Facebook Changes – The Good Times Are Over

The good news is that we’ll be seeing more conspiracy theory posts from crazy Uncle Stan, and of course, we cannot forget that seemingly unending stream of baby photos from that friend of yours you haven’t seen in six years. While at the same time, we may not be getting so many feeds from news sites, even if we have intentionally subscribed to them.

OK, so that is not entirely true, but Facebook’s new algorithm changes suggests that their new focus, or rather, their re-focus, is back onto posts from family and friends – the social media platform’s earlier, grander purpose. There are some tweaks to this however, that will prioritize posts that spur on the most genuine engagement, aka meaningful comments and shares.

“With this update, we will also prioritize posts that spark conversations and meaningful interactions between people. To do this, we will predict which posts you might want to interact with your friends about, and show these posts higher in feed.” Said Adam Mosseri, Head of News Feed, on the Facebook blog in early January.

“…we’ll show less public content, including videos and other posts from publishers or businesses.”

-Adam Mosseri, Facebook

This is essentially an effort to shut down the fake news phenomenon that has plagued us all over the past two years. Whether these changes will be the anathema we all want to see, or just further reinforce these echo chambers, we will need to wait and see.

However, one thing is almost certain, this is not welcomed news for retail brands.

Whole industries have arisen around Facebook’s advertising platform. It was, and remains, a stable platform to gain an audience’s attention. But this shift in the way Facebook prioritizes content effectively means there is less advertising space. A conclusion many have drawn is that Facebook ads will become more expensive. Purely based on supply and demand, less irrelevant content on our feeds, means decreased opportunity to interrupt.

Irrelevant content. That is the point isn’t it?

From a multimedia perspective, this is good news of sorts. Sure, it will be harder work for marketers, especially digital marketers, to locate audiences, but there was a time when Facebook ads didn’t play such a big part. And while Facebook is a dominant player in the social media landscape, there are other significant platforms, tools, and methods still in existence and available to effective use.

There are other mediums and channels out there that are rather effective in communicating messages. Included in this is your website, your newsletters, media websites, Twitter, Linkedin, Weibo, etc.

The list is extremely long.

If anything, these changes means marketers can cater content to other distribution channels that reach greater audience numbers. Good content, along with smart SEO, will matter more than ever before as brands attempt to reach, resonate, and compel people to share and discuss their brand messages.

There is no choice now, but to step out of the comfort zone that has become Facebook advertising, and take a refreshed view on where our audiences spend their time, the ways we can reach them, and the way we communicate with them.

This is pretty exciting.

Did I mention PR Newswire Asia can help strategize your content and distributes your news to media so they can pick up your story? Talk to us!

Cal Wong is Content Services Manager at PR Newswire Asia.
Photo by Dikaseva on Unsplash

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