In this latest edition of keeping you posted, we look at:

  • Forthcoming upheaval as Facebook plans to make its biggest-ever changes
  • How automated messages can help keep you on top of enquiries
  • The latest addition to Instagram’s offering

 A big change to Facebook’s news feed

Founder Mark Zuckerburg has caused surprise and consternation in some quarters with his announcement that Facebook’s news feed is to undergo a dramatic overhaul.

From now on, the social media giant will prioritise updates from close Facebook friends over professional content from news organisations and big brands.

It means that your news feed will stop showing memes and viral videos, and instead display updates from friends (people you actually know).

As a result, Facebook will no longer be a major source for news and video content from brands. The platform will focus on content that connects with users through personal engagement with friends.

What can your business do? This change is not in effect yet, so it is hard to know exactly what it will mean for businesses on Facebook.

However, all is not lost. As ever, brands that are proactive and plan ahead are likely to benefit most. So make sure you have a clear social media strategy in place.

This should include a social media calendar, to remind you to update your page daily with planned content ready to send out.

This will help keep your brand active and engaging, so Facebook is less likely to move your content away from the main part of users’ news feeds.

 Facebook introduces automated messages

 In another update, Facebook has also rolled out a tool you may already recognise from elsewhere, to help organisations engage with their audience quickly.

The tool sends users who visit your Facebook page an automatic message. You can set it so that the message can either welcome visitors or advise them that you’ll be in touch soon.

Online shoppers will be familiar with this tool, as automated messages asking ‘how we can help?’ are often used by retailer brands.

The new feature is aimed at brands whose pages get a lot of enquiries through Facebook’s messaging service; as it means organisations don’t have to respond to each individual message they receive straight away.

Automated messages can help brands appear more active on social media, by responding instantly to potential customers with a clear message.

Online retailers are big fans of the tool; reporting that the ability to send an immediate response to the visitor’s interaction improves customer satisfaction.

So, if you get a lot of enquiries through Facebook, set up your own.

Don’t forget to continue to monitor your Facebook messages for further interactions and enquires from the public.

Watch out for Instagram’s ‘recommended’ feature

 Instagram’s latest feature will mean more posts on your Instagram feed –whether you like them or not.

The photo platform is launching ‘recommended for you’ photos, displaying images liked by the Instagram users you follow.

The update is similar to Instagram’s ‘following’ section, where you can see activity from other accounts you follow.

It’s likely to be a big help to businesses seeking to grow on social media, as brands can now engage with users who don’t follow them via a mutual Instagram follower.

So if your organisation is on Instagram, again ensure you’re keeping active and engaging on the app, as you could be harnessing the ‘recommended for you’ tab to help you gain followers.