Anti social Facebook is double dipping

Written by on January 20, 2015 in Opinion with 0 Comments

dislikes on screen, 3d renderFacebook is becoming, like, hugely uncool amongst teenagers. After all, who would post something on a site where their parents post photos of their pets and parties? Teenagers have gone elsewhere. This we knew. What is perhaps less widely known is that Facebook is essentially charging advertisers twice to reach their audience.

If you as a company pay to promote a page on Facebook and amass, say, 10,000 nicely targeted people who like your page, that seems a good way of promoting your business. But when you post something of potential interest to these followers, it is likely that 80 percent of them will not see it in their timeline. Because Facebook only posts it to 20 percent. Or less.

As one small businessman put it, “it is like paying to promote your shop, and then when potential customers walk in, having to pay again for them to see what is on the shelves. To me, that is not an ethical business model.”

Whatever you think of business model, it is clear that Facebook is getting pretty good at finding the right people for a business to target.

The same small businessman launched an auction web site and used Facebook’s filtering tools to identify the right profile of potential customer. This he did through key words appearing in posts, as well as targeted demographics, location and so on. It did not take him long to build his followers to close to 10,000. Impressed, he decided to use the sponsored adverts to push news of specific events to his followers. And was disappointed to find that only 20 percent were getting these posts. Unless he paid more.

Facebook is partnering with more and more operators to tease out contextual information and combine social information with device, usage and location information. This will allow them to offer the right offer at the right moment. But operators need to be aware that Facebook is no longer a completely social network and is becoming very clever in holding businesses to ransom. Double dipping is not good business.

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About the Author

About the Author: Alex was Founder and CEO of the Global Billing Association (GBA), a trade body focused on the communications sector. He is a sought after speaker and chairman at leading industry conferences, and is widely published in communications magazines around the world. Until it closed, he was Contributing Editor, OSS/BSS for Connected Planet. He is publisher of DisruptiveViews and previously BillingViews. .


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