Should you Dump your Facebook Page in 2014?

Facebook marketing not working

 

If you have a Facebook Business Page, I’m certain you have noticed the drastic decline in post reach lately. It’s nothing new; we’ve seen a steady decline in reach for a while now.

The difference is that now the average organic post reach (how many people see your posts in their newsfeed) seems barely worth the effort for many Business Page owners.

 

Facebook’s Message to Page Owners

Facebook made it very clear in a recent blog post that this trend is not going away and you should expect further decline in reach. They also strongly recommend buying ads if you want to increase your reach.

“…competition for each News Feed story is increasing. Because the content in News Feed is always changing, and we’re seeing more people sharing more content, Pages will likely see changes in distribution. For many Pages, this includes a decline in organic reach. We expect this trend to continue as the competition for each story remains strong and we focus on quality.

…Page owners should continue using the most effective strategy to reach the right people: a combination of engaging Page posts and advertising to promote your message more broadly.”

 Leaving Facebook 

We have to acknowledge that Facebook can be a valuable platform where you could “potentially” reach a large segment of your customers! After all, it has 727 million daily active users on average and 1.19 billion monthly active users (as of September 2013). Abandoning Facebook may not necessarily be the best choice for your business, especially if you have a large following or an active community.

However, Facebook has made it clear that in order to reach your customers you will have to fork out some cash (pay to play). You’ll have to decide if it makes financial sense to allocate some of your budget to have a higher reach and visibility on Facebook.

But if you don’t have the budget to invest in Facebook Ads or if your Page is not working for you, it is probably best to start considering investing your time elsewhere.

Where to Spend Your Time in 2014

Facebook Groups

If you don’t want to give up on Facebook, you should consider starting or joining some targeted Facebook Groups.  If the Group has a good moderator and is active, it can be a great place to share your expertise and create visibility for your business.

Remember, in general it is best to avoid posting your latest sales pitch to other members unless explicitly mentioned in the group description. If in doubt, reach out to the group moderator.

Other Social Networks

To find the best place(s) to connect with your customers, you first need to understand each social network, its purpose and the demographic. You also need to have clear goals and determine your resources. Make sure to do your homework before jumping in.

LinkedIn

One of the great benefits of LinkedIn is that it has significantly less noise than Facebook since users are on the platform for business purpose only. So you won’t see “cute” baby or cat pictures cluttering your newsfeed.

As well, HubSpot found that traffic from LinkedIn generated the highest visitor-to-lead conversion rate at 2.74%, almost 3 times higher (277%) than both Twitter (.69%) and Facebook (.77%).

 LinkedIn Best for Lead generation

 Resources for LinkedIn

Pinterest

According to Shopify.com, Pinterest drives sales especially if you’re a product based company.

“As the 3rd most popular social networking website in the world, Pinterest can be a great tool for ecommerce stores to use to increase site traffic and boost sales.

… After analyzing data from 25,000 Shopify stores, we discovered that referral traffic from Pinterest to Shopify stores is equal to traffic coming from Twitter. Of the traffic from Pinterest, shoppers are 10% more likely to make a purchase compared to those who arrive from other social sites. Of those purchases, the average order is $80 – double the average order of customers coming from Facebook”.

Resource for Pinterest

Google+

Launched in 2011, Google Plus is still a young platform. Although some people haven’t embraced the social network yet, the power of Google is undeniable (let’s not forget that Google IS the King of search).

According to Google, there are 540 million people active across Google each month, 300 million people active in just the stream. Additionally, Google+ features and integration with other Google products make this platform extremely interesting.

If you’re still having doubts, read these two articles:

Using Google+ Is The Best Way To Boost Your Website’s Search Ranking With Social
Using Google+ to Appear in the Top Results Every Time – Whiteboard Friday

Resources for Google+

 YouTube

YouTube is the third most popular website in the world and according to Nielsen, it reaches more US adults ages 18-34 than any cable network. As well, with more than 1 billion unique users visit each month and over 6 billion hours of video watched each month (that’s almost an hour for every person on Earth, and 50% more than last year YouTube is definitely worth adding to your marketing strategy in 2014.

Resources for YouTube                                      

SlideShare

Acquired by LinkedIn in 2012, SlideShare is the world’s largest community for sharing presentations. With 60 million monthly visitors and 130 million pageviews, it is amongst the most visited 200 websites in the world. Besides presentations, SlideShare also supports documents, PDFs, videos and webinars. (Slideshare.net)

Slideshare Pro version allows you to have access to the analytic features, remove ads, use lead capture forms, upload videos and control your branding.

Resource for SlideShare

 

The Must-Haves

Email Marketing

Email marketing is a great way to stay top of mind, build deeper relationships and helps earn trust with your customers. It is an effective strategy for prospects and lead nurturing. Focusing on building and growing your list in 2014 will definitely pay off in the long run.

Here are 10 Email Marketing Tips:

  1.  In general, the less information required to opt in, more sign-ups you’ll get
  2. Give a bonus or something valuable in exchange for email addresses
  3. Reach out to your prospects with “targeted” messages
  4. Make sure you have mobile-friendly emails
  5. Subject lines can be the difference between an open or ignored email
  6. Your emails should provide value, educate, entertain or help your contacts solve their problems
  7. Keep it simple
  8. Include a call to action in your emails
  9. Track your results and adjust accordingly
  10. Respect CAN-SPAM laws

Email Marketing Resources

 Your Blog

Hopefully, you’re already spending time creating content on your blog. Don’t forget that your website and blog should be your home-base, think of it as the anchor to your online marketing.

Blogging helps to…

  •  drive traffic to your website
  • establish you as an authority in your field
  • connect with your community
  • rank higher with search engines

Unfortunately great content is not enough! Your content distribution strategy is crucial in order to get noticed. Take a look at “How to Get Eyeballs on Your Business with a Blog [infographic]” for some tips to help you gain traffic and visibility for your blog.

Don’t Forget

I’ve said this many times before; don’t put all your eggs in the same basket…especially if you don’t own the basket!!

There’s no one platform that is right for everyone and since the web moves at warp speed, you’ll always have to be ready to adapt and readjust.

Finally, if you’re doing everything as you should on Facebook or any other platform but it’s not paying off, perhaps it is best to spend your efforts and time where it will payoff…simple!

 

Are you planning on dumping your Facebook Page in 2014?

 

Photo credit United Nations Photo via Compfight

Genevieve Lachance is a web marketing consultant who has a passion for social media and technology based in Montreal, Canada. Read More About Me »