Over the last couple of weeks or so there have been a few mutterings and rumours about a new Facebook feed.
And then more recently this feed was rolled out for all to access with a full change (in test format) going on in Sri Lanka, Bolivia, Slovakia, Serbia, Guatemala, and Cambodia. And this has had business owners who use Facebook worried.
The change in feed - known as "Explore" has seen Facebook separate its Page posts onto a separate feed - effectively making the main feed for friends and family posts... along with pages that use paid promotions.
This has obviously caused some business owners who use Facebook to market their businesses to become very worried. Will anyone see their posts in the future if they dont pay for them?!
As I explain in the video, Facebook is likely to be making this move, not to generate more money for its platform, but more likely because they are worried about user engagement and use of the platform.
Facebook has made a number of changes to both its algorithm and also to its app - all in a bid to try and get the 'personal' back into Facebook. You may have noticed that things like suggesting to post recently taken photos, the 'facebook friend-aversary' and others have all been introduced in a bid to move the platform back to being about people - moving away from the funny memes and other such content which now dominate the feed.
This move is, in a way, a positive step for Facebook. It recognises why we use the platform and is actively moving to try and keep us there.
But should this move come at a cost to those of us who use it for marketing purposes?
Well, before we all gather pitchforks and head over to Zuckerberg's house we need to look at a few things.
Firstly - Facebook is always testing something somewhere. This isn't really anything new - it just caught the eye of a few and snow balled from there. The countries this is being tested in are pretty safe - They have a decent selection of users, which make it good for testing, but it certainly isn't mainstream. For Facebook, it probably these are places that tests can be complete without causing an uproar - although interestingly it should be noted that even tests in these places are causing some uproar!
Secondly - Facebook is well aware of its need to balance the money and personal sides of Facebook - neither survive without the other. If it's all business - then just rebrand Facebook to Yellow Pages and expect a decline in users because there's nothing but adverts here. Remove the businesses and whilst you hold a lot of personal data you won't be making money without businesses operating.
So what's our opinion?
Even by Facebook's admittance, the test won't be rolled out further. But our opinion is that you will see some form of this going forward - but expect it to be heavily watered-down. Facebook needs to continually refine it's product and moving Facebook back to the personal side will definitely help it to retain users and hopefully recapture some of the younger users that it's losing to other platforms like Snapchat.
So basically, don't panic, but as with everything in the digital marketing sphere - keep an eye on things. They always change and we need to be ready to react when then do - espcially with our business marketing.
As ever, I hope this article has been interesting and of use to you. The video forms part of our Facebook group 'How to Shoot Video for Your Business' - which aims to help business owners up to date with not only how to deliver media, but also everything that surrounds it - so head there to join the discussion!
And of course, if you want GINGERBEARD Media on your team to shoot and deliver video - then we'd love to have a chat!