Already the Facebook Newsfeed changes in 2018 have marketers in a twist – and it’s only the middle of January!  The tech giant has just announced a raft of changes this month. They are altering the Newsfeed to prioritise more popular content. The company want to drive those articles/videos/posts that drive more discussion and interaction. Mark Zuckerberg has said that these changes are to make Facebook a more interactive and positive place for users. These changes will also eradicate fake news and click bait (good news). So what does this mean for businesses? Well we now that what will be prioritized in the Newsfeed are personal posts from friends and family (requiring really good quality social media content to catch their attention). The platform is searching for content that sparks meaningful interactions between people. This obviously includes news articles/videos etc. that prompt discussion. We also know that live Facebook videos get 6 times more the interaction than normal video posts so this may be a way to gain the competitive advantage if you have something interesting to live stream.

Facebook chases the billion dollar Netflix advertising market

So what has caused these changes. The scandal from the accusation of Russia interfering with the U.S. election system has led to some of these changes with Facebook trying to appease the U.S. government. Also, as Netflix has changed the face of television – last year announcing it had a 6 billion dollar budget for buying content and invited interested producers etc. over to theirs to discuss – and how we watch content, Facebook now also seems to be gearing up for more exclusive video rights. The tech giant is moving towards becoming a major digital television destination in order to tap into the billion dollar tv ad revenue stream. As we all start to watch more via the internet, Facebook are looking to get more exclusive video rights. This month they were appointed the exclusive rights to the red carpet pre-party content for the Golden Globe awards. (Twitter was the highest bidder for those rights last year). They have been bidding for things like the Indian Cricket League (no surprise with a huge fanbase).  Facebook tend to test everything in the United States first and their new Watch platform is no exception. It’s currently available over there on desktop, mobile and as a television App (the Set Top).  Hopefully it won’t be long before it rolls out across Europe.

Russians interfere with US Facebook political ads

So what should businesses do next? Firstly, create content that is interesting and relevant to your audience. Make sure it has some sort of wow factor or something that will engage users. STT Swings in Carlow have been creating great videos that are engaging and informative at the same time. They use images of their target audience (children) to get the marketing message across. STT Swings use the heaviest framing you will find on the market to produce their wooden outdoor play sets so they show children playing on the play sets and talk about creating memories. The videos re-enforce the message that the climbing frames, swing sets etc. are made for maximum durability.

ONS Developers have also been creating interesting content. They have just launched a new housing development in Portlaoise and have created a range of video content targeted towards individual market segments. As a construction developer, they have a strong record of producing quality houses with a strong emphasis on community development.   They have cleverly created a video with testimonials from the first stage of the Bellingham development. They’ve created content for young social influencers, content for first time buyers and have lots of interesting, helpful content on the page.

 

Use Facebook Live when possible and relevant. Encourage your fans to click your ‘see first’ button on your page so that they get to see the content first before anyone else. This can be done on any page. You may also have noticed that business pages have (at last) set up groups for pages. This is a huge facility to leverage for your prospective clients. Use them to share content, or just curate and step in when necessary. Events are a great way to leverage local businesses. Events tap into the new Local system that Facebook has set up and it’s a great way for prospective customers to see what’s in their local neighbourhood. So now you have a plan for all these Facebook Newsfeed changes for 2018!

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