Bluefinch Creative Blog

Is Facebook a Waste of Time?

June 3, 2013

I recently came across a thought-provoking article on Social Media Today which posed a question that many of us busy humans and business owners often ask: is Facebook a waste of time? In my opinion, the answer is both ‘yes’ and ‘no.’ Sound complicated? Let me explain.

The Gist of the Article
The writer goes on to assert that spending time on Facebook is fruitless due to Edgerank, the pesky algorithm that prevents us from engaging with all of our fans (in an attempt to sell us Facebook advertising, no doubt). Well played, Facebook – well played. The writer also states that “It has nothing to do with brand. It has nothing to do with what’s actually important to the company. It has everything to do with what Facebook has deemed important.” I couldn’t agree more. Those who are looking to find a way around this need to game the system to get in front of their fans and even friends. We need to tweak and change and alter our content to make the Facebook algorithm happy.

Moral Considerations
Ok, I’m going to go on a bit of a rant here. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I don’t want to be shown pictures, videos, and content based on my past preferences ALL the time. Once in a blue moon, I think that it would do my ego good to be challenged with new content and ideas, not self-limiting concepts and beliefs that become further compounded by the fact that my friends (who likely see similar content) will probably agree with my point of view. Birds of a feather flock together. Does anyone else see the danger in this? OK, enough about morals – back to business and marketing talk.

Facebook – herein lies the rub
In my opinion, creating a Facebook fan page only to collect fans like obsolete Canadian currency will likely not produce the bountiful fruits of business success. I’m a huge advocate of social media (check me out on Twitter for proof @bluefinch604) but we must not ignore common sense and intelligent business strategy; every action in marketing needs to contribute to more qualified leads and (eventually) sales in the short and long term (depending on the strategy and marketing vehicle). The issue that I’m seeing with Facebook is a whole lot of folks just collecting fans with no comprehensive business or marketing strategy in place. That won’t do at all!

Fret not, for I have a solution.
So, how do we get around all these limitations? I suggest running a really targeted online contest using an online contesting software (Contest Domination is pretty good) and running a series of Facebook ads promoting the contest. Put on ‘like gating’ to require visitors to like your page before they can enter, then collect their personal details (such as email address). Two birds, one stone – voila! Now you have yourself an interested and engaged fan and an associated email address to inform them of the contest outcome and encourage them to opt-in to your e-newsletter.

Facebook limits how we can engage with fans so I say let’s pull them off the platform with clever online contesting. If you want to take a look at my contest, you can visit my Facebook page here. What are your thoughts? Are you past the honeymoon phase with Facebook? Are you starting to notice its ugly chin hairs or is she still Angelina Jolie to you?

Here’s the full article if you feel like taking a gander:

About The Author
Content brought to you by Tanya Roberts, a Vancouver-based online marketing consultant that specializes in slick content strategy to rock your website traffic, build your brand, gain leads, and increase sales. Tanya is an experienced marketer, copywriter/editor, freelance writer, internet/online marketing consultant, and social media specialist. You can also find Tanya on Google Plus. Results matter; here are a few of .

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