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The new Facebook algorithm and what it means to business owners

To fully understand the futility of the drama let’s start first with a back to basics concept of ‘communicating with your tribe’.

It should have and should always be about relevant and meaningful conversations full stop, regardless of your chosen medium or platform. In fact let’s say that is the biggest full stop in the world ever and anything else is pointless.

If you are in business, and my definition of this is that you are carrying out daily activities that generate an income, and to do this you need to communicate with other people or businesses you by default have no higher single objective than to say who you are, what you do and why should they pick you.

At the same time we can also say that being ‘in business’ is a long term plan. Chances of taking an idea from concept to fruition as an overnight success without needing to speak/write/portray any detail of said business is well … not highly likely.

Getting back to Facebook and how our nature and assumptions of communicating have wandered off the path…[bctt tweet=”By default you have no higher single objective than to say who you are, what you do and why should they pick you #FacebookWarrior” username=”fionacatchpowle”]

The tool gives us access to hundreds of potential customers. We know this as a fact based on the information there are over 2.1 billion monthly active users of people who need stuff.

If we are selling the right stuff for them and we can get that info in front of them there is a possibility they could buy from us. Kind of like doing 2.1 billion leaflet drop … maybe not such a good plan after all.

Facebook has been a way of communicating with people and then evolved into the realm of business, which seemed cool on face value. It was never created in the first place to be a mass-media dumping ground (like the aforementioned leaflet) but the not so smart marketer decided to make it all about that, and quite frankly spoilt it for the rest of us.

To combat zillions of pieces of information being posted, Facebook had to define ways to make it possible to be selective about what you saw in your news feed, as there simply is not enough time in the day to see it all and is it really news worthy? (the clue is in the title in case you have wondered – the news feed should be a feed of newsworthy items).

But the tiny error they made was to decide for us. They couldn’t really help that because it just has to be like that in order to evolve. However they could have probably helped deliver that AI (artificial intelligence) concept a little more openly in the first place. Enter stage right Edge Rank aka The Algorithm. 

What happened next was a bit strange in my view. Rather than focus on what you were saying and how to present it, engage with users a build a tribe of like-minded people who would become your customers, we ended up with many a peculiar ‘guru’ creating a concept that we to join in a competition to ‘Beat the Algorithm’ – this has and continues to cause a lot of unnecessary confusion and mis-information among marketers.

Please get over it. You cannot beat the algorithm in any of its guises but you can train yourself to work in beautiful harmony with the algorithm.

[bctt tweet=”It’s not rocket science, the news feed should be a feed of newsworthy items #FacebookWarrior” username=”fionacatchpowle”]

The algorithm in any shape or form is, and always will be there, to enhance the user experience and make it meaningful and relevant. Concentrate on this when you create, post and engage with others and you will find as a business the experience will become more enjoyable for you as well.

The concept of ‘trying’ to use Facebook seems exhausting to me. Business owners need to take a step back, think about how they are acting and learn some of the basic Facebook Mechanics to relieve the stress and time consuming behaviour they are currently attempting.

Industry stats from Locowise in September 2017 using a study of 5000 pages shows average organic reach of a page post as 7.98%

Now, I have no idea what these people are posting but I can tell you hand on heart that no Page I operate or use as a test case has such low reach. Bearing in mind we use post reach followed by engagement as our primary stats to establish if what we are writing is for the right people at the right time, I personally would be gutted if my reach was that low every day.

So I can understand why people may be frustrated, but the long term view I have always adopted is to share information that people want to know. No posting for the sake of it, not gate-liking, no competitions, no baiting.  Quite simply my method is about communicating with others as I would like to be communicated with.

My other golden nugget strategy is to think Local not Global. Yes you may have access to potentially thousands of people, but let’s be realistic. If you are a local business your customers will be local. Unless you have every online bell and whistle in place to capture a worldwide audience then you are not going to see results.

You can study ranking and signals until you are old and grey but nothing will replace being human.

The 3 main interactive actions are Comments, Sharing and Reacting (no longer classed as a post like as you have a choice of reactions). Those steps need a human to choose. Their choice will come about by the emotion the post evokes. Be real, be there and be yourself.

I have some online training coming up soon that will show you my Facebook Framework which is a set of repeatable simple steps that make sense. Super easy stress-busters that are effective.

Facebook Mechanics are the buttons to press at the right time. It still dumbfounds me as to why people try to over-complicate the process when there are some straightforward bells and whistles that Facebook have had in place for a long time which are very underutilized.

Stay tuned for more revelations. In the meantime please get in contact if you’d like to work with me on a one to one basis. I’m not everyone’s cup of tea so we need to know we are a good fit by having a video call first.

[bctt tweet=”You can study ranking and signals until you are old and grey but nothing will replace being human #FacebookWarrior” username=”fionacatchpowle”]