November 3, 2012

If You Think This Solves The Facebook Page Drama, Think Again

The company is already testing a new feature, according to Inside Facebook, that will allow users to access a feed of all updates from all the Pages they follow. So, if you are one of those insane people who actually likes when brands declare “Happy Friday!” you can, on your own accord, seek out those updates. They won’t be lost in the ether of the social stream, they’ll live in an easily accessible place next to your main feed.

Apparently, Facebook has quickly taken heed to all the baseless whining being scowled upon them by brands and marketers. But this is really nothing more than a stopgap solution that ultimately won’t has as much of an impactful effect on reach as some would stupidly believe.

Facebook has allowed users to customize visibility on their news feed for some time now. Hiding posts. Update types. Interest lists. How many people do you really think utilize these functionalities? I’m guessing little to none. Hell, most don’t even know these options even exist. As Mark Zuckerberg famously said: nobody wants to make lists.

With this being the case, do you really think your Facebook page “likers” will seek out the option to see all your updates? I doubt it. Even if prompted with a big fat call to action on your part, I still think the number will be slim. Don’t think of this new feature as a savior, but consider it more of a luxury.

I wonder how many charities, bands and artists believe social media has completely replaced their core systems of communications with their supporters. My guess is not many. Which means changes to Edgerank simply decrease their volume of free advertising — it doesn’t cut off essential communications. To a Facebook user, self-promotion is the same, whether it comes from a band in Brooklyn or from a corporate brand page. And Facebook needs to ensure its users don’t sign in to see a feed of nothing but self-promoting Page updates.

On social media platforms, they’re not your users. They never were. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, whomever, will always do what’s in the best interest for their business and their users – not yours. Hence why anyone that tells you (social media > e-mail = true) for customer relationship management and puts a Facebook page higher priority to a fully owned and controlled e-mail list is full of shit.