Facebook Advertising - Is it Still Worth It?

Genius Monkey stays ahead of the marketing game by monitoring every form of advertising. One of the most prevalent forms of marketing this year is through social media outlets such as Facebook, Twitter, etc. 

For years, Facebook fan pages have been an effective social media marketing strategy for advertisers, with little expense on their part. As of late, since the spring of 2012, the numbers of clicks on Facebook have been getting fewer and fewer for the owners of the fan pages. Instead of the advertisers’ messages reaching all of its “liked” fans, its visibility has actually declined to the point of only reaching 15% of them. This “problem” was recently acknowledged by Facebook. As a very convenient solution, they announced that business owners could now pay sponsoring fees to have a greater number of fans see the posts they submit. Now, like everything else, it’s all about how much money you have, and how willing you are to part with that money. So it appears that Facebook manufactured a problem, and created a solution that would greatly benefit them financially. In doing so, they:

  • Manufactured a slowdown in clicks per fan page
  • Presented a plan for improvement to the advertiser, offering more clicks for more bucks
  • Increased their revenue by approximately $1,000,000 per day.

According to the head of advertising for Facebook, Gokul Rajaram, if you want the other 80 to 85 percent of your followers to be able to see what you post, then “sponsoring posts is important.” That’s right, page owners now have to pay for their fans to see what they have to offer, which is the very reason they signed up for Facebook in the first place. It is an understatement to say that this places the advertisers firmly between a rock and a hard place. They have established Facebook as an effective platform for their advertising, and now it is being held hostage. The more unstable the public stage becomes, the more they need to pay to regain their status of visibility. Many are calling “fowl.” It’s almost like a cell phone repairman grabbing your phone and throwing it to the ground, then offering to repair it for you. According to Ryan Holiday of the New York Observer, this new plan results in Facebook “raking in nearly $1,000,000 a day.” It not only targets advertisers anymore, but personal posters as well. Now there is an option given when a personal post is made, allowing the poster to be much more visible…for a fee.

Facebook is not alone in its quest for new fees and charges. It appears that other social media outlets have joined in on the reindeer games. When a new social media site begins its journey to success, it must show enormous growth rates of new accounts. This may be the reason for so many Twitter accounts that are simply facades, going unused. By selling accounts in groups of 1,000, Twitter could show a high increase in accounts with no burden of proof that they were even being used.

It is not unusual that a blog will publish an outlandish, hard to believe story, hooking readers into their nets. This creates a great deal of traffic. However, when they come out of the “trickster’s closet,” declaring the hoax, they normally generate even more traffic with the announcement of the error or the retraction of the story.

So it comes down to this; advertisers will either pay the fees they need to, or they can take the bench based on either inability to pay, or on principle alone. Sometimes taking the bench ends up being a very costly move, as it takes them out of the competition game.