At SM&, we often get asked, “What’s the advantage of your team managing our social media pages?” The answer is simple – expertise. Our Digital Team lives and breathes social media. Each morning we meet to discuss the latest changes and news in the digital world. If Twitter changes their layout, we need to know about it so that we can adjust our Twitter pages. If Facebook changes their algorithm to favor link posts, we need to know about it so that we can get our clients the best results possible.

Believe it or not, social media can change a lot in one week. That’s why we have decided to share three crucial things that happened on Facebook this week with our readers.

  1. Facebook Pages Got A Makeover: In March 2013, user profiles got a new single-column look. Now Facebook pages are following suit. This means that instead of having to scan your eyes back and forth across two columns, all of the page updates will be featured in a single column on the right side of the page. On the left side will be information about business hours, location and followers.  Facebook has also added an updated navigation menu to the top of pages which includes a new “build audience” tab for easy access to your Facebook Ads account. Some pages have already begun seeing changes. For more details, you can find a pretty comprehensive explanation here on The Next Web.
  2. Facebook Slashing Organic Reach: According to an anonymous inside source (originally reported by Valleywag this week), Facebook could be reducing the organic reach of pages down to as low as 1-2%. Though many brand pages have seen a decrease in organic reach in the past year, this would drastically reduce the ability to reach your fans without paid advertising even more. Let’s say you have 3,000 Facebook fans, this means that at best your posts will reach about 30 people. For brand managers who have spent time and money building up fan bases, this is very frustrating. For Facebook, it’s just business. Just as you have to pay for advertising through any other media outlet, social media is no different.
  3. Hashtags on Facebook Can Hurt Your Brand: A study released by Socialbakers this week revealed that using too many hashtags on Facebook can dramatically reduce engagement. Based on a sampling of 200,000 brand posts on Facebook in February 2014, brands that used one or two hashtags in a given post received an average of 593 interactions. That number dropped to 416 for brands that used three to five hashtags. The reality is that each social network has its own culture. While hashtags work on Twitter because people are searching for relevant conversations, it doesn’t mean that they will work on Facebook because people simply do not engage with the platforms in the same way.