Facebook Timeline Change Effect on Business Pages

Good morning Internet fans, Ryan Perry here. Simple biz support. Today is Wednesday, July 22nd, therefore, it must be Social Media Wednesday and therefore, I have Sarah Giometti with Provaro Marketing. My number one social media gura… I mean, you could be a guru, but I guess, since you’re a female, can I call you a gura?

Sarah Giometti: I don’t think it works that way. I think…

RP: No?

SG: Right.

RP: Like a unisex guru, it’s just unisex. Either one can wear it and you’re fine.

SG: Yeah. I think it’s a unisex word, there’s no alternate for… At least not in the English language, as crazy as our language is.

RP: Well, yeah, I’ve been known to butcher the English language though, but that’s a whole another topic we don’t need to get in to necessarily today. It is Wednesday though. It is Social Media Wednesday. You’re here, I’m here. We should probably talk about some thing social media related, and why don’t we talk about Facebook today?

SG: Sure, why not. Facebook…

[laughter] why not? It’s Social Media Wednesday.

RP: What the hell? It is Wednesday and there’s actually… They made a change just so everybody that’s watching the show, we’re not making this up on the fly. We actually do have a plan for today. Facebook did make a relatively big change for business owners or at least it could be a big change for business owners, and it’s kind of a hidden little secret. So what is this and what’s going on?

SG: Right. So they made these changes a little bit on the sly, like they did do a news press release, but even on the social media, the real gurus that I follow, only a couple of them have really picked up on this change and it can be a really big thing for business pages. They’ve changed how when you like a page how you consume it in your news feed. Obviously, we talked about Facebook as an algorithm because there could be over 1,500 pieces of content. Every time somebody logs in, and so they’re trying to figure out what people want to see first and they obviously don’t always get it correct.

SG: So, they made this slight little change that allows the end user to better control, at least on the pages that they follow, better control how they consume that content. And it’s choosing whether to leave that page in the default position for the algorithm, or to bump them up to show them first so that you do have a better chance of seeing all of their updates. So this is great for the end user and that’s actually more why they did it was to give the end user more control, but it’s a bonus for businesses where if you’re followers love you, you can teach them to go make the slight change in how they follow you and get exposed to your updates more frequently.

RP: Right. And we’re going to show you how to make this change, but first, I just want to say, A, there’s two things. One, I think Facebook from the very beginning was very proactive and understood that the experience really has to be about the user and for the most part, I think they’ve done a very good job making sure that the user experience is a positive one when people are on Facebook and that means part of that is, “Hey, we have to limit the amount of ad bombarding that you get.” Now, some people are going to say, “Hey, there’s too many ads as it is already.” Everybody has their own opinions. There has to be a balance there and I think that Facebook’s done a good job. However, from a business owner’s point of view, it’s been really frustrating over the last couple of years. It seems the number of organic reaches that your post gets consistently drop, drop, drop, drop, drop and now, I have to pay money in order to be found on Facebook.

RP: Now, fortunately, their ad cost is very inexpensive; however, there are some brands out there that have very loyal fans and on the same side, I will also say that ’cause I’m one of these people, I’ve noticed in the last year, I spend… I have more value, I don’t know, maybe value is not the right word, but I like to see the different businesses in my news feed and it’s not all just social media and Internet marketing, but it’s newspaper articles. It’s local events that are going on, car related stuff that I’m interested in that I follow that I want to see and it’s frustrating or it has been frustrating that I haven’t been able to see some of the stuff or have been very limited because Facebook has said, “Hey, we really want to put the emphasis on the user experience to make sure that you’re connecting socially with your friends.” And so, I think this little change that they made has a huge impact on my experience because, now I get to choose, do I want to see a brand on a regular basis.

SG: Right. The first step they did to try to fix that for the end user was the… You being able to kind of train your news feed. That the more posts you click from a certain brand page, the more often you’re going to see that content and I’ve seen that like the news… I don’t follow particular news papers, but I do follow news sites and because they are of my personal interests and beliefs, I have noticed I click on them a lot, so I see them a lot and there are a lot in my feed, but for some of the other local stuff that I may not actually click through and read the whole thing, I do still want them in my feed so I know what’s going on in my community, and so that’s where for the end user, this is really great ’cause you can pick and choose what you want and leave the rest of that that you kind of maybe, sort of care about, but not really strongly passionate about, leave them in the default in your algorithm and they’ll just show up occasionally like they have been up until now. So, the trick for businesses is you’re going to have to tell your followers how to do this, and most likely you’re going to have to do a promoted post so that they all see it, so.

RP: Yeah, you’re going to have to really educate, and while…

SG: We lost Ryan for a second.

RP: Yep, I’m back.

SG: There he is.

RP: I have no idea what happened, and now it says… Apparently I came in as a new person. They kicked me out, and now I came in as a new person ’cause I lost my…

SG: Oh, but now you’re back to the same person, so.

RP: Well, no, but my bottom bar disappeared, and on my end, I show three people. I show Ryan twice, and then I show you. So, that’s really strange. What I was going to say though is why don’t you go into your screen share, please, if you could. And show us where this is at, and how to do it. And business owners, this is something you’re going to need to educate your audience on how to do, and that’s what Sarah’s going to show us real quickly here. You have to educate your audience. They’re going to have to manually go into your page, make this change in order to make you a priority instead of a default setting for the newsfeed. Do you have that page up yet?

SG: Yep. And real quick, you’ll be able to… Instead of having to create your own education for them or walking them through, you can share this video. I’m going to have a standalone video that is really a step by step that I will have on my blog. So, we’ll have the resources there for you to be able to utilize to share with your audience and your followers to train them. So, here, let’s show a screen share. I’ve brought up Ryan’s page. So, obviously, I’m an admin of his page, so this is what you will see. Your followers won’t see this stuff up top, but they will see the “like” box, and it’s really easy. All you have to do is hover the “like” box, and down here it says, “In your newsfeed,” and you can choose “see first” or “default”. And it’s set at default. It’s default in a default.

SG: So, what your users want to do, what you even want to do for the pages you like, is switch it to “see first”. So, now you’re telling Facebook that you want to see the post from this page in your newsfeed. You can also do it on mobile phones. We’re not going to do a screen share there. It’s really that simple. It’s a silly little hidden gem that just rolled out within the last couple of weeks. Stopped screen sharings, we don’t need it anymore. And on the mobile phone, you can do the same thing when you go to a page, and that’ll be in the video I have. I’ll have the screenshots for a mobile phone so you can see how it works. And just utilize that to inform your followers to give them the opportunity to make the switch. And they won’t all do it, but at least you’ll make the best effort possible to get them to switch over to “see first”, and it should increase your reach overall.

RP: Yeah, and just to clarify for you business owners that are watching, you’re not going to be able to go in and make this change for them. You’re going to have to show them, “Hey, you’re going to have to go to my page.” So, if I own ABC Brick Company, as an example, you’re going to have to say, “Hey, end user. You need to go to my Facebook business page at Facebook.com/ABCBrickCompany. Click the link, and then change it from default to priority in order to make that switch so they see all of your post.”

SG: Right. Yeah. They have to do it themselves, but it’ll be worth your while to tell them about that. And even if you throw $5 on a Boosted Post to make sure your entire following sees it, it’s definitely worth the money to have the opportunity to show up in their feeds more often every time that you post.

RP: Yeah. Definitely. Okay. Well, tell you what, you’re going to make kind of a detailed step by step how to do this. And if you could list that link below so that those people who watch the video, but still don’t need that step by step how to do it. If you could share that link, that way they can just go through and do it for themselves.

SG: Yep. I will absolutely do that.

RP: Alright. Perfect. Unless you have any closing thoughts, I think we covered it. The key thing is with this, business owners, is that if you’ve been one of those people that have been complaining, “Ah, Facebook. You’ve really been throttling back my visibility,” this is your opportunity to increase that visibility. The big question is how loyal are your Facebook followers? If they have to actually take action, they have to physically click, and go and do, you’re definitely going to need some loyal fans in order to take those steps.

SG: Yeah. For sure. They need to really love you, or at least like you enough to take those extra steps ’cause it’s asking them to do something. So, hopefully you’ve been listening to lots of our other stuff, and you’ve built up a good following where a good portion of them are willing to take that extra step for you.

RP: Yeah. Perfect. Alright, with that, I think I’m going to call this the end of this episode. Sarah, as always, I appreciate your time. I hope you have a great week, and it’s sunny and beautiful out. And that’s that. I’ll see you next week.

SG: Alright. Have a great week. Thanks, Ryan.

RP: Alright. Will do. Okay everybody, take the time. Educate your audience. Show them how they can place your Facebook feed at the top of their list so they can see on a consistent basis. This is really going to help engagement for you, and hopefully drive more business either to your website or to your phone. Alright everybody. Take care and have a great Wednesday.


About the Author:

Ryan Perry is the founder and CEO of Simple Biz Support, Inc. Ryan started video blogging in 2009 as an alternative to written blogs to create visibility and credibility online. During the workweek, he enjoys helping small business owners harness the power of video to grow their companies. On the weekends, he enjoys hiking and searching out waterfalls throughout the state of California.

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