What are the Facebook pros and cons for businesses?
The social media giant has made it more difficult for businesses to find success on the platform over the last few years. Now, with all the news about data breaches on the social site, many marketers are wondering if Facebook is still worth the investment of time and money.
So I thought it might be a good idea to layout the advantages and disadvantages of Facebook as a marketing channel.
Facebook Pros and Cons: Cons
Since 2012, the platform has been reducing the amount of reach for business pages. By the end of 2017, it had fallen to around one percent. In January 2018, Facebook announced it would show fewer posts from business pages. This change made reach virtually non-existent.
There are new changes resulting from the Cambridge Analytica data breach in 2018. When you create a custom audience you will still be able to see the estimated audience size. It appears as a small gauge at the top right of the screen.
However, if you use additional targeting with that audience, the estimate is no longer available. That’s probably due to the fact that Facebook is phasing out its relationship with third-party data providers. Those firms matched up personal information about likes and interests from the internet with users’ profiles on Facebook.
With this feature going away, marketers will have a harder time making informed decisions about their ads.
VERIFIED EMAIL LISTS
When uploading email lists for ad targeting, you will need to verify that the names and addresses on that list were gathered properly and within Facebook’s guidelines.
Facebook also announced that it wants to make sure, “all future access to the Pages API will need to be approved by Facebook.” An API (Application Programming Interface) allows other apps to read, comment or schedule posts to a page. While we know changes to the API are coming, we aren’t sure yet exactly what they are yet. However, they could impact the way businesses market themselves on the site.
While these are small changes, they add up to make it more difficult to market your business.
Facebook Pros and Cons: Pros
Despite the recent changes, it is still a viable marketing channel for a number of reasons.
2 BILLION PEOPLE
The biggest reason to continue marketing on Facebook is the number of users. As of this writing, there are over 2 billion users! That means the number of people that fall into in your target audience is considerable! This is the most important reason why Facebook is still viable!
While there have been recent changes to custom audiences, advertising on the platform is still highly effective. Facebook offers targeting that is unavailable with other forms of media. It is also very affordable. You can advertise on the site for as little as $5.00 per day.
Facebook also offers analytics to track the performance of your ad so you can see what is working and what is not.
Because of the cost, the targeting and the metrics, advertising on Facebook remains a very efficient investment for your advertising dollars.
Many business people have told me that they don’t want to be on Facebook anymore because of the behavior of some people on the site and the content they post. I tell them to not let their emotions rule their business judgment. Just because they don’t like something personally, does not mean it is bad for their business.
While Facebook has made some pretty large missteps recently, the results of which negatively impact businesses, it is still a viable marketing option because of the size of the potential audience and the advertising capabilities.
Are you looking for success strategies for Facebook? Call me at 513-237-5530.
Bob Turner is a Digital Marketing Consultant in Cincinnati, Ohio.
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