Facebook Updates: Declining Reach + Policy against Engagement Bait

Extra  Extra Read all about it! The Facebook Algorithm is at it again

One week ago, around December 11th, Facebook Pages across the globe and across industries suffered big drops in their Organic Reach. Meaning: posts shared by Pages are now shown to even fewer fans.

This is certainly frustrating news, as Facebook’s organic Reach had been continuously dropping for years.

Since then, many Pages tried to game this new algorithm by pushing their followers to interact with the post. For example:  “Comment / share this post if you want to hear from us in the future”.

In return Facebook has just introduced a new policy, classifying these types of posts as a new kind of spam: Engagement baiting.

If you ask your friends/fans/followers to react, comment, share, tag or vote on a post as a way to bump the post to the top of people’s News Feed, you’ll actually have the *opposite* effect now: those types of posts will get demoted in News Feed.

A few examples of posts identified by Facebook as Engagement Bait:

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So starting this week, Facebook will begin DEMOTING individual posts in News Feed from people and Pages that use engagement bait. Plus, over the coming weeks, Facebook will roll out stricter demotions for Pages that repeatedly use engagement bait to “artificially” gain extra reach in News Feed.

Facebook further clarifies, “We will start with posts in English that use engagement bait and plan to roll this out to other languages in 2018″.

HOW WILL THIS AFFECT YOUR BUSINESS PAGE?

  • If you use engagement bait tactics in your posts, expect reach on those posts to decrease.
  • If you repeatedly use engagement bait tactics, your Page will see significant drops in reach.
  • Yes, you can still do CONTESTS on your Business Page! If you ask your fans/followers to like/react or comment in order to enter your drawing/sweepstakes/contests, this is fine. However, you cannot ask people to share your contest post in order to enter the contest. This rule has been in place for some time…

What you can immediately do to avoid your posts getting demoted:

  • Focus on posting RELEVANT, MEANINGFUL and AUTHENTIC posts for your friends/fans/followers.
  • Stay away from click-bait type headlines and stay away from inauthentic engagement-bait tactics

What to do in 2018

  • Keep an eye out to learn how this change impacted other pages
  • Seriously consider a significant budget for digital advertising: $$ for Facebook Paid Advertising. Yes. Facebook is a Pay-For-Play service. Although frustrating, it’s understandable for it to charge for-profit users.
  • Partner with a Digital Marketer to protect your page and drive return on investment.

 

For more details, you can check out Facebook’s:

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