How Does The Recent Facebook Scandal Affect Marketers?
Undoubtedly, you have heard of Facebook’s recent scandal. Cambridge Analytica is a political data firm hired by the 2016 Donald Trump election campaign. Their job was to identify personalities of American voters and influence their behavior. The tools offered by the firm accessed the private information of over 50 million Facebook users, including identities, friends, networks, and more. This information was used to target audiences with digital ads to influence the election.
Facebook has seen a 24% decrease in the average time users are spending on their platform. However, even with the call to #DeleteFacebook, most users likely won’t go through with it, at least not permanently. Social Media has become such an integrated part of consumers’ lives that many of them are, quite simply, addicted to it.
So, what is the best way to ensure your Facebook practices don’t fall flat?
You will almost definitely need an ad budget to stay at the top of your marketing game. However, if you have an excellent strategy in place, you could minimize your budget. Many companies realize this and have an ad budget in their marketing plan. In fact, even with the recent scandals, ad spend on Facebook has increased by about 62% in Q1 2018. This shows us that pay-to-play is still an ever-present method of getting your information in front of your audience.
Start A Conversation
The growing interest in messaging apps, such as Facebook-owned WhatsApp and Snapchat, indicate what users are craving more of: conversation. Networks such as Facebook have started to lose their appeal to typical users, whereas messaging apps are steadily increasing their daily usage rates.
Focusing heavily on interaction with followers can help to increase engagement and interest in your company. Chatbots, for example, are becoming widely popular as companies realize the importance of offering timely responses. Utilizing bots and Messenger to connect one-on-one with your audience should be at the top of your marketing strategy.
Likewise, using the proper networks will help minimize time and money spent on misplaced advertising. Rather than creating accounts on every social network, spend time analyzing your target demographic and which platforms they use. Visual companies do great on Instagram, whereas companies aimed at the 50+ crowd are more successful on Facebook.
As far as Facebook is concerned, creating a more personable and engaging experience the way to go for just about any brand. Invite your audience to answer questions, caption behind-the-scenes photos, or share their experiences. Creating a welcoming and engaging page will help to keep your audience coming back for more.
At the end of the day, marketers must have a well-structured marketing strategy to keep their Facebook engagements up. This strategy should include at least a minimal ad budget. However, despite algorithm changes and scandals, Facebook will likely continue to be a heavy player in the social networking game.