How has Facebook changed for marketers?

15 months on from the data scandal, Facebook is a very different place compared to what it once was. But has this been a positive change? And how has Facebook changed for marketers? Well, most of the changes Facebook has made have influenced marketers one way or another, and companies and businesses have been forced to shake up their social media game. So what type of marketing techniques are currently effective? And which ones should you avoid? Well, here at here at Pumpkin Web Design, we are Preston’s leading web design and web marketing professionals. We provide valuable web design, SEO, and marketing solutions to a range of clients, across the North West, including Southport and Wigan, as well as Manchester. As a result, we have produced this guide to everything you should know about Facebook marketing, 15 months after the data scandal.

The aftermath of Facebook’s data scandal

Last year, the extent of Facebook’s data collection, and sharing, was uncovered. And this led to a huge backlash from the public and politicians alike, as well as widespread media coverage. To rectify the situation, a number of changes were made to Facebook, to make sure that the platform was really working at its best, connecting people and building community. This was the first nail in the coffin for traditional Facebook marketing strategies, as businesses aiming to advertise and reach a new audience, suddenly became the enemy of a platform for “meaningful interactions with people you care about”. So what has changed? And is Facebook still viable for social media marketing?

How has Facebook changed for marketers?

Facebook is still a great option for social media marketing, but a lot has changed. Things that used to be effective, but can no longer be relied on, include:

  • Organic reach- while you may have reached your entire number of followers previously, with every post you shared, organic reach for business pages has dropped very significantly. In fact only 1 to 6% of your audience will be reached by posts you share, unless you pay for Facebook marketing. It feels like a bit of a shake down! But you can encourage your followers to select the “see first” option for your page, which will help you reach more people.
  • Link posts- Facebook no longer want you to direct users to other website. They want you to stay right there, on the Facebook app. This means that posts with links to external articles, websites, or videos, will be pushed to the very bottom of the pile, and reach even fewer people. If this is happening to your content, the best thing to do is to get engagement on there straight away. And this means comments in particular. The more comments left on your link post, the more people will see it, which counters the negative effect of the link in the first place. If your customers aren’t so forthcoming, consider asking friends and relatives to help get a discussion started.

Effective marketing for Facebook

Things that are now effective include:

  • Groups- groups are now the biggest part of Facebook’s strategy to build communities. And this is where businesses and companies can generate the most interest. You could consider starting a group for your business and building a real sense of community. Maybe partner with other local groups, that are not in direct competition with you, and really put the time and effort into building something that can help you increase sales and sign ups.
  • Stories- stories disappear after a certain number of hours, and so many businesses feel like that is a waste of their budget. But it’s exactly this reason that encourages your potential customers to spend time watching stories. You could find that the number of people who view your company story, is a lot higher than those that view your regular posts.
  • Messaging- messaging has become a great way to reach your audience and really connect to them. Creating group messaging for all of your followers means that you can directly target their inbox with your latest article, or offer, and this can encourage a lot more click-throughs.

The future of Facebook marketing

So, what does the future look like for marketing on Facebook? Well, currently, the future of Facebook itself isn’t all that secure. With the looming threat of regulation, changes in terms of use, and more complications for both businesses and users, it’s hard to say where Facebook as a platform is heading. An increasing number of users are heading over to alternative social media platforms that have less regulation, and less “spying”, including apps like MeWe. It might be a good idea for your company to check out the emerging apps, and get used to using these personally, before potentially migrating your business pages, in a worst case future scenario.

If Facebook does stick around, marketers will find that the more money they pour into Facebook advertising, and the more time they put into “community marketing” on this platform, the more they will get out of it. But there’s no guarantee that the additional effort will be worth the outcome.

For more information or advice about web marketing, and how your business can stay on top, get in touch with the experts today, here at Pumpkin Web Design.

Pumpkin Web Design Ltd is a small and highly results driven digital agency working for like minded clients in Preston, Chorley, Southport, Blackburn, Burnley, Morecambe,Wigan, Manchester, London, Warrington, Blackpool, Lancaster, Leyland, Lytham St Annes, Bolton, Chester and the UK. Our services include web design, SEO, content marketing, video production, brand design and much more.