Ever been in a shady relationship with someone who keeps changing the terms and conditions (often without telling you or burying it deep in a whole load of guff that distracts you), who keeps shifting the goalposts, and who has no shame in jacking you? That’s how I feel about Facebook.
Now, after accumulating over 9.5K ‘fans’ or ‘likers’ for my site Baggage Reclaim, all organically, none purchased, and just by posting consistent tips and inspiration, Facebook has decided to ‘hide’ the majority of these people from me. This means that when I post something to the page, instead of having the potential to reach all of them, they’ll shave off as much as 70 or even more percent.
I’m sorry, but that’s just pure f*ckery.
So they ‘withdraw’ the people and then sell them back to you by offering you the ‘opportunity’ to promote a post to them. Hold up a second now: So I go and get the ‘likers’, who incidentally have liked the page so that they can hear from me and on occasion engage with me, and then Facebook, who I must point out didn’t exactly do anything to contribute these people, comes along, hides the information from their feeds and then expects me to pay for it?
The thing is, Facebook clearly want to make money from advertising. As more and more people access Facebook via mobile apps, many of them no longer see the ads that appear when you’re viewing Facebook via a browser on a computer, hence advertising revenue must be down.
Facebook pages have been hugely popular because they’re a wonderful means of engaging with your audience on a different platform and of course, directing them to your site, products etc. But I don’t appreciate being held to ransom.
I know that Facebook have this attitude of how they own everything and yada yada yada, but it’s tricky not to feel like someone nicked something from you and has come back and offered to sell it back to you…whenever you need to avail of it. What the frickin what now?
I have no intention of paying them anything but I really feel for small businesses that are reliant on these ‘audience jackers’ for their marketing and are already financially squeezed. It also feels a bit ‘Emperors New Clothes’, because it’s like paying for invisible people and someone insisting that they’re there or that you can reach them, when actually, if some of the stories I’ve read are anything to go by, they’re not.
This is why there is no substitute for cultivating your own community on your blog and email – they’re your property. Value them. It doesn’t mean don’t use Facebook, or Twitter or whatever, but just remember that they’re third party, not ‘yours’, and you actually have full control of your own property
- I'm Natalie and I blog for a living. I'm a dating and relationships writer and coolhunter. This is my 'journal' of what I get up to, the occasional rant, tips and inspiration, plus things I love that you may find useful or just plain lovable too.
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