Numerous Facebook page owners have complained for a while now about their reach and Facebook's treatment of business pages. With the latest admission from Facebook that they are in fact reducing organic reach, more page owners and wondering about their long term options.
For some people, Facebook is still a viable marketing strategy and they continue to see positive results. For these people, this is great.
Unfortunately, for many others, the benefits of using Facebook for marketing are quickly decreasing. I have serious concerns about the viability of Facebook marketing for many small businesses. If you haven't read my previous post about how Facebook is killing themselves with these pay-to-play strategies, I invite you to read it here.
For those of you who are considering transitioning your fans away from Facebook for your social media marketing, I wanted to provide you some tips.
Be Open and Honest
Take the time to explain to your fans what's going on. Just because you and I live in this crazy world of Facebook marketing and talk about this stuff all day doesn't mean that your fans understand any of this. If you have a good relationship with them, they'll understand and appreciate the honesty. Talk about how you want to continue to engage in meaningful conversations with them and ensure they see the content they've come to enjoy. Explain that you miss reading their comments and conversations as a result of the changes to Facebook marketing.
Tell Your Fans You're Leaving
Let them know why you're planning to leave and where they can find you now. You need to let your fans know repeatedly that you're decreasing your attention to Facebook. With only 5-10% of your fans seeing your Facebook posts, you'll want to post at least a couple times a week. Reassure them that the presence they're used to getting on Facebook will transition to the new site(s).
Provide Links to Your Other Sites
It is important to provide direct links to your other sites. Make it as easy as possible for them to follow you to the other location. If they have to look you up or search for you, the chances go down significantly that they will follow you.
Share Posts from Other Sites
To help encourage your fans to follow you, show them what you're doing on the other site(s). Share links or photos of the posts you're sharing on your other sites. Invite them to join the conversation on the other site to bring them over quickly and purposefully.
Update Social Icons on your Website
I'm guessing that your Facebook Like Box or sharing icon are in the prime real estate areas on your website or blog. If Facebook will no longer be your primary focus, you need to update your website. Move your Like Box lower on your side bar. Move your social icon further down the list of icons. And then move your primary site into the line of focus on your blog.
Don't Go Cold Turkey
Whatever you do, please do NOT drop off Facebook completely! Without time to transition your fans away from Facebook, you will lose them completely. Take the time to follow the steps above over the next few months.
What are your thoughts? Will you be transitioning your fans away from Facebook? Or have you already started? If you have already started to transition, do you have any other tips on how to process the transition?
I know that's a lot of questions! But I'd love to hear from you in the comments below!
Smart tips! I share many blog posts on my FB profile and pages; since I like hanging on blogs and updating my own this shows where I am most active.
Thanks Ryan! I’m glad you found it useful!
I (mostly) manage my Church’s FB page and I have not been noticing huge drops that you and others are talking about. Do you think FB handles religious/nonprofits different than “businesses?” Could that even be possible?
Although I sometimes see a drop in reach on some posts…I have seen increases in many other posts lately. Also, we have been getting More likes. More sharing. of content (mostly from folks who don’t even “like” our page. but share from someone else who has). There is nothing really “new” or different in what I am posting….it is basically the same formula as I have been using for last year….
Just Curious if any other Religious groups or non-profits on FB are seeing a difference lately
Cyndi, if you’re seeing good reach and results, don’t stop!! Keep doing what you’re doing 🙂
These changes are affecting a lot of people but they haven’t affected everyone. A lot of pages based outside the US aren’t seeing the same issues that we are. And maybe Facebook does offer some preferential ranking to charities or religious pages. I honestly don’t know the answer to that. Maybe you have a really good fan base who are highly active and Facebook rewards you for that. Whatever the case may be, Facebook is obviously working for you and that’s a good thing!
I do recommend that you consider looking at other sites just in case these changes affect you in the future. Just be prepared with a contingency plan but no need to pull the rip cord just yet!
I manage a fairly large Christian page and I have also noticed a significant drop so I’m not sure facebook is specifically doing anything with religious organizations or charities. Their main focus right now is profits and these new changes are exactly a short-term way of doing that. Long term wise though it really doesn’t make much sense.
Thanks for your input from the religious page perspective, Peter. Facebook is focused on money and how to keep their shareholders happy.
Great tips Jenn. I also loved how you suggested some Gplus influencers for your followers to circle up. And from this post, I specially like the point you make of not leaving Facebook completely. It’s a transition period and we still have to wait and see how this whole drop in reach is going to evolve. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and Happy holidays!
Thanks Veronica! I’m so glad we’re connecting over on G+ and that you found these tips helpful. Happy hoidays to you too 🙂
These are some great tips Jenn! I agree 100&% of letting the fans know what is going on. Yes, we eat, sleep and breathe this stuff, but these business owners might not know the best practices in how to handle this.
It just goes to show the importance of a website/blog and an email database. Yes, Facebook is making is more and more difficult for small businesses. I have always liked Twittter better and after last week’s news, I like it even more 🙂
Thanks Adam! You are correct, for sure, the email list and website are the only things we “own” and they are worth everything!
I’m happy to hear that you’re enjoying yourself over on Twitter. We have to focus where our clients are and where we get the best results 🙂
Great tips but only 7% will see your efforts to get them to go elsewhere. My goal is to get them to subscribe to my blog rather than move to another platform.
I definitely agree, Michelle, that the benefit of moving our fans to our blogs is the best overall solution. I thoroughly enjoy using social media to share other relevant articles and engage in every day conversations with my audience. This is why I believe it is also beneficial to have them interact with me on other social media platforms.
I also advertise my current plans on other social media platforms where I know a good portion more than 7% will see those posts. We have to work with what we get on Facebook…
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