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How a Small Facebook Change Could Ruin a Profession


As I’m sure some of you have noticed, Facebook has made some changes to its algorithm. Many users are seeing less “meme-type” content and more “news-type” content. News articles fight for top spot-even over your friend’s posts.

This is all well and good and love it or hate it, but the algorithm could completely ruin one profession: social media marketing.

In a study of brand pages by Ignite, they saw an average of a 44% decrease in reach on brand pages since Dec 1. Some pages saw “declines as high as 88%”, according to Ignite. Average engagement dropped by an average of 35%, with some pages seeing as much as a 76% decline.

At Michigan Creative, we have many social media clients and have become frustrated with the decline. How can we sell Facebook management when the task itself has become so much less effective? Our pages vary between 100-1200 likes and the average reach between the pages has dropped to a dismal 3-70 impressions. We continue to see a drop in reach, with the notifications coming virtually to a stop. Engagement has halted and we can forget about increasing likes without paying for them.

This does bring up a point that many focus on: Facebook is free advertising. Maybe this is Facebook’s way of getting people to put even more money into promoting posts and pages; last year brands invested $6 billion in Facebook advertising. This is probably an unlikely assumption, however, because brands really rely on paid and organic traffic.

It got us thinking: What next?

It’s hard to say if Facebook will make an adjustment, but that is what we are all hoping for!

In the mean time, we have to focus on alternate strategies. At Michigan Creative, we are going to work on re-evaluating our social media services and adjusting as needed to find the most effective approach for each client. We are going to look at options like Pinterest, Twitter and other social networks.

We also are looking into the effectiveness of paid traffic. Facebook has always wanted businesses to pay for content and it can be effective for gaining engagement as well as increase likes. However, does it really result in more sales?

What does this mean for the future of social media marketing? What is your company planning on doing to deal with the issue?

Until next time,