There is no doubt that users spend a lot of time on Facebook, especially compared to other social media sites, but there seems to be some ripples with the number one social media site. In the past few months, Facebook has quietly shifted into crisis mode. According to The Information, “original broadcast sharing”–i.e., posts consisting of users’ own words and images–fell 21 percent from 2014 to 2015, contributing to a 5.5 percent decrease in total sharing.
According to Inc. It’s a stunning reversal of fortune for Facebook, whose strategic emphasis for the past few years has been on getting media companies and celebrities to put more of their premium content on Facebook. The better (read: more professional) the quality of what’s in your News Feed, the more advertisers would pay to be next to it, went the thinking. That strategy now looks like a backfire.
According to confidential data obtained by The Information, more than 60 percent of users share no personal content in a given week, while the remaining 39 percent share an average of five posts.
Fortune believes there are two things driving the decline. First, there’s the rise of professional content on Facebook. Second, there’s the shift from content published in private to content published in public. Now, while some believe that the sharing of personal information is what brings people back to facebook, I would argue the opposite. When I see someone post baby or family pictures I hide those posts. I use facebook as a news feed but I’m smart enough to understand that facebook controls what I see and as thus I am at the mercy of their feed algorithm.
I also believe that Internet users are gradually using more social media channels and that facebook has become boring. The real hot way to communicate is with Apple’s iChat messenger and facebook frankly, is not going to take that away from Apple with the use of bots.
I really don’t believe in social media marketing anymore, but I still believe that brands need to integrate social media into their digital strategy. Most consumers don’t want to have a relationship with their frozen pizza or ice cream brands, but social media gives consumers a passive way to complain about products/brands and if you’re a marketer you had better be listening.
Originally published at www.newmediaandmarketing.com on April 14, 2016.