Everybody strives to get as many Facebook likes as they can. But, as the social media network continues to alter its strategy, the amount of fans on your business page doesn’t mean nearly as much as it did before.
Contrary to what some businesses might think, Facebook is not a free social media marketing channel. In 2017, you can’t expect to create a Facebook business page, invite contacts to follow it and automatically generate lots of leads. The only way to receive results is to post quality content backed by an advertising budget.
Organic Reach Continues to Fade Away
The scary truth of Facebook for business is that fans of your page don’t automatically see your content. According to DMR, there are 65 million Facebook business pages, which publish approximately 1.5 posts a day. The average organic reach is now down to a mere two percent. As a result, 75 percent of brands pay to promote their Facebook posts today.
What is Organic Reach?
According to Facebook, “Organic reach refers to how many people you can reach for free on Facebook by posting to your page.”
Why Less People See your Posts now than Before
Facebook itself is to blame for brands’ dwindling organic reach. The social media network’s algorithm controls what content is seen and what is not. CEO Mark Zuckerberg has said Facebook focuses on placing its users’ interests first.
“There’s this inherent conflict in the system though, which is are we trying to optimize news feed to give each person, all of you guys, the best experience when you’re reading? Or are we trying to help businesses just reach as many people as possible?” Zuckerberg said. “And that means that if a business is sharing content that’s going to be useful for them, then we’ll show that. But that means if the business is sharing content that isn’t going to be useful for them, we may not show that.”
Facebook Likes are no Longer the Key to Success
It’s likely your business once spent considerable time and effort building a community of fans on Facebook. Although a large potential audience can’t hurt, the number of Facebook likes a business has accumulated is no longer the most important metric.
“So if you are a business owner and you’re thinking about how to use your free page on Facebook, I would just focus on trying to publish really good content that’s going to be compelling to your customers and the people who are following you,” Zuckerberg said.
A Pay to Play Environment
As organic audiences have shrunk, businesses have been forced to rely more on paid advertising. For as little as a few dollars a day, a local company can place their message in front of a larger social media audience.
Depending on your goal, you can choose from several types of Facebook ads to help reach more people.
- Link-Click Ads
- Carousel Ads
- Lead Generation Ads
- Dynamic Product Ads
- Video Ads
- Canvas Ads
- Slideshow Ads
Every indication is that the days of free exposure on Facebook is a thing of the past. In its place, ads targeted at specific demographics are the future of lead generation.