The original intention for Facebook’s news feed was to show users interesting stories and updates from their friends. This has changed somewhat over time, as more and more business and organisations have flocked to the social media giant to take advantage of its incredible marketing potential. The downside, according to Facebook, is that people are seeing more and more promotional posts, and fewer posts from their friends and relatives. As a result, Facebook has revealed one of its biggest updates for some time.
Sometime soon (the exact timeline hasn’t been announced yet), news posts from Pages will receive another hit, and will be shown less and less frequently. As a result, running marketing campaigns via Facebook Pages will become harder work, as the reach of any given post will be reduced again. The last time this happened, reports of a 40% drop-off in audience reach were recorded by some analysts, and that will fall further with this latest change. Again, this could also be seen as another push towards Facebook’s advertising platform, which will become an even more desirable option as the free alternative becomes less and less compelling.
The good news? Well I’m not sure there is much. As a personal user, I never used to find promotional posts that much of a problem – if any of the Pages I like show too much rubbish, I just stop liking them. I can’t do anything about paid/boosted posts either, and those are usually the most annoying of all! (Not that there’s anything inherently wrong about Facebook advertising – it is in fact a great, cost-effective tool to reach a well-targeted audience, but it can be badly misused by advertisers throwing money at a scattergun campaign).
For Page owners, this is just more bad news. Effectively, your organic reach will be further reduced, meaning you’ll need to spend more money to reach the same audience. Perhaps there are some hidden benefits for Page owners that haven’t been revealed yet (perhaps an increase in engagement from users who are now less flooded with promotional posts?), but it doesn’t sound like the life of a social media marketer is about to get any easier.