Why Facebook Likes do not matter
“Like us on Facebook”
How many more times do we have to hear that desperate business plea ?
I have news that might be hard to digest – Facebook Likes don’t matter anymore. Sorry to burst any Marketer’s report but it is no longer a metric to measure. Not anymore.
Yes, in the past Facebook Likes on a business page were gold but today they are as meaningless as LinkedIn Skill Endorsement and putting your Klout score on a resume.
Its not your old Facebook
Facebook is an ideal platform for a wide range of usages. From keeping notification with long lost friends, to getting those critical birthday reminders, sharing your dinner plans and seeing the new cat/ dog/ holiday/ new car/ new baby, Memes pic and videos. If you are using Facebook in your personal capacity its an incredible platform that is only growing and evolving.
Facebook is superb for businesses too. What other platform lets you potentially reach over 1.7 billion people across the globe from your arm-chair ? However, if you are a business on Facebook you can’t just use Facebook as you used to but you must keep up with the ever changing rules and algorithms.
In the past if you had a business page on Facebook and you gathered Fans and Likes then you essentially had a customer based who chose to receive your information. They opted in to get your messages. A marketers dream come true. Every time you posted a Facebook image or story or link to your new Widget you would get around 20% of your Fans seeing your latest post and Liking it. wow 20%. If you happen to catch them on a day they were looking for your Widget, then chances were good they would at least head over to your website to see what you have to offer.
Today’s Facebook is different.
In order to offer a superb user experience, the ever growing Facebook has to constantly change the way stories, news, post, pics and videos appear on the timeline. Today’s algorithm shows people content based on what they want to see which is derived from their usage patterns so family pics have priority over a post form the breakfast-cereal company.
Facebook was built on the idea of connecting people with their friends and family. That is still the driving principle of News Feed today. Our top priority is keeping you connected to the people, places and things you want to be connected to — starting with the people you are friends with on Facebook – Adam Mosseri, VP, Product Management, News Feed
Great for the user but it means that “organic reach” has been on the decline for business pages. Now when you post about your latest Thingie, only a small percentage of your audience get to see it organically.
Its not me its you
So are business pages dead? Absolutely not. They are just different.
If you run a business page you now need to spend money in order for your content to be seen. Regardless if you just boost individual posts or create full Facebook campaigns, you will need to cough up so that your message is spread beyond just those who liked your page. Today’s Facebook is more about smart targeting for a price to generate a lead and less about an organic social network. Its about understanding the Facebook rules and working within the framework to reach your ideal customer.
Social media is constantly evolving and today Likes don’t matter – Leads do. On today’s Facebook social network, companies needs to go back to basics and be social in order to stand out.
As I always say at every social media conference I speak at or when I consult to clients: “My bank manager loves my Blog stats and Likes but for some reason he still wants actual cash!” The current Facebook for business is not about being frustrated with the lack of return of Facebook investment posting but rather about moving to an active role in pushing the content to generate leads. And Leads mean cash.
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