As a band, we came to the decision not to use Facebook. Although it used to be a great way to reach your audience and engage with people, the party is over and we’ve seen bands paying hundreds of pounds just to reach THEIR OWN audience. Instead, we’re using good ol’ fashioned email to keep you up to date with what we’re doing.
I’m keen to let people know why we’re not using Facebook but also i don’t want to bore you to death so, I’ve boiled it right down to the core reasons.
TL;DR: FB Bad – Email Good.
Relevancy score and news feed
When Facebook first became everyone communication means of choice every company and joker in the world became obsessed with getting you to like their page, whether that be the people who make your toilet paper, the meme queens or your favorite band so they could repeatedly hit you with their core message; “buy our stuff forever”. Facebook began to realise it’s platform was becoming nothing more than a spam feed and changed its news feed algorithm to show you only things – they – consider relevant. One of the ways in which they determine relevancy is showing the page’s posts to a small number of the page’s fans (people that have liked a page) and if those fans engage with that post they’ll show it to some more, so people began to struggle to reach their own opted-in audience. This was fine for brands, they understand a billboard doesn’t come for free and so Facebook, being the oh so generous capitalists they are, created a system in which brands would pay to reach their own audience as well as new consumers. This left artists a little in the dark, anyone who does this as a hobby would post and maybe 5 of their 100 fans would see a post.
Which leads us on to the next big issue….
Fake likes and “your mate Tim”
As soon as people realised likes are a way of boasting their social approval (the higher the like on your page the better you must be right?!) people started paying 3rd party companies to like their pages from what are known as click farms or likes farms. These are mostly people in third world countries with an internet connection and an index finger. Surprisingly few are bots. Facebook decided it would crack down on these fake accounts by flagging if a certain number of like would all of a sudden like one page from the same IP address (that’s the thing that lets them know where you are at all times) and banning those accounts.
Problem solved right!? Well.. no. The like farms got wise to this and so randomly like a whole bunch of other pages as well as the pages they’re being paid to like. So people who hadn’t paid for likes would start getting fake likes too. Now pair this with the relevance score algorithm and now every artist is sending posts out to fake accounts and their message their fans asked to see isn’t getting delivered.
Another problem is “your mate Tim”. When bands start pages they often are prompted by Facebook to invite their friends to like their page. Seems innocent enough but “your mate Tim” is liking your band page because he likes you and wants to be polite. He might hate your music and so will likely never engage with your posts. Again, pair this with relevancy score and he’s actually in the way of people who might want to see it.
Data protection and safety from the market
Facebook use your email address and every characteristic from your account including the language you use, your location, gender, likes, dislikes, private chats, friends, groups and even off-site activity (almost any website site with a Facebook pixel) in order to sell that data (clumped in with other people’s data) to advertisers who want to target someone exactly like you. They can even allow brands to cross reference mailing lists with Facebook accounts (see “lookalike audience”) in order to sell to other like you.
And there is nothing you can do about it
Weigh that up with good ol’ fashioned email where we can reach you all and you can opt out of us at any time if we become to “marketing” or disingenuous. – I know which one i prefer.
Categorised in: Rants & Reasoning
This post was written by Besant