Sam Rose - Head of Content

Sam Rose

16th February 2018

Facebook Algorithm Change Prioritises Local News

At the end of January, Mark Zuckerberg announced that Facebook would be changing to show users more posts from their friends, high-quality news sources, and local news publishers.

What’s Changing?

Facebook researched what their users want and they found that people like to use the social media platform to connect with friends and to find out what’s going on in the world and in their local communities. The News Feed is therefore set to be updated to prioritise posts from friends, news from trusted sources, and news from the user’s local area. The changes are being rolled out in the US first, but they could come to the UK soon.

What Does This Mean?

Local publishers are those whose links are clicked on by readers in a tight geographic area, so if you operate a local website, this could actually be good news for you. Local news and sports websites and neighbourhood blogs could all benefit from this change. If people in your town are engaging with posts from these sources, those posts are more likely to be closer to the top of other people’s news feeds, and you could therefore see more engagement and traffic to your website.

How Can Local Businesses Benefit?

Unfortunately this change only extends to local news sources, and doesn’t affect other businesses. So local plumbers, builders, hairdressers, independent shops, restaurants, gyms, pet groomers and so on, are not currently affected. However, these businesses could still benefit by marketing themselves in local news sources. For example, writing an article for a neighbourhood blog or your town’s newspaper website could result in the publisher sharing a link to the post on Facebook, and with this new algorithm change, local users would be more likely to see it. This could be a way to improve your local visibility and make your brand more well-known within the audience you are targeting.

Why Is Local Marketing Important?

If your business relies on local customers, it is essential for you to be able to reach those people both online and offline. Social media, local SEO, email marketing and informative website content can all help you to get your business in front of more people who could use, love and recommend your products or services to others in the local area.

Facebook’s move towards more local news puts an emphasis on the importance of engaging with our community and the people around us. In order to be successful and stand out from the competition, it’s important for you to be an active and visible part of that community, both physically and digitally.

If you would like some help with reaching potential customers in your area, get in touch with SilverDisc. We are a digital marketing agency based in Kettering, Northamptonshire, and we can help you to increase your local audience and sales. whether you are in Kettering, Wellingborough, Northampton, or much further afield, get in touch to find out more!

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