There has been a great deal of hype about ‘Getting Your Business on Facebook’ or else face the dire consequences that your business is a dying one. I used to tell people pretty much the same thing except lately the benefits of having a business page are becoming blurry. The question used to be: Are you a Business2Business or a Business2Consumer company? This will dictate the urgency and relevancy of having said page. Now it has to be: Do you have some money to throw at this project or not? Just like traditional advertising, being online is getting more expensive because the Facebook’s of this world are deciding what you see, and what you don’t. Line those coffers a little and you’ll get more exposure. Don’t, and you’ll probably disappear.
I can hear the steam rising out of digital agencies ears all over the world. “It’s about creating unique and sharable content” ~ I know. “It’s about getting people talking about something that they are passionate about” ~ I know. “It’s about talking to the right people, not the numbers” ~ I know. I could go on and on but I think everyone gets the point. I know what social media is about. I know that the opinions on what the platform should do, doesn’t do, does well, falls short on, is used for etc is incredibly diverse and untamed. I know that I don’t know everything there is to know about Social Media and guess what ... neither do you.
Back to how Facebook dictates what you see and what you don’t see … and how it’s messing with Facebook Business Pages. It’s called Edgerank and it’s a kill joy. Read up on it here so you’re up to speed when my next post comes out.
Facebook introduced the ‘Top Stories’ newsfeed a while back and at first I thought, well that could help filter out all the ‘kitty sleeping’ and ‘children eating rice’ (take 41) pics out the mix but I actually noticed that I started seeing plenty more pictures and less updates. I didn’t pay too much attention because I changed my view to ‘Most Recent’ all the time and to top it off I haven’t had terribly much time to swan in friend updates like I used to.
Many people don’t even know that you can re-sort your timeline to ‘Most Recent’ instead of ‘Top Stories’ and even if they do know, Facebook refuses to let it be the default. I cannot change my view to ALWAYS be ‘Most Recent’ even though it’s my preference. So Facebook is showing me all sorts of content in my timeline that is applicable to my friends and its silly self – instead of me. If you can, in fact, default to ‘Most Recent’ then they’ve made it just as hard to find as it makes me angry. Very.
I think they tried to control this view by introducing the affinity score that, again, many people don’t even know about. It’s the thing that rates your friends. If you interact a lot with a friend they’ll show up a lot more in your timeline than those you don’t interact with. A completely flawed approach. I have a number of friends that don’t spend a hellovalotta time on Facebook but when they do, I want to see what they’re saying. Facebook are notoriously bad at deciding what I’d like to see.
A really good friend of mine posted that her father was in hospital with cancer and they were not sure how much longer he would live. Another one posted that his mother had died. Another posted that her baby was born. I never saw any of those updates. How dare Facebook decide what I can and cannot see? Facebook should not be the mediator of my newsfeed. I should. If it was sorted by default on latest posts I would have seen it because I am ALWAYS on facebook. Unfortunately I lost stamina at some point and stopped re-sorting every time I used it. I feel more out of touch with my friends today than ever before.
Then Facebook introduced ‘Close Friends’, to combat their incredibly stupid way of filtering the newsfeed. With a bit of PT, the average person can now see what their close friends are doing again without being measured clinically by some computerised algorithm. GREAT … for those who bother to do it. What about the business pages though? I have subscribed to approximately 20 business pages excluding the ones I admin and I never see their updates. Just because I don’t interact with business pages doesn’t mean I don’t want to see their posts. That being said, maybe if I actually saw the page updates, I’d interact. What came first? Seeing the post or commenting on the post?
That’s just my personal experience. I decided to delve deeper into this from a business point of view. Since it’s partly how I make my money I thought it a prudent step to take. So …
… next week I start on a 3 part series called: Edgerank or Edgewank? The Theory/The Practical/The Conclusion. Here I’ll demonstrate exactly how it’s becoming impossible to grow organically on Facebook anymore.
Till then, stay informed!
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