After exploding on the world stage in 2004 and changing the world as we know it, ten years later it seems that the Facebook appeal has started to dwindle. That is of course if you are a business of any size engaging in social media marketing like the campaigns that they run on Facebook. The most common complaint in 2014 about the social media giant was the fact that the reach of the site was on a massive decline. Figures suggest that companies who used to easily reach 15-20% of their target audience were now struggling to reach only 6% without the obvious solution of pumping more money into the Facebook ad campaign, i.e. that they would but their reach rather than let it grow organically. There have been some suggestions that Facebook has done this on purpose in order to manipulate businesses into buying and paying for more ‘likes’ or a bigger reach. However, Facebook has defended this criticism by saying that they are bettering the ‘news feed’ for everyone involved, not just the commercial side.
There are a number of reasons as for why the reach of your Facebook page has dropped, and the following list is some of the most common:
This is probably the primary reason for a dwindling reach on Facebook. It can be compared to when your Google ranking plummets as a result of Google changing their algorithm. It is not that you have done something wrong in order for your rank to drop, it is certainly not a punishment, it is simply a modification to slot you in better with those in your forte. In addition, just with a Google adjustment, there is nothing you can do to get ‘your’ grade back. The drop is the new norm and as the saying goes, ‘You can’t fight City Hall’ and the only solution to this problem is to step up your game by placing more emphasis on your online presence.
Facebook now intends to separate advertising and organic, natural posting. Their desire is for all advertising promotional material to be restricted to their sponsored post routine while natural posts provide an untreated value without advertising attached. Particularly, the posts that Facebook think are excessively promotional will deteriorate in their coverage. If there are too many posts then you will also find your reach dropping as people will become disengaged as your posts may start to clog their ‘news feed’.
This is a schoolboy error when it comes to Facebook posting. Your followers will want to see regular posts on your page so if you are not posting as regularly as you should then this will naturally result in a decline in interest in your page. The most common solution to this is to schedule your posts. I found it very handy to prepare an editorial calendar of content on a weekly basis and then schedule each post for the day in question. It is also important to pick the right times of day to plan your post. I found the best times were sometime within the ‘Elevensees’ and lunch breaks and again in the evening time between 7-8:30pm.
This is another common problem in the world of Facebook posting, specifically to brands and businesses within a certain niché. The primary example that I can give to portray what I am saying is if you create a page to promote an individual event. You pour your blood, sweat and tears into supporting this page before the event has taken place because you need to raise awareness of the event. However, once the event has finished, followers will naturally lose interest in your page because you are not offering any more content (unless of course you have regular events that you can promote). The same can be said for the type of business that you are running or supporting. For example, somebody who owns their own ice-cream business is not going to have too much interest in their page during the winter months unless of course they can come up with various ways to keep their customers engaged during their off-season.
This is the online equivalent of being reported to the police. If a business gets a bad reputation in the real world, then rest assured that it will get a bad reputation in the world of online social media. A spam flag will damage your posts in particular and your page, in general. If you receive a spam label, you will end up with a severely lowered reach if you are lucky enough to not have your page shut down at all.
When you buy fans or ‘likes’ on Facebook, the chances of these people actively engaging in and having an impact on your reach are slim to none. The reason being is that when Facebook presented your page to those people in order for them to like it, it did so algorithmically which means that they chose a selection of your audience, typically most engaged. If you have a vast number of ‘fake likes’, these ‘likes’ are worthless for the success of your page and thus the percentage of genuine people reached falls and as a result, giving you a lowered reach.
Facebook’s ads and targeting campaigns are magical for showing your posts to a selection of subset users. This in turn helps you raise your awareness and reach because the ads are only targeting people and followers who are genuinely interested in your posts that boost the circulation of your posts. If you have recently stopped targeting ads then you are more than likely guaranteed to see a decline in your reach.