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New Facebook changes and what they mean for marketing professionals

Posted on 10/09/2011 by Emma Dadswell

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In recent weeks, new changes to users’ Facebook profiles, with the arrival of the new ‘Timeline’ feature, have caused much debate on social media sites. But what other changes are afoot, and will they have a profound effect on the way marketing professionals carry out their jobs? It appears so.

A recent article in Utalkmarketing details the new developments very well, and is well worth a read. But here’s a quick summary of the important points:

  1. Recent changes instigated by Facebook mean that in order to show up on a user’s news feed, brands are going to have to work much harder. Gone will be the days where simply ‘liking’ a business’s page means its content appears on your homepage.
  2. As well as getting tough on spam marketing, Facebook will stop showing posts from pages that are dry or lack regular content.
  3. Apps will be the new driving force in creating brand promotion. With users being able to see what their friends are up to via the newsfeed (for example what music they might be listening to via Spotify), businesses ought to be thinking carefully about integrating with Apps associated with their brand.

So with some of these changes already live and others in the pipeline, what do brands and their marketing employees need to be doing to stay ahead of the game?  Whilst traditionally increasing the number of ‘likes’ was the ultimate goal, this will no longer be relevant. If a business has 5000 ‘likes’ but little interaction, its content will no longer be visible. Marketers will have to work hard at devising a comprehensive communications strategy to not only increase interaction with followers, but also come up with the innovative content to drive this.

Those professionals working in the retail, music and video sectors should be capitalising on the new changes. Large numbers of these brands – Spotify, YouTube, and Amazon for example - already have Apps that instantly appear on newsfeeds if a user is listening, watching or reading.  The opportunities for brands within the media, gaming and communications sectors are endless, and if capitalised on quickly, could dramatically increase the audiences they reach.

From a hiring perspective, social media savvy has never been more important and we suspect that in the coming months, employers will be on the lookout for candidates who can not only demonstrate innovative ideas but also show how to implement them via social media channels.

What’s your view? Let us know by commenting below.