Is no one listening to your Facebook posts?

Have  you made the effort on Facebook?  Have you set up a Facebook fan page for your business, and you work hard to post compelling content?  So then, why is no one listening?

It may be because your business’s fan page – like millions of others – is not ranking well in Facebook’s recently changed algorithm. That’s not your fault; it’s actually the new formula at Facebook.

Declining views are the new norm for Facebook

That’s right, recently a story in Ad Age, revealed that Facebook admits it is purposely not showing your business page posts. The Ad Age story headline:  “Facebook Admits Organic Reach Is Falling Short, Urges Marketers to Buy Ads

There’s a great podcast episode about this on Social Media Examiner with experts Mari Smith, and Jay Baer.

Facebook has radically changed the algorithm – which is commonly known as “EdgeRank”  —  that determines what Facebook users see in their personal newsfeed. In early December, Facebook announced that it was declining the organic reach of business pages. The reason they gave is because fans want to hear from friends, not businesses.  I can’t say I blame them – I feel the same way, and I’m a social media marketer!  Gary Vaynerchuck says that Facebook is trying to “protect” its fans and ensure the user has a high quality experience, that is not over commercialized.

Now What?

So what does this mean for the social media  marketing community?    Is Facebook now a strictly pay-to-play medium?  Overall, yes, but there are still ways to make the most of free visibility on Facebook. According to the experts, results may vary.  There is no silver bullet.  Even the professionals of the world are still figuring this out. As Jay Baer says, “they don’t really know the secret code yet.”

The  world of new media, social media, and owned media is dynamic and rapidly changing.  It is important for businesses to have a diverse array of media marketing techniques. That means using paid media, earned media, and owned media.

Is All Social Media Switching to Pay to Play?

Twitter has recently unveiled sponsored posts, and so has Pinterest.  LinkedIn also has advertisements.

Jay says he uses the acronym “POEM” which stands for Paid, Owned, and Earned Media.  I was really pleased to hear Jay Baer talk about Paid, Earned, and Owned media, because I share his philosophy (as you can see from my home page).   The key is to have a good mix of each type of media.  Jay also advises business to be sure that they invest in owned media, which by his definition would include, a blog, a podcast, email, and to some degree, a video on YouTube (although that could change in the future, depending on what YouTube does.)

I found this discussion fascinating, because as we are witnessing here, the definition of “owned” media is fluid.  One could argue that your Facebook post is “owned” media because you wrote and published it.  However, as Jay rightfully points out, “you should never build a house on rented land.” The Facebook platform is owned by Facebook, and your published post is subject to their terms.

One thing all of the experts agreed on is that 2014 is a year for diversification.

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