Many social game companies use Facebook as the central point of their community strategy but changes to Facebook’s surfacing algorithm suggest you may want to focus elsewhere. A social game’s Facebook fan page has been a great medium to increase retention, virality and even monetization. Keeping the community engaged through dialogue and promotional offers, so they are regularly on the fan page, is a relatively low-cost, low-effort way of getting your players back in the game (and thus increasing retention). Running promotions that encourage your Facebook fans to share links and other information increases the virality of your app. You can even use your Facebook fan page to improve monetization, by running sales directly from the page that cater to the community.
A recent article on Business Insider, however, points to the lower reach these pages are now experiencing, and thus reduced effectiveness. According to the article, at the beginning of December, Facebook changed the algorithm it uses to select the stories that appear in users’ News Feeds. The effect of the change was to reduce the reach of Facebook posts, which some companies feel declined by as much as 80 percent. Although Facebook’s motivation for the change is uncertain (Facebook claims it is trying to surface more relevant posts, while companies feel they are trying to force them to advertise more), the impact is very clear: Less surfacing equals less effectiveness. Continue reading