At first, both Instagram and Facebook presented content chronologically. Users saw content as it was added from everyone on their list. In 2016, Facebook put an algorithm in charge of deciding what content should be displayed. The goal was to help you find what was most relevant. Facebook showed you the most liked posts or content sponsored by brands in which you had indicated an interest. The new goal, according to Zuckerberg, is to help you have more meaningful social interactions.
Zuckerberg says Facebook reviewed academic research and found users are happier and healthier when they use social media to connect with people with whom they have relationships instead of just passively scrolling through content. Facebook hopes to encourage more meaningful interactions and reduce the fake news for which it was so criticized during the last election.
The hope is that users will share more photos and video from their own lives instead of reposting professionally produced content. Zuckerberg indicates users are more likely to share organic content if they see others doing the same.
How Feeds Will Vary
Most people see feeds filled mostly with professionally created content aimed at getting their attention. Zuckerberg says now feeds will contain mostly posts from family members and friends, along with groups users have joined.
Influencers who have a growing audience will become even more desirable for marketers. If brands are unable to reach consumers directly, they may try to reach their target audience through individuals who have influence over buying and behavior patterns.
Content Will Be Even More Important
Zuckerberg says comments mean meaningful interactions. While likes and shares indicate some interest, the new algorithm will prioritize posts that create conversations. Brands should make sure new material contains topics and content that spark interactions. Ask questions or use relevant material to create a discussion, and your users’ friends and family members will see the material and perhaps add comments of their own.
Zuckerberg Says Videos Create Discussions
The new algorithm will prioritize videos, especially ones taking place live. Zuckerberg pointed out that live videos receive six times the interaction of regular ones. Facebook Live helps drive engagement, improves the user experience, and boosts your brand’s organic reach.
When you need a digital marketing strategy that brings in more traffic and drives conversions, SteerPoint is your full-service digital marketing agency. We stay on top of trends to help customers create conversations.