How many times have we said this?
Just when I figure out Facebook, they change the News Feed!
As a reader, it’s frustrating because I want to see posts from the Pages I “like”. If I didn’t, I wouldn’t have “liked” them in the first place!
As as an owner of a Facebook Page, it’s frustrating because I know there are people who need what I’m sharing, but Facebook is not showing it to them.
And it’s happened again. Facebook recently announced MORE changes to what is shown in your News Feed.
You’ll start seeing more from your family and friends than from some Pages that you like. You’ll also see Pages you like that have engaging posts with back-and-forth conversation.
I love the idea of seeing more from my family and friends. That’s why most of us joined Facebook in the first place. I’ve re-connected with so many old friends and kept up with family members I would never see otherwise.
But I don’t want this to be the end of Facebook Pages. I’ve intentionally liked Facebook Pages that fill my News Feed with positive, encouraging posts and helpful information. So I’m going to do my part to be sure I see them.
HOW TO BE SURE YOU SEE THE PAGES YOU LIKE MOST
Facebook will continue to show the Pages that you have chosen to See First. To do that, go to the Facebook Page you want to see and look just under the cover photo. Hover over the Following button, then check the See First option. While you are there, be sure the Notifications are turned on so you’ll know when your favorite Page shares a FB Live video or an Event. It should look like the photo below:
Facebook will let you select up to 25 Pages. Here are some of the ones I’ve asked to See First.
Do A New Thing (duh!)
Dr. Michelle Bengston – I love her Hope-Filled Perspective FB Live Videos
Lindsey Hartz Creative – Great support and information for Christian writers
Sweet Tea Social Marketing – Heather Heuman stays on top of all things social media
Kirsten Kiki Oliphant – Resources for the digital writing life
By George Organizing Solutions – In addition to providing tips and strategies to stay organized, Liana helps us deal with the mindsets that keep us cluttered. Love her approach!
HOW TO BE SURE YOUR AUDIENCE SEES YOUR POSTS
If you have a Facebook page for your blog, business or ministry, here are some tips from the experts:
Keep calm – As usual, everyone is freaking out over the latest changes. But just hold on for a little while. No one knows exactly how these changes will really pan out and the intended and unintended consequences.
Educate your audience – Just like I’ve done here, teach your audience how to use the See First option to ensure they see the content they want to see.
Community, community, community – If Facebook wants more interaction and community, let’s give it to them. Your posts should ask questions, take polls and otherwise encourage a response. Facebook is going to favor posts that have back-and-forth conversation in the comments.
Video, Video, Video – We’ve heard this for a while … FB users love video. In their announcement about the new algorithm, Facebook said FB Live videos get six times the engagement. Videos that people come back to view again, or videos in a series that people come to the Page specifically to view will be favored. So try how-to videos or a weekly/ongoing series of videos with a similar format. A good example is the OBS Today series on the Proverbs 31 Online Bible Studies Facebook page Monday and Wednesday. It’s live, fresh, authentic “must see TV” that inspires discussion.
Consider starting a group – Groups naturally have more interaction than Pages. It is thought that the interaction in a Group connected to a Page will spill over and help the reach of the Page. Expect an explosion in the number of Facebook Groups. But beware … maintaining a group can be time-intensive, and some people are reporting that reach on posts in their groups are not really much better than on the Page.
What does it mean for Christians with an online presence?
Honestly, I think we are well-positioned to weather this storm. Our audience is passionate and personally invested in our content. We are already focused on building relationships rather than numbers. And our message it positive and engaging.
But, we must not be complacent or give up. We must be savvy in adapting to change, and help each other by commenting, using the See First option and highlighting high-quality posts when we find them.
We also are reminded that our faith is not in algorithms, platforms or Page likes. Our faith is in a mighty God whose word has not been stopped in thousands of years. It will go where He wants it to go, whether by papyrus, monk-scribed paper, printed books or electrons.
So how are you responding to this change? I’d love to hear your ideas!