Facebook implemented yet another set of changes to its social networking platform, causing uproar among many users and teaching new lessons to Internet marketers. In particular, the News Feed, where Facebook users are allowed to view updates from people in their network, received a major overhaul, which can potentially affect your Facebook marketing strategy.
Facebook marketing changes every Internet marketer must knowNew News Feed: Facebook no longer displays all the updates from people in your network. Instead, it uses an algorithm to select which updates goes into every user's Top Stories, which is the first thing a user sees when he or she logs on to Facebook. Factors such as the relationship between a user and the author, the number of comments and Likes, will determine an update's relevance or inclusion in Top Stories. An update can later qualify as one of the Top Stories when it obtains more Likes or comments.
Smart Lists: Moreover, users are now provided with tools to exercise greater control over what they see in their News Feed. "Smart Lists" allows a user to create lists according to "Close Friends", "Acquaintances" and "Restricted." When this list is populated, only updates of people under "Close Friends" will appear on the user's News Feed. This can be potentially harmful to marketers whose connections are more likely professional than "close".
Subscribe option: Users can now choose to subscribe to all, most or only the important updates of certain users. This will compel Internet marketers to create highly relevant and useful content, and keep self-promoting activities to a minimum, in order to earn the subscription of users.
Removal of automatic feeds: Pages (formerly Fan Pages) previously enjoyed automatic publication of posts and articles appearing in external websites and blogs. This was made possible through the Notes option which synchronized web and Facebook pages without performing any additional action on the Facebook wall. Starting September 30th, Pages will no longer automatically publish news stories from integrated websites and blogs. Page owners will now have to post new stories on their Page walls in order to notify fans and users of new web articles or content.
Facebook Marketing Changes MeanThe recent Facebook marketing changes reinforce how the Internet is in a constant flux, where Internet marketers constantly need to educate themselves to stay on top of their game or keep afloat. Increasing relevance and social engagement are important steps in coping with Facebook's changes, as is the need for incorporating a call to action where your Facebook users are enticed to subscribe to your website or blog.