Childbirth Businesses and Facebook
I’ve been a strong supporter of separation of personal and business on Facebook, and I still am. Changes in Facebook algorithms have changed the way your business page works. So now I wonder, is Facebook still worth the trouble?
I go back and forth on this question. I suppose the answer is going to be very individual for each business. For me, I am starting to lean more toward the “not worth my time” side of the equation. Here are my concerns, and why it may not make sense for me.
1. My primary goal is to maintain a website with great information for families. This takes work. In the last two years, the time I have had to add new content to the website has instead been devoted to making sure I had adequate “updates” of the pages on Facebook. In other words, maintaining a Facebook presence prevented me from creating new website content. This is a problem for me because I am primarily a student, the website is my hobby and gets my “hobby” time. This may not be a problem for businesses that have more time to devote to web content or businesses that don’t really want web “content.”
2. I envisioned the Facebook page for Birthing Naturally to be a “social” experience. I wanted the fans to share ideas and questions and great sources of information. It took a lot of trial and error to figure out how to make this work (aka, to not have fans sharing posts that could be perceived as angry rebuttals to each other; to not have posts that were fake fans looking for free advertising; to not have my fans feel like I was spamming them with website content.) And for a few years, it did work. I could set up a month of posts in a third party ap, the posts would stimulate discussion and everything worked mostly OK. But with the new algorithm for Facebook my discussion questions reach about 300 fans on a good day. This doesn’t lead to stimulating discussions, it doesn’t even lead to more than five comments. This may not be a problem for businesses that use Facebook to post about events, like meet the doulas nights, or to promote a coupon for services.
3. My posts were social – meaning to stimulate discussion from the question. I didn’t post quote photos, viral videos, or pseudo-science news articles. But these have become the post of choice in Facebook. Which means for me to get better organic viewing of my posts I either need to invest MORE time into Facebook to create these images and videos, or I will be using content from other websites — which seems to defeat the purpose of having a Facebook page for my website. This may not be a problem for businesses that are not promoting a particular webpage.
4. I don’t have time to post even daily, which is why I used a third party ap to plan out my posts. If these posts receive lower ranking for Facebook, the percentage of fans who see it will fall again — and it does, when I post from the ap I get half as many views as when I post from Facebook directly. So I am back to that problem that the value of what I get for posting isn’t worth the few hours it takes to plan and prepare good questions. This may not be a problem for businesses that use Facebook to link to posts in a blog or other content from their sight. The links will be available to anyone who views the page within a specific time frame. But then we have to wonder how many people visit a Facebook page.
I have more time over the summer, so I’ll probably keep going into August before I make any decisions. But I have to be honest and tell you that today, I’m feeling like a Facebook business page isn’t worth my time for my business.
How do you use Facebook, and has the algorithm change affected the way you use Facebook to communicate with potential clients?
Reminder: Complete the Birth Worker Survey – the results will be used to teach about statistics in the Month of June.