You may have noticed some changes to your Facebook newsfeed this year. There’s a reason for that: According a post by Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook has shifted focus from promoting branded content to promoting content that generates discussion and interaction. This has had an immediate effect on business and pages that use Facebook to communicate their message. What’s a savvy social media marketer to do? We’ve compiled a list of do’s and don’ts for making the best of the new system.
- Don’t use engagement-bait.
Tag a girl who looks like this! Comment YES if you like Lady Gaga as much as I do! Share with 10 friends for a chance to win!
Don’t do that. First of all, it’s a bit tacky, but more importantly it’s not going to work. Facebook’s algorithms are learning as they go, and the company can not only recognize engagement-baiting, it now actively punishes the practice. Posts like that will be purposefully buried, regardless of how many people really do love Lady Gaga.
- Do generate thought-provoking content.
This year, our company’s rivals have spent $40 million lobbying for legislation that will hurt our communities. Here’s a visual breakdown.
It should be a no-brainer, but a good social media post contains things followers find interesting and relevant to their lives, just like a good press release or a good news article. Find your target audience and give them something to talk about.
- Do tag journalists, outlets, and allies in positive posts.
A great piece by @TimesHerald’s @JamesSmith about how one @CoolRidesTaxi driver is making a difference in her community.
One way to share the love is to tag people—in turn, they’re likely to share and interact with your post. You want the piece to get traction, the person who wrote it wants it to get traction, and the people involved want it to get traction. It’s simple.
- Do interact with your audience.
How long has this company been operating in Cleveland? Thanks for reaching out! We have been operating here since January 2013.
It’s basic social media math: If you respond to comments, you end up with twice as many. Much of the selling point of social media is the ability to interact with people, so let your followers do just that. If you like, set up some talking points beforehand.
- Don’t feed the trolls.
Hey @AmySmith @NeatStuffInc all of you are awful and I hope your company goes bankrupt!! #deleteeverythingforever #cats #politics
The trolls aren’t worth it, no matter how tempting it may be to drive up your engagement by arguing with Facebook’s more aggressive members. It doesn’t reflect well on your company’s image, and you aren’t likely to change any minds.
- Do take a fresh look at your strategy.
2018 Social Media Strategy Meeting, 3:00 pm!
It’s a new year, which is a good time to reassess strategy anyway. Take a look at your target audience, crunch the numbers, and discuss new ideas for design, content, and language. Tried-and-true only gets you so far, so make sure your social media plans are optimized for the current climate and system.