On the edge of a cliff

Anyone managing social media either for themselves or clients will have noticed that Facebook have been tinkering with the algorithms in the last few months. Resulting in their content taking a nose dive as far as reach.

I get the stated reason, to a point, but the cynic in me can't help but think that it's a little more about the Facebook coffers and less about de-cluttering people's News Feed and dealing with the hundreds and thousands of bits of news, memes, competitions and links that are annoying Facebookers.

My reason for coming to this conclusion?

  1. Apparently asking fans or followers to like or share is not considered fashionable any more, it is about rich and targeted news. Why then do the new T&C allow Facebook competitions by way of a comment or share now? Seems to be counter-productive to me.
  2. The way the Insights page is now presented clearly links you to Boost Posts all over the place.
  3. A few of the pages I manage, who don't share memes or chase likes or shares have seen their organic reach take a nosedive and they haven't changed what they have been posting.

These changes get me a bit hot under the collar. Small businesses such as hairdressers or pubs will be most hit. They don't have the time to re-do their Facebook strategy. Heck most of them don't have anything as fancy as a strategy. They just want their followers to be able to see all their updates and news. They don't have a budget to spend boosting their posts or the time to research ways around the end of EdgeRank.

If a user gets annoyed with a page they liked they already have a number of options, they can unlike or report. It does feel like big brother is taking over a little.

My advice is to check out some decent blogs such as Social Bakers and spread your marketing to rely less on Facebook. But use your Insights to help direct you. What age are your audience, if you know this you can work out where else they hang-out. Create an Instagram feed or Google+ space. Maybe by linking your new Instagram to Facebook will help with your organic reach too.

So my conclusion is that the initial tweaking seems harsh on Facebook's part. They may relent as there is a lot of feedback that it is too severe. Users are already getting annoyed about old posts turning up at the top of a News Feed just because one person was having a duvet day and decided to comment on a story from 12 months ago. Again this seems to be agin to the rationale Facebook gave as one comment on an old post shouldn't bump it in my humble opinion.

Don't jump off a cliff just because the EdgeRank has gone and nose dived. If you post meaningful and engaging content and appeal to your followers you should be just fine.