I used to dislike posting content on Facebook pages, because my eyes would be invariably be drawn to the Reach figure at the bottom of every post. I knew it by heart – videos would be best, text-only updates good, link shares and images would be shit. It felt like I was forced to post videos all the time to increase engagement. Granted videos are great and all, but shouldn’t the sharing of articles be something people would like too?
The recent Facebook algorithm adjustent however, has left me pretty impressed. Images and shared links used to get pretty shit visibility, something to the tune of 5% on average. Nowadays though, links and images function perfectly well, being able to draw engagement and visibility comparable to videos at times. Of course, it all depends on the quality of your content, but I like it. It gives an emphasis on putting content through the way they should be, instead of trying to game the system. For example, sharing a video with a link to an article to increase exposure. Or sharing an article as a text-only update by removing the link preview, which actually increased the reach. The previous formula was totally illogical and encouraged emphasis of certain content formats over others, all in the name of increasing reach.
The penalty on like-baiting, recirculation of the same old content and so on are metrics I like. It encourages the marketer to seek out fresh content, which can only be good for the user.
For what it’s worth, I like the Facebook Ads system as well. Very well-designed, and engagement rate was very solid bang for the buck when it came to boosting posts. The only problem was, targeted ads didn’t seem to work as well. I had it set for a male 21-40 Australian non-fan demographic with interests in various NBA teams and players, and the strike rate was horrible. It’s not a surprising fact though, seeing as I haven’t clicked on Facebook ads in a very long time, which probably means they aren’t attractive enough sitting on the sidebar. The ones that pop up on the feed though, are well displayed and likely to attract clicks.
Be interesting to see how Facebook develops – it’s never a dull ride, that’s for sure.