A typical post on Facebook is seen by about 12% of the posters followers. Of course this varies based on the topic of the post. Something that is funny or controversial may get a higher percentage of readers who follow to like, comment and share. Of course the dullards that post what they had for lunch may have fewer interactions. The more interesting post the more social interaction.
This is exactly the strength of Facebook.
The week prior to Facebook’s public launch the company started testing a program that would allow you to purchase priority placement of your posts. In effect, they are allowing you to make sure that all of your followers see your message by letting you buy the exposure. You get priority top positions on your followers news feed. Apparently over and over as long as you pay for it. This is not the typical Facebook advertising. I can think of a couple of reasons to have something like this – to announce a death, a move, a pet needing to be rescued…. But this is not the intent of Facebook.
Facebook already allows you to get your message out to more people – it is called advertising. And if people want to opt out they can. Perhaps the point Facebook is trying to make is that they don’t like you opting out. They need to make a buck.
Facebook needs to generate new revenue. On May 18, 2012 they went public amid a cloud of controversy. Facebook will now be held accountable for both long and short term performance by stockholders.
The move to be able to pay to have a post promoted means that your news feed can be clogged up by your rich but boring uncle Bob who has to tell everyone about each doughnut he eats –potentially making you miss the news feeds about your poor but pregnant nieces experiences with her first pregnancy; or what ever is important in your world.
The point is, chances are very good that Facebook will alienate existing users by doing whatever it takes to make a buck.
What do you think? Add your comments below.