Blogger: Janet Kobobel Grant
If you’re like me, when you head to a social media site and discover it’s been revamped once again, you feel your blood pressure rising. Partly because you’re weary of how often changes occur but also because you suspect you’ll need to fight your way back to connect with potential readers and fans. Building a social media presence is hard work, but when the “wizards” behind the site keep changing the rules, our challenges increase.
Well, Facebook recently announced a makeover, which is to be instituted in January 2015. Here’s what you need to know about Facebook’s latest revamp to keep yourself connected to other Facebookers.
FB decides if a post is too promotional using three criteria:
1. Posts that suggest people buy a product or install an app.
2. Posts that encourage people to enter promotions and sweepstakes with no real context.
3. Posts that reuse the same content as ads.
Facebook did mention in its announcement that brands can buy ads. Um, if I feel overloaded with ads that pop up on the side of my wall and more and more frequently in the middle of regular posts, I’m not sure FB is protecting me from exposure to companies’ messages.
I get #3, but #1 and #2 would seem to limit an author’s ability to mention a new book release with, say, a link to Amazon. Or for an author to increase email subscribers through contests, as #2 would suggest. (I don’t know what to make of “no real context.” I guess that means I can offer a free stack of books, but could I offer a basket of goodies?
Don’t get me wrong: I’m all for Facebook going back to feeling like the genial, laid-back point of connection it used to be, but the decision to only allow certain posts to show up on my wall strikes me as more and more confining for Facebook users. Corporations still can be visible to me, but people I actually know and care about have shrinking visibility.
To read in detail about these changes, here’s a helpful article. Be sure to read the comments as well, since they provide various perspectives.
In another new move, Facebook has created an app that you can use on your mobile device that enables you to view only posts within specific groups. So, if you’re very connected to a FB group and often go to Facebook to check out that group’s conversation, this app enables you to head directly there.
For authors who have created a group for fans, for those who have street teams, and for FB users who have writerly groups with ongoing discussions, this app could prove very helpful.
You can read more about it here.
What do you wish Facebook would do differently? How do you use Facebook to “up” your professional presence?
What do Facebook’s upcoming changes mean to authors? Click to tweet.
Facebook revamps the rules once again. Click to tweet.