In the last few weeks on-line marketers have been scrambling, since Facebook announced imminent major changes to it’s algorithms.
I’m a marketing novice so I’ll try to put the developments in layman’s terms. Mr Zuckerberg is not so charmed with the turn Facebook has taken. He feels it is being taken over by advertisements, is over promotional and could even be responsible for an unhappy society (which sounded ‘evil overlord’ to me in the statement).
His solution is to change the program and return your news feed to the original friends and family feel you may remember back in the day. Following research and feedback from hundreds of thousands of users, a new design has been signed off and will appear later this year.
The difference you will see is all your groups and business pages displayed on a separate tab which means you will have more control over the promotional content you want to see.
This is a big deal.
The advertisements in your news feed don’t appear there by accident, they are pumped in by extravagant marketing budgets. You may not know this but when a business places an advertisement on Facebook the amount of filters to reach a target audience are phenomenal. From your income right through to what type of wine you prefer to drink. Big Brother is watching.
Money talks and whoever shouts loudest usually comes out on top. Not anymore (apparently) as Zuckerberg leaves millions (billions?) of revenue on the table in pursuit of his original Facebook Utopia.
Of course, there are many formulas already doing the rounds to beat the algorithm and cheat the system.
If Zuckerberg is true to his word these efforts should prove to be futile. The way to Facebook users hearts will be through creating meaningful content that encourages interaction and discussion. If you build it they will come.
To build great content you will need an interesting product or service. This is a massive opportunity for the little guy, where innovation and thinking differently can really shine.
Expect a raft of Hollywood high production mini stories, movies from the big guns with a more abstract feel. Hopefully some smash it and transform advertising for the better, but I get the feeling there could be some major car crashes.
A paradigm shift is on the cards. Let’s hope Zuckerberg delivers on his promise and doesn’t get cold feet the next time he checks his bank balance.