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Guest Post: What Happened to Video on Facebook?

We recently came across this article by Nick Henderson, Global Manager of Social for Tourism Australia, discussing what's happened to video on Facebook, following recent algorithmic changes. 
 
We reckon it's chock full of valuable, actionable takeaways for local marketers. You can read the original article here. Below you'll find Nick's article republished in full, with permission.
 
Following Facebook’s announcement in January that it would be altering its Newsfeed algorithm to drive more meaningful social interactions, the platform’s prioritisation of video appears to be over.
 
For years the best advice to drive organic reach on Facebook was to publish video content. Tourism Australia’s Facebook page reached double the number of people using video compared to other formats with similar levels of engagement.
 
Since January however, the average organic reach of images Tourism Australia has posted on Facebook is up by more than 50 per cent whilst video is down. For the first time in years video and image posts are now reaching a similar number of people.
 
In light of the changes Nick Henderson, Tourism Australia’s head of social media, has these tips for Australian tourism businesses:

1) Focus on the right format for each post. 

There’s no doubt video will often be the best way to tell your story – and it still makes up more than half of our posts – but when you’ve got an incredible image you won’t be at a disadvantage for using it providing it engages your audience.
 
This image is a great example of a shot which was previously unlikely to have performed particularly well but recently reached more than 1.3m people on our page.

2) Remember that the organic reach of each post is linked to how engaging it is

You are better off publishing fewer posts of higher quality than posting any content you can find for the sake of it.

3) Actively test which posts resonate with your audience. 

Facebook is prioritising posts that drive interactions between friends and we are seeing big spikes in the reach of posts which do.
 
Figure out what your audience likes to share and comment on through rigorous testing and start to build your plans around this type of content.
 
If you are looking for some inspiration pay attention to the type of brand posts that are regularly appearing in your Newsfeed – that should provide some clues as to what works.

4) Live video has been identified as a format which drives greater conversation

If live video could work for you test this out to see if it should become part of your ongoing content strategy. We have tested live videos since the algorithm update – such as this one captured at Uluru – and seen very strong results.

5) Promoted posts are unaffected by the algorithm change

If your paid strategy is working there’s no need to change it based on changes to the performance of your organic posts.2

6) Don’t just focus on your own social media accounts.

Give your guests a reason to promote your business. We love the Park Hyatt Melbourne’s most popular employee Mr Walker – a concierge Labrador who greets guests on arrival.
 
Who could resist sharing a photo of him when they visit?

7) Avoid the temptation of asking fans to share or comment on your posts

Facebook recently announced that these posts will be de-prioritised in Newsfeed. This has the potential to affect your ongoing post reach.

8) These changes only apply to Facebook

There’s no need to overhaul your publishing strategy on other social media platforms if you are having success there.
 
Find out more about Tourism Australia’s approach to social media here.
 
Visit Tourism Australia’s Facebook page here.

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