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Your Facebook Page's Organic Reach Is About to Plummet

Your Facebook page’s organic reach is about to plummet — even more so than it has in the past six months, down to a lowly 1-2%, actually. That means if you have 1,000 Facebook likes on your page, only about 10-20 of those fans will even see your posts! While organic reach has long been declining, it has significantly declined since the fall of 2013.

Short History of Facebook Organic Reach

Since Facebook pages for business launched in 2007, the organic page reach has been decreasing. By April of 2012, Facebook itself disclosed that Fan Pages reached only 16% of their audiences on average. Recently, a study revealed that Facebook page organic reach went from an average of 12.05% in October, 2013 to 6.15% in February, 2014.

Last fall, Facebook cited “A lack of space in the newsfeed” as a reason for the decline in organic reach. It’s possible that shortly, there will be no room left for organic posts at all.

This change is very bad news for businesses who have spent the past seven years collecting Facebook fans, unless they’re willing to start spending regularly to reach their audience. The worst part is that this applies to pages across the board. Whether you’re a huge brand with millions of likes, a community organization page or a non-profit, this dip in organic reach will affect you.

Should Your Company Use Facebook?

At this point you’re asking, should my company even use Facebook—Is it worth the time? Do the thousands of fans you have acquired even matter anymore? With a measly 1-2% reach, it’s hard to justify spending time posting on Facebook.

Facebook wants to assure you, “The fans you have matter.” In fact, the sales deck lists a number of benefits to acquiring fans, including improving organic distribution and getting more insight about your audience. The number one reason? “Improving ad effectiveness.”

In short, your fans matter, if and only if, you plan on spending money to reach them. After years of using Facebook for free advertising, this may seem unfair, but Facebook needs to make revenue somehow. And while you may not be too keen on the thought of spending money with Facebook, more engaging posts will still lead to a larger reach (when people share, like or comment on your posts, Facebook will see this as a post of interest and allow it to come up in more people’s newsfeeds).

An Affordable Marketing Option

The Wild West of Facebook is coming to an end. People tend to forget that Facebook isn’t a charity or a non-profit organization. Facebook is a business and just as companies pay for a variety of other marketing services, Facebook is demanding to become a paid service as well.

Many companies have succumbed to paying for Facebook ads and sponsored stories already with great success. After all, posting and only reaching your current audience doesn’t always bring in the best results. With your current audience, it’s more than likely that they already follow you on Twitter and Linkedin, and you have them on your email list. By spending on Facebook ads, you can reach beyond this current audience and gain new followers, which isn’t easy to do organically.

When compared to traditional advertising like television, radio or print, Facebook is more affordable and more targeted.

Facebook Ads 2014

(via Moz Blog)

Brian Carter points out on The Moz Blog, “If you just spend $1 per day on Facebook ads, you will get in front of 4,000 people that wouldn’t have seen you otherwise. If you are doing that and your competitors aren’t, you win the awareness game in your niche.”

Carter also notes that there are many companies receiving a positive ROI using Facebook advertising, but there are other companies doing it poorly and without proper statistics or strategy. If you decide to add Facebook ads or sponsored stories to your marketing mix, take time to create a viable plan.

The Solution

The reality is, Facebook’s organic reach could be zero very shortly. Facebook has been making strides in this direction and it seems inevitable that paid posts will be the norm for businesses. It seems unfair that businesses who have invested time and money acquiring followers will no longer be able to reach that audience, but even with a small budget, companies can turn this bad news into an opportunity.

With very targeted ad campaigns, great content and even the smallest amount of cash to spend, companies can reach their current fans and more on Facebook. Moz’s Brian Carter mentions, “If you can’t spend $30 per month ($1 per day on Facebook Ads), you shouldn’t be in business."

There is some truth to Carter’s statement. While it’s difficult for certain businesses to pay their overhead let alone advertise, if you think about spending with Facebook as an investment in your organization’s brand, it may look a little different. How important is it for your brand to engage with fans on Facebook? How detrimental would it be or what opportunities would be missed it be if your organization didn’t engage in this way?

What does your company plan to do concerning the decline in Facebook pages organic reach? Let us know in the comments below.

Join The Conversation

  • Nov 17 Posted 2 years ago cindyp299

    Hi Tara,

    After a career in a few different occupations I finally found the one that I loved in 1986 when I became an Emergency Medical Technician-Paramedic for a hospital based quick response Advanced Life Support Unit. We had 2 units and one covered a large rural mountain area, so it was very physically demanding. The hospital years later had a hiring freeze in place and was short an ER Aide. Since work was enjoyable I worked every shift available, between extra shifts on the Medic Unit very often worked for 16 hours, off 8, then back for 16 hours. In a 2 week period it wasn't uncommon to have 48 to 56 hours of overtime. That was for about 5 years, but after that ended still did work overtime and transports. In early 1999 things finally caught up with me, I had all I could do to work 8 hours a day, go home and right to sleep, then would wake up, eat and then sleep until morning. I felt like I was run over by a truck, I was even told by my supervisor to take a week off because I looked so bad. My Dr. did all kinds of tests, found all kinds of things wrong, I never returned to work and eventually received disability due to a combination of many different medical conditions. I had my gall bladder removed, then biliary duct surgery, gastrointestinal disorders, narcolepsy, chronic fatigue syndrome, Epstein-Barr Virus, hiatal hernia, duodenal ulcers, leukocytosis, hypothyroidism, loss of bowel control, and more. I'm unable to survive on what I receive and need to earn money. But I'm not able to work a scheduled job. I can do some things when I'm feeling okay enough to do them. I've been searching for ideas for years with no luck. I recently saw where another person is advertising in a different county in my state for the following: she set up a Facebook page, not sure what type, not a personal one, others can like the page, posts appear in a small area on the left side, not promimently shown. She charges area businesses $50 a mouth for her to post things about them on her page, as in maybe a dinner special for any number of restaurants, bands playing at different bars, ads or specials for companies that repair cell phones, or computers, perhaps a coupon on the page for a computer tune up for a certain price, photos could be allowed at a certain number per month, with an extra fee for any additional ones, ads for bazaars for fire companies in the summer (would be a one time fee), there seem to be many great possibilities here. I do have a computer. I would have to figure out a name to use for the Facebook page, should a twitter account be included? I've never used twitter before. In the beginning you would not be able to charge businesses $50 a month as with a new page you would have no followers. I've looked at the different Facebook pages and don't know which one would be the correct one to use. Did see it said no third party advertising, isn't that what this other person is doing? So, does this mean that I'm not able to do this? There is much more to my story that I cannot put on a public site, but my situation is not just one of being desperate financially, it is much worse, but I have nowhere to turn to for help. This has been the best I've come up with since my Mom died in 2005 and things changed. I'm 58 and have nothing at all. I was in danger for some time, which really almost caused me to have a breakdown. I did do some irrational things, but have only caused problems for myself. What was done to me was unbelievable, yet I'm unable to do anything about it. Life is not always fair, but I'm not looking for pity, only looking to dig my way out of the very deep hole I'm now in. I may soon be homeless and my income has been reduced to less than $200 a month. This is my only chance I now have. I'm paying that there is a way that this may be possible for me to at least try it. I have no idea if you personally respond to these, or if I have to keep checking this site. My son had my computer in n his bedroom, I'm using a Nexus tablet and hope that I'll be able to find this site again. So far you seem to be the one who may have the answers I'm looking for. I would be forever grateful for any information you may have, thank you so very much.


  • KCGuzzardi's picture
    Jul 16 Posted 3 years ago KCGuzzardi

    My head is spinning from all of this discussion over Facebook ads.  We are small business owners & like the non-profits, charitable organizations & government agencies we don't have the budget to spend advertising on Facebook along with Google, Twitter, LinkedIn, all the prevlant review sites & certainly not to pay a social media manager.  Small businesses; particularly restaurants, are looking at a 3-5% profit margin BEFORE taxes... and these are the small businesses that are managing to be successful enough to make a profit in the last 10 years.  So with all due respect, apparently Brian Carter doens't understand the cost of running a small business.  As a family operated business my husband is on property working a minumum of 70-80 hours a week; I use to work on property with him but given that it cost $50-250 an hour (National average) for social media management - I took over marketing our business 5 years ago (that includes all forms of advertising & special events).  I rebuilt our website - updating it at least twice a week, manage all of our social media, major search engine content & reply to all pertinent review sites (Google, Facebook, TripAdvisor, Urbanspoon & Yelp primarily).

    I get that the young, billionaire owner of Facebook is in business to do business & make a profit... aren't all business owners?  Over the last 5 years there is one experience I keep having... Social Sites, Search Engines, SEO Companies & Businesses that manage content over look small businesses, non profits & government agencies that have little or no marketing dollars.  All their decisions & advertising options they offer are geared toward big business... so much for supporting local!  

    As a personal social media user, I agree with what others have already voiced... don't block what I have liked & have interest in hearing about - you will loose me; I can always use Google to find what I want & there are still phones to talk on or to text conversations.

  • connectedcops's picture
    Jul 11 Posted 3 years ago connectedcops

    Of all the things Facebook has done to anger the planet, this one frosts my a$$ more than any and IMHO - THIS ONE will hurt Facebook significantly. The mistake FB is making is they are assuming that the only conversations people want to have on Facebook are with big brands. They're squeezing out government groups and non-profits who don't have ad budgets, effectively stifling those very important conversations. It's my opinion that this move will cost them dearly.

    I work with law enforcement. In my training classes when I would address the former 16% organic reach number the students are stunned and their conclusion is "then, why are we using Facebook at all? Why bother?" If Facebook is going to make it even more difficult - now that police finally - with social media - have a balanced playground to get their stories and information out - they're going to lose police deparrments and every other local government group. They're also going to lose non-profits and any small organization that doesn't have ad dollars. And withthat loss comes the people who care about those groups. More importantly, in many cases, they're killing very important dialog.

    Even myself, I'm a very small company. I spend a small amount of ad dollars. I have spent some on Facebook in the past. But this makes me so angry, my current small advertising budget is being allocated to LinkedIn. 

    Once word of this gets through the law enforcement community - and I plan to facilitate that through the publications for which I write - it won't turn around again. Police are cynical. You break their trust and it's gone forever.

  • Jun 27 Posted 3 years ago Sweeties

    I have always said that Facebook was the SINGLE MOST EFFECTIVE marketing tool for our business. In fact, our business never would have grown from out of a home into an actual store if it wasn't for Facebook.

    Over the last 3 years, I've worked very hard to build up nearly 20,000 "likes" on my business page-and that is just for a 1 location small business in a suburb. Yes, I did pay for some advertising in order to get to that-back when advertising was actually effective.

    Honestly, I could post something, like a special, on our page, and have a line out the door within 15 minutes. Prior the the initial change in the fall-looking at numbers from about a year ago-I had about 12-13,000 likes. Out of that I was getting a reach of about 5,000-8,000 per post. Imagine the "likes", comments, and "shares" our posts received. We post beautiful photos of our products, which got people engaged in our business. Our customers looked forward to seeing our posts, and sharing them with friends on their own pages.

    Since the initial change in the Fall, I can pretty much pinpoint an immediate drop in sales to right around the time this happened-and we are now down THOUSANDS since then. It is like Facebook was our major artery of customers-it is what sustained us as a business (NO other advertising we could do comes close to how effective it was)-and now they just cut off our blood supply. Customers have come in and they say they thought we closed. They say they miss us and ask us why we don't post anymore. The truth is, we DO post-several times a day. But now, I feel like why even bother because I average LESS THAN 500 people for reach-and that is out of nearly 20,000!!! It is RIDICULOUS!

    Ok, so we know Facebook isn't hurting for cash, but yes, they are a business. I get that. I would be willing to pay a monthly fee in order for all of the work and money I've put in to building my page and getting likes-if all of those people actually saw the posts. If they don't want to see them anymore, they can "unlike" the page. I would pay about $50-$100 or so a month  (maybe even more) if this happened...PLUS, I would start advertising again, because the people that I got to my page through ads would actually be seeing my posts! Why would I advertise now to get people to my page, when they aren't going to see what I post anyway? Makes no sense. I recently received a survey from Facebook regarding advertising, and did mention of this, but of course, nobody every responded to it. This may not have such an impact on large companies, but for small businesses that grew their business on here, it is like we had the rug pulled out from underneath us, with no options and nothing we can do. Paying to promote posts....I can MAYBE get a reach of 2500 people over a 3-day time frame-and again, that is out of nearly 20,000 people. I feel like that is a waste, too. I'm sure I'm not the only one that would be willing to pay a monthly fee to get back to the reach numbers we were seeing before.

    I also agree with some of the others that are non-profits, like a lot of animal rescues and shelters. People seeing their posts saves lives, and by not offering any options and just stopping the reach basically, the impact will be felt there as well.

    I just think Facebook needs to really learn the needs of the businesses that are using it, and how they can still make money, without small businesses going down. I'm not sure what they are doing over there, and it just keeps getting worse. My customers don't use Instagram, Google +, or Twitter...Facebook is our only option. Nobody reads newspapers anymore. I'm just super frustrated and quite frankly, disgusted with the whole situation. I hope they can figure something out soon.

  • Jun 27 Posted 3 years ago Pound Puppy Rescue

    This is extremely disheartening for a non-profit that relies on our Facebook page to spread the word. We don't have money for advertising. It does not seem fair to be put in the same box as for-profits. Even though we are listed as a non-profit, I get bombarded with offers to boost posts by paying. In the last couple months it is obvious that my posts aren't getting to the fans.

    I hear about FB's philanthropic side, but this issue is far from that! Does anyone know if there's a way to register as a non-profit to get out if this downward spiral? Without 'organic views' my organization could crumble.

    Thanks for your input. (Posted from a mobile device...please forgive typos!)

    Pound Puppy Rescue





  • Christopher Miller's picture
    Jun 23 Posted 3 years ago Christopher Miller

    Great article!  The last 3 months have certainly borne this out. 

    There's a lot of concern and resentment about Facebook making it tougher for us to get results using their platform.  Honestly, I came to the digital side after working in broadcasting for many years.  If you've worked in any of the media for any length of time, things only get tougher. They never get easier. And yet, it's up to us to get results.  Longing for the good old days never hits that mark.  

    Page Likes REALLY don't matter much now; those people who just Like your page can be very passive in their own online actions, compared to people you find through smart targeting of Facebook ads.  Facebook's changes in reach aside, the people who Like you after loving one of your posts are a lot more active, generally speaking, than those folks who simply click Like on your page.  

    So I gotta pay dirt-cheap prices to efficiently reach a super-focused target?  Twist my arm!  </sarcasm>

  • Jun 19 Posted 3 years ago Spot_IM

    Yes, but what if you're not a business? What if you're a non-profit digital publisher, a blogger, or some kind of website host that wants to find, build and engage with their community? They don't have money to spend and they're not looking to make money. Social media of this sort is broken. Good thing there are solutions for them and for-profit websites to host their own social network within their site. 

  • jasonverdelli's picture
    Jun 14 Posted 3 years ago jasonverdelli

    Excellent post Tara! Just like anything else, it will work better for some and not as well for others. Obviously their is always a cost to benefit, at least in business. Sometimes its money. Sometimes its time. Gaining more reach through Facebook will be worth it for some and not for others. I referenced your article in my latest post at Social HubSite. Again, great insight.

  • Jun 11 Posted 3 years ago Cohin Bellara

    If you see it based on a Marketing Strategy it makes a Lot of sense.If i have Data over 8M People what do i do with it all,very Simple i make use of it by selling it to legitimate business with a 50-50 chance of the date actually being feasible for the business one is into.

    Facebook Uses Facebook Ads to make things easy for them selves and dumps a million data in our face and says here you go,now choose what you like and let them see what you want them to see,if your lucky they might help your business.

    The Fact is how does Facebook  take the "Horse to the Water".Simple start decreasing your FB Fan Page likes and Show a New Template with a nice Tab That will help you Build You Audience.So i Guess thier Algorithm of Creating Oragnic Fans was Wrong and Now we Pay for it.Nice...........Ahhhh...Facebook Forgot to mention the Pages we all made was just to Lure us into thier trap.

    Facebook FAQ on Facebook Pages

    Step 1:Create a Facebook Page

    Step 2:Leave the Rest to us to use to make money out of you

    So what Choice do you have now you had a Business Page with  2000 Fans and now 500.

    So What you gonna do Brothaa!!!

    Build Audience. ;)



  • Ehtesham Shaikh's picture
    Jun 11 Posted 3 years ago Ehtesham Shaikh

    You guys think Facebook is doing such crappy think in order to make money out of it?

    Is he bankrupt or can’t make any profit without ads?

    I think those questions are crap and should be dump to the bin.

    For me it's an unexpected and unpredicted problem that Facebook is facing therefore hence it affects businesses.

    Let me explain you with the help of example.

    I normally spend approximately 30 minutes on Facebook from the day I created my account. Earlier I like 4-5 pages but now there is no limit to it, here the time is same but the feeds are much more then it was earlier.

    Therefore Facebook shows those feeds which users are interested in as per their interest.

    Check out the statement or answers to those problem by Brian Boland https://www.facebook.com/business/news/Organic-Reach-on-Facebook

  • May 31 Posted 3 years ago Little Sprouts NZ

    For us this is a terrible shame.  We give away life-changing packs of baby items for free to families in real need.  We made a commitment when we started to only spending donated funds on baby items.  We want every cent to go to where it's needed.  Even our boxes and our printing etc is donated!  And the primary way we have let families and businesses know about us is via Facebook.  As a user when I liked a page I thought I would get the news from that page, and I am sure that most (non business) users would think the same.  It's a shame there isn't an exception for registered charitable trusts like ours, though I can see the difficulty in try to verify that.


  • May 30 Posted 3 years ago Andrew Heaberlin

    The issue at hand is simple:


    I do not mind paying to boost a post to get a further reach.

    I do however mind having to pay for those new fans that I already paid for to see my posts.


    I have a food/restaurant blog ..and unless I pay to boost my post..only 8 people out of 700 fans will see my post.

    That's garbage and a ripoff 

    If you like a page. .you should be able to see updates and new posts..so it's also unfair to your fans.


    I do understand the need to monetize and make money..but how they are going about it is corrupt.

    As of yesterday..I could not even share my page.  It just asks if I want to share my page on my page posting as my page??

    What scam is that?

    As of right now I can still copy and paste my reviews on my personal page...but I have far less people there..because it's personal....but I'm sure FB is working to cancel that too.


    Perhaps FB will go the way of MySpace and G+ will be the new thing. I like G+ and use it as well...but as has been said..not enough people yet...but if FB continues on...that could change real soon.

  • May 29 Posted 3 years ago Karen Woods Ashley

    I understand Facebook is a business and, as such, must generate income. However, my Facebook recipe page does not make income, was not intended to do so. I have over 10,000 "likes" in just about 4 months since the page's inception - I do not charge anyone to see my page, it generates no income ... why should I have to pay fees in order for my fans to see my posts? 

  • May 21 Posted 3 years ago Gabead1974

    Hello all,

    Been reading the comments below and see a lot of great input! I am "new" to Facebook when it comes to business. I opened a page and noticed right away how hard this is and nothing is worse than working hard and posting only to be invisible from the people who chose to see your post! I hate Facebook because of the algorithm they are using which equates 1-10% of people seeing your stuff! Seriously?  I don’t  mind paying to target people but here is where I do mind. I don't like buying likes! I don't think Facebook is genuinely getting the people who are interested. In fact, I think they could be fake! Every single time I put an ad up for likes, I get tons from the Philippines which makes me very suspicious! Also, why should we pay for likes then have to pay again to have those likes you already pay for to see what you have to offer?! Complete rip off! If Facebook would at least raise the percentage of views to at least 30-40%, I would almost dump my wallet out to pay for the rest! Another unfair advantage is for the small businesses that just got started; there have been other businesses that have been around forever. Yes they got hit hard too, but the fact remains they still have an advantage because at the end of the day they still have a huge following they never had to pay for. So a new business comes in and totally has to do everything from scratch by paying or seeking out people to attract them to your page. I am all for companies making money, but the way Facebook is doing it is not fair at all.

  • May 12 Posted 3 years ago Jane Smith

    Hello, Lily

    One solution to the "problem" is to run contest using the third-party Facebook page apps. These contests will drive new fans (only ones who are really interested in your brand) and successfuly convert them into your customers. That's their purpose, though. I used megafanapps and from my experience it works. Small incentives such as direct coupons drive people to your PoS or ecommerce directly. Furthermore, you can use (or your fans can use) most of these apps on their smartphones or tablets. You only pay for a year and can use the app without any limits. For now this is maybe the best way to keep your fans on your page and, on the other hand, promote your business successfully. 

  • May 10 Posted 3 years ago LilyLor

    My reach dropped drastically the same time as Kelly's. On 2nd May I noticed that my posts do not engage people, and then I saw that they were delivered to only 1% of my audience... And since then, that's how it is. My posts "reach" 20-30 people... I'm a small local business, having almost 3000 Likes, and I spent quite a lot of money on Facebook, and cannot understand why they stop allowing us to orgaically reach people. And the worst is that they were playing with our time and misled us. I understand they are business, that's completely fine. But wat they are doing cannot be justified with that. However, the bottom line is that there is pretty little we an do here: either stay and pay, or leave...

  • May 2 Posted 3 years ago Kelly Martin

    Hi I have my own page, I run it to inspire people and for fun, its not for business and well it used to be fun but now with just over 1000+ followers and growing my reach as of this week is around 7 people. I am considering closing my page and going to google+ it is a shame that ordinary users are having to pay now. 

  • Apr 8 Posted 3 years ago Janel Lind

    Amanda, your appartment business should create a "group" instead of a "page" because if you are using it to keep residents informed on happenings..this platform gives you an ideal resolution. You can be the administrator of the group and add new tenents through private email or through facebook directly. Once a person moves, it is easy to remove them from the group..PLUS groups get AWESOME organic rankings through peoples facebook feed.

  • Apr 3 Posted 3 years ago OpenAdilo


    Facebook is now an ad platform. Period. The social aspects that made the platform popular are no longer available to everyone. Facebook apologists do not seem to value user choice. Algorithms are deciding who sees what posts for users who have made choices to see certain content. Facebook ignores them in favor of revenue to satisfy their shareholders.

    Users just don't know it yet. I have done the surveys... they don't know!! When they do,... as you say... FB will regret it.

    P.S. Facebook had years to create a sensible revenue model and they failed. Facebook is now at the mercy of Wall Street. This will end badly.


  • Apr 2 Posted 3 years ago barbarawickman

    Great info... thanks for all the excellent articles. 

  • Apr 1 Posted 3 years ago mikeviral

    The REACH of paying ads and organic is so far apart.  If I spend 10 dollars for my post to reach 30k people the engagement will 40.  The same organically will be over 2k engagement.  I own a company with over 1 million fans.  We are getting killed with this new system.

  • James Meyer's picture
    Apr 1 Posted 3 years ago James Meyer

    Yes AK, I've done it. Have I converted 100% of followers, no.  Could anyone?  No. But to answer your question yes I have, for several clients, in different industries.

    The various channels have different uses.  Certainly there may be, and often is, overlap but each has strengths, and weaknesses.

    Consider what you have of value for your followers and that becomes the key to growing an "owned" list.

  • Tara Urso's picture
    Apr 1 Posted 3 years ago Tara Urso

    I agree to an extent but there are only very few pages that I have added to an interest list... and i doubt many who aren't in the social media world like you and I even know what that is or how to do it.

    There are some pages which have actively asked their audience to add them to an interest list/ get notifications for every post, which is a good strategy. Laura Roeder of LKR social media for example has an arrow on her page's cover image pointing and asking for her audience to actively receive her updates, regardless of FB's algorithm. This is a great strategy and I bet a lot of other businesses wish they had been doing this, but like i said, I don't think most people have interest lists or have opted in to get every notification. Maybe I'm wrong and I would be interested to know just how many people opt in to get notifications.

    I do think that there is value in continuing with a fb page without paying if people are regularly navigating to it because of ulterior reasons than seeing what you have in the newsfeed, such as going to a networking event and giving someone your business card then they look at your fb page, a person just read an artice you wrote and clicks on your company's fb page link, your company has an awesome newsletter and a recepient clicks on your fb link, etc. But that's a whole other story. As you know, there are many facets to content marketing.

    When I said that the only way to reach your audience on fb is to pay, I was more referring to those with pages who have been relying on organic reach for their content to be seen. For those who are doing awesome newsletters/ emailers, going to or hosting events and just all around getting their name out there, and encouraging people to navigate to your facebook page, that's different.

    It's known that fb's organic reach has been bad for a while but if you have 1000 likes and reach goes down to 1%, only 10 people will see that post organically in the newsfeed. Even if you have an awesome post that people would want to share, what if those 10 people ignore it? My point is that the organic reach pool is getting smaller.

    Ps. I would like to know how many people use the interest list feature. I made a survey so anyone reading who is interested, please take it! >>

    Survey: Do You Use Either of Facebook's Features: "Get Notifications" or "Interest List"?

  • Apr 1 Posted 3 years ago John Harris


    First step is to stop paying for your likes. Second step is to purge the artificial likes you just paid for. Here is why: These likes take a portion of your organic reach that is equal the to portion they consume as likes. So if they are half of your likes, they in theory are getting half of your reach. Paid like accounts are rarely ever monitored so your message is not seen by those. Paid likes are rarely ever by your target audience, so even if your message is somehow seen, it's by those who matter.

    Purge your artificially created likes and use the money you were spending to bump up your exposure to your real audience. Doing both steps will maximize your organic reach and reduce the chances that you will pay to be sending your message to alot of backholes.


  • Mar 31 Posted 3 years ago Asjohnson

    Curious...we are in the apartment business and use Facebook as a means of keeping our residents informed on daily happenings in addition to occassional prospective communications. In your opinion should we walk away from Facebook if we aren't using it as a prospective tool? 


  • Mar 31 Posted 3 years ago Wollie

    Hi AK Stout... You Know there are solutions where you can run a fully functional website on your facebook fanpage.... Using a blog platform like wordpress and Facebook API...This allows you to and your fans to stay on facebook while interacting with each other....the diffs...you control everything... Just do a google search on Facebook Fanpage intergration with a wp plugin....you should get a lot of stuff

    As for the difficulty in generating targeted fans...and coting to acuier them...I am hopelesly lost...hahaha hope I helped a little...If I'm off topic sorry 

  • CubesCubesCubes's picture
    Mar 31 Posted 3 years ago CubesCubesCubes

    I absolutely welcome decreased organic reach.

    Facebook is simply another ad network. Sure, it's very different from more traditional advertising channels, but it was inevitably moving down this path. If you didn't see it coming and continued to recommend your clients to invest in a 'larger audience' then you should've known better.

    You're playing on someone else's playground. If you want to play by your own rules then start a website and nurture a community there. 

    As reaching people through social channels becomes more expensive, advertisers and marketers become more strategic and careful.

    There's no free lunch guys, deal with it.

  • Mar 30 Posted 3 years ago akstout18

    I respectfully disagree. As a consumer I hardly ever look at my news feed. I use Interest Lists let me see posts from pages of my choosing without the algorithm coming into play. I also simply intentionally navigate to many pages to see what they are doing, if they have events, what sales are going on etc. If I learn about a business else where I will scope them out on Facebook to try to learn a bit about them before I decide whether or not to do business with them. None of that has anything to do with the news feed. You may not gain any new exposure from people who don't already know about you if you're not willing to pay on Facebook but that does not mean there is still not value there for people who are scoping you out or intentionally navigate to your page. 

  • Mar 30 Posted 3 years ago akstout18

    You can pause/stop a boosted post at any time to pay less than the minimum shown when you initiated the boost. Sure it's a pain in the neck to remember to go back and do so but for people who only have one business page to remember it's not so hard a thing to do. 

  • Mar 30 Posted 3 years ago akstout18

    What about the people who intentionally navigate to a business' page to see what they are posting? Putting on my consumer shoes for a moment... I hardly ever look at my personal news feed... but they are many, many pages that I go to on a regular basis to see what the business is up to, what info they are sharing, do they have any sales, any events coming up? Also, I have many businesses that I've added to my interest lists... when I go to my list, those posts are not fed through the algorithm... I'm seeing everything from those pages that I have added to my list.

    I would never recommend my clients not use Facebook. I still think there is value in having a presense, an active presense at that, that people can see if they go to your page to scope you out and see what you are up to. We need not be so tunnel vision focused on the news feed being the only mean in which our content is being seen by consumers. 

  • Mar 30 Posted 3 years ago akstout18

    Sure that sounds good and theory. And if it was as easy as pushing out posts every now and then that say "click here to join our email list" or something similar that'd be all well and good (if people were actually paying attention and willing to do so.) But what's your method for doing so? Say you have 25k 'likes' on Facebook... how are you converting them to your list? You have 8,000 followers on Twitter, how are you converting them to your lists? I don't think it's that people don't get the idea that owned media is better than earned... I think it's that they are trying to interact with their consumers, where the consumers are... and it's much more difficult to convert people over to something you own/manage than you make it sound. And there's no way you're going to do that without paying. 

  • Mar 30 Posted 3 years ago akstout18

    The problem there is that the consumer is on facebook and wants to use facebook and do as much as possible without leaving facebook. They aren't interested in jumping around to 100 different branded community sites. This is why we need to interact with consumers where they already are/want to be. 

  • Mar 30 Posted 3 years ago akstout18

    Hi Amy,

    While it is true that the minimum you can boost a post shows $5, you can pause it at any time... so if you can remember to check on it, you can stop it at around $1 (or any amount of your choosing). Perhaps since Page 'Likes' won't matter if no one sees your posts... the budget for 'Likes' could be reallocated to boosted posts. Instead of using the option to post to friends and fans... maybe the 2nd option would be better for you where you can target specific demographics and interests.... this could be similar to the targeting you are already doing for Page Likes. 

  • Mar 28 Posted 3 years ago Amy G

    I've been trying to work through this conundrum for the last few weeks. One of the pages I manage has reach which has dropped to less than 1%.  Paying for post engagement is impossible as Facebook tells me I can't target such a small group (the page has just over 2000 fans). Boosting posts doesn't seem to help either, the minimum spend is $5 dollars, which works out to be $150 a month, not $30 - and the option is for "fans and friends of fans" - and list a "potential" audience of 100,000, so it isn't even guaranteed it's going to just my fans. The page is for a non-profit cause that is just getting started, it's pretty specific, and unlike a product, is unlikely to appeal to people who haven't directly friended it - meaning boosting reach is simply hurting engagement levels. 

    The company already pays $100 a month for page likes, but adding another $150 a month really isn't an option for a not for profit.They, and I, aren't opposed to paying to make Facebook work, but it seems that paying Facebook money is simply lining their pockets and not actually giving us anything for the money!

    I'm at a loss as to what to do - other than declare my job obsolete - Google+ doesn't have enough of a following in Australia to make it a viable alternative. 

  • adrianspeyer's picture
    Mar 28 Posted 3 years ago adrianspeyer

    I am suprised not one of the solutions offered was building your own branded community.There are many community solutions available that makes it easy for users to sign up with their current Facebook credentials and even share back to Facebook, while the data and contact info is still owned by the brand. If you are concerned about paying to contact fans or fear another social network could go the same way, it may be time to explore ways to get you and your community onto a platform you can control.  ( Full disclsoure: I work for Vanilla Forums, a community platform that offers this type of solution).

  • SueCockburn's picture
    Mar 28 Posted 3 years ago SueCockburn

    Tara, good article. We've become used to thinking of social media as free, and Facebook may be the biggest target for our frustration right now but the other networks are following suit. Yes, social media was free in the beginning - kind of like a lost leader, to lure in business. Now social media has, to some extent, a captive business audience. We've seen the potential and the value to building brand name recognition in particular. 

    While I'm not keen to pay Facebook to promote my posts, I understand the reality. They were set up as a business, a big business, not a charity. This has (likely) been a part of their strategy since day one. And they have been slowly, over the past few years, getting us ready for the change by slowly making it more difficult to get into the Facebook news feed and in front of ffans without paying. There has pretty much always been a cost to attract new fans, at least those not somehow connected to someone to us or our fans in some way.

    At this time, the cost is pretty small to get in front of a few thousand or more people in a localized area to hlep build brand name recognition. Larger companies of course need to get in front of more than a few thousand and will incur the larger cost of doing this.

    All this to say, while I'd rather Facebook didn't charge to get my business in front of fans, the reality is all social media networks are going this way. Five years from now we may be thinking of these as the glory days of social media, once the other networks begin to follow suit more obviously.

  • Mar 28 Posted 3 years ago krisdeleon

    I don't get why businesses are complaining to pay for Facebook. If you know the average liftime value of your customer, then you'll know how much you can spend to acquire that new customer. For example, if a new customer is worth $100 (profit) over his lifetime, you could spend up to $99 on acquiring that customer. 

    Let's say that you pay $50 to boost a post, and that post reaches 1000 people. Out of that 1000, 100 become qualified leads by subscribing to your mailing list. If only one of those leads becomes a customer, then you spent $50 on acquiring that customer. That would make you $50 profit over that customer's lifetime with your business. And this doesn't even include the brand awareness value your company receives from your promoted post.

    That's why it's important to track, measure and optimize performance of your Facebook ads, and have clear goals in mind when running Facebook ads. Then you can compare these results to your other channels, like radio, print, TV, digital, etc. and see which is most effective in reaching your target audience.


  • Talking Finger's picture
    Mar 28 Posted 3 years ago Talking Finger

    Until you have to, in perpetuity, pay for Boosted posts to Reach those same fans since Reach declines to 1%-2%.

  • Talking Finger's picture
    Mar 28 Posted 3 years ago Talking Finger

    Completely not true. 

    Let's say you can get new fans for $1 a day (not a reality, but let's just say this...and you will NEVER be able to spend less than a $1 a day...there isnt even a choice of this for ad spends). Let's also say we have the absolute best content in the entire world that our fans just LOVE.

    Since organic reach is down to 1%-2%, this means I will, in perputuity have to pay for Boosted posts (and this is NOWHERE NEAR a doolar a day...more like $8-$10 a day) to reach the fans I just spent a $1/day to attain.

    It is not a step forward in content maketing. Pages who have great content that was always sharable will need to pay to reach the advocates that will then share. And when they do Share, and you get a new fan, they will not see ongoing content without a boosted post spend. 

    Even with a focus on strong content (and any good social has already been doing this) to get that content out is going to cost much more than a $1 a day.


  • Mar 28 Posted 3 years ago MeetDeniseRenee

    I think the best use of a business's time (and money) on Facebook and any other social platform is not just to build up an audience there and think the job is done.  The goal should be to get them back to your properties and engage with you on your own turf.... advertise to get them off of FB and onto your site to download your whitepapers, watch your videos, sign up for your newsletter, buy a product from you, attend your conference, etc.  Facebook et al should be like a "bar:" you go there to meet and greet and when you find someone you're interested in, you get them out of the noisy environment to have a more meaningful conversation in a quieter space.  Ultimately, that conversation could - and in a business sense should - be the start of a long and beautiful relationship.

  • Talking Finger's picture
    Mar 28 Posted 3 years ago Talking Finger

    Well said...I replied to another post regarding this ridiculous strawman argument of "$1 a day". 

    And let's even aquiesce and say $1 a day gets people to come to your Page and Like. I will need to now pay for Boosted Posts on a continual basis to have those people I just spent the "$1 a day" to attain to see each piece of content ongoing in perpetuity.

    Brands for the win. Small business for the loss. Users of Facebook for the spam filled Home feeds by those who can afford big budgets for the loss.



  • Talking Finger's picture
    Mar 28 Posted 3 years ago Talking Finger

    Which is the complete opposite of what social was intended for: That the small business with a very limited budget can compete with the "big brands" based on value of product and service and strong engagement with a fan base. 

    Bye bye level playing feild, hello to spamed Home feeds by those who can simply afford to fill Home Feeds.

  • Talking Finger's picture
    Mar 28 Posted 3 years ago Talking Finger


    The article quotes "If you can't afford to pay $30 a month..." is a complete, non factual based strawman argument. Any business can afford $30 (which is a ridiculous dollar figure to begin with... a single Boosted post alone is $30 for many Pages). The problem we are seeing is that even when you do this, and you engage a fan...you then have to PAY AGAIN for them to see the next piece of content. And the next...and the next...diminishing returns to ROI (the exception being pushing to an ecommerce site)

    $30 might get them to the door, but if they cannot step inside long term and engage without paying for them again, then you get a crowded storefront with no one ever actually seeing whats in your display case. 

  • Talking Finger's picture
    Mar 28 Posted 3 years ago Talking Finger

    We all know Facbook is not a charity. 

    However, the point I want to make, and the many clients of ours who have been using Facebook for so long is the WAY Facebook is doing this. 
    After years of cultivationg fans and creating content to keep them interested and engaged, provide valuable information, and YES, even spending money here and there on ads and boosted posts...Facebook then pulls the rug out from underneath these very businesses. 

    I equate it to a CRM tool for example. I buy the tool, and enter in all of my contacts. Say it's a thousand. I pay for updates to the CRM tool over the years to keep it functioning. Then the CRM developer comes to me and says...oh by the way...if you want to contact the people in your CRM you have to now pay for each contact. 

    Facebook is once again puhing towards the concentration on the larger companies and big brands who have the budgets and resources to pay for this, at the sufferance of the small businesses that they should be embracing. We admin 140 FB Pages for clients, and many are now looking to move off of facebook in their disgust with the slap in the face to years of investments in time and money to build cultured audiences. Most have paid for fb ads here and there, and of course most have paid for Boosted Posts as well here and there (about an average of 2-3 per month). 

    Now Facbook is basically saying that was never good enough, so we will hide the fans you worked so hard to attain and keep engaged unless you pay us. 

    This is a move that Facebook is going to regret. I have already have had several clients pull any further efforts on Facebook beyond maintaining regula content. Two have cancelled creating a photo contest and a sweepstakes in the last week, and will now do this on their website with a push from other social media. I speak reguarly to groups an organizations teaching social and in the last coupel of weeks as this leaks out about a major crush to Reach, people are asking if this is all worth it anymore on Facebook when there are so many other great sites.

    What Facebook should have done is allow exsiting fans be reached via organic means, and somehow work out a way that businesses pay for reaching new fans. 

    G+ and other social networks are smiling. 

  • Tara Urso's picture
    Mar 28 Posted 3 years ago Tara Urso

    "If a business doesn't have a budget to pay for exposure then Facebook is pointless"

    that pretty much sums it up!

  • Tara Urso's picture
    Mar 28 Posted 3 years ago Tara Urso

    Completely agree james. Get those email addresses!

  • James Meyer's picture
    Mar 28 Posted 3 years ago James Meyer

    I think the whole point is if you are going to use Facebook, or Twitter or any other SM platform you need to convert your fans and followers to an owned list or something YOU control.

  • Mar 28 Posted 3 years ago Amy Decker

    While I understand that Facebook is a business that wants to make money, it's very difficult for someone like me to accept -- I admin a fan page devoted to animal welfare. I don't make money doing this, therefore I don't have money to spend on ad or reach campaigns. However, it's very important to spread the word about animal welfare and related causes and I'm seeing my posts delivered to a very small number of my over 22,000 followers. I would think Facebook could make some sort of exception in non-profit causes such as this. 

  • ubersocialmedia's picture
    Mar 28 Posted 3 years ago ubersocialmedia

    I no longer recommend use of Facebook to the vast majority of my clients. Even when a small business can afford to pay for exposure, i've seen that CTR's from News Feed adverts, with very careful targeting, have dropped down to around 4%-5% when previously the CTR I was able to achieve on Facebook News Feed ads was significantly higher.

    Users in the UK are abandoning Facebook (active logins have been declining for well over a year), and I know as a user, i'm sick of the same old rubbish appearing in my News Feed and i'm also sick of Facebook deciding what I want to see which stops me seeing a lot of content I do want to see but end up missing whilst it forces low quality drivel into my News Feed that I have no interest in.

    I think for a good few months now, as a rule, the number of people who are reported as seeing organic wall posts has already dropped well below 5% for all of the clients I work with.

    If a business doesn't have a budget to pay for exposure then Facebook is pointless, but many small business owners still don't realise how few of their followers actually ever see content they post, then wonder why they get tiny levels of engagement which puts them off using other forms of social media. which would actually be more beneficial to them.



  • Mar 28 Posted 3 years ago kengullette

    Nobody should apologize for Facebook by saying "They have to make a profit somehow." Actually, Facebook should allow people who like your page to see your posts. Period. They are ripping us off. And Facebook should make sure that when you pay to promote an ad to get more eyeballs and more "likes," only those interested in your subject sees it. The sad truth is, when we have paid for Facebook "likes" in the past, even when we have done so under Facebook's rules, Facebook allows people to like our page who have no interest in it. And so, when we do pay so our "likes" can see our ad or post, a lot of those who we pay for STILL have no interest in our product, and the ones who do are a tiny fraction of the ones who see the promotion. Enough. Let's focus on strategies that make us money -- like blogs, YouTube videos, podcasts, and pay-per-click. At least those attract people who are interested.

  • Tara Urso's picture
    Mar 26 Posted 3 years ago Tara Urso

    Are you using ads on the sidebar or sponsored stories? Are you focusing on creating great content that people want to share? Do you have a targeted landing page or have you tried creating a custom landing page within Facebook? If you're creating sharable content, your cpc should be lower because people want to like, comment and share.

  • Zach Ethan's picture
    Mar 25 Posted 3 years ago Zach Ethan

    Hi Avtar,

    You're certainly right that it's cheaper to reach people who are already your fans, but I don't think the price drops significantly. The CPC is still fairly high from my experience, I've actually never experienced a CPC below $0.25. Any advice for getting my CPC lower? We're almost always paying more than $0.50 CPC. Even with use advanced targeting and Power Editor it really hasn't helped decrease CPC much. 

    Any insight you can provide would be greatly appreciated! 

  • Zach Ethan's picture
    Mar 25 Posted 3 years ago Zach Ethan

    Hi Tara,

    Could you please elaborate on how I could spend $1/day to reach our entire fanbase? 

    I don't think it's feasible. I've toyed around with different CPC and CPM pricing strategies and I don't even think I've ever been able to reach our entire fanbase with less than $10/day; in most cases it's substantially more. I'd love to figure out how to cut our costs down to reach our entire fanbase.

    I do agree that content marketing is the new trend that's catching on, however you still have to pay to play. Great content alone isn't the answer unfortunately. 

  • Tara Urso's picture
    Mar 25 Posted 3 years ago Tara Urso

    Thanks for posting Zach,

    As Avtar said, it's cheaper to reach current audience members. You may need to spend more than $1 per day at first... but once you gain your targeted audience, you can spend less.

    Also, this could really be a step forward in terms of content marketing because since organic reach is declining, companies will really begin understand the importance of engagement (more so than before), pushing them to actually create content worth sharing. Those who don't want to/cannot spend as much may really focus on the content creation aspect.

  • Tara Urso's picture
    Mar 25 Posted 3 years ago Tara Urso

    Thanks for the comment Avtar. Yeah, that is one crucial point about paying for reach with Facebook, through targeted campaigns you can get those in your target audience to like your page and it's like an investment in the future because it's cheaper to reach them. This is why posting content behind a fan gate is a good idea, you gain the like and reach your target audience all in one!

  • Avtar Ram Singh's picture
    Mar 24 Posted 3 years ago Avtar Ram Singh

    Hey Zach,

    While I echo your sentiment about paying over and over for fans - one crucial aspect that you're missing is that promoting to your fans costs less. Instead of paying $0.25 CPC over and over by targeting an audience - once you've made them your fans, your CPC drops significantly (at least from my personal experience). So it makes it cheaper to target to your fans.

    Which is why - target your "Page Like" posts properly!

  • Zach Ethan's picture
    Mar 24 Posted 3 years ago Zach Ethan

    I think most business owners have no problem with paying Facebook for advertising, I believe the primary problem is having to pay to get new fans, and then pay again to reach the same fans you just paid for. Then repeating this cycle again and again. Most small businesses are willing to pay for Facebook advertising, but they simply cannot afford to promote every single post. 

    Also I'm not sure what Brian Carter was getting at with his point, have any of you tried spending $1/day on Facebook advertising? It doesn't do much. If you want real results you need to be spending at minimum $10+/day to expand your reach, $1 will do nothing. 

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