Facebook’s December newsfeed algorithm change is so far punishing brand pages, regardless of how interested fans are in that page’s content, according to a new analysis by Ignite Social Media. Ignite analysts reviewed 689 posts across 21 brand pages (all of significant size, across a variety of industries) and found that, in the week since December 1, organic reach and organic reach percentage have each declined by 44% on average, with some pages seeing declines as high as 88%. Only one page in the analysis had improved reach, which came in at 5.6%.

Companies using Facebook pages have found it increasingly difficult to reach their audience through unpaid, organic promotion. Even those with thousands of fans see only a tiny fraction of their posts actually being viewed in newsfeeds. Many have suspected for some time that Facebook is pushing businesses to use Sponsored Posts, just to get them seen by people who already Like the brand.

Facebook now admits that businesses will need to pay in order to get their companies posts and information in user newsfeeds.

Facebook says …

We expect organic distribution of an individual Page’s posts to gradually decline over time as we continually work to make sure people have a meaningful experience on the site. To maximize delivery of your message in News Feed, your brand should consider using paid distribution, as it enabled you to reach people beyond your fan base and move beyond the organic competition

The reality is, if Facebook can display business posts in the newsfeed, they would far rather get paid for it then do it for free.

Their position shouldn’t surprise brands, many of whom have seen the writing on the wall for some time. Facebook has shareholders to keep happy – one of the things that make shareholders most happy is an increased revenue stream. Businesses that rely on Facebook for promotion are going to have to pay if they want greater than 1-2 percent “seen” rates on their posts.

So what does it mean for small brand pages trying to grow audience? Well it means you have to break the banks for Facebook or find an alternative

 

 

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