Facebook’s done it again. They revamped their News Feed and it’s making us question our content calendars all over again.
As the world’s biggest social media platform, Facebook has always been a top priority for marketers. Especially with nonprofits whose budgets could use some free advertising. But a shift in Facebook’s News Feed means a shift in how nonprofit marketers need to approach their content strategy.
With the new changes, Facebook users can expect to see more posts from friends, family, and groups. Posts from businesses, organizations, brands, and media will be less prominent. And an organization’s posts will decrease in reach as a result. Even a page with 4.7 million followers is feeling the blow.
The goal of the update is to make a user’s News Feed “more meaningful.” People don’t want to be bombarded with branded content. If company page content wants to be seen, it’s going to have to encourage more meaningful interactions between people. Facebook is prioritizing posts that get people talking, so posts with comments (aka meaningful interactions) will get more reach than those that simply have shares.
So, what do you do? You still want supporters to see your posts, but Facebook is making that harder and harder. We’ve got a couple of ideas.
1. Prioritize content that generates conversation
Nonprofits are already centered on community, so this shouldn’t be too hard, it’ll just take some strategizing. Facebook wants to be a place for discussion, whether that’s on celebrity culture or local events. For example, Oprah’s recent Golden Globes speech is content that would fare well in the new News Feed because it’s a discussion generator. Try creating content outside of Facebook and then using Facebook as a place to discuss that content. Video could be key here. Anything that will make your followers start speaking up.
2. Rethink video
Speaking of video, you need to be careful. For the last year or two, the conventional wisdom has been that Facebook heavily rewards posts with natively-hosted video. So everyone and their brother has been saturating News Feeds with videos. Now that Facebook has announced it wants to prioritize meaningful interactions, passive video posts aren’t going to fly. By passive, Facebook means posts that include a video simply for the sake of sharing a video (i.e. “check out our new brand video!”). If the video doesn’t engender some sort of emotion, passion, or opinion, it’ll likely flop.
3. Be willing to pay for boosts
Facebook can’t be seen as a free advertising platform anymore, but a more cost-effective advertising platform that allows page managers access to an already-interested group. Facebook provides segmentation for you with options like boosting to “people who like this page and their friends.” Put money in your marketing budget specifically for Facebook boosts, even if it’s only $20-$30 per month.
If we’re thinking big picture, these changes are good for our community and the world’s use of social media as a whole. But they also mean we as marketers need to up our strategic planning game. Your content is meaningful, it just needs to learn how to play by Facebook’s rules. Let us know if we can help.
– Elaina Dove, Marketing Coordinator