Marketing 2014 on Facebook and Beyond… a discussion

Your Facebook Page’s performance depends greatly on the number of fans you have.

Interaction rates plummet as your fanbase grows, and this has gotten worse in the past year (perhaps because of changes to Edgerank?).

Your Facebook Page's performance depends greatly on the number of fans you have.</p>
<p>Interaction rates plummet as your fanbase grows, and this has gotten worse in the past year (perhaps because of changes to Edgerank?).</p>
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  • John D Saunders and 5 others like this.
  • Alex de Carvalho Incidentally, as opposed to Pages, interaction INCREASES in Groups as the community grows. The only issues are in preventing spam and in moderating out inappropriate behavior (profanity, bullying, etc).
    3 hrs · Like · 3
  • Tony Lester Yes, this is so true… It is getting worse. The only way to reach people now is by paying, so spending years to develop friends is a waste of time. Because even your friends don’t get your posts, unless you pay or put them in a group. I wonder if the invite to event has the same problem.
    3 hrs · Like · 2
  • Alex Wall This is a totally technical, “oh shut UP, AWall”, semantic thingie to point out, but Edge Rank, as a term, has been phased out by Facebook “officially” (although that doesn’t imply the thing it described is not still in full swing). It’s now simply referred to as the News Feed algorithm.
    3 hrs · Like · 3
  • Tony Lester You mean Alex Wall it is going to get worse….
    3 hrs · Like · 1
  • Alex Wall Too much oversimplifcation. Dammit people gonna make me sit down and write a blog to get my feelings/data out.
    3 hrs · Like · 1
  • Grant Stern So basically, using a facebook page means that if you’ve become successful, you get throttled back even further to help them monetize the platform. 

    Why should ANYONE want this? The whole thing that makes the web and social media exciting is that a …See More
    3 hrs · Edited · Like
  • Tony Lester I think Facebook is following a neo-communist concept of; the more you have, the less you should have…..
    3 hrs · Like · 1
  • Tony Lester Seriously… very simple, diversify…This is what Facebook and Google taught me recently.
    3 hrs · Like · 1
  • Alex Wall I think you guys are looking at this from the perspective that you, as a content producer, as someone trying to reach fans, that YOU are the most important Facebook user archetype. 

    But you’re not. Zuck is a billionaire, even the secretaries at Facebo…See More
    3 hrs · Edited · Like · 3
  • Tony Lester Your right Alex, but I want everyone to see the pictures of my cat licking his paws…and I don’t want to pay for it. LOL
    3 hrs · Like
  • Alex Wall they got pages for that.
    3 hrs · Like
  • 3 hrs · Like
  • Alex de Carvalho Pages are meant for companies. So yes, a Facebook Page is an ad platform. Nothing wrong with that. ROI means there’s an investment. A company invests time, effort, and money to create a post that gets a measurable return. 

    It spoiled the user experien…See More
    3 hrs · Like · 1
  • Alex de Carvalho Alex right on! +1
    3 hrs · Like · 1
  • Tony Lester Here is the danger… like what happen in SEO. Will a company pay for better content or just pay for PPC. Strictly by the numbers, PPC is now cheaper than organic. SEO is dead, at least as a sole way to get people to a site, perhaps is SM without PPC
    3 hrs · Like
  • Alex Wall SEO isn’t dead at all, dude.
    3 hrs · Like · 1
  • Tony Lester I said as a sole means of bringing traffic. And Google is doing everything they can to make it irrelavant. They are the arbitrator of what you see and at a price.
    3 hrs · Edited · Like
  • Alex Wall That’s not true, either. I’ve done SEO content for 30+ of the most boring types of clients you can imagine — personal injury attorneys — and they were all bringing down 2k visits/month, all organic. And that was straight search, no social. Another client has 200k monthly organic visits from search.
    3 hrs · Edited · Like · 1
  • Alex Wall Matter fact, Google “Miami PR firm” or “Miami marketing firm” — that #1 organic ranking you see there earned us a meeting with a company we’re all familiar with, 100M uniques per month. Don’t tell me SEO is dead. SEO changed, and you didn’t. That’s the only thing SEO and Facebook have in common.
    3 hrs · Edited · Like · 1
  • Alex de Carvalho Search (organic and paid) is still the number one driver of visits. Not far behind is email marketing. Both tower over social media. And within social media, dark social represents 70% of visits.
    2 hrs · Like
  • Alex de Carvalho Alex That’s impressive, for “Miami PR firm” – congrats
    2 hrs · Like · 1
  • Tony Lester Yes, it is impressive. Also searched under Miami Public Relation firm gives simlar. But not everyone can have Alex to do their SEO. Google has made it easier for some and much harder for others to be found. For most small business the simple solution …See More
    2 hrs · Like · 1
  • Alex Wall If they wanted that, why not just give the entire first page to PPC? Are there not still #1 and #2 and #3 placements on organic SERPs? The platform has not disappeared. Ads are clearly distinguished from organic placements. Google is an extremely self-…See More
    2 hrs · Like · 1
  • Tony Lester LOL, that is my problem, I get very competitive. I take it personally. Let getting killed in a video game. After all it is a game. And all the players have their rules. And everyone likes to exploit some. It just takes more time now to win the game.
    2 hrs · Like
  • Alex Wall You’re right. The best have gotten better. I think competitiveness is a great attribute. Practically a pre-requisite to the marketing trade. 

    I, too, hate getting killed in a video game, but that doesn’t stop me. I was on a killing spree last night on Halo…
    2 hrs · Like
  • Jason Mazier Many times in these debates I simply conclude that Google and Facebook have teams of people much smarter than I am. They know what they’re doing. They’re not sitting in a room thinking up ways to screw their users and customers. They want the best po…See More
    2 hrs · Like · 2
  • Tony Lester Agreed Jason, just always remember, like in government, these great brains are working for their advantage, not yours. We are the product being sold, and they control access, and make the rules. We are their farm, we are their crop. We are the insects in the field devouring each other. But soon or later, they plow the field and we go for a ride.
    1 hr · Like · 2
  • Jason Mazier LOL Wasn’t that the premise of the Matrix?
    1 hr · Like · 1
  • Tony Lester LOL…. take the blue or the red pill…
    1 hr · Like
  • Jason Mazier As to your point, is a Google a giant? Of course, it is being argued already that it’s so big it should be regulated like a utility company. But it’s still a company that needs it’s users to keep coming back. Google needs for its SERPs to deliver the…See More
    1 hr · Like · 2
  • Grant Stern Pages are not strictly meant for companies, but for communities too – as well as non-profits, ideas, guys who make memes, etc. Looking at pages as a strictly business proposition misses the point that many of us created pages to build communities around shared interests and they’re squashing our communities into the ground.
    1 hr · Like
  • Grant Stern In other words, Facebook pages are an ad platform now, not social media. <drops the mic>
    1 hr · Like
  • Alex Wall Just because a page isn’t performing well, Grant, doesn’t mean that it’s the platform’s fault. Consider the problem might be between the keyboard and the chair. 

    Pages are fundamentally commercial. They were never meant not to be. Sure, there are meme…See More
    47 mins · Like · 1
  • Pierre Bradshaw They are switching the emphasis for those types of non commercial pages to groups. Expect a revamped groups product shortly.
    47 mins · Like · 2
  • Grant Stern How much better than a 10% like rate should a community page perform. 10% of the viewers like the content when its shown – or greater – in multiple posts on any given day when the page is active.
  • Pierre Bradshaw *shrugs*
    All I know is damn near everyone in a group sees updates, and you can’t easily run those *evil ads” so that should make the “Facebook should be free” crowd happy, no?
    42 mins · Like · 2
  • Alex Wall The puzzler is this: I joined this group in July of 2012. I was very new to the industry, still very new to the industry. Some of you have DECADES of experience over me, and not just in marketing, but in business. Some of you were VPs or owned your own…See More
    35 mins · Like · 2
  • Alex Wall Also, remember that a lot of the algo is based around affinity. So if you accrue a lot of followers, but your posts don’t appeal to them, they don’t engage, and then your posts don’t get served to them as frequently… meh. That’s on you. A good way to…See More
    32 mins · Like · 2
  • Pierre Bradshaw Yes, you are magic. From what I can tell, Alex, you are an outlier. Clearly.
  • Grant Stern Alex Wall congratulations on becoming a member of an enterprise level organization – we hadn’t heard yet
  • Alex Wall Grant Stern Wait what did I do?
  • Alex Wall Do ya think it don’t piss me off when I post something to my fan page, currently at 132k fans, and only 6,510 people see it? And only 86 people like it? and 3 people comment? and no one shares? 

    yeah. yeah it does. yeah, it hella does. But I don’t blame Facebook… I step my game up.
  • Tony Lester LOL, Alex as one of those that been marketing for decades…You either evolve or die like the dinosaur. It does change too fast, and it is a pain, but like you say, we bitch but we have to work with them. Now on reason why I like you, your comments; yo…See More
  • Alex Wall I get that, Tony. I feel #thestruggle of those who have been doing things a certain way for a long time, and all of a sudden, those same tactics, applied the same way, are producing less results. And I know that’s frustrating. But you know what else was frustrating? The White Pages! Radio. TV. Color TV! It’s not enough to sell the best ice cream in town; man, you need to blast that froyo in technicolor. You had to hire a videographer, an editor, an ad director, buy media time, or that flimflam shop down the street serving watery-flavored ice chips (but playing MUSIC on their commercial) was going to knock you out of town. Things change.
    13 mins · Like · 1


  • Grant Stern Alex Wall you’re getting great results, congrats. Not everyone is professionally gaming the system as Facebook changes it, for profit, with a huge budget, right now. 

    Compare FB to twitter – which is still roughly “in situ” from its original status when I keep saying that FB Pages is a strictly ad platform. Twitter shows promoted posts, has cards, few other things, but it’s not sorting the data for you. Facebook Pages is nothing more than Google adsense with a places profile – but 2 years ago, pages were something else. 

    These social networks aren’t just advertising platforms – there’s political implications to this. Consider that in the 2012 election, people with pages could do basically anything reach wise, that the Algorithm thought would build more traffic because it was interesting. Now, Facebook decides the price of that access. If you followed yesterdays news, this has major implications. Broadcast platforms that aren’t content neutral tend to broadcast – where FB everything used to be based more on interaction and audience response, like a social netowrk.

    Big picture – this is a major downer, really the end of an era of open communication between the newspaper era – if Facebook grows the pages platform further. 

    If it becomes a wasteland because millions of people like me say “Fuck It” then someone else has the next big thing.

    For someone in your setting, have fun, Rock and Roll with the platform. 

    For someone that isn’t going to access a six figure monthly budget in their chair, not working enterprise level, Facebook might as well be a newspaper. 

    There’s no mystery left, nothing to even discuss. It is pay for play and nothing else. A sad day.

    I leave you with this: Wikipedia defines social media as this: 

    “Social media is the interaction among people in which they create, share or exchange information and ideas in virtual communities and networks.”

    Its hard for me to tell where a zero engagement social media page falls in this definition.
  • Tony Lester On a side note… You all know Google was planning on releasing an update called, either Stan or Rex, or perhaps Dinosaur a few months before Hummingbird. There PR machine decide to cool it because so many people were so pissed about Penguin and Panda. So they called it Hummingbird, not so dangerous sounding… They are changing the landscape tremendously.
  • Alex de Carvalho At SMCSF, we set up a Page and a Group at the same time. It became quickly evident to us that a Group is more conducive to cultivating community than a Page is, because Group content is generated by the community, not by the Page owner. We didn’t have time to start discussions and memes on a Page; rather the SMCSF community wanted to discuss things among themselves. 

    Our role was to create rules of order and to keep out the spam.

    As a community, we aren’t trying to monetize like a Page owner might be and we don’t require their Page Analytics.

    However with over 5 years of experience in running this group, I wish there were better features (for example, search). Also, some important features are missing in the mobile app for Group management.

    It wouldn’t surprise me if Facebook finally improved Groups (it’s long overdue) … and it wouldn’t surprise me if they put in a freemium model for more advanced group management features. But then again, Facebook doesn’t do freemium …
    8 mins · Like · 1
  • Grant Stern Alex Wall again, not everyone wants to work the corporate job – and there’s nothing wrong with going big budget enterprise or not. My only point is that Facebook Pages has left the social media playing field and is merely the ad platform for Facebook’s social media today. It was not always this way.
  • Mal Campbell 1. Facebook owes you nothing
    2. Only rule number one matters
    7 mins · Like · 1
  • Alex Wall Grant Stern I don’t understand how you can keep arguing that there’s zero engagement when there are literally millions of pages who are doing a great job communicating with their engaged audiences with no budget. 

    You have an organic following and they’re not talking to you? THAT IS YOUR FAULT. Post better shit. Worry less about getting 100% exposure and worry more about fostering the 10% who actually engage your content. 

    You know what else sucks? That email open rates have gone down in the last five-ten years. Whose fault is that? Is it email’s fault? Is it Constant Contact’s fault? Nah man, look, people get more emails nowadays! There is more commercial material out there nowadays! That doesn’t mean the platform is dead, that it doesn’t work, or that the only solution is to spend money, or that it’s just no good for community driven purposes anymore. Come on, man, own it: you’re just not doing it right.
    6 mins · Like · 1
  • Mal Campbell Alex Wall, I recently did a radio interview where I ranted for a good twenty minutes about people who complain about Facebook marketing… On Facebook.

  • Tony Lester Grant, and Alex… your both right… Now since Alex mentioned Yellow Pages, I remember not too long ago, that every small business had to pay ridiculous amounts of money to Yellow pages for ads, A plumber would spend $2k a month to be seen, and that is when $2000 could buy a very decent car. So the free ride is over, Google is the new yellow pages, the internet the new Radio, and as Alex said you have to blow it up to make yourself heard…
    5 mins · Edited · Like


  • Mal Campbell Yelp is the new yellow pages.