There is a lot that I want to say about marketing and social media and how we should all be moving forward in 2014. But these 2 videos say it all…and more.
They will require just a little more than 30 minutes of your time. Both contain some hugely important messages that you need to heed if you are going to continue to build community, provide relevant content and get results with social media in 2014.
First though, I have to mention the Hoo Ha that has been happening online lately about the drop in Organic Page Reach on Facebook (it relates to one of the videos…both in fact).
Some businesses are reporting drops of 40% reach overall - even more in some cases. In short, Facebook are going to be ramping up their ads and damping down their organic reach.
Is Facebook Reach Really Declining?
Well in short, yes… AdAge reported that Facebook have admitted that organic reach is on the decline, providing the following statements from their team:
“We expect organic distribution of an individual page’s posts to gradually decline over time as we continually work to make sure people have a meaningful experience on the site”.
They also recommended that we consider paid distribution
“to maximize delivery of your message in news feed.”
…and, just to confirm that Facebook posts from brands is in slow decline, they also said this:
“We’re getting to a place where because more people are sharing more things, the best way to get your stuff seen if you’re a business is to pay for it,” he said.
Meaning? You. Will. Need. To. Pay. For. Reach. With. Ads
Should we be worried about the change in Facebook Reach?
My gut feeling is…no. Let’s face it, our posts never reached 100% of our fans (more like 16% on average) and those that want to find us will find us. But it will get harder and it is already getting harder.
So yes, you may need to consider investing in some ads (more about that later) but for now you should not need to “worry”… if you follow some of the tips in this post, watch these awesome videos, and do a few things to set yourself up for smarter marketing in 2014.
Here is the first video – from Social Media Influencer Pam Moore at Marketing Nut. Pam has responded to the question about whether we should jump ship from Facebook and move to Google+. Her response is not likely to be what you expect, so listen up.
For more on what Pam thinks about the decline in Facebook Reach, be sure to check out her full blog post. It’s a great roadmap for smart marketing online, especially “Here Is What You Need to Do” tips.
Shift Your Approach
We do need to take a new approach to Social Media Marketing in general, and, if you are not already doing so, it is time to really focus on a home-base or content hub outside of Facebook and those core platforms where your target market is hanging out.
This should be your blog, website, podcast site or similar – a site that you own. And definitely, if you are putting all of your eggs in the Facebook basket, it’s time to reconsider how you are doing things online.
The key to succcessful social media marketing is not “Facebook”… it is in building community that focuses on your home-base or website and then integrates with social media platforms (not all the platforms – but those that suit you best – and those platforms where your ideal clients or target market hang out).
What can you do about it?
Keep focusing on these essential marketing principles and you will have to worry less about Facebook and their ever-shifting sands, and more on what to do with the fans and clients that love you, your content and your business.
- Focus on engagement – remember that the Holy Grail of Facebook is the “share” – it is where other users are sharing your content for you. Create and post high-quality, shareable content. Engaging, shareable images are a great way to generate shares. Continue to inform, educate, engage and entertain.
- Your Website is Your Hub - don’t just focus on Facebook – or any social platform – focus on the “home base” of your marketing – your website, podcast site, or web show – and then share content out to social media sites.
- Surprise and Delight - I am a huge fan of Walt Disney and I totally agree with his philosophy to “Exceed Expectations” when dealing with clients and prospective clients. How can you create an experience that they will be wanting to talk about with everyone they know (on any platform – not just Facebook!).
- Help and Inspire - Create content that does these two things and you will have people coming back looking for your next status update, blogpost, tweet or G+ update…. if you can help them, solve their challenges, answer their questions – that is where you get noticed, and shared and that is where you get reach. Not the Facebook definition of reach, but real reach across multiple platforms, driving traffic back to your site (your hub).
- Build a Dynamic Email List – I say “dynamic” because I don’t really like the term “list” – it is very one-sided and doesn’t reflect what you should be aiming for – a connection between you and your subscribers. Be social in your emails, add massive value and talk with your subscribers (don’t shout at them with marketing messages). You don’t own Facebook. You don’t own any other social platform, but you do own email. And we all still open it. Email is still where it is at for communicating with your community.
- Don’t Speak Gibberish - Just because you can be on every platform doesn’t mean you have to be. Going from Facebook and posting the same type of post on Twitter will seem like a Foreign language to those that love Twitter. People go to Facebook to connect with friends and not necessarily to buy but to find out what others like and recommend. But on Pinterest, people are there pinning things they love and are more interested in buying. Be considerate of the platform you are on and choose them wisely. Then really listen to how people are engaging and look closely at the communication on that platform and join in by providing content that suits the audience. Gary Vaynerchuck recently explained this brilliantly in his book:
Companies need to pay attention to Context. They need to think about timing. They need to start respecting the platforms and understand the nuances that make them interesting”. Gary Vaynerchuk – Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook.
Which brings me to Video 2. The uber savvy Marie Forleo interviewing marketing king Gary Vee. Words are not necessary. Just watch it. (note: Language Warning if you have little people around, this interview contains colourful language).
Gary Vaynerchuk is, as far as I am concerned, one of the savviest marketing minds around. He didn’t build a $60 million dollar company without some serious marketing smarts as shown again later with his ability to transfer real world marketing to the social media landscape and rock it with Wine Library TV, social media and two must-read books Crush It and Thank You Economy.
Gary nails what I have seen be an issue with businesses time and time again…jumping on board the latest social platform with no thought about who they are speaking to (or with) and why they are there… or even if it is one that suits them. He has some very wise words of advice in this interview…. especially with regards to why you should always listen to your customer and acknowledge them.
Tuck this one away to refer to regularly. We all need a reminder from time to time about where social media is at. And Gary Vee not ony knows where it is at, but where it is heading and that, my friends, is often a changing reality.
So, if you haven’t done so yet, grab a copy of Jab Jab Jab Right Hook and take note of his advice!
So, what now?
Back to Facebook. How much of your time and money is Facebook worth? Only time will tell. For now, be prepared that you may need to invest some money in Facebook Ads if you wish to have your content seen by fans on Facebook.
I agree with Melonie Dodaro on this, Facebook is going to be holding fans to ransom, and I for one will continue to disperse my content across a few key platforms, not just Facebook. I will still be there. But expect to see me where I have always been – mainly here (my home base – where I love being the most) and on a few other platforms I love and where I know you love hanging out.
So there you have it – my best advice for 2014 is to heed the advice of Pam and Gary – continue loving Facebook and whatever platforms you are on…. but be on the right platforms providing the right kind of content that is useful, helpful and relevant to your target audience.
And give your home base some lovin’ too. Then go out there and rock it in 2014!
What resonated with you about Gary and Pam’s advice? Any favourite quotes or tips or actions that you will take in 2014? Leave your comment below!
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