Agents who use a brand page on Facebook are likely to find the platform less effective in future, following a major change to Facebook’s strategy, writes Pippa Jacks.
The social media platform’s founder, Mark Zuckerberg, announced last week that Facebook’s algorithms are to be overhauled so users see more photos and updates from their family and friends, and less from businesses and media outlets.
“Since there’s more public content than posts from your friends and family, the balance of what’s in News Feed has shifted away from the most important thing Facebook can do – help us connect with each other,” he stated.
The move is also reported to be an attempt to address the problem of “fake news”. The new approach could have significant ramifications for travel businesses that post deals, photos and videos on their brand pages to drive organic engagement.
“It’s a really serious development, and something that agents should be aware of,” said Bruce Martin, founder of social media consultancy Ginger Juice. “I’ve already noticed a lot more personal news in my news feed,” he added.
Martin advised that it is still too early to know what the changes will mean for brand pages, but suggested that agents might need to get used to the idea of “paying to play”.
“It doesn’t sound like adverts will be affected by these changes, so it might be that travel companies have to become more skilled in using advertising options,” he said.
Birmingham-based Honeymoon Dreams, which won Top Weddings and Honeymoons Agency in TTG Top 50 Travel Agencies 2017, has 7,000 followers of its Facebook page.
“It’s become increasingly hard to nail down what Facebook is more likely to show to people, so we already do quite a lot of advertising to ensure our content is seen,” said marketing manager Tom Pestridge.
“But these changes could mean we have to spend a bit more.”