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Facebook Policy Changes

15. 12. 2014

Is Your Business Page Ready For Facebook’s Policy Changes?

How to Make Sure Privacy Basics is Working For You.

This month, Facebook announced new changes to its Privacy Policy. As of January 1, 2015 your business is no longer permitted to make promotional posts on its news feed. According to a statement released by Facebook,“News feed is already a competitive place – as more people and pages are posting content, competition to appear in news feed has increased. All of this means that pages that post promotional creative should expect their organic distribution to fall significantly over time.” Essentially, Facebook wants you to buy ads if you want to promote a product or service. They’re positioning this change as having two benefits: 1) users will gain more control over the types of ads they see in their news feeds, and 2) companies will be able to more effectively target their audience and prevent their message from being overwhelmed by competing voices.

Why is Facebook Making These Changes?

These policy changes are a direct response to requests from Facebook users who feel that pages they “like” post too much sales-based content. As a result, the ads that appear on their personal feeds are not relevant to their interests. These users prefer to see more interactive and informative posts, as well as ads that cater to their likes and hobbies. By implementing these policy changes, Facebook’s overall goal is to encourage companies to make more engaging posts and ads.

What Qualifies as ‘Too Promotional’?

Facebook defines any of the following as being promotional:

  • Posts that solely push people to buy a product or install an app
  • Posts that push people to enter promotions and sweepstakes with no real context
  • Posts that reuse the exact same content from ads

On the Facebook News Feed, the social network offered an example of the types of posts that users do not want to see:

The only purpose of this post is to sell the product. It doesn’t offer any useful information, besides where to download the app. Users want to engage with Facebook pages in a meaningful way and this type of promotional content prevents them from doing so.

How Can You Build a Strategy that Benefits From the Policy Changes?

1. Make Privacy Basics Work For You:

The new Privacy Basics service offers users the ability to control:

  • which information they share with their Facebook friends
  • the type of ads they see

When an ad appears, users have a number of options:

When the user clicks ‘Why am I seeing this?’, they will see the interests towards which the ad is targeted. Then they can adjust their interests and choose whether they would like to see similar ads. You can help prevent users from clicking “I don’t want to see this” by making sure your posts are informative and have a specific and engaging call to action.

These options also give businesses more insight into their target audience. Since users will be more specific about their interests, you’ll get more accurate information about the people who want to see your ads. That means you can do your own digital marketing research by gathering information about individuals who engage with your promoted posts and ads. You can then more accurately aim your future posts at users with similar interests.

2. Keep Doing What You’re Doing:

The key to taking advantage of the new Facebook privacy policy is to keep producing the type of content that you should already be posting – content that is engaging and interactive. When you stop focusing on “selling,” you produce content that is genuinely valuable and interesting to your fans, sparking their desire to see more of what you have to offer and generating sales organically.

3. Start Building Your Email List:

Did you know that you are five-times more likely to have your message seen via email than on Facebook? Email marketing remains one of the most effective forms of direct marketing. Facebook’s organic reach has been on the decline for the past year, while email marketing has maintained a steady reach. After the policy changes take effect in January 2015, you may have to depend more on your email list in order to send out promotional material, or find other ways to connect with your audience.

What’s Next?

Make sure your company’s Facebook page is ready for business on January 1 by following these three simple steps:

1. To keep your Facebook account in good standing, review all future content to make sure it fits the new guidelines.

2. Get familiar with the Facebook ad platform, so when you need to advertise on Facebook, you can launch your ad quickly and seamlessly and take your competition by storm.

3. Carefully track the results your posts generate. Find out who is choosing to engage with your brand and what kind of content they like to see.

Facebook’s new policy doesn’t have to mean yet another expense for your marketing budget. With a bit of preparation and some fine-tuning of your current posts, you can keep current conversations alive while making new friends and fans.

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