Facebook has just announced that it is launching a new Feeds tab and designating a new Home feed dedicated to discovering new content as the tab users will see first when they open the app. Here’s how the social media giant described the change in its press release:
“Today, Mark Zuckerberg announced we’re making it easier for you to control what content you see and discover on Facebook. We’re introducing Feeds, a new tab that lets you easily see the most recent posts from your friends, Pages and groups. You can curate a Favorites list of the friends and Pages you care about most and filter their content in this new tab. We’re also naming the primary tab — the first thing you see when you open the app — Home. Home is the starting point for connection, entertainment and discovery on Facebook.”
What Are Feeds?
Facebook’s new Feeds tab is intended to allow users more options in how they sort and see content. Feeds will be dedicated to Friends (those you are currently connected to), Groups (posts from Groups of which you are a member) and Pages (public or brand pages that you follow). As a Facebook user, you will also have the ability to curate your own Favorites feed to see posts from the friends and pages that you choose. These new Feeds will not include any “Suggested for You” content from the platform, but they will include paid advertisements.
Bringing It Home
Meanwhile, Facebook’s new Home tab will become the initial landing spot on the app and is intended to drive discovery of new content on the platform, a la the similar “Explore” on Instagram or “For You” on TikTok. Home will display suggested content based on the platform’s algorithm suggestions in addition to posts from existing friends and groups or pages. According to their release:
“Your Home tab is uniquely personalized to you through our machine learning ranking system. This system takes into account thousands of signals to help cut through the clutter and rank content in the order we think you will find most valuable. We’re investing in AI to best serve recommended content in this ranked experience.”
What Does It Mean for Brands and Marketers on Facebook?
The new Feeds update is still rolling out across Facebook’s massive user audience, so it remains to be seen how this update will affect the user experience and behavior on the platform. Meta’s intent to transform its home feed into more of a “discovery engine” is in line with its ongoing attempts to remain competitive with other social media platforms, particularly TikTok whose wildly popular short form video is heavily driven by recommended content discovery. That being said, there are some interesting things to watch as the update unfolds, perhaps most importantly potential impacts to organic reach.
Waning organic reach on Facebook is something that marketers and brands have been lamenting for years now. And this latest update is poised to potentially make an impact on that issue – for better or worse. Starting on the glass half-empty side, Pages have now been split into a separate feed. It’s hard to know if users will still go and specifically seek out and peruse posts from brands or if separating this content from the main body of friends and family posts may cause it to recede into the background. On the other hand, the new Home tab presents an opportunity to get content in front of users who otherwise probably wouldn’t see it. That means that marketers may have the chance to reach new audiences and cultivate new engagement.
What Should My Brand Be Doing on Facebook?
As we wait to see the full effects of Facebook’s new Home and Feeds update, there are still things that you can do to help position your brand for continued success, whatever update may come.
1. Create top-quality content that provides value to your audience.
The cardinal rule of social media for brands is always to create the best possible content that resonates with your audience and provides real value to them whether education, inspiration or entertainment. Now more than ever, providing that value is critical if you want to make the cut onto your audience’s Favorites feed.
2. Follow the platform’s lead.
Social media platforms play favorites all the time, and Facebook is no different. Facebook is currently very focused on short-form video via Instagram Reels (which it is encouraging users to post directly to Facebook as well) and Stories in keeping with its need to compete with platforms like TikTok. That means you can gain some positive momentum by keeping up making use of the channels that the platform is favoring as it is more likely to show and recommend that content.
3. Cultivate authentic engagement.
Based on their update press release and what we can observe about how the “Explore” feed on also Meta-owned Instagram works, we know that engagement is a key signaling factor in getting your content more widely distributed and recommended on the platform. Timing is important here too, as the platform is generally more likely to recommend content that gets strong engagement quickly after posting.
4. Cultivate community and connections.
Not only does cultivating community and connection strengthen your ties to your existing audience, but it also makes you more likely to be recommended to other people they know or people like them.
5. Track and adapt.
As always, you should be tracking your key performance indicators on social media as well as critical dimensions like posting times. Tracking and reviewing your performance on a regular basis is imperative if you are to understand the impact of changes to the platform on your unique page and audience and adapt your strategy accordingly.
For more ideas on how to amp up your organic social media performance overall, check out 7 ideas for driving your organic social media success on our blog here.
Need help making sense of it all and setting your social media strategy on the path to success? Connect with the Clementine bunch today!