It’s hard to believe I haven’t posted here since March 7. It’s not like I don’t have time to post regularly; I mean one can’t spend EVERY waking hour binge watching the must-see TV series, or crafting witty posts and replies on Facebook and Google+. And I have kind of a job I have to deal with to take care of the bills.
Knowing full well that the road to hell is paved with good intentions, here are a few things I intend to write about :
Over the past several days Veritasium has drawn a lot of attention and comments both in favor of and attempting to rebut his video Facebook Fraud:
After watching the video, I looked at the insights for my own Facebook page. My Facebook business page as about local real estate here in Memphis, a pretty specific market and target demographic, and I have worked hard over the years to develop an organic following of fans who either live in the area, have interest in the area, and/or fall into a certain age demographic for the home buyers and sellers I normally work with.
As any small business person who uses Facebook as a marketing tool knows, Facebook throttles your page posts, serving them to only a small percentage of your fans. I think everyone agrees that this limitation is engineered to encourage businesses to buy more advertising and “boost” more posts. But I have found an issue I have overlooked in the past: The audience that Facebook allows to see my posts does not reflect the general demographic of my fans.
This is the demographic of my fans. It’s a demographic that reflects my clients, and home buyers in general. Note the age ranges of 25-64, a total of 85% of all my fans. They are folks of home buying age, and a great audience for what I do.
Here is the demographic that Facebook has chosen to share my posts with:
Nothing like a reflection of my fan base, with 25% under 25 (I like dealing with younger home buyers, but I would imagine that many in that group are too young), and only 10% in the 45-64 sweet spot for empty nesters and retirement buyers.
How does this tie into the Veritasium video? Suppose you don’t agree with the hypothesis or quality of the research in the video and continue to spend good money boosting your posts and building your fan base. It appears, that even with tight targeting of ads Facebook could choose to skew who gets your content, while staying within your general parameters. For example, if I targeted an ad to 18-34 year olds, what’s keeping FB from only offering that ad to 18 year olds and not 19-34?
Facebook is in business to make a profit, even the vast majority of Facebook users, even businesses, consider it a free service and never pay Facebook a penny.
You can’t depend on Facebook’s organic trickling of your posts to get to those folks who you really want to see them.
When you are paying to boost posts or to advertise your page, target, target, target.
If you are doing something online that is against the law, you should be concerned about the police. There is really no reason, whatsoever, to worry about breaking blogging “rules” or dealing with the blogging police. I am amazed at how many blogs there are about blogging. Google returns over 18,000 results for the term “blogs about blogging”. Narcissistic? Well isn’t that what blogging is all about anyway?
If you are burned out with your blogging efforts, or if you have been reading the blogs about blogging, considering starting a blog of your own, keep one thing in mind: If you have good content, the word will get around, and the readers will come. The “rules” exist to get more views for mediocre content that probably didn’t deserve any views in the first place. That’s why you see more blogging instruction on SEO (search engine optimization), formatting, keywords, meta tags, image optimization, lists, and links, rather than on producing quality content.
If anyone in the world of business could honestly be labeled a guru, it would be Seth Godin. I admire Godin’s blog. He runs it as a sub domain on typepad.com, not a self-hosted platform. There are no well placed, keyword and context heavy pictures, and his posts are not open for comments. The pundits would probably label this blasphemy. Seth doesn’t have to worry about SEO, meta tags, and that H1-H2 stuff, because his 600,000+ monthly visitors (343,000 of them unique visitors) probably share his posts across the media, and he probably sells a lot of books and books a lot of big dollar speaking engagements because of his blog.
If you are going to blog, then blog. Blog about something you are passionate about; blog about something you are an expert at; make it a picture blog if you are into photography. Don’t get all hung up on self-hosting, custom URLs, plugins, and widgets until you get a feel for producing good content. Get started with a free platform like Blogger or WordPress.com. But if it doesn’t feel right after a reasonable trial period, it’s OK to quit. If you get in the groove with your content then it might be time to hone your skills by reading some of the “blogs on blogging.”