Facebook is adjusting the algorithm which drives users News Feed to promote posts from friends and family members over posts from publishers. What are the implications?
According to data released last year from the Pew Research Center, about 47 percent of a survey of 2,000 adults using Facebook said they get their news from Facebook. The study also found that Twitter users had a more diverse range of topics and were more likely to follow media organizations on the platform.
In a blog post on Wednesday, Adam Mosseri, vice president of News Feed Product Management at Facebook, announced that the Facebook is adjusting the priority of posts in New Feeds to emphasize personal content. Posts from friends and family will appear higher than posts from Pages, accounts that belong to brands, businesses and publishers.
This change is important because Facebook has become a dominant force in the distribution of news globally, with many publishers relying on it for a significant amount of the traffic they receive. Publishers that find they are unable to reach their audiences on Facebook risk seeing a decline in their advertising-based income. Facebook’s changes not only determine which content is viewed but what kinds of content are created.
“Our success is built on getting people the stories that matter to them most,” said Mosseri, “If you could look through thousands of stories every day and choose the 10 that were most important to you, which would they be? The answer should be your News Feed. It is subjective, personal, and unique — and defines the spirit of what we hope to achieve.”
The News Feed, which was introduced a decade ago, has become synonymous with Facebook and is by far the company’s most lucrative product, thanks to the targeted advertising that appears there. It has two priorities, to inform and to entertain.
Content is still king, this Facebook update may cause reach and referral traffic to decline for some Pages. The specific impact on your Page’s distribution and other metrics will vary depending on the composition of your target audience. For example, if a lot of your referral traffic is the result of people sharing your content and their friends liking and commenting on it, there will be less of an impact than if the majority of your traffic comes directly through Page posts. Bottom line, if you aren’t already doing this, we encourage Pages to post content that your audience are likely to share with their friends and family.
First published by Adrian G Stewart at OOKII.Company