As the largest social networking platform on the Web, Facebook has become the place to be for anyone and everyone involved with social media. Marketers are making their way to social media platforms overnight to reach their target audience… and it’s been working great, especially on Facebook. It’s brilliant. They’re able to see results while they connect with their current customers and reach potential customers. What’s better than that? It’s the perfect relationship.
The beauty behind Facebook for many business owners and marketers is the idea of being able to reach a targeted audience organically and not having to spend a dime. After all, what’s cheaper than a cheap date? Free exposure on Facebook!
THE HONEYMOON PHASE – “You’re perfect, I love you!”
For a long time page owners had the power to reach every Facebook user who “Liked” their page with the push of a button. For example, let’s say your business had a Facebook Page with 10,000 “Likes”. It’s time to run a special promotion and you want to tell all of your fans. Well, all you would need to do is create a status update on your Facebook Page, press post, and CA-CHING – your new promotion was just sent to your 10,000 fans. Sounds great, right? (Sorry… you’re late to the party.)
THINGS START TO CHANGE – “I need space”
While Facebook evolves and continues to grow, with the fastest growing demographic being 45-54 year olds, Facebook is quickly recognizing the power of marketing on their platform and they are doing everything in their power to make you pay for it. Why? Because, well, they can and they know you will. Not as cheap as a cheap date anymore, huh?
On April 23, 2012, Facebook announced that a Page’s organic reach had dropped down to 16 percent. That means that out of 10,000 fans on Facebook, only 1,600 fans would now see posts. Facebook had claimed that the number of users posting on Facebook was increasing and promoting your post would give you the upper hand when it came to competing for News Feed placement. This was the beginning of having to promote your post or the News Feed would scream “I need space!”. (In other words – oh, you’re not paying? Sucks to suck).
WHATEVER, IT’S JUST… WHATEVER– “#whatever”
Page owners and marketers dealt with the change and continued to create content for their Pages. Quickly they learned that if they created engaging content and users “Liked” the content, the content would appear more frequently in their News Feed. So, maybe this could work… right? Yeah, #whatever.
MAYBE WE’RE JUST NOT MEANT TO BE – “I’ll just ignore you”
Ad Age put together a study in the beginning of March 2014 reporting that Facebook Pages were now reaching just 6 percent of their audience. Can you guess how many of your 10,000 fans you can reach now? The answer is not 1,600 anymore. Try 600 (and that’s if you’re lucky!).
What does this mean for a Page owner or marketer? We hate to break it to you, but if you don’t boost your posts you can consider yourself ignored. Don’t worry, things will only get worse from here! Wait… what?
THE BREAK UP – “Yeah, it’s over”
Did you dislike the sound of only reaching 600 people (even though 10,000 people originally “Liked” your page agreeing to see your content)? Don’t shoot the messenger, but that number has dropped again. In fact, a recent article from Gawker explains that reach is plummeting down to 1 percent.
Ready to play, “How many fans will I reach now out of my 10,000?”. Ok! Let’s do it. With reaching 1 percent of 10,000 fans, your posts will now display to *drumroll please* 100 people. Yeah, consider it done. The relationship with Facebook’s Organic outreach is over.
SINGLE AND READY TO MINGLE – “What do I do now?”
Don’t worry, everything you’ve worked for hasn’t completely went to waste. You’re probably thinking, “What do I do now?”. Well, you continue to post to Facebook, but this time you invest a budget to boost your post and advertise on Facebook. We know this doesn’t sound ideal, but you actually get a bang for your buck… and there’s benefits!
GO ON A DATE – “What can investing money into Facebook offer me?”
Boosting post on Facebook will allow you to reach people who like your page and their friends OR reach a targeted audience based on location, age, interests, gender, and even relationship status. Did we mention that you’ll be able to reach up to thousands of people for as little as 5 dollars based on your targeted preferences? No… those aren’t thousands of people who already know you… those are thousands of people who can get to know you.
That sounds good, right? Yeah… it’s time to go on a date. Check back for our next article, “What to expect on my date with Facebook Advertising”.