Facebook reach is down - should you jump ship?

Should Your Business Give Up on Facebook?

Facebook reach is down - should you jump ship?“Since Facebook is not showing our updates to our fans, we have decided to move to Google+ (or Twitter, or whatever). Please join us there if you want to keep up with the latest.” Sniffle, sniffle.

Have you seen this on Facebook? I know I have, and I think it’s a little short-sighted. Rather than just giving up out of frustration, or because the “experts” say it’s a waste of time, let’s look at what’s behind all this quitting.

Why Businesses Are Leaving Facebook – Or Threatening to Leave

Organic reach is down – it’s pay to play on Facebook. Again, true. But since when was marketing actually free, anyway? If you want to get the kind of reach you were getting four years ago, you are going to have to pay. Depending on your business, and the results you get, it might be worth it for you.

Teens are quitting Facebook. Yes, it’s true. But unless your business caters only to teens, that shouldn’t matter a bit. Even if your best customer are in their teens, are ALL of them leaving Facebook? If you abandon your remaining teenaged fans, will they thank you for it?

What Facebook is Still Good For

We recently launched a campaign for a new client. Nearly 6% of the resulting leads came from Facebook. No other social network sent any leads. In the last several months, about 1% of our leads have come from Facebook. Not a lot, certainly, but not nothing, either.

And what about website traffic? For our site, nearly 2% of our website traffic in a recent period came from Facebook. Again, not huge, but I wouldn’t turn away the 621 visitors it brought in.

Facebook is still a good place to network with business contacts. In our industry, Facebook is still a very active place for finding new content and commenting on other’s blog posts. We keep in touch with our peers and get some great feedback and insights. Definitely worth sticking around for that alone.

Just being there and remaining active gives you added credibility. People have come to expect the business that they work with will be on Facebook. If you’re not there, it might be a red flag to some potential customers, depending on your industry.

Suggested Changes to Facebook Strategy

Facebook Page Tabs getting any action?Facebook tab apps no longer get the attention they used to, so we don’t spend time on those anymore. If you look at your insights and find the same is true for your page, don’t feel bad letting them go.

Recent anecdotal studies show that sharing multiple photos in a post up your reach. We tried it yesterday (see below) and the update did receive more than twice the reach of other recent posts. Engagement was up, too. Try this on your own page, but make sure you’re posting multiple USEFUL images, and don’t be too disappointed when Facebook changes the rules again.

Don’t spend too much time coming up with things to share. Share your own content, and things that you were going to share on Twitter that you think would work on Facebook, too.

Is Facebook Worth it For You?

Look at what is working now, how much time you have to spend, where your customers are, and what your goals are. Look beyond the easy numbers (reach and engagement) to see if you’re getting real value from Facebook. But please, don’t just leave because you don’t like the new rules. Get our Marketing ROI ebook and find out for sure what’s working. Better yet, request a free consultation. We’ll look at what you’re doing now and offer suggestions you can use now.

Summary

Article Name
Facebook Reach is Down. Should you jump ship?
Description
Lots of businesses are doing it. Is Facebook still worth the time investment for your business?
Author

About the Author Alisa Meredith (311 Posts)

As co-owner and chief inbound marketing consultant at Scalable Social Media, Alisa Meredith spends a lot of time keeping up with online marketing trends for the benefit of our customers. Computers have been a passion of hers since her first T1-99, so inbound and social media marketing is a natural fit.

Comments

  1. This was such a refreshing article! I’ve seen pages since mid December whining about Facebook with almost every post, and then wondering why they aren’t getting any engagement there.

    People want to see information that benefits them, not join your pity party. Sure, my reach has been down. I’ve made some minor changes to my posting strategy in attempt to maximize reach, but my focus has remained on what is relevant to my audience. The results have been increased fans and engagement, despite the significant decrease in reach.

  2. Alisa Meredith

    Thanks so much for taking the time to comment, Michael!

    That’s exactly how I feel about those posts. Either find a way to make it work, or just stop. Nobody likes a whiner!

    Good for you! Have you tried posting more often to try to reach more people? That’s a strategy I didn’t mention, but might be worth a try. Or, maybe I’ll just spend more time on G+!

    I’m finding the same thing. Facebook is becoming more of a networking site for interacting with my peers than anything else, and that’s OK with me!

  3. I haven’t increased my number of posts. I usually post 3 – 4 times per day, with a share or two as well. For my audience, I think anything more would be overkill. I’m still considering how much time I want to invest in G+. I’ve read all of the “G+ rocks” articles and some people I highly respect are having great success there. My experience hasn’t been the same. I invested a ton of time there last year with little results…at least in comparison to other platforms. Most of the engagement I receive on G+ comes from relationships I’ve cultivated on FB. Maybe I’ll just keep checking in here for some G+ tips…lol!

    • Alisa Meredith

      Yes, that does seem like a good number. I’ve actually decreased frequency just because it isn’t worth the time needed to craft worthy updates (for me). I feel the same way about G+, but if I look honestly, I do get more +1s and comments there – I’m just not as comfortable there. I’ll make it a goal to do so and to share my findings with you, Michael! Thanks for the inspiration. 🙂

  4. Starting on Monday I’ll be done “testing” on Facebook. I’ll have a set “push” plan for my own pages and those of my clients. I’m going to take the advice of Mike Allton, someone who does little wrong in my book, and – for now – consider Facebook a distribution zone.

    The web traffic has been dropping for us, but is still enough to share the articles I write, the SSC members write and those of my trusted circle.

    Lastly, it isn’t whining or complaining to write about the numerous and frequent Facebook issues. Sure some folks aren’t willing to look for solutions – but those articles wouldn’t be popular if the topic wasn’t top of mind for many.

    • Alisa Meredith

      Will be looking forward to your findings, Mallie! That’s how I feel about Facebok, too – it’s a distribution zone, not so much an “engagement” zone – except with peers.

      Oh, but there is so much whining and complaining! I don’t think people want to see that on their stream. Solutions? Yes.

  5. “But since when was marketing actually free, anyway?” Loved that the article started with this statement. So many businesses are getting angry that you may have to start paying something to get even more from the network, but what other form of marketing can you spend as little as a few dollars and get potentially in front of 1000s of your target market.

    Yes, Facebook reach is down, but when you stop and really think about why it makes sense. There is more and more competition and demand for space in the News Feed of every user, unless Facebook follows other networks and sends updates in real time you’re naturally not going to be able to reach everyone. For us, we still find value in the fact that users that commonly engage with your brand will be more likely to see your updates, even if they aren’t logged in the second you hit Publish.

    ~ Trevor
    http://www.facebook.com/SocialBrothers

    • Alisa Meredith

      Thanks for stopping by, Trevor! I’m glad you liked it. I think it comes down to change. Even a change in the newsfeed (stream, ticker, etc.) has people up in arms, so when money is involved, how much more emotional people get.

      We had to know that when Facebook went public and had to start making a profit that the free ride was over. I’m glad it’s still working for you. I’m off to check out your page now.

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