Earlier this week, the famed Facebook CEO changed the way algorithms work for his social media site. In order to be effective in how you reach your audience now, you must essentially pay more advertising to get a greater reach. For the end user, that means:
- They don’t get to see posts from their favorite pages as much.
- The page manager must try harder to get more eyeballs per post.
- The page manager must spend more money to get more eyeballs as well.
- It’s not a fair shot anymore.
The last one is not a kind one, but it’s true. I’ve seen a lot of folks on my social networks crying about this new change. Content has been a BIG trend this year and sites like Upworthy proved that you could get funded on the model of sharing content and taking things that weren’t trending into the social stratosphere. And for many agencies and freelancers who used the bread and butter of content to figure out how to make their social media efforts shine, the party effectively ends now.
Call in the caterer, bring in the decorations, and withdraw the invites: there’s a new paradigm in town.
Here are the new rules:
- If you are a small, medium, or startup business an integrated marketing strategy is more important than ever. You had better be using Twitter, Facebook, your home website, a blog, YouTube (as necessary), Google+, etc. Do not just depend on Facebook for your social media outreach. Doing so is a mistake. You will fail if you try to survive on a Facebook-only strategy.
- Email marketing still matters. So does CRM. Learn how to use both, and use both well.
- Better yet, learn how to network in person and build an event. If these three points should tell you anything, in addition to the fourth below, is that you need to have a treasure chest of skills. Having one golden key is no longer golden — especially when the locksmith can change the keyhole anytime they feel like it.
- If you are a professional and seeking work in the area, sticking to Facebook alone is a death knell. As I’ve always said, and I am gladder than ever, you had better have some technical chops too, be that within analytics, content writing, etc. The unfortunate bit is that marketing in Business school doesn’t teach this. Students are screwed thinking they just need to know how to post and they are good. Coding, designing, speaking, selling are still more important than ever. Learn it. Make sure that Google Analytics, Omniture Site Catalyst, Sprinklr, Radian 6, and other platforms are something you can do and know.
- Social media is not free. You are the product as the user, the platform is merely just that. Zuckerberg and co. just make their money off your seeking of attention, and they just changed the rules again. I don’t see them changing, because where else are you going to go? Zuckerberg understands he has the eyeballs of a billion plus on his network, and that you will get a lot of people here if you can do it right. He knows that you won’t get nearly the type of content value here with videos, photos, posts, notes, etc that you can get on Twitter, YouTube, etc.
Finally, some industry thoughts:
- Facebook as a company needs to make money. I’ve seen from plenty of folks that they are saying that Facebook is going to die as a company. First, it’s going to be a long decline if one from 1 billion+ users down to a few.
- Second, if Facebook does go into decline, where will people flock? Young people use Snapchat, Instagram, etc where there is very little strict business engagement value there, other than the and business has to go elsehwere. Perhaps it’s back to forums and other traditional CRM platforms. This is why Jive SBS, Zoho, and other CRM companies still matter even in the midst of social media.
- Third, Facebook’s got a hold on its mobile strategy, something it did not figure out during the IPO, and its new heights of stock prices reflect this. It will be interesting to see how the stock goes forth from here.
Hold on social media industry, it’s going to be one wild ride from here.
Image credit BusinessInsider