Is It Time To Put an End to Facebook?

20140331_122318If you manage a page on Facebook you might have noticed your reach going down. If you are not getting likes, shares, or comments your posts are getting seen by virtually no body. Even if you have thousands upon thousands of people liking your organization you may begin to see that your posts are still only reaching single digits. Why? Facebook is killing organic reach.

Research from Social@Oglivy seems to indicate that the organic reach of Facebook posts is trending toward zero. Soon, no matter how wonderful your Facebook post is it  won’t reach the News Feed of your audience. Changes in Facebook’s algorithms has already halved for both large and small pages. In an effort to commodify its social network, Facebook is making it near impossible for businesses, nonprofits, organizations, and causes to make a splash without doling out some money.

Organic-Reach-Chart

The question left for a lot of social media managers is when Facebook is constantly changing their algorithm, to the detriment of pages, does it even make sense to put effort into it anymore? Eat24, a popular food ordering app, says no. On Thursday they broke up with Facebook.

When we first met, you made us feel special. We’d tell you a super funny joke about Sriracha and you’d tell all our friends and then everyone would laugh together. But now? Now you want us to give you money if we want to talk to our friends. Now when we show you a photo of a taco wrapped with bacon, you’re all like “PROMOTE THIS POST! GET MORE FRIENDS!” instead of just liking us for who we are. That’s hella messed up.

In my opinion, I’m not exactly sure Facebook is dead. I think it is no longer a effective mechanism to broadcast your message but Facebook never best served that purpose. With these new changes, Page managers more than ever now have to turn their Pages into community spaces. See your Facebook page as a place for people to have a discussion, comment, and debate. Ask questions, provoke responses, and listen to your audience. Now Pages will have to rely on unofficial brand ambassadors, dedicated fans who will share and promote your posts and messages to their friends because it strikes them and they feel part of your work. In order to be successful to Facebook it will require a lot of fostering connection both online and off.

If that’s not something you want to do then maybe Facebook isn’t the best place for you.  Derek Belt, in a piece on GovLoop recommends switching to email to reach out to your customers. The average Government open rate for MailChimp  is 45.8% which is far more effective then the 2.11% reach many brands see on Facebook. In my own work promoting webinars have seen the decline of social media effectiveness, we now get less clicks from our Facebook posts then we do just having a calendar posting on our website. Email on the other hand has proven to be the most effective way to reach out to our target market and ensure everyone gets the message about our upcoming events.

What do you think: is it time for your organization to say goodbye to Facebook?

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