The other day my friend Shauna told me a discovery, which highlights how Facebook is becoming more antagonistic to small businesses, creatives etc., and also less useful. She’d been promoting a concert and workshop for Sharon Knight on Facebook and had created a Facebook event page and invited people to it. She shared it on her personal page as well as on other pages, but what she discovered is that most of her friends didn’t even see the event share in their newsfeed. The only way they saw it is if they visited her personal page directly. Then she told me how she hadn’t seen a Facebook event share I did until she visited my personal page. Further discussion revealed that if the words buy or show or something else sales related are used in an update, its much less likely that people will see the update.
If you are someone who has a Facebook business page, you already know that the business page is next to useless. You can have lots of likes, but only have a post get through to a small percentage of those likes. The reason that happens is because Facebook is trying to get you to pay money to boost the post. However even paying money to boost the post doesn’t guarantee you’ll reach a significant amount of other people you weren’t reaching before. With the changes to event sharing, Facebook is again trying to get you to pay money to get your post in front of the eyes of people. So what can you do?
I tried an experiment where I wrote about an event and posted it and then posted a comment with the link to event. Apparently more people did see that post, because the link wasn’t in the original post. That could be something to try as a way to get around Facebook metrics. However, I also think its fair to say that Facebook is becoming less and less useful for marketing purposes, and whether you’re an author, musician, artist, or small business, the reality is that every dollar needs to count in a big way if you’re going to make the most of it. Facebook marketing isn’t what its cracked up to be, so while you can do it, I recommend exploring alternate approaches as well, depending on whatever event you are trying to do. I’ve found that flyers, if used correctly, can actually do a lot to generate interest in an event, but some of that involves conversations with whoever is hosting your event.