In October last year, Copyblogger announced that they were leaving Facebook. In an in-depth article they revealed both the numbers and the personal experiences that influenced this decision. And they weren't the only ones. In 2014, other companies went public with their reasons for leaving the world's most popular social network, and compared with previous years the total number of users declined.
That was roughly the same time that Ello popped up. Pitched as a deliberate alternative social network, one that is "not owned by advertisers" and would not track your posts and interactions, people started clambering for invites to its beta version. It’s not surprising that more and more businesses questioned if they too should abandon the good ship Facebook when it comes to their social media marketing.
In our opinion this is not a bad thing - it's always good to regularly evaluate if something is or isn't working for your business. But with Facebook, how will you know whether to stay, or go?
Are your customers on Facebook?
If your target market includes the kind of people who use Facebook regularly, be it for social, search or other purposes, this is the best possible reason for you to stay on Facebook. If you're not a Facebook user yourself you might not know if your customer is, so ask your employees, or check out this report on demographics of social media users. You may even discover that your customers are more active on a different social network.
Related Article: Your Target Audience Awaits in These Niche Social Networks
Are you using Facebook in the wrong way?
Depending on who you talk to, some will argue that Facebook is the best or worst place for marketing your business. In our experience with Facebook paid advertising and promotional content, we found that Facebook was not a great sales channel for us. Instead, for us Facebook is a place where we share content to inspire and inform our followers, rather than a platform for acquiring new users.
What's your ROI?
It’s basic business sense to never spend more than you earn, and the same applies to Facebook. We spend a fraction of the time and money that other companies do on our Facebook page, and we receive many benefits, although they are admittedly difficult to quantify. Firstly it serves as an additional communication channel with our customers, which has value. Secondly, it shows our human side, and because we update regularly (5-6 times a week) new customers can see we're active. For us at Findmyshift, this feels as though it’s worth more than the amount of time and money we’re spending on managing the page.
Is Facebook getting in the way of your productivity?
Unless it's the industry you work in, social media shouldn't be getting in the way of the day-to-day running of your business. As a distraction-rich activity, it's not difficult to see how "dangerous" simply logging on to Facebook could be, so if you have low willpower, maybe removing temptation is worth more than the risk of not being on there? Alternatively, try using Buffer to schedule posts so you can limit how often you log in.
Do you enjoy it?
Sounds obvious, but why do something that you don't enjoy? Furthermore, if you find creating content for Facebook dull, it's unlikely your readers and followers are going to enjoy reading it. We work as a team to source relevant content for our social media channels and only share articles we find useful, inspiring or entertaining.