Facebook isn’t the #1 investor relations tool on the market. In fact, it’s not even at the top of the list of social media tools that Investor Relations officers use on a day to day basis. Nevertheless, there has been considerable talk in small and micro-cap markets this week about how changes to Facebook’s news feed algorithm will affect public companies trying to reach potential investors. Here’s a quick overview of how the changes impact investor outreach on Facebook.
What’s Changed at Facebook
The primary focus on Facebook’s new feed algorithm updates have been to remove unwanted or unnecessary advertising from users’ news feeds . The changes specifically deal with advertising that:
- is solely to push people to buy a product or install an application
- pushes people to enter promotions and sweepstakes with no real context
- reuses the exact same content from ads
Who Is Affected?
This will vary between companies based on how much focus you put on your corporate Facebook page. If you’re trying to create retail investor leads, Facebook is a very cost-effective channel that is also extremely under-utilized.
Still, most public companies have yet to begin using Facebook ads in order to reach potential retail shareholders. Company Facebook pages are generally reserved for public relations and human resources departments. However, if you are representing a small- or micro-cap company that’s been doing investor outreach on Facebook, you could very well be impacted by the last bullet point on that list. It’s unlikely that any public company IR departments are asking potential investors to signup for sweepstakes, but there is a good chance that if you’re running a Facebook ads campaign and you haven’t put up a new promoted post in the last month, your ads are no longer showing in news feeds.
What should you do?
If you’re not up on the latest Facebook investor outreach strategies, checkout our social engagement strategies for more info how to reach investors with Facebook.
In terms of your ad campaigns – it’s probably best to start a new campaign with fresh content. Facebook rolls out features to audiences in waves, so these changes are not going to be visible for all users tomorrow. Though we haven’t heard of a timeline as yet, it typically takes a month or so for changes to go site-wide. For this reason, we suggest you still keep the campaign you’re currently running active and simply ‘clone’ it so you have all the same custom audience settings. A new campaign will ensure your ad display isn’t being influenced by a legacy version of the old algorithm.
Final thoughts on Facebook
Most of your audience on Facebook will be employees or potential employees but remember that they’re stakeholders as well. Facebook’s news feed is especially useful for displaying re-purposed earnings content. You could also consider posting a quarterly video update, investor relations podcast or quarterly earnings infographic. In order to keep the page current with useful information for investors, we suggest posting something at least once a week. If you’re using a crm to track investors, be sure to record comments and questions on your corporate Facebook page as they could be important in the future.