Facebook is changing its algorithm – again!

This past week has been a tough one for marketers online. Since Mark Zuckerberg announced major changes to Facebook’s newsfeed, I have been doing non-stop research into how small and medium businesses can survive online.

Two thoughts:

  1. This sucks,
  2. But that’s okay. We will make this work.

I have to admit, I was being a bit of a Debbie Downer this week thinking this is the end of Facebook marketing for businesses. It’s not though. Like the ever-changing world of media changes to become more digital, we have learned how to adapt in the past. This is one of those times where businesses keep on trucking and adapt to this as well

Over the past year, I have really gained a passion for business owners. You have to give it to them – it takes a lot of work to get noticed! With this blog, my intention is to be part of the solution and not shoot ideas down for failure. There is always a way and I am a true believer of this.

So what do we do about Facebook? 

Honestly, by the time this blog gets noticed by someone, Facebook and Instagram’s algorithm has probably been changed 5 more times. There are some solutions, right here and right now, that can help you out if you are struggling as much as I was last week.

1. Ads

This is something I will advocate for. There are so many cool things you can do with Facebook ads and it is a good way of reaching out to an audience you may not even know about. If this is done right, you can track who is viewing your ads,

2. Groups

It is an under-valued and under-used feature within Facebook; groups. This has been around for years and years. Groups are a way for a user to become part of a community. Topic-specific conversations happen here. For me, I personally use it to stay involved with the active community in Vancouver and to connect with other Facebook ad buyers. I’ve noticed that these posts show up higher in my personal news feed because it’s relevant to what I am interested in, and they spark conversations that genuinely do interest me.

So how can you get your business into groups?

Say you’re a baby store. Have your page and continue to manage it, but start discovering groups in your industry. Groups such as mommy groups, product-specific groups, toddler groups (these all exist!). You will receive more genuine interest and will likely see more sales through these rather than your page. I actually read something the other day that said the chances of selling something on your page is about 5%, whereas the chances of selling a product on a group are 20%. So it works and it’s a good way to tap into your audience all in one place.

3. Sponsored Events

This is a fun one because it sparks conversation. I get suckered into these all the time and it keeps my social and active life in order. Think events, open houses, sales! It’s not only a great way to advertise to a potentially new broad audience, but this proves to have some value on an already existing community! If I’m going to an event, I want to see if it’s worth it based on how many of my friends are attending (#truestory).

4. Don’t throw in the towel

There is still a place for small business in social media. Don’t give up now and think it’s useless because it’s not. I like to see social media as an extension of a website. It’s a way for customers, current and potential, to validate that your business is still current.

That being said, don’t post content that no one cares about. Your posts will show up higher in a person’s News Feed if it’s worth their time basically. Start working on engagement. Respond back to comments, ask questions and try to show there is a human behind the person posting your content on your page.

Don’t give up now.

In my opinion, there will always be a place for business online because that is where the market is going now! I’m optimistic about keeping a business alive online, but this will mean multiple changes to adapt and keep relevant.