Are we seeing the Facebook business page apocalypse?
Well if you can swallow this answer and have the patience to read the entire article for the explanation and some solutions, yes, no and kind of…..
Facebook under the guise of “returning to their roots” and becoming more of a “community-minded” platform are seeking to increase their shareholders’ profits and thus their net worth.
Now before we go getting all hot under the collar let us remember, like many of you reading this article, our seemingly very distant friend Mark Zuckerberg 😉 is a businessman that has a business, his aim is to increase his bottom line and since his business is a publically traded company he actually has an even greater responsibility to do so.
We can’t be mad because he is obviously burning a lot of bridges and rather than biting the hands that have fed him, he is systematically lopping them off with a huge corporate guillotine and demanding we buy prosthetics and continue to feed him at increased rates 😛 😉 (Not verified that paid ads are going to increase in cost yet)
Ok all laughing aside No business pages are not going to fade away and die IF we are willing to adapt and evolve our practices and strategies.
What FB is doing is limiting the reach of pages that engage in specified engagement baiting (click here https://newsroom.fb.com/news/2017/12/news-feed-fyi-fighting-engagement-bait-on-facebook/ ) as well as stopping business pages posts (that are not paid ads) from showing up in the community newsfeeds.
They are hoping this will A. stop people from complaining so much about ads, B. Encourage more paid ads, and C. makes the newsfeed a more prime real estate area for paid ads.
They are also hoping that people who have been leaving FB for other social media platforms will return and thus some of their bigger corporate ad clients will spend more time and money on ads.
They want the platform to be more like the Hotel California, you can log out anytime you like but you can never really leave.. <~~~~~ if you didn’t get that joke PLEASE go on youtube and search for the eagles and give your young ears a revitalizing appreciation for real music 😉 😛
What this all means that unless you start implementing vast and wide-ranging changes to the way you approach your marketing/social media practices on FB, YES! you will be facing the Facebook business page apocalypse, slowly your reach will dimish to the point only a few people will see your content and NO ONE outside of your page followers.
Effectively what IS happening but not quite happened yet is the apocalypse of Organic Reach, https://www.facebook.com/help/285625061456389?helpref=uf_permalink , again before we get madder than many of us already are the extra work and research we will have to do, ask yourself would you allow thousands of businesses to post their brand images and ads all over your business for free?
I keep referencing all these before you get mad scenarios but I was red-faced, flip backward, kick the cat, feel bad nearly passed out angry when I first found out about all of this 😉 (The cats ok)
Ok so let us jump into the solutions part because that’s what I get paid the big bucks for 😉 not so big anymore as my own ad budget is about to skyrocket to maintain my reach and implement some of these solutions for my clients’, unless you fine folks decide to share this article that is 😉 😉 😉
You can do polls within your community as well, this via word of mouth can bring new people to your page, as your followers will let friends and family know that you care about their opinions. It can also help you decide on new products and services.
Just posting links, posting links especially those that make people click away from FB to other sites is not considering quality original content, nor does FB look favorably on links that take eyes away from their site.
Ever since FB brought in live feeds or “going live” it has put a big emphasis on encouraging its use and it is a high-quality engagement tool, use it whenever you can, even if you just do a short video to say what is going on with your business or provide solutions to scenarios your viewers are faced with.
Paid ads, you can run paid ads for as little as $5 a day and you can run them for one day to a month, We do not suggest running really short ads as you will want to keep an eye on your past present and future ads to see what works the best. We suggest at least 5 days to give a chance to gain impressions, ideally 12 to 14 days.
Allow/create a paid ad budget to experiment with, this what Facebook REALLY wants and it knows it is still the number one platform for reaching people, although this may change with these new changes, it is not the current reality as of January 2018
It is a process and trial and error to see what works and doesn’t, we are biased but more and more this is why you should have a social media manager in your employ or have your social media management contracted out. It is more now than ever a full-time job that you simply can not do while running a business.
If you have been running your FB business page like an ad space and providing no quality content without paid ads and intend to continue doing so, you are facing the Facebook business page apocalypse, think of it like a nuke going off a few miles away, your presence won’t be incinerated but ultimately the radiation cloud will choke you out of existence.
With paid ads you can target people that are more likely to be interested in your products and services.
You want to SUPER-engage with your followers and create an extraordinary engagement atmosphere. A little trick I have discovered for this is at the right-hand side of your status box, there is a drop-down icon, that allows you to change how you are commenting on your posts, you can use this to comment not as your page but as yourself and encourage interaction (an under cover agent on your own page 😉
You can also have your page admins and editors do this as well, we are not aware of any rules against this little gray hat tactic as of yet.
It is also important to remember while the biggest Facebook is not the be all end all of social media platforms. Another solution is to start various other social media accounts depending on your business/services, many of these can be linked together and all can be managed via social media management platforms like Hootsuite and Crowdfire to name only two. We do however suggest taking it easy on automation on Facebook, moving forward you really want to be more hands on.
Use offline advertising to complement your social media presence! Utilize radio advertising to direct people to your Facebook page and thus your other social media platforms. Facebook cannot prevent you from promoting your business page on local and national radio 😉 The point is there are plenty of ways for you to direct traffic to your website and Facebook page without just using social media platforms.
We also had a question today about sharing your Facebook page articles and posts to groups, at the time we were not sure but now are happy to report that as long as you own the group or are an admin you won’t have a problem with that, not yet at least.
Is linking your page to your group going to help?
Some people are saying they all of a sudden are not able to, which is leading us to think they may be phasing that out, so it can not be used as a gorilla tactic to preserve organic reach instead of following the suggested solutions. This being said no one has come out yet saying that we can’t.
Well, this has been 5 days of research and networking and almost 9 hours to write so I am going to leave it here. I am hungrier than a social media marketer that got corner by Mark Zuckerberg 😛 😉 I am going to post this and since old marky boy can’t penalize me for engagement baiting on my own article, I will ask you to SHARE this article with anyone that has a business, fan page etc
Doing so may help this weary social media manager help a few people and maybe even get a few more clients 😉
If you have any further questions feel free to reach out here via our website or @ https://www.facebook.com/socialmediaexcellencediscovered/ we often give out #freeadvice to pay our success forward 🙂