How to make the most of Facebook’s latest Pages change

 

By Chris Lee

Facebook recently rolled out key changes to its Pages on desktop, including updated timeline design, more admin tools and access to new insights, such as ‘Pages to Watch’. But what do the changes mean for business? NMK talked to Raphaël Diai, Community Manager at integrated marketing agency Collider to learn how businesses can make the most of the new Page options.

According to Diai, the update set for 13 June is a re-jig, not a revolution. Brands will now have their content displayed on a one-column timeline, with all the information about themselves on the left-hand side and fully customisable.  As an admin of the page, they will get access to a ‘week overview’ column on the right that tells them their weekly stats and from a graphical standpoint the dimensions of the cover image and avatar are the same. However, the bottom part of a Page’s cover image might be hidden by some of the new features (your name, your activity and the like / following buttons) so there is the possibility that some assets might need to be resized or redesigned.

“The updates are really just tweaks. Most users see content from brands not on their pages, but via their newsfeed. So whilst the layout update is important from a brand perspective, it shouldn’t affect any company’s content and the way they engage with their communities,” Diai told NMK.

Changes won’t affect strategy

Diai advises that community managers do not forget that the percentage of people actually looking at their Facebook profile is quite low and that most users see branded content in their newsfeed.

“This layout update is important from a branding perspective but doesn’t really affect your content and community management strategy,” he advised. “What is more of a concern on that front is Facebook’s ‘diktat’ regarding organic reach of Pages’ posts.”

Diai said that the percentage of fans seeing posts that aren’t supported by ad spend is dropping dramatically.

“Organic reach represented 16 per cent of your community two years ago. It’s now more likely that they represent four per cent. From a community of 10,000, that is just 400 people. Knowing that 96 per cent of your community isn’t touched by your content might be quite scary for some brands that spent years and money building these communities,” he warned.

What is the value of Facebook in 2014?

Based on the above maths, Diai believes that several questions then come to mind: What is the real value of being on Facebook as a brand in 2014? Should brands move on to another platform? Should brands invest in social media at all?

“Well, Facebook might be playing with everyone’s feelings and strategies but it remains the most relevant traffic crossroad and more important it is where your audience is,” he argued. “It’s of course the most visited website (after Google) in the UK and above all it’s the website where users spend the most of their time (average of at least 18 minutes per visit) on the web.”

Diai concluded that brands needs to adapt their Facebook strategy and involve advertising spend in their social media budgets.

“Advertising on social media can be a great and cheap way to reach a broader and a very targeted audience. You just have to expect – and accept – Facebook’s changes,” he added.

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