Facebook Clamp Down on ‘Like and Share’ Clickbait Content
The latest update from Facebook, could leave business pages who rely heavily on ‘like and share’ content to grow their following, feeling verrrrry nervous right about now!
Facebook aim to demote pages, and content that use these ‘engagement-bait’ tactics, and are vowing to monitor and penalise business pages that continue to promote this practice. You’ll notice this method of ‘gaming the system’ to acquire artificial likes, happening a lot during the festive season - as many business pages attempt to cut through the noise and reach customers through competitions and promotions.
Like and share style competitions get a bad rap, because they offer no real value to publishers or 'followers' For example, those who don’t want to engage with the business running the competition have become over-exposed to them indirectly through their friends, and therefore consider the content on their newsfeed, spam (note: a word you do NOT want associated with the business you work so hard on!) The content is often reported to Facebook in the form of users choosing to ‘Hide’ or ‘Report’ it, which also impacts on the overall businesses relevency score (something that needs to remain high in order for your future ads or boosted posts to perform well, against your budget.) As passive users, some of us might like the chance to win a luxury hotel break or beauty hamper and do engage from time to time - but as publishers, we have got to do better.
What Facebook HQ have said on the matter; “People have told us that they dislike spammy posts on Facebook that goad them into interacting with likes, shares, comments, and other actions. For example, “LIKE this if you’re an Aries!” This tactic, known as “engagement bait,” seeks to take advantage of our News Feed algorithm by boosting engagement in order to get greater reach. So, starting this week, we will begin demoting individual posts from people and Pages that use engagement bait.”
If you’ve used these tactics or currently use them, it’s not time to despair or panic - you certainly weren’t the only one, and likely felt as though you needed to since your competitors were doing it, and your growth was probably slow when you weren’t using these methods - but - my advice would be to stop once your current comp is over, and plan some new approaches for your social media to go into the new year on a safe and strong note.
The followers you recieve from these competitions are more often that not, an empty ‘like’ - as their intentions were not to purchase from you, but rather to WIN from you, yes; there had to have been some interest, and yes; now they’re familiar with you, but, if they never convert to an actual sale, will their like be worth your business page being suspended or worse, shut down?
Your marketing dept/contact will have warned you against this for some time now hopefully, and if you don’t have a marketing advisor I hope this article was helpful!
If you would like advice on ethical and consistent social media content or advertising strategies that are more successful - than spammy - please get in touch, and keep an eye on my blog and Instagram for tips and tricks that won’t stress you out or get you in trouble! Like and share this blog to… (I am joking :) !!)