For many years, Facebook has been an excellent platform for businesses to use to voice their opinions, news, and ideas, raise their brand awareness, attract new followers, and growth their businesses.
Sadly, not anymore.
As a marketing platform, many businesses are finding Facebook is rapidly dying out…
Over the last year or so it’s become pretty clear that the effectiveness of Facebook for promotion purposes has been dwindling. Plummeting reach, shocking engagement, fans who don’t see your posts even when they both like and follow your page, and a general sense of futility has become the norm for marketers wrestling with Facebook.
Here’s the ugly, unpleasant truth that we’re all realising but nobody really wants to admit: without consistent video content at least once a week and/or an advertising budget the size of an elephant, it’s virtually impossible to effectively get your brand out there on Facebook in 2019.
Facebook’s algorithms have changed and they now filter out the majority of posts that are relying solely on organic reach (i.e. you aren’t paying to promote them). News feeds are only displaying select posts, based on certain factors and signals that the Facebook gods have deemed worthy of shining through.
Ostensibly this is all in the name of showing only the most relevant and engaging posts.
Whether that is actually the case or not remains dubious.
Approximately only 100,000 signals filter through and it can be massively affected by things like who’s posting it, what day and time it was posted, the number of interactions with the post and finally the type of content posted.
With nearly 1 million comments, statuses and photos uploaded every minute, is it really worth using anymore? Here are three of the worst problems with Facebook and why it’s dying out…
#1 Organic Reach And Engagement Has Plummeted…
Organic reach is a measurement of how many people can find your posts without the need for paid advertising. It filters through popularity and post frequency to determine how far reached you will be.
In recent years, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg decided to make changes to how organic reach worked. Flash forward to 2019 and there is little to no organic engagement and reach.
The way Facebook used to work was simple: if your unpaid post appeared in someone’s newsfeed, it counted as your organic reach.
Now, it only classes as an organic reach if your unpaid posts actually appears on a user’s screen, which ultimately changes the way organic reach is tallied. Not only did it negatively affect businesses reach, but Zuckerberg also lost over £2 billion due to this change.
It was a huge shift that had (and continues to have) a detrimental knock-on effect to the engagement, reach and effectiveness of a page.
Lach of reach leads to lack of engagement, while lack of engagement makes it impossible to achieve organic reach, creating a vicious negative circle.
How To Fix It: Video, Video, Video…
There’s currently only one way to boost your reach and engagement that’s to post video content at least once a week.
One of the easiest ways to do this is to do a weekly Facebook Live video. It creates more dynamic content, as they can be done as behind the scenes footage, and provide a direct way to speak to your audience.
The Benefits Of Live Video…
Facebook Live takes seconds to setup and has the benefit of being real-time footage without the need for any editing. As a bonus, it’s completely free, and you and your team can alternative who runs your live videos to help really engage your audience.
Live videos work perfectly, particularly for product-based businesses. Having live videos weekly can build excitement around product releases, allow you to showcase any celebrity endorsements or client reviews and testimonials, and it adds that extra level of insight into what your product looks like.
Video has far more depth and versatility than a simple picture.
If you aren’t a product based company, you can use live videos to effectively connect with your audience and build a relationship with them. Having a live Q&A is a great way to get a clear idea of your audience’s needs and preferences, while providing them with tangible value, and ensuring they aren’t bored with your content. You can hook your audience in and continue to do so, by teasing future live content and tempting them into watching the next live video.
Using Pre-Recorded Content…
Live videos aren’t for everyone. A lot of people find the prospect daunting, and even if you don’t you may have a business model or setting that are unsuitable for lives. If you don’t want to go live, you can still beat those algorithms and boost your organic reach and engagement by using pre-recorded and edited videos.
Pre-recorded videos work just as well in many respects as going live. They are a little more labour-intensive, as they require editing, but the flipside of this is that you don’t have the worry of saying something you shouldn’t live in front of all of your followers.
If you don’t have time to post video content to Facebook regularly, the other option is to use gifs, which are much less labour-intensive to produce.
#2 What’s The Big Idea?
Facebook is constantly changing and attempting to update their platform, and as we already know, this doesn’t always work…
Our posts are getting lost, the website glitches out, and occasionally you can’t even upload the post you spent ages writing – so frustrating!
To millennials, when a social media platform goes down it feels like the world is ending, to a business, it’s even worse.
When a platform is used for marketing and proves to be difficult it creates issues.
Real issues, not just social panic because nobody’s seen what you had for lunch today.
Consistency is key when it comes to any form of marketing. Maintaining a consistent Facebook marketing schedule is vital. In fact, it’s more important to post consistently high quality content a couple of times a week than it is to sporadically post a lot when you have time, and none when you’re short of time.
With near enough no recourse for gaining better control over the app and platform (particularly when it’s glitching), due to its inconsistency and lack of reliability, it is extremely difficult to create a successful social media marketing campaign on Facebook.
In recent weeks, out of all issues reported to Facebook, 63% related to a total blackout on the platform, while 21% had issues with logging in. It’s worth considering the fact that many marketers are choosing to revert to other social media platforms – but is this because Facebook no longer suits them, or because they don’t have a working platform for everyone to use?
How To Fix It: Get To The Help Desk…
If something’s not right on your Facebook, the easiest way to fix it is to troubleshoot and then report the problem. This way you will have a log book of all your current and previous issues and Facebook will get back to you on how to fix them.
One massive benefit of Facebook is their Help Centre, where you can find the answers to your questions. With 21% having issues logging in, there are ways to help you get logged in for your daily social media scroll. Simply searching “I can’t log into Facebook” into the search bar on the Help Centre will bring up a couple of options for you to try. These include trying to reset your password, using your trusted contacts to help you log in and recovery of your account.
If these options don’t work (and especially for those having a total blackout), you can report the problem. A common one being that photos are loading as black boxes, empty boxes or broken images. The easiest way to get a quick fix of any broken features is to add a description and screenshot of the issue, as Facebook techs can then find the problem quicker.
Facebook will review the problems and will occasionally reach out for more information if it is needed. They should then update you with further advice and how to fix this issue.
If you’re still not sure if your problem is fixed, you can use an online detector to find issues in your area and see if others are experiencing the same issues.
#3 Change Isn’t Always For Good…
Now that we know Facebook hasn’t got regular updates to keep it functioning correctly, and that they’re not effectively taking steps to keep their audience on the platform, it’s left in the hands of our businesses to try and make use out of the utter chaos left behind.
Facebook runs on user feedback, which means there will always be a new update, creating so much instability for businesses. It’s like running in a marathon but always starting one mile behind everyone else.
Facebook is making it so much harder for businesses to keep up with all the changes, it almost seems inevitable at this point that Zuckerberg’s empire will come crashing down, just as our organic reach has under his ministrations.
One thing to note is that trying to compensate for the mistakes created by Facebook isn’t going to work. Overposting is a frequent reaction to plummeting reach and engagement, and it’s a common misconception that many SME’s think posting more often will work to benefit their business.
Here’s the truth about how often you should post on Facebook:
If you don’t have video content, one post a day is fine and should be the maximum that you post. Less is more when it comes to Facebook. Never post more than one a day.
If you do have video content, you can post up to three times a week, with two videos and a more regular picture.
How To Fix It: Get Smart And Adapt…
The only way to fix the constant changes in the user updates and algorithms is to get smart and adapt.
Keeping on top of any changes and never relying on the same type of content can really help your business grow. Schedule regular reviews of your Facebook strategy to ensure that what you’re doing is actually working, and in line with all the latest needs of the platform.
Take advantage of Facebook’s features like their live videos, Q&A’s and polls. This way, you can work to get the most mileage possible out of your content by using video that works well with the current algorithms, but also makes you more aware of what is interesting to watch on Facebook.
Always create a reaction, whether that’s excitement or happiness, you have the choice to be flexible in how you want your audience to feel, but make sure they feel something.
Another way is to help your audience get smart too.
Make sure that they are actively seeing your content by encouraging them to set their viewing settings to “See First” posts. This way, your content is pushed to the top of their news feed and they’re more likely to see it. You can also collaborate with other businesses and even brand ambassadors to improve your reach.
One word of warning, this does take time and testing too. You’ve got to have the time and ability to test out what works best for your business and what engages your audience more, then go for it.
Given the changeable and difficult nature of Facebook at the moment, you may be best hiring a social media specialist to help you get the most out of your marketing efforts. A pro will be able to guide you through the process of testing various forms of content, finding the strategy that works best for your business, and taking control of all these elements for you. They can also re-evaluate your current strategies and tell you where you’re going wrong, and really take your business to the next level by managing your social media effectively.
How To Rock Your Facebook Marketing…
So, now we’re clear on the issues going on with Facebook at the moment, how exactly can you employ an effective marketing strategy that delivers great ROI and avoids these problems.
In this situation, less is more.
Try and post regular video content and prioritize quality over quantity always.
Make sure everything that you are providing to your audience is highly valuable, and something they’re genuinely interested in. Something they need, that gives them a tangible takeaway rather than being easily forgotten.
You have more chance of boosting your engagement by sharing relevant content.
If you’re unsure how to create posts that are appealing to your audience, you can check out your competitors in the Pages To Watch section and browse what did well.
An easy way to reach more people is to tag and share information with others. Tag relevant companies and connect with them. You can work together as brands and since everyone is getting to grips with the death of Facebook, it’s well worth helping each other find a way to make the platform profitable again!
Another simple and easy Facebook tip is to post at the best times of the day.
There are hours that are more valuable than others. For example, the peak time to post is between 12:00 pm and 3:00 pm on a Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, and 12:00 pm and 1:00 pm on Saturday and Sunday. You can analyse what hours of the day work best for you.
How We Can Help…
Are you feeling frustrated by your poor and lacking organic reach?
Or does the thought of trying to address these issues fill you with dread and the certainty that you’re never going to be able to overcome these problems?
Perhaps you’re thinking of giving up on Facebook altogether and switching to another platform? Whatever you decide to do about your Facebook marketing we’re experts in all things social media and marketing and can get your Facebook page (or whatever platform you prefer to use instead) back on track.
Think about how many hours you can claim back when you’re not worrying about Facebook. We can help you build your business and grow alongside the constant changes of social media, get in touch today to kickstart your social media…
Our Head of Marketing, Hazel Butler, is an award-winning author, copywriter, and editor. Part ghostwriter, part blogger, part videographer, and part strategist, when she’s not endlessly penning content for our clients Hazel’s happily concocting the perfect marketing plans to propel their businesses forward.
Get to know her...
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