Facebook is fundamentally changing. Starting earlier this year, the platform started putting more emphasis on showing you content created by your Facebook friends instead of posts from business you follow. This move makes sense in light of Facebook’s recent issues. However, the change is a double-edged sword. Marketers are now facing major drops in impressions and engagement on their Facebook content. Fortunately, the new Facebook algorithms won’t ruin your funeral business. What funeral professionals will have to do, however, is work smarter to continue to see positive returns and preneed leads from social media. Here are three ways that funeral homes can combat the recent changes to Facebook’s algorithms.
1. Create Better Posts
A funeral home’s Facebook content needs to provide important and practical information to its followers. Long gone are the days of posting photos with inspirational quotes and expecting to get good engagement. Facebook’s algorithms understand what you’re posting and have the ability to make a decision about whether or not your followers will see it in their newsfeeds. This decision is often based on whether your post will start a conversation.
2. Join Facebook Groups
It’s highly likely that your community has numerous Facebook Groups dedicated to topics from politics to garage sales and community events to history. Your Facebook page can join these groups and interact with the content that is posted there. It’s an easy way to become more visible to community members and promote your brand. You may even gain additional followers as you provide value, and Facebook can tell that you are engaging with people in an organic way. If you choose to use this marketing method, I do have one piece of advice: don’t overdo it. You do not need to be part of every single conversation in these groups. You should monitor the groups closely and look for the right time and place to chime in with specific knowledge. Are people asking funeral-related questions? Good, that’s your opportunity to shine. Are people discussing a community event unrelated to you? I recommend you stay out of the conversation.
3. Utilize Facebook Stories
Facebook stories is a function that allows users and brands to post a “story,” which can include text posts, images and videos, to the platform. This story then lives for 24 hours at the top of the Facebook app, much like Instagram’s stories feature. Users can watch these stories uninterrupted, comment, like and bounce from story to story depending on what interests them. The tech team at Facebook has made it easier than ever to add your post to your Facebook story on mobile. It’s done so by conveniently asking if you want to add your post to your story before it’s published in your newsfeed. So far, several big brands like CNN and Marvel have already started using the stories feature to engage with followers. It’s an easy and free way to help your audience see that you’ve posted, if not also take the time to hear what you have to say.
Facebook is changing, but ultimately, it’s changing to better serve its users. It’s forcing brands and businesses to take a hard look at the actual value they’re bringing to users and encouraging them to try harder. If you’re looking for even more in-depth information on how to manage a funeral home Facebook Page, you can download the Social Media Guide for Funeral Professionals. This free tool provides more than 30 pages of content created by Homesteaders and DISRUPT Media to help you start and manage a Facebook page. Plus, it details the new and exciting changes happening to other social platforms and includes a comprehensive glossary of common social media terms.