The Gamble of Doubling Down on Social Media

Black Jack Hand

This article from Business Insider talks about how Proctor & Gamble is struggling to meet its marketing goals after the CEO made an announcement that they were going ‘all-in’ on social media.

In a recent interview, P&G’s CEO is now saying they are instead going to increase their paid search budget and focus on traditional marketing efforts like sampling. While P&G is working with the biggest ad budget on the planet, what they learned can shed some light for the rest of us.

Facebook Changed the Rules

One thing that made the gamble on social media not work the way P&G planned was that Facebook changed the rules of the game. Facebook changed its algorithm for what people see in their news feed. Business pages went down in impressions significantly.

Is it unfair for Facebook to ‘change the rules’? Not really. Facebook is a free service. It isn’t like you paid for the features they promised you. That free service comes to you thanks to ads delivered to you by your ‘likes’ and activities. As Facebook matures, its job is to show users the content and ads they respond to best. That left many a brand page on the cutting room floor.

What can you do?

So what is a business supposed to do? If Facebook is your marketing channel of choice, you need to make darn sure you are delivering really, really good content that people like and respond to. The more people like and respond to your content, the more you will show up in people’s news feeds.

Second, you need to focus your marketing efforts on your own territory! Those rules won’t change at the drop of a hat.

Your owned marketing territory is your website, your blog, your email list and/or your contact list. Social media sites are great, they are popular, they are where people are, but they are also owned by stakeholders that are worried about their social media sites making money, not how you use them to market your business.

Social media is a great way to let people know about your company, build trust, create conversations and engage current and future customers. What we as businesses need to do is use those opportunities to get people to do something else with your business like participate on your owned marketing channels.

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