As part of its ongoing wave of API changes and shutdowns, as of 1 August, Facebook changed how users are able to share content to their networks. The company quietly nixed automated, API-based sharing to user profiles, requiring users to post with Facebook’s share dialogue, rather than custom-built dialogues that could include features like scheduling posts.
In other words, users and all third parties now must post directly and instantly to their feeds, and are no longer able to simply use the “add to queue” feature to schedule posts. Sounds straightforward enough, but what many communicators don’t realize is how this seemingly simple change directly impacts employee advocacy—for the better.
Dispelling the hype
Apprehension has abounded about Facebook’s recent modifications, with marketers, advertisers and communicators scrambling to change up their strategies in response. This reaction is understandable—updates like this make it harder to use third-party tools to manage social profiles and require changes in behavior that many are hesitant to make. And, in this case, losing the ability to schedule posts also does away with the convenience factor that benefited those who used scheduled sharing for good.
Yet, despite all the headlines, this latest move is inarguably a win for brands when it comes to employee advocacy. With the previous option to push automated, scheduled posts, the key factor missing was authenticity—employees could schedule corporate content to post directly with no consideration on their part before going live. This made it easy to spread inauthentic posts and contributed to spamming—a chronic issue plaguing Facebook and other social networks—with employees at times serving as content factories rather than meaningful content curators.
Content is not king....
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