Facebook algorithm changes to affect brand posts

Last week Facebook altered the algorithm that decides what a user sees on their newsfeed. Nothing major you may think, but the main change of this algorithm affects organic brand page posts. Facebooks aim is to de-clutter the amount of posts served up to mobile and tablet users by brands.

Algorithm changes are nothing new and Facebook tends to change these on a weekly basis. However this new change is a real game changer for brands as it minimizes brand page posts being seen by those who’ve ‘Liked’ that page. Facebook defends this move by stating the change isn’t to penalise brand pages and engagement levels shouldn’t be affected.

Many brands are used to rolling with Google’s search algorithm changes and Facebook’s should be treated with similar respect. Brands will need to change the way they post and apply new rules of best practice.

Advertising agency Ogilvy sets out the following guidelines which we agree brands should follow in order to maximise their posting strategy (Source: social.ogilvy.co.uk):

  • The reach for many organic page posts will decrease. The number in this decrease will be anywhere between 5% on the low side to 40% on the high side. Some pages may remain unaffected which are following best practices for page publishing.
  • The change may allow Facebook room to grow its organic/paid offering ratio, in which 80% of content in the newsfeed is organic and 20% is paid in the form of sponsored stories, a form of premium advertising within Facebook.
  • Additional strategy and cadence to page publishing will be required. Brands should develop content with newsfeed interaction in mind.
  • Post at the optimal time. Only you know what’s right for your business, and you can use your Page Insights to figure out what’s working. User engagement with Facebook Pages is highest from 9:00-10:00 pm, and the 18-24 demographic is the most engaged during this time.
  • We recommend two posts per day of sound, sight or motion (audio, photo, video). Brands doing a text-only post at 10:00 am, and then another text-only post at 1:00 pm are not using the new algorithm to their advantage. Posts in this timeframe and delivery method cannibalize one another by overlapping, and having no visual element to maximize reach.
  • To break beyond the new reach limitations on organic posts, certain content should use the sponsored story functionality to highlight the content to a wider audience.