Facebook has become a headache for brands and businesses. The social network became a key part of the brand’s communication strategy in recent times, as social networks became increasingly popular. Consumers were there and the brands wanted to be, so that their message arrived clearly to their potential recipients. Facebook had to enter into the communication strategy in this new age of networks.
But Facebook also imposed a new problem, one that brands and companies did not see until the last moment. When playing in the field of another, this is the one that sets the rules and the one that in the end has the frying pan by the handle at the time of changing them. Things are not as the companies want or expect them to be, but as that scenario aims to be.
In the case of Facebook, successive changes in the algorithm that regulate what enters and what not in the news feed have been those that have caused problems and tensions for brands that operate in the social network and that try to use it to reach their Potential consumers. The different changes and adjustments have made it increasingly difficult to break the barriers of Facebook and to reach organic consumers become more and more difficult. Over the last few years, different strategies and different tricks have been working to get to the feed, but have been losing weight and relevance as Facebook has been punishing them.
This has happened for example with clickbaiting, which was one of the recurring tools in recent times to position itself. The striking headline that invited to click because one could not stay without knowing what happened was one of the tools that companies and especially the media used to reach organic potential recipients. However, after growing like foam, it fell equally once Facebook decided to punish it for leading to irrelevant information or that was not exactly what it offered.
Emotions, the new way
Should we lose hope of reaching the potential recipients on Facebook in an organic way? The online media could have found the new formula for it, or at least the one that is working for now, as pointed out in a Digiday analysis. The new direct way to enter the feed is in the emotions and in playing with them to connect with the consumer, generate engagement and be seen with good eyes by the algorithm of Facebook.
In fact, the emotions have become the key that is already pressing all kinds of media on Facebook, from the serious BBC to the one born to be viral Little Things. “We are gravitating towards those stories that make you cry,” says one of the directives of one of these media. “We just do not tell you what we’re going to do with the headline,” he adds. Unlike clickbaiting, which played with the headline to generate expectations in front of the story, here is something more subtle. It is the recipients themselves who bring in the emotions, not the ones who publish the stories.
That is why, in recent times, the media are betting on Facebook for stories that generate sadness, happiness and anger, which are those that are shared and empowered. This type of content wins: users respond to them and enter directly into the feed.
The idea works mainly on Facebook, where it is being used on a recurring basis, but some media are beginning to use it in other social networks or play with emotions in other scenarios beyond your page. Bloomberg, for example, is also using the emotions to make its content much more attractive and viral on LinkedIn and Instagram and has created groups on Facebook that enhance the emotional participation of users, making the activity go more in that Line and boosting that positioning.