If you haven’t heard already, Facebook is getting a #makeover. Mark Zuckerburg announced last week that the Facebook product team is ditching the current system of arranging newsfeed based on relevant content to a system, which prioritizes impactful interactions among peers. Colloquially among many businesses it’s being referred to as the apocalypse for Facebook advertisement—unless you learn how to use it to your advantage.
The Bad News
The update will begin with your newsfeed and gradually work to redirect the entire network of Facebook. Essentially Zuckerburg and his team at Facebook are recreating how your newsfeed prioritizes information to better suit creating and expanding relationships among users. It’s bad for businesses dependent on the current model because information, ads, and content can no longer be effectively targeted based on interest. Similarly to the new instagram update, Facebook will prioritize posts on one’s newsfeed, which reflect an important conversation, development or event. That post’s reach will be determined by who in your relevant friend circle has interacted with it based on hierarchy and the probability you are to engage with that information. The meter of value isn’t measured by likes however; it’s heavily weighted by comments. No longer will companies using Facebook’s highly customizable business page be able to reach as many people at once by just throwing money at it—at least not without adapting first.
The Good News
For many companies, the addition of a blog to their website has helped expand their scope when it comes to retaining new customers. This update will only encourage companies to dig deeper in creating content not just catered to their audiences but engaged with them as well. Which is good news! Shaping companies to abide by the interests of their consumers is a model, which puts businesses exactly where they should be—prioritizing the customer first.
It also increases the value of having affiliates and influencers whose brands are already personalized to vouch for your company. Affiliate marketing has long been a key to successfully driving e-commerce. In prioritizing human-to-human interaction, businesses shift their focus from targeted solicitation to customer awareness and community support. It’s also good news for bloggers who make their living on affiliate marketing as now companies will need to expand their affiliate channels to drive traffic to their Facebook page.
It’s great for us as we shift our brand to prioritize business philanthropy. Our brand is already engineered to make the act of shopping for jewelry philanthropic. We support sustainable manufacturing procedures AND source our gemstones and minerals from conflict free providers. Not only that, but we have quarterly fundraisers for non-for profits and charities doing awesome things for awesome people. This quarter we will be working with the Breast Cancer Research Foundation on a fundraiser that accompanies each donation made with a piece of our jewelry (for like half the retail price too, it’s going to be a sweet deal). And all the money is donated! This is the direction we believe businesses should go and we’re happy that Facebook is making changes that encourage businesses to pursue these types of customer to business interactions.
So what are your thoughts? It probably depends on who you are! If you utilize Facebook for socializing, this update is great news. You’ll stop seeing random people’s posts you haven’t heard from or seen in a decade and have more access to those within your circle. For business, it’s not necessarily a bad thing if you leverage it to your advantage. Create content that’s a call to action, but leave your sales pitch at the door. Sympathize with the problems that exist within your customer base and make your page a hub for discussing them. Position your brand as the expert and pioneer the conversation so people instinctively seek your company for the answer. Mine that information to refine the products or service you sell. Ultimately this update shifts the focus from answering a question to being transparent and active in creating the solution.