Facebook: Should I Stay or Should I Go?

Facebook: Should I Stay or Should I Go?Facebook is one of the most popular social media networks out there, but when you take a look at the other networks, Facebook is the one that comes off worst in terms of complaints.  So why is it so popular if it has so many problems?  I typed this into Google and here are the top 3 articles…

Why is Facebook so Popular?

Why Facebook is so popular – the psychology behind it (no longer available)

Why is Facebook so popular?

I’m pleased I didn’t choose this phrase as my blog title – a little bit of competition, and that’s just the top 3, there are pages and pages of the same!

Ok so if you actually go and read these articles, you should get an idea why Facebook is so popular.  But that’s not what my post is about, it’s about why I am considering dumping Facebook and concentrating on some of the other social media networks I have profiles on.

1. No Clients

In the 11 months I have been running my business I have not gained a single client directly from Facebook.  My business page on Facebook has been running from day 1 and I have nearly 300 likes and a fair bit of interaction on there but as far as I am aware none of my clients have originated from seeing me on Facebook.

2. Time 

It takes up a lot of my time sharing and interacting on Facebook and ensuring I am sharing what people want to read.  The Insights on Facebook are very handy when it comes to checking out what your fans like best, which leads me onto my next gripe…

3. What I Share 

I share all my blog posts on my page, I also share articles I find online which I think my fans will enjoy reading.  I make regular updates, maybe not as many as I should but there is always something new each day.  But, and this is a big BUT… hardly any of these things get people talking as much as when I post an image of my cat or my puppy, or something totally unrelated to my business!  I posted a couple of images of my back garden a couple of months ago and they have been one of the top talking points on my page so far… It’s madness!  I know that people like to see the personal behind the business and that’s fine, but when interaction on ‘business’ articles is lacking compared to the personal updates, it’s time to reconsider what you’re looking to achieve.

4. Technical Issues

Facebook is always having technical issues of some sort, in fact every day I have one problem or another. Yesterday I shared an image from another page and even though it showed as a share on the original image it never made it to my page.  This has happened a lot, and not only is it frustrating but also not great if others are sharing things from my page and the same thing is happening.  Among other issues are insights not being up to date, comments disappearing and just last week it took 15 hours for a message to arrive in my page inbox!

5. Reduced Reach

As you may know Facebook have now bought in promoted posts (only to certain pages I might add – I don’t have the option yet), well according to a few other business pages I follow the reach of your updates seem to be restricted now, or is it just now?  One fellow business owner has mentioned her posts are being caped at 20% reach – how can we create a successful page when Facebook are restricting who sees our updates?

I found this article about just this issue – The changing face of Facebook (the below is taken from the article)

The changing face of Facebook

As you can see, this isn’t great… I spend a lot of time on Facebook trying to get my information out there but in fact on average only 16% of my Facebook fans are seeing it.  In this article there is a great call to action about how you can make sure you see all the updates from the pages you like, I would suggest doing this.  Another way is to hover over the ‘liked’ button and make sure ‘Show in News Feed’ is ticked.

Here are some examples from my page… a personal style update and a business update, check out the reach!

Facebook Personal Update

Facebook Business Update



Over the next few weeks I will be taking a closer look at my Facebook strategy and making the decision whether to stay or go!

In the meantime, pop over to Twitter and Google+ and interact with me there, where there are no restrictions on reach!!

Comments

  1. I am so glad you brought this up Jo, as it has been on my mind. I was not heavily into social networking until I published my novel.
    Twitter has been amazing for me in a few short months, I have also added a twitter account for my advertising site.
    I soon got over 800 followers and I get many re-tweets, people who tell me they have bought and enjoyed my book, interviews on websites and even one on the radio and much more.

    I added a Facebook page, just getting to 30 followers, but no real interaction apart from some of the people who I interacted with on Twitter. Saying that I am not that active on Facebook, so maybe a part of that is my own fault.

    I really feel that Facebook is still very much a family and friends interaction site. I am not knocking it, because I am sure it has it’s uses.

    We all tend to feel we could be losing out it we are not on Twitter, facebook, Pinterest, Linked and many others. The problem is that they all really overlap each other, so you are usually interacting with the same people many times.

    It all comes down to time management, or how best to spent your time. I feel I should be writing my second novel, but I keep getting distracted, my own fault I know.

    So I have dropped Linkedin and I was considering dropping Facebook as all my contacts are already on Twitter, which is where they came from. The less distractions that I have to deal with the better. I would rather concentrate on one, which has to be Twitter as it has proved itself to me.
    Steve Bichard recently posted..I made it to Number 0ne on AmazonMy Profile

    • Thanks for commenting Steve… I think big brands do well on Facebook but for smaller businesses and individuals it’s very difficult to get the interaction you want.

      If you’re signed up to my email list I am just about to send out an email about social media time management… :)

  2. Jo, thanks for this! I was just talking to a friend last week who has a biz too like mine ’bout Facebook and why people don’t comment or share as much any more. I felt like it was just me, but many of my biz friends have noticed a drop in interactions. Facebook can be such a time suck. I go on mostly for my biz groups and blogging circles. I tend to enjoy Twitter a bit more ’cause it’s faster with the feed…my ADHD brain loves it. I think people tend to share more on Twitter too. Hmm, makes me wonder why I spend so much time on Facebook :D
    Lisa Marie recently posted..Your Answers Questioned (A Different Type of FAQ)My Profile

    • Thanks for your comment Lisa, I agree it is a time suck and for me I get nothing back from it really… I have a big decision to make, as I don’t want to be wasting my time anymore! :)

  3. i will try the personal touch on my page … lets see what happens.

    i once did a “facebook challange” to learn how to use that page better … some tasks were to interact with the fan, make them ask questions which i would reply … i was willing to reply to all questions … but yet … no interaction :(

    i gained 3 customers via facebook, but not because of my page but because of some groups like UCB … it seems to be more effective to take part in groups than having a page … but having a page proves the seriousness in business
    helen recently posted..Flower of WindsorMy Profile

    • Thanks for your comment Helen… sometimes people interact and sometimes they don’t, the fact that the updates are not being sent to all your fans is a real problem – what’s the point of having lots of likes when only a 5th of them see what you’re posting, it’s very bizarre!

  4. Facebook is a huge waste of time, really. And I have been considering leaving for a while mainly because of the last point you made about reduced reach. It ticks me off that Facebook chooses the things you see on your feed instead of letting you do it yourself.

    And they have been known to monitor everything you share, how much you comment, how many messages you send to a certain person at any given time. I got a “pink box” warning from them that said my account was going to be suspended if I kept sending messages to a friend of mine. I should have used the chat feature instead.

    And last year they threatened to block my account just for sharing a list that most people I knew shared. They had targeted activists and disabled quite a few of them for sharing that particular list….which made me suspicious about the original source.

    I wish more people I knew would get on Google+!!
    Angie Schaffer recently posted..Is America the Greatest Country On Earth?My Profile

  5. Yup. Facebook is the antichrist. But, I found you on FB and I learned about the 28 Day Author Blog Challenge from one of your posts via FB on Flipboard :) So, though you aren’t getting a ton of business through there, you are expanding your social network. My advice: Just let your twitter do the talking. :) Bwahahhahaa!! WRITE ON!
    Jo Michaels recently posted..Platform SmatformMy Profile

  6. Facebook is simply hard to learn. I have questions every day, it’s hard to find answers, I just find it difficult (not intuitive at all) to use, but I hear people say it takes up to a year to get action – that’s a huge investment in time, but can one afford not to make the investment?

  7. At the end of the day it’s up to you to see what social networks work for you. Having said that I think it’s a good idea to keep Facebook, but recognise it for what it is. Think of it as a place to network with people who perhaps don’t need your services, but who do enjoy your tips and links be it for formatting ebooks, PA work or just working from home. Spend a lot less time on FB but I wouldn’t leave. Perhaps if you simply buffer posts on FB for a month and focus more on Twitter or give G+ a lot more attention and see what happens.
    Just to say I think it is very hard to be found on Facebook now. I paid for a promoted post which still only managed a 10% reach, my usual reach is about 6%. However, I have found clients on Facebook and only found one on Twitter and FB drives more traffic to my site. It’s worth noting that when I am on Twitter I hardly ever see your Tweets, I actively look for them as well as other Tweets from people I enjoy following. I rarely scroll down more than once or twice on Twitter and so I miss a lot of Tweets. I actively search for them using hashtags and typing in handles. If people didn’t do this I think the reach would be minimal.

    • Thanks for your comments Lynette. I agree with you about all this, even though I really want to give Facebook the boot I don’t think I will, like you said it drives traffic to your website – me too! Twitter yes… I expect the reach isn’t any better, but like you I search on there and that’s how I find my clients, although sometimes word of mouth on Twitter is great. :)

  8. Allan Almeida says:

    Almost everyone in the society today has a Facebook account. And I’m getting fed up with it honestly. It’s not so private anymore unlike before.
    Allan Almeida recently posted..OSHA’s Injury and Illness Prevention Program (I2P2) RisingMy Profile

  9. I’m just starting my online business and for the last few months creating my FB page has been on my to-do list, but haven’t made the time yet. When I speak to people about my business or blogging, they ask for those links, so far nobody has asked if I have a FB page, still, nowadays it is expected and I will be creating that page….soon…really.

    So far my main sources of interaction and clients have been through Twitter and Goodreads. The way I see it, on FB I get to interact with the same people, on Twitter I interact with the world.

    • Completely agree with your last comment Ellie. I like having a Facebook page and looking at the insights, but I have decided to direct my time elsewhere when I am looking for clients, such as Twitter. :)

  10. Very useful post backed up with experience and stats.

    My experience:
    I have 4 FB pages and 4 matching Twitter accounts and have pretty much come to the conclusion that FB is more useful for B2C and Twitter more useful B2B.

    In my experience:
    http://www.facebook.com/ReadiesCards a B2C page has generated me sales in last 12 months
    http://www.facebook.com/RigsbyWoldHolidayCottage a B2C page has not generated sales but has generated some useful discussion (I need to push it harder), FB paid advertising generated some noise but no sales at all
    http://www.facebook.com/nSolve B2B has generated one potential lead, very little noise and no sales
    http://www.facebook.com/pages/nTasktic/246026762117360?ref=hl B2B page, hardly maintained zero noise, zero sales

    My Twitter accounts:

    @ReadiesCards – no sales but the odd useful chat
    @RigsbyWoldCotta – no sales but not enough energy put into it
    @nSolve – within 6months, numerous useful leads and at least one very close sale
    @nTasktic – no sales but only just starting

    Based on your article Jo I will review the last FB page. As conflicting SEO advise suggests having a FB page is good but having an unmaintained FB page is bad (though whether worse than not having the FB page is not clear). Any experience?

    My B2C pages I think are relevant to FB as, certainly with the Happy Flower greeting cards, my main customers are females 30 – 55yrs and I feel FB is heavily occupied by females making FB a good fit.

    Looking at it from the other way:

    Having said FB is B2C I personally can not imagine searching on FB for a virtual assistant, or a window cleaner or a local garage or buying a t-shirt. It would need a friend to make a recommendation (social media working at its best but my 150+ friends (ignoring Jo for the moment) have never done that) while with Twitter it is a lot easier to go hunt a service.

    Google+ would love to see a blog post about your experiences with it Jo

    • Thanks for your comment Paul. In terms of having that many FB pages, well done… I don’t think I could manage more than one for my business. I guess if you have a dormant FB page or one that isn’t updated very often then it probably isn’t doing your SEO much good. I have a couple of other FB pages for my Grandfather’s book, they aren’t very popular and not much interaction, but they serve a purpose and that’s to keep the information out there for people to see.

      As for Google+, at the moment I only share my blog posts on there and occasionally update my status. It’s just because I am so busy with client work that I haven’t got into it properly, plus many of my FB page updates are scheduled through Buffer and I can’t do that with G+. I’ll definitely get round to doing a blog post about Google+. :)

  11. all very good points! and i’m sure no one particularly likes the new facebook limited reach… it just goes to show your marketing efforts shouldn’t rely on outside sources and your most important site should be your own!
    janet recently posted..lessons from <br />the trenches: What&#8217;s Your<br /> Sob Story?My Profile

    • Thanks for your comments Janet, definitely agree that you shouldn’t rely soley on any social media networks, at the end of the day they can take it all away just like that.

  12. My thoughts exactly .when FB is even selecting what to feed from MY Business FB page into my own linked personal page it really makes me wonder just how much of what I am sharing / posting etc on my business page reaches anyone . I have noticed huge decrease since end of 2012 .

  13. I’ve been wondering the same thing, Jo, but still can’t make up my mind! ;) After reading your post here, I’ll give it some deeper thought! I have 2 Pages to maintain and am not sure I’m doing either justice. ;) I guess since FB and Twitter are where I hang out (I just can’t get into Google+) I’ll probably stick with the Pages….

    • I still haven’t disappeared from Facebook, I think it’s more about the people than Facebook itself… if I didn’t have a good bunch of followers I’d say goodbye! :)

  14. I think this changed my perspective about Facebook Advertising. Guess it’s not as effective than it let on.
    Mark Murray recently posted..PLR Article Collection SoftwareMy Profile

    • I have had some recent success with Facebook advertising for a client. I created an advert for their new page and managed to get 15 likes over about 2 weeks. It doesn’t sound a lot, but the page is a niche topic, and not something just anyone would like.

  15. I set up an Author page on Facebook a few days ago and have been lucky to have over 100 likes so far. Very lucky, considering the book isn’t even out yet! I decided I wanted a page so that I didn’t just spam all my friend with my constant book type updates on my personal page all the time. That said, I’ve no doubt I’ll announce when the book is out on my personal page!

    Of those 100 likes, only about 12 are from people I’ve not been connected to before so time will tell how effective it is.

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