And, no, it isn’t your imagination.
On September 20th, Facebook changed its algorithm, resulting in an even lower percentage of your fans being shown your updates.
Facebook continues to make it more and more difficult for small business owners to be successful with their social media engagement efforts. When questioned, Facebook’s response is for fan page admins to pay up so more of your fans see your posts.
As a result of the increasing challenges and the desire for fan page admins to not have to constantly pay for engagement, you’ve probably seen a flurry of Facebook fan page updates asking fans to follow a set of steps to “ensure” their page’s posts are seen. You also may have seen some asking you to add their fan page to an Interest List.
Unfortunately, these approaches aren’t going to be successful.
- If a fan is not alreadyÂ seeing your page’s updates, they won’t see that post telling them to follow a set of instructions.
- The use of Interest Lists isn’t going to help your cause unless your fans already use that feature. I would venture to guess that the majority of Facebook users have never even heard of Interest Lists, let alone regularly use them.
- It’s never a good business practice to ask your customers to jump through hoops on your behalf.
So what can you do?
- Focus on content My personal motto when it comes to social media content is “relevant and complementary”. You can’t blast your message all day, every day or fans will tune you out. Generate a list of content ideas that relate to your typical fan. For example, a jewelry store may post about weddings, fashion, gifts, salon and spa services, fancy cars, vacations, Broadway shows coming to town and anything else that speaks to high-end, luxury clientele.
- Pay for (some) engagement On a very limited basis, it may be worth it to pay to promote a post. Special sales, holiday events and other business announcements may warrant the expenditure of a few bucks. Promoted posts start at only $5, so it’s not a big investment to at least test and see what kind of rewards you reap.
- Diversify your social media strategy The challenges fan page admins face have only continued to mount. Plus, you don’t own your page, Facebook does. If your entire social media presence – or even more risky, your entire online presence – is your Facebook fan page, it’s time to consider some varied options.
Hearing of these changes can be frustrating. As a small business owner, you’re already trying to do the work of many all by yourself. If you employ a solid content strategy and have a balanced social and online presence, you won’t need to be overly concerned about Facebook’s continued throttling of your fan page’s reach.
How have you adapted your strategy as a result of Facebook’s algorithm change?
*Photo credit: Israel Avila