Facebook has been putting a lot of effort into fighting ‘fake news’ and ‘clickbait’ posts for the past several months. A new change that has just been rolled out is going to help take this to a more granular level. This change allows their algorithms to better isolate individual clickbait posts that are shared by people who normally don’t do this type of thing.
While the other changes have been focusing on stopping clickbait by keeping posts from those who are always sharing this type of thing, this one hits on the other side of the problem. It has happened to just about everyone at some point. You see a post that really catches your attention, and you share it before you realize it is just fake news or clickbait.
The vast majority of your posts may be good, Facebook wants to minimize the number of people who will see this clickbait post. To do this, their algorithms will look at posts people make to determine if key information is withheld from the headline, and if the headline is written to exaggerate the story it links to. If so, it will not be seen by nearly as many people (if any at all).
As usual, Facebook hasn’t released all the details about exactly how this works, but the end result should be fewer of these types of posts showing up in newsfeeds.
Many marketers have long used the clickbait tactic to drive traffic since it can be so effective. With this update, and the future updates that will undoubtedly come, this strategy is quickly becoming outdated. Marketers should be focusing on finding a new option to drive traffic, ideally one that provides helpful information and services to their target audience since that is the best way to develop good, long term traffic sources.