Why Facebook is Dead for Bloggers

Let’s face it. The world is addicted to Facebook. And for us bloggers, or really anyone with a page they want to promote, it can be a useful tool for publicity. So, exactly why Facebook is dead for bloggers? Up until now Facebook has been giving free advertising space to businesses and organizations, allowing groups to connect with users and update them regularly. But the free ride might be over. Facebook admits they are lowering the reach of organic posts to weed out spammy or non-engaging content.”

I can appreciate the idea that Facebook wants the user experience to be more enjoyable, and for the user to be able to see more things they actually care about with less advertisements. But how will my user experience be better when I see more ads that Pepsi has paid for and less updates on groups that I have purposefully liked? Maybe I want to see updates from those groups that I have liked because I, well, like them.

 
why facebook is dead for bloggers


This transition isn’t hurting huge companies who can afford to pay Facebook for advertising. It’s hurting small businesses, organizations and yes, blogs, who got used to the comfort of free publicity through Facebook and have spent time and resources in building their Like base only to see their reach drop to 1 to 2% of that audience. This is hurting mom & pop shops, local nonprofits, creative groups and anyone using Facebook to promote themselves even if they aren’t making money.

When we first started our blog Facebook was our main source of promotion for our posts. Our Like base grew rapidly and our organic reach was high. In the past few months we’ve noticed our reach has dropped significantly and subsequently the number of readers coming to our blog from Facebook has dropped as well. Even though everyday we continue to get more and more Likes.

 

Do we really have a right to be complaining?

Not really. Luckily, and I suppose unluckily, our blog is young and we’ve kind of come at the end of the Facebook free ride. We didn’t get too cozy with Facebook and will be able to evolve out of it as we grow. But I feel for groups that have been on FB for years and relied on it as their main source of publicity. But at least they had the free advertising for a while. Better that than nothing, right?

 

So what next?

Where do we go from here? Well Facebook isn’t completely dead. The good news is that the more love a post gets, the more people will see it. So you have to really crunch your analytics and find the best stuff to post, and when. It’s kind of a catch-22, but if you can develop a small group of active and loyal followers who participate through Likes and discussions, their participation will lead to a larger reach for your posts.

There’s been speculation that Facebook is slowly being fazed out anyway. It’s pretty hard to think of a time where the world’s biggest networking site, and something that is so universal in our world today, will ever become irrelevant or obsolete. There has been a slew of recent studies that show that young people are losing interest in Facebook. As one of the first generations to use Facebook, back when only college students could use it, I find the backlash pretty ironic. High-schoolers were dying to get on, but opening the site up to kids means opening it up to parents as well. And who wants to be on the same networking site as their parents? Facebook is in the decline and cooler networks like Snapchat, WhatsApp, Kik and Instagram are replacing it.



why facebook is dead for bloggers


So what does this mean for travel bloggers or those looking to promote their pages? Should we get in touch with some hackers to sneak in ads on Snapchat? I don’t think this blog is ready to stoop to that level. It’s hard to tell what the next big networking thing is going to be, but we’re starting to put a little more time into Pinterest. We also haven’t given up hope on Twitter and Instagram, who aren’t too shabby either.  For now we’ll be squeezing the last drops out of Facebook and then testing out new possibilities.

 

What do you think? Is Facebook out the door or is it just having a brief dip? Drop us a comment below or find us on Facebook and Twitter!

24 Comments

  • Bob R says:

    I don’t see FB dying as a good way to keep up with friends, but for small businesses and bloggers the writing has been on the wall for a while. I’m giving up on my page and will only be using my personal acct from here on. For my purposes the fan page didn’t bring back that much; now, having to pay to reach the fans we’ve already been forced to work very hard to obtain, seems counter-intuitive at best.

    • Totally agree. I don’t think FB will ever die out as a social networking tool and I think some big companies will still thrive as a marketing tool. But for little guys like us, it’s not useful anymore. Thanks for comment, Bob!

  • They have purposefully tinkered with the algorithm as a way to boost their own revenue. You have to pay to boost your posts now. Otherwise use as many hastags as possible to have people see you post that way. These new changes definitely mean we also now have to think more what we post, when we post as well as think about the people who are likely to help you boost these posts on your page without pay out money.

    • Yep, it definitely makes you more aware of your content and how your audience interacts with it. For example, our instagrammed photos usually do a lot better on FB than our blog posts. It’s important to play to make sure your audience is interacting with your updates. Thanks for reading Bianca!

  • noel says:

    Wonderful post and great observations. Yes I think most bloggers are actively spreading out the social media to many different platforms. Two of the most popular for me being Twitter and Pinterest and not to be outdone by Instagram, Trover and LinkedIn, you need to engage more to where your most active subscribers are and look to picking up more followers…good luck meanwhile and join us for Travel Photo Mondays a great way to build community and helping out with SEO.

    • thanks Noel! Definitely agree that it’s important to diversify your social media platforms. I’m just looking into Trover now and it looks like it has a lot of potential! We’ll be in touch about the Travel Photo Mondays, thanks!

  • jennifer says:

    You know what drives me absolutely nuts? When you get a notification from Facebook that a particular post is more popular than your other posts, would you like to promote it? Meanwhile the views are about a quarter of what they were before Facebook started this whole “Let’s make sure no one sees anything ever again unless they pay” thing.

    /rant

    • Haha, good rant! Yep, that drives me crazy too. Especially because us bloggers aren’t usually making much money in the first place. Travel bloggers want to spend their money on traveling, not Facebook promotion!

  • The Guy says:

    Very good article and a view I’ve shared for a long time. My strategy has never been Facebook focused and I don’t think it ever will. One blogger criticised me for my lowly Facebook likes but was not willing to respond when I directed him to Twitter followers, Google+ or other avenues.

    I know various bloggers who don’t like Facebook and I’m with them. If you want to grow your audience it may help a little but you need a multi-source strategy to drive traffic. I see that like myself you are using Traffic Blog Exchange which is one of the many other avenues.

    Thanks for an honest and fair assessment of Facebook.

    • Thanks, glad you liked the article! For a long time, we were equating our Facebook likes with our readership but it’s really not accurate. We’ve been definitely looking at building our Twitter and G+ followers as they seem more important now. Thanks for commenting!

  • I hate to think it is true but if Facebook is restricting the reach of a post of what use is Facebook, to users or bloggers? Or anyone for that matter. They may become just another website like, CNN. We all know how much money CNN makes right?

  • Beth says:

    Ah this has been a real issue for us and our clients, many of them have spent thousands advertising on Facebook to build their fanbase and all for what? For the reach to be lower than ever before, even though they have 10 times as many fans. Atleast your fans are real fans though, much of the paid advertising has generated a disproportinate fan base, with most of the likes coming from Mexico and Egypt. It’s all such a big mess, there’s no way back now. So I agree, Facebook has shot itself in the foot, by being dishonest with people’s money and changing the algorithm to squeeze out small businesses and independent people. We’re also trying to spend more time on Google+ and Twitter, but it’s a shame because Facebook has always been my favourite network and the best place to display varying forms of media content. Great article btw!

    • I can imagine this whole thing is even more infuriating for social media professionals! Facebook has been a marketing powerhouse for so long, it’s hard to switch gears and view it differently now. I was reading about “click farms” where likes are outsourced to different countries. So crazy. Thanks for commenting, Beth!

  • Lyn says:

    I have only had my FB page for 2 months. My posts were previously reached by 400-500 people and had interaction by about 100 each post, currently reaching only about 100 with interaction with about 20 people per post. I know many of my 1300 followers never regularly click like or comment on things that I know they enjoy seeing. My numbers reached have dropped over 46% last week 37% again this week so it certainly is reducing my audience which is needed to keep my page alive, without interaction my page will soon disappear.

  • Karen Warren says:

    Everything is moving so fast with social media that I suppose we all (bloggers included) just have to try to keep up with what is happening. Facebook is still useful at the moment but it will eventually lose ground to other networks – I suppose the best strategy is to make sure you use a wide spread of social media.

    • Absolutely, having a variety ensures you reach people from all different avenues. We have pretty much stopped using FB, but it is still handy for us every now and then. Mostly reaching out to friends with posts, we don’t really get much action from the broader FB community, even with nearly 1K likes.

  • Great post you guys! I don’t know if I have an opinion if FB is out the door or just in a dip, I honestly haven’t followed FB that much. I have found quite a bit of success with Pinterest, StumbleUpon and Google+ though. I haven’t yet figured out Google+ and need to be utilizing that more so I guess that’s my next project. For now I’ve been focusing on growing my Pinterest and Stumble connections.

  • This actually makes me kinda happy because I’ve put hardly any effort into my Facebook page, glad that’s probably not going to hold me back too much!

    • Nah we wouldn’t worry too much about it, not at this stage. If you already have a decent network it can still be very useful, but for bloggers it’s becoming a little redundant. That’s what we think anyway.

  • Yes! I am glad you took your time to talk about it. Facebook is definitely slowly dying out. It is normal for social media. The same happened to others like myspace etc.
    I hope people are going to invest more time in their google+ accounts. This network is really worth looking at. I have never had so many interactions on none of the networks as google+…and it is google in the end so it is really worth investing your time in it!

    • Thank you for taking your time to read it! We are definitely gravitating toward Google+ but its a slow process. We’re not sure if there’s a big enough market there yet. Hopefully with time!

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