I’d like to outline a theory. Hang with me for a second …
For several years social media marketing on Facebook has gotten more and more challenging. As a social network that was first used by people to connect with friends and family, it grew fast – and marketeers (like me!) wanted to reach those millions of accounts.
So we created Facebook pages and if you “liked” our page, you were electing to opt-in to our posts and see them in your news feed. This was way better than email for those of us tired of 1% click-through rates on email blasts – Facebook was a friendly, happy group of people. You liked my page – you must be dying for me to share everything with you.
Then Facebook started suppressing all that wonderful content* posted on pages in news feeds. Even if you opted in, you wouldn’t see it unless one of two things happened: 1) The post organically was getting many comments, likes, and shares – also known as “engagement” or 2) the page owner paid to make sure the post showed up in your news feed.
As a consultant, I started to turn away from Facebook as a marketing vehicle about 18 months ago – with the exception of marketing for non-profits. You can check out a post here on how we blew away our fundraising goals with just social media marketing this year for Shiba Prom. However, I had noticed in my own news feed I wasn’t seeing pages of my friends’ businesses – pages I had gone and liked. As I looked at metrics for my own business pages, it was back down to that same 1% number you see on emails – this time as an engagement number. My advice to clients evolved: make sure you have a Facebook page so you can hold the URL and no one can hijack it. Post to it when you can, but don’t expect it to drive results for you.
Then I noticed something interesting: in a group conversation one day several us commented on how we were seeing an ad campaign in our news feed but the ad didn’t seem to be driving revenue. We all had something in common: we had liked the page and had many friends who worked at the company. It’s not uncommon for someone to like posts from their employer. Press release the stock went up? Heck yeah – let’s like that! New product launched that you killed yourself over for a year! Yup – liking that one too! Which then means your friends have a higher chance of seeing that post in their news feed.
And who is in your Facebook friend list? Family, long time friends…and co-workers? By liking a post are you helping to propagate it to other employees of the same company?
It’s a theory. Check out your Facebook audience in the Insights. Tell me what you see. I like to measure how many of the people who have liked and opted-in are actually engaging with the posts. On a slow week, I see about 10% of the audience engaging with Shiba Prom. On an active week, it’s closer to 50-60%.
So who is checking your Facebook page? Internal or external audiences?
* That was sarcasm. Content is king and if you post junk no one will engage with your social media even if you pay to have it front and center. But that is a topic for another day!