Firstly, let’s define the organic reach of a Facebook business or organic page. Facebook defines it as “how many people you can reach for free on Facebook, by posting to your Page”. For our clients at digital88, Facebook reach is the main bone of contention and frustration.
Prior to 2012, the percentage of people who liked your page seeing your posts was much higher. The algorithm was then changed, and continues to change. It dropped to approximately 16% of people who liked your page, seeing your post. In today’s world, it’s more likely to be around 2-5%. And the bad news? It’s getting lower, and we are heading toward 0% organic reach.
According to Facebook’s VP of Advertising, Brian Boland there are 2 main reasons for the organic reach decline: “First, there's simply too much content being published on Facebook, making visibility in the News Feed increasingly competitive. Second, Facebook is deliberately trying to show people the content that is most relevant to them, as opposed to surfacing all the content available.”
Of course, you can always pay to reach the people who like your page, or friends of people who like your page, or thousands of various targeting options and mixes. This is the exact reason why businesses, and our clients, are so frustrated – money talks. James Del sums up the general sentiment “Facebook may be pulling off one of the most lucrative grifts of all time; first, they convinced brands they needed to purchase all their Fans and Likes -- even though everyone knows you can’t buy love; then, Facebook continues to charge those same brands money to speak to the Fans they just bought."
Facebook have denied this claim, stating “Organic reach is not dropping because Facebook is trying to make more money. Our goal is to provide the best experience for the people that use Facebook”.
The bottom line here is that the social media landscape has altered significantly. Using Facebook to promote your business is now an entirely different ballgame to how it was. Investing the time into running a Facebook page that is only used for organic/unpaid posts could be a waste of time for some.
At the end of the day, Facebook is a business, an extremely successful business, and their bottom line is profit. This move toward a more paid model for business pages isn’t a major surprise. It’s about changing your social media plan to keep up to date with the algorithms and getting the most engagements, and ultimately leads and sales, in the most cost effective way. Get in touch to find out how we can help you do that.