Is Facebook Losing Relevance?

Why Inbound Marketing Works for Hospitality

When you’re working with advertising and marketing professionals, I would bet the words “social media” are at the forefront of most discussions. How can we get more likes, more followers, more hearts, more thumbs up? I can just hear an account executive display his social media savvy by stating, “you have to have a Twitter page, Instagram, Tumblr, Youtube Channel, and Facebook…a Facebook page is a must!” With marketing managers asked to do more with less money, the real discussion should be, is Facebook losing relevance?

This topic reminds me of a video The Onion The Onion Social Media posted back in 2012 regarding social media. The Ted-esque talk is hilarious and what makes it so funny is the truth it tells. You cannot assume that you will reach your target audience solely through Facebook. In a recent article in AdWeek, the piece discusses the fact that “brand publishers are ditching Facebook in favor for microsites.” During the pre-social media era, microsites were mini websites that were used to push information on one certain product or service. The AdWeek article cites that the reason for ditching Facebook is “attributed to Facebook’s EdgeRank algorithm, which curates the content users see in their News Feeds.” Essentially, you don’t have full control of your message as you may think in the Facebook world. I don’t believe that Facebook needs to be completely ignored, I believe that it needs to be used only as a tool and not a solution. This goes for most all of the other social media outlets. Michael Hyatt, the author of Platform Get Noticed in a Noisy World, has a great way of dividing out your social media. He breaks them out as follows:

  1. Home Base: This is your digital real estate that you completely own and control. This is your website, microsite, blog, or a combination of these but not limited to them. Here’s where you can control the information and also interact directly with your audience.

  2. Embassies: These are places you’re not in control of, but have a registered profile. This is Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. You can participate in conversations here and the net to reach your audience will be cast a little wider.

  3. Outposts: These are places that you have no control, nor a regular presence. This is where you just listen in on the conversation so you can get an idea of what people are saying about your product or service. Google Alerts or using a third party Twitter feed can help you listen in on what people are saying and make a decision on what to do.

Although Facebook has tons of users and in turn tons of data, it’s important to understand that there’s nothing like your own digital real estate that you can call “home”. From there, it’s a matter of using a strategic mix of social media tools to reach your audience. I think that the ultimate beauty of all of this is that everything is more measurable than ever.

What are your thoughts on marketing with Facebook?