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Noticed Engagement On Your Facebook Business Pages Fall? Here’s Why.

Facebook Pages

Facebook Pages

Facebook. Ah, facebook. I remember the first time I heard about Facebook. Someone asked me “are you on Facebook?” After understanding what it was I quickly said “hell no!”thinking why would I want to be part of this thing called a social network? In my mind, facebook was essentially – myspace, that other social website, essentially for kids.

Social Network?

I shunned it. I did nothing, even as I continued to hear about this thing called Facebook. I ignored all the requests to join it, that is until I received a request from a friend I lost track of years ago. I reluctantly joined and within 15 minutes – I was hooked. Friend requests from people I had not talked to in years were flying EVERYWHERE. People I grew up with, people I went to high school, middle school, even elementary school with! Old friends from my years in the Navy, college – they were all there. A quick click on a friends profile told me where they live now, what they do for a living, if they are married, any kids? and the most important – what they look like now. It’s always cool to see how BIG and FAT the dude or chick that broke your heart 20 years ago is now – isn’t it?

It wasn’t the platform that I loved so much it was my “friends”. This is where they were and therefor where I needed to be as well. Facebook became a daily stop for me. Wake up – Facebook. Lunch break – Facebook. Before I go to bed – Facebook. And that was BEFORE there were smart phones with mobile apps that gave me immediate gratification ANYTIME I wanted. As much fun as I was having on Facebook, I quickly learned that it could have a business use as well – a good one.

Pages

HUB Marketing

HUB Marketing

I set up a fan page or “business page” or “pages” as it is called today. I invited my clients, past clients, prospects and even some friends. Titled “MyTitleGuy”, I filled my page with content. Content my clients would find of value. Content about WordPress, How to use social media for business, Twitter, industry data and most recently – video content. By using this website as a HUB, I was able to pull my clients and prospects from Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, StumbleUpon, YouTube and Pinterest to MyTitleGuy.com where they could learn more about me, my value and what problems I might be able to solve in their real estate business. My facebook business page became one of my top lead sources. All was going great.

Changes

Notice I said “was”. Then facebook began making changes. One of them was the change to timeline in February 2012. This thing that was supposed to be so great, frankly – sucked! Traffic to my business page dropped overnight. Suddenly my content was only being seen by “some” of my friends and fans. Engagement {the spirit of Facebook} went through the floor. I wasn’t seeing any of the pages I had “liked” which meant those that liked my page were not seeing mine either! PageLever, a Facebook analytics tool found that engagement has decreased by 53 percent since Pages began adopting timeline. Losing traffic was bad enough and then another change came. Facebook went public.

Going Public

When facebook went public I knew things could only get worse. Now, facebook would be making decisions based upon what was good for business – theirs – instead of what was good for us. Now facebook would be forced to turn a profit. One of the ways they are doing this is by holding our friends and fans for ransom. Let me explain.

Before timeline, before Facebook went public, a post on my business page would result in engagement. Comments, likes, shares etc. These comments, likes and shares were indications that my friends and fans had visited my website to read the linked article. Now, engagement has dropped significantly, if you have a business page I bet you have noticed it as well. The question is: WHY?

Pay To Play?

Promoted Posts

Pay To Play?

Here is why. Promoted Posts. Facebook’s latest change is in effect holding our friends and fans ransom. The same people I used to reach with a simple update – for FREE – I now have to pay for? Facebook appears to have adopted a “pay to play” model where we now need to pay to get our posts and updates, the posts and updates our friends and fans have “opted in” to receive, in their newsfeed. Whaaaaaaat? So now that facebook is holding my friends and fans for ransom, I and every other page administrator have a few decisions to make. I personally do not like paying to reach those that have clearly said they want to hear from me. I can understand and would likely pay to reach those target niches I do not know, but want to reach but that is not the case here.

Ouch

Facebook, on its mission to turn a profit, appears to have stabbed itself in the foot. By charging money to reach your friends and fans, many businesses and page owners will likely reevaluate their options for continued engagement with their audience. One of those options is Google +, another is Pinterest. Both up and coming and both FREE. I would argue every business, every REALTOR should already have a presence on both. If enough of them/us shift to other FREE platforms, the same thing that caused explosive growth of facebook – the place your friends are – could be its demise. We’ll see. In the mean time, you can find me on Google + and Pinterest at the top of this and every page on this website. Let’s connect!

Have you noticed engagement fall on your pages?

Stephen

Hi I'm Stephen Garner, I'm just a guy in the title industry {in Phoenix} trying to change how real estate agents market themselves and their services. To that end, I teach my clients HOW TO leverage sales technologies like WordPress, Content, Video, Camtasia, Final Cut X, iMovie and indexable IDX solutions to convey value and help your ideal client find you online when they are most interested in learning about you and your services. I work for escrows. Hire me!

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