Keeping up with Facebook changes can be a big task. It seems they are always making updates to their algorithm and layout, and adding new features behind the scenes. Below are ten recent Facebook updates (and 1 to come!) that could affect your marketing and social media planning.
Facebook Changes (that Marketers Should Know!):
- Personal News Feed Preferences: Facebook has just started rolling out updated ways that users can control our news feed (see Facebook press release here). The most exciting of these is selecting which friends and pages you would like to see on the top of your newsfeed. This is still in the works but keep an eye out for it. If your fans don’t want to miss your content, they can specify to keep your posts at the top of their feed.
- Narrow your Audience: When publishing a post to your page, you can limit the audience that sees it. Selections include gender, age, location, interests, post end date and more. For instance, if you are posting about an event that is only in a specific area, or it just applies to women, you can set your post demographics so that it does not show to people it does not apply to, hopefully improving your overall engagement. In order to see this audience demographics option, you should have the “target” icon in your post box. If you don’t see it, go to your settings and make sure the “News feed Audience and Visibility for Posts” box is checked.
- Welcome Note for Place Check-ins: If you Facebook page is set up as a “Place”, you can customize a message and image for people to see when they check-in on Facebook from a mobile device. This can be a great place to share a useful tip to people who are at your location now!
- Publishing Tools: Along the top of your Facebook page, there is a “Publishing Tools” tab, where the scheduled posts, drafts, and expiring posts are tucked in. When you click into this area, there is also a search box for searching for your past posts to your page, which can be very handy. There is also a “Create” button in this area to allow you to create a new post directly from the publishing tools tab, rather than having to go back to your timeline.
- New Emphasis on Page Responsiveness to Messages: You may notice near your messages button, that Facebook is looking closer at how fast you respond to direct messages to your page. They are giving a special “very responsive” icon to those pages that respond to 90% of their message in 5 minutes or less. If you do plan on doing more customer service from your Facebook page, responsiveness is key.
- “Call” Button on Ads: Facebook has added a “Call Now” CTA option on ads to encourage people who see the ad on their mobile device to call the business on-the-spot. Realizing that many people are viewing Facebook via their smart phone, they can easily press the “call” button to access the business immediately. Just know that if you use this ad option, it is important to have staff ready to answer the calls while the ad is running.
- Call-to-Action Button on Cover Image: Although this option is not brand new, I still see many pages who are not utilizing it. You can choose from options such as Sign Up, Call Now, Shop, and more. Facebook is also providing page admins with stats on how often people are using this button to reach out to you.
- Declined Reach of Promotional Posts in the News Feed: Everyone who manages a Facebook page has noticed a declined reach of their posts over the past couple years. In particular, you will want to avoid overly promotional posts, as the reach will be minimal. If you have a promotional post that you want to get out to people, use Facebook Advertising to give it a nice boost and additional exposure.
- Emphasis on Video & Video Ads: According to Social Bakers, there are now more videos being posted on Facebook than on YouTube. Videos are highly engaging and have the auto-play feature in the newsfeed. Call-to-action buttons can also be added to your video. Video ads can now also be an integral part of you marketing.
- Constant Addition of New Facebook Advertising Options: Without a doubt, Facebook is putting emphasis on their many advertising opportunities. Their targeting capabilities are extremely robust, and with options like uploading your own custom audience and creating a conversion pixel, you can not only advertise to your ideal customers via Facebook, but then use the conversion data to see what advertising worked!
- Bonus –Facebook Messenger Integrated into E-Commerce Apps: The stand alone messenger app will be integrated into some commerce sites which will enhance customer service. So for instance, instead of getting an email that your order has shipped, you could get a instant message via Facebook Messenger. This could possibly go hand-and-hand with Facebook’s recent emphasis on responsiveness via Messenger (see #5).
If you are overwhelmed with Facebook changes or don’t have time to keep up with a consistent social media strategy, we are here for you. Did you know that Vivid Image can create and implement a Facebook marketing strategy for your company? From creating and publishing posts, responding to customer messages and comments, optimizing your branded Facebook images and messaging, and managing a Facebook Advertising campaign – – we can help! Contact us here to find out more.