The conversation that seems to be dominating the Facebook marketing community is all about how algorithmic changes to Facebook’s News Feed are hurting organic reach. Our numbers say the opposite; brands have never had a better opportunity to have their best content placed in front of so many people.
As Facebook’s user base has grown, brands, marketers, and advertisers have entered the space as well. And, as happens in any crowded space, it has become harder to have your voice heard.
We have talked about the reasons behind this many times: Facebook users Like an increasing amount of Pages, and are connected to increasingly more friends and relatives. There is not an infinite amount of space in the News Feed, so it is up to Facebook to ensure that users see only the best, most-relevant content.
Because optimizing the News Feed is one of Facebook’s core duties to its users, they have always communicated their commitment to ensuring the quality of posts in the News Feed. So for brands to be seen, they must produce high-quality content.
What’s Really Happening with Engagement
We’ve recently studied* the best content creators, looking at how high numbers of interactions – a sure sign of great content – correlates to organic reach.
First, we looked into the actual number of Interactions happening on Facebook over the past year for a significant sample of pages – the 3 million largest – and found that Interactions are consistently increasing on Facebook.
Other analytics companies have talked about brands’ Reach by examining a select few pages, and using that misguided, impossibly small sample size to draw conclusions about an entire industry. We know that you have to look at an entire market or a significant sample size in order to make accurate, informed business decisions.
In fact, since January 2014, Interactions have risen 30%. Facebook engagement for brands is most definitely not declining. For all the apocalyptic predictions, it seems that Facebook is still heading the same direction as always – upwards, steadily.
Media Outlets and the Power of Great Content
Media outlets thrive by creating new, engaging storytelling methods, incorporating multiple visual, graphic, and other design elements into their content. Facebook has been a wonderful space to experiment with rapid innovation, and a smart stomping grounds for brands looking to see what new storytelling forms resonate with fans. Here, we can see how media engagement has exploded in 2014.
For brands to show up on users' News Feeds, they need to produce high quality content. The increasing engagement shown by Media pages makes this plain.
Media outlets always have something to talk about, whether that means hard news or new recipes. Brands are less likely to have as much news to break to their fans – so what matters most is not trying to say more, but to say things in a more captivating way.
By letting media lead the way, brands benefit from having this experimentation act as their beta test. Doing so creates future opportunities in the ecosystem – and also shows that the quality of your News Feed content is the key to successfully reaching your fans. It is important to note that media success does not preclude brands’ success; it predicts it.
Any page category can see increased reach by remembering that:
- Creating engaging content leads to reach;
- Publishing is just the beginning – measure what impact posts have on your brand awareness, conversions, and/or visits;
- Amplify your posts to the right audience – one that will engage with your content.
- Business Insider: CHART OF THE DAY: How Interactions Affect One's Reach On Facebook