Small businesses often have small budgets to match and as a result heavily rely upon free tools such as social media. Businesses have increasingly become more reliant on the organic reach of posts to deliver key marketing messages direct to followers in the hope that this message will reach hundreds if not thousands. But in recent times, with the introduction of a new Facebook algorithm as well as other influencing factors, we have seen a sharp decline in organic reach. Let’s take a look at why this is happening…
With over 50,000,000 business having a Facebook profile, the platform is getting pretty crowded, having a knock-on effect on the influence of organic reach of the posts that are put out there. Basically the top and bottom of it is that there is too much content out there. It is a really sore subject for many, with social media posts being shared, but no longer being viewed in news feeds, unless you engage in paid-for options to boost your posts.
The other huge reason that your posts are not reaching the news feeds of your customers is that Facebook wants to control what content is being viewed and by who, based on its relevance rather than just showing all available content it now cherry-picks posts that you’ll find interesting based on your location, previous clicks, interests and the like.
Originally based on a points system, the algorithm EdgeRank was linked to post recency, interaction, inclusion of a link on the post. Developing into a more complex algorithm, it now looks at Interest, Post’s performance, Creator (performance of past posts), Type (status, photo etc) and Recency (how new is the post.)
The popularity of this medium as a way of reaching customers has evolved to the point where there is actually too much content available to view at any one time, which is where the algorithm picks out the best content to show potential customers. It has it’s own agenda too, providing a platform that is high quality and informative as well, therefore being in a position to show the best quality content relevant to each user bodes well for Facebook/Twitter in giving its customers what they want. It is not so helpful for you as a small business, who is looking to spread the word.
How To Combat The Organic Decline?
It’s not an ideal scenario, but it may be time to consider a mixture of organic and paid posts in order to grow your reach. Continue to be actively engaged on social media, posting current, relevant and informative posts. Adding a paid aspect to your campaign may give you the boost that you’re looking for, and it needn’t be very costly. Be more selective about what you post, aiming to get as much interaction from one post as possible. Encourage calls to actions, likes and shares to increase engagement and if you do decide to use Facebook for paid engagement, make sure that you target your efforts and track your analytics, so you can learn what works best.