Facebook Changing Algorithm To Catch Up To TikTok

The Verge reported last week that Facebook employees have been given a new directive: “Make the feed more like TikTok.” This is according to a leaked internal Facebook memo. Facebook’s early salvo of bringing Reels from Instagram into Facebook has been largely ineffective. In fact, as seen by the TikTok branding on much of the video content on both Instagram and Facebook, Reels often originate on TikTok.

As Facebook shifts to be more like TikTok, video will become the primary content type across social media platforms. Instagram has already morphed, focusing more on Reels and looking more and more like TikTok.

The reason for these changes is clear. Facebook is losing the battle for time spent across platforms, particularly with “Gen Z”, those born between 1997 and 2012. In fact, Facebooks own research shows that younger users find the platform “boring” and for “people over 40”.


However, shockingly, TikTok has proven that its appeal and usage extends beyond adults under 24. In fact, nearly 80% of TikTok’s users are now 25 or older and 66% of all users fall into the coveted 25 – 54 age group. The platform is growing up and Facebook, the once dominant social media platform is taking notice and taking action. But is it too late? Time will tell.

This rapid growth and increasing market share are coming primarily at the expense of Facebook.

What does this mean for local brands? For starters, national trends tend to trickle down to local. Some users are slowly leaving Facebook. Others are spending less time with the platform.

All the while, TikTok is growing in both its user base and the time spent on the platform.

TikTok is becoming THE trendsetter when it comes to culture. Music, fashion, and discourse are being impacted by the app and its users. The majority of users discover new music through the platform. When a brand uses music that is popular on TikTok 68% of users say they remember the brand better and 58% are more likely to talk about the brand. TikTok users are simply more

immersed in the platform than other social media options. While scrolling the news feed on Facebook or perusing Instagram can be a secondary activity TikTok generally grabs 100% of a consumer’s attention.

An important aspect to understand about TikTok is that it is an entertainment platform before all else.  All content, including ads, needs to be entertaining.  The audience is expecting to be entertained. Since all content on the platform is video, ads included, brands of all sizes that decide to implement a TikTok strategy must plan their content appropriately. Think short, useful, and entertaining content that doesn’t come across as a sales pitch. Videos do not

necessarily need to be professionally produced but they do need to be well conceived. See this local example from our client, Victoria ER, in Victoria, Texas. While funny, this type of content provides useful, timely information while establishing Victoria ER as an expert resource in the market.

Content like this can be more of a creative challenge than your run of the mill Facebook campaign. However, the beauty of creating content for TikTok is that, if done correctly, it can easily be used on other platforms and perform very well. Funny informative video content works on TikTok but it also works on Facebook, Instagram, and even LinkedIn.

However, content that works on other platforms will not necessarily work on TikTok.

For retail, the #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt hashtag is perpetually trending, and hearing all types of people say “I saw this on TikTok” is now commonplace. Local retail and other businesses can capitalize on this new reality. Everything from #houstonshopping to #househunting is covered and well trafficked by consumers.

Now that Facebook is further modifying the newsfeed and platform to mimic TikTok, we believe that most brands should begin to implement a TikTok first strategy for content and ad creative. TikTok as a platform has grown up quickly, gained a meaningful audience across all demographics, and is poised to impact local businesses that take advantage of this opportunity in a positive way.

ThriveFuel can assist you in this transition. Our team of creative content writers, strategists, and professional video production team can craft a winning strategy for your business. Whether you’re competing in a local market or multiple markets across the country, we can help.

If you’d like to learn more about a TikTok and video first strategy, social media marketing, or marketing in general please reach out to us today!