At the start of 2018, Mark Zuckerberg announced that Facebook users would be hearing much less from businesses, brands and media. The algorithm change would make the Facebook News Feed a place that encourages meaningful interactions between people.
Meaningful interactions? Admirable, of course, but this change put businesses in dire straits. The News Feed algorithm is the one that controls who sees your blog posts, pieces of content and advertisements.
It’s the one that controls how visible your brand is to your target audience on Facebook.
What do meaningful interactions mean to Zuckerberg? His algorithm gives preference to content that begets active interaction (commenting and sharing) rather than passive interaction (likes and click-throughs). Active engagement means the content has made the user stop mindlessly scrolling, think and take time to interact.
It’s content that should spark a conversation. Adam Mosseri, former Facebook VP simply put it as “we’re trying to figure out what people find interesting.” Big brands no longer play on the same footing as regular people.
There Are Ways To Beat The Algorithm
Some brands are tempted to use engagement bait to outsmart Facebook:
“COMMENT on this post if you care about children with cancer!”
But Facebook might as well be Santa Claus, because it always knows when you’ve been bad.
The way this algorithm works ultimately forced brands and businesses to turn to Facebook ads to spread their message. With 2 billion people on Facebook, it’s not exactly a social network marketers can ignore. And they don’t — today, 93% of marketers regularly use Facebook advertising.
Paid advertising is a great option for many, but there’s just something about that little word ‘Sponsored’ that makes it feel less authentic. Some brands turn to celebrities to endorse their products. But people trust some forms of advertising even more than celebrity endorsements. Consumers really don’t like feeling manipulated.
About 2% of people will take advice from a celebrity, while 85% of people will take advice from friends and family.
Want to bypass advertising altogether? The best way to reach your target market is through some form of organic, inbound marketing. Unfortunately, today brands reach a whopping average of 2% organic reach. That’s not much to work with.
Consumers Today Are More Skeptical And Discerning Than Ever
Marketers spend billions on Facebook advertising. Meanwhile, people’s trust levels are taking a nosedive. They are far more likely to trust a recommendation from someone they trust or know personally than advertising or celebrity endorsements.
Outsmarting the Facebook algorithms is possible with a well-done influencer and content marketing strategy. Influencers are great at eliciting strong responses and engagement from their followers.
But a colossal following for brands and influencers does not necessarily equate more engagement. There’s no shortage of Facebook pages with over a half a million followers and zero engagement. In fact, influencers with smaller amounts of followers are far more likely to have more engaged and dedicated audiencers. According to Forbes, “Engaging an influencer’s hard earned community is more beneficial than broadcasting to an unengaged channel.”
Nano influencers are ordinary John and Jane Does’ just like us. They don’t have more than 5,000 followers and are more people than they are brand ambassadors. Their followers can relate to them on many levels.
Brands simply cannot engage with people the same way nano influencers can.
A Nano Influencer Marketing Campaign Can Dramatically Increase Your Reach
Nano influencers understand their audience. After all, they’re one of them. They know what content is most useful and relevant to them and they — hopefully — never write content that’s clickbait. They don’t promote a product or service unless they really believe in it. And their followers know that.
They are authentic people. And not only does Facebook love that, but your potential market does too. Nano influencers might have a smaller number of fans than the big-shots, but those fans tend to be super-fans that engage far more. Plus, nano influencers, the non-celebrities that they are, have time to engage with their fans. And it’s not a chatbot or an assistant responding. It’s a real person.
Where can you find nano influencers for your brand? Look no further than within your own customers. Your most loyal customers are those that will be the best brand ambassadors.
Encourage Your Customers to Become Nano Influencers
Use a loyalty program to reward your customers for engaging with your content.
Instead of giving your customers rewards for making more purchases, reward them for engaging with your content. The more comments and shares they get from your Facebook post, the more free stuff or exclusive discounts they get.
When people who love your brand share or comment on your post, their friends and family will be able to see it on the News Feeds.
For one, you’ll get free organic reach and bypass the Facebook algorithm. But on top of that, rewarding loyal customers will only increase their loyalty to you.
The Facebook algorithms are scary, even apocalyptic, for some brands. But it needn’t be that way. Engage with your audience through your own customers.
How are you adapting to the Facebook algorithms? Have they had a positive or negative impact on your reach?