I came across a post in a Facebook group that declared “Facebook Is Now Dead!” What do you think? Is Facebook dead?
I'm calling BS!
Facebook is FAR from dead!
In fact, if you know what you're doing on Facebook, then the fun is just getting started!
How do we know this?
Because Facebook is on a mission! And, in 2013, they shared that they were only 1% done with their journey.
In 2015, Facebook reiterated that they were still only 1% done and although they've made amazing progress is bringing the world closer together, I can't imagine that they've veered too far from that 1% mark yet.
What's this journey that Facebook is on? In a nutshell, it's to make a difference in the world.
So how can you, an Entrepreneur, market your business effectively at a time when Facebook is changing their landscape to focus on those things that are “meaningful” to their users?
Step 1: Stop selling!
By “stop selling”, I don't mean that you should stop raising awareness of your brand. But, rather, that you transition your marketing efforts from selling to fostering relationships.
Facebook never meant to be a marketing platform, it adapted and grew, and ultimately became one.
Yet, somewhere along the way, entrepreneurs realized that if they asked people to buy their products through Facebook, that their sales grew.
The reason people bought wasn't that the purchase was a “deal”, but rather because they most likely already knew, liked and trusted the person or brand promoting the product.
Enter 60 million other business owners selling their products and Facebook's landscape morphed into an online swap-meet of new goods.
Much like we get tired of commercials and infomercials, we get tired of people always asking for the sale online as well.
Facebook understands this and has shifted the rules so that we, as enterprising individuals, need to refocus our efforts on building trust. Building a brand. Building community.
Let's face it — a brand is nothing without a community to elevate it.
Step 2. Step up your game!
We live in such an instant-gratification time that Entrepreneurs often lack the patience to see true results from their relationship building efforts online.
To be clear, I'm not saying that Entrepreneurs don't have patience, it's that as go-getters, we want to see our efforts pay off. We've been “brainwashed” to believe that a single post on social media can take our business to new heights. Yet, the reality is that like with anything… building your brand and marketing it on Facebook takes time and effort. Get ready to do the work!
Ask any overnight success how long it took them to become an “overnight success” and I bet their response will begin with a laugh and a time frame MUCH longer than a single night.
Step 3. Keep Up!
Facebook went from being text-based to image-based to video-based. Businesses can educate, inspire and entertain in multiple ways, yet most businesses shy away from using all of their available resources.
Mari Smith, the ‘queen of Facebook', encourages us to focus on video. Not just candid lives, but to really focus on consistently “bringing it” everytime we broadcast online. In a response to the original “Facebook is dead” post, Mari replied with:
Mari Smith Hey [name intentional omitted]!!! Okay, I have to get on my high horse here, my friend. THERE IS *NO* *NO* *NO* WAY THAT FACEBOOK IS DEAD. No way. Sorry, noooooo no way. Facebook and Instagram say they are only “1% done.” That is, they have 99% to go to really achieve what they are setting out to achieve.
Facebook is determined to become a destination DIGITAL STREAMING TELEVISION PLATFORM, similar to Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu and yes YouTube. For now, YouTube is Facebook's biggest competitor when it comes to video. Facebook is investing in more and more original content, just like Netflix and Amazon. Facebook is also on a mission to secure more exclusive streaming rights.
*Smart* marketers spot the incredible opportunity with Facebook right now in terms of establishing your platform and your channel and your show and your loyal audience here. Facebook today is like YouTube was some 8 or even 10 years ago. It's a goldmine, if you know what you're doing.
There is absolutely room for both giant online video platforms: Facebook and YouTube. And for sure, if you have the bandwidth and know-how, you want to use *both* platforms. That's great you if you're having success streaming on YouTube.
With Facebook, it started as a social network and now they are adding streaming video in a major way with the Watch platform, Watch Party in groups, everything video, favoring video – especially Live – in the News Feed. Live video on Facebook gets 6x the engagement than recorded video. So, because there is already the social graph here, Facebook is able to integrate elements that support watching video content together with communities of friends. And that's good news for advertisers. It's like the next generation television, only better because of the available data.
Whereas, YouTube or Google were never social networks. They've tried and it's just not the same. Facebook enforces real identity on the platform. Even though there's a number of fake profiles or incorrect names, the vast majority of people have legit names/accounts here.
On top of *all* this, add to the mix that Facebook offers the BEST granular ad targeting parameters bar none. Smart marketers combine both organic and paid in their video and live strategy.
Facebook may not be the favorite app of some marketers/businesses out there… but, frankly, those folks are completely missing the biggest opportunity.
Okay, end of rant. Lol. Sorry to ‘pick' on you but I saw your comment here and it's just completely not true for 99.99% of marketers. The 0.01% are the ones not seeing the opportunity… yet!!!
Step 4. Have A Purpose and Make That Purpose Meaningful!
On January 11th, Zuckerberg stated
…you'll see less public content like posts from businesses, brands, and media. And the public content you see more will be held to the same standard — it should encourage meaningful interactions between people.
What does this mean for businesses?
It doesn't mean that people will see less of your posts because the reality is that you're fortunate if 1% of your Page followers see your posts.
It means that if you want people to see your posts, you need to focus on encouraging “meaningful interactions”.
Content needs to be relevant to your audience. Your Audience. Not you, not your business, but rather content that your audience deems meaningful to them. Now's the time to speak to your audience in a relationship-minded manner. Put them first. Give them what they want. Educate them. Inspire them. Share with them. Be a part of their lives and invite them to become a part of yours.
So is Facebook Dead?
It's only dead to those that aren't using it.
If you're an Entrepreneur, there's a HUGE opportunity for you to capitalize by simply being yourself, being consistent, putting in the work and having a bit of patience.