Is Facebook Forcing Promoted Posts On Creators?

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Ever since Facebook introduced the concept of “promoted posts,” people have been seeing a significant decrease in their interactions from fan page posts. Ideally, a regular non-promoted post should reach 10-20% of your audience. However, people with fan pages have been seeing much lower percentages in terms of organic reach. Facebook’s EdgeRank algorithm is responsible for separating promoted posts into a category that is designed to reach a maximum number of viewers. With Facebook asking for payment for promoted posts, the possibility that non-promoted posts are no longer reaching that 10-20% is very realistic.

With Facebook struggling to satisfy investors now that they have gone public, the need to bring in a larger revenue stream is incredibly important. Introducing the promoted post was Facebook’s way of pacifying critics who believed the social media site’s ads were no longer an effective revenue generator. The word is still out in regards to whether or not promoted posts are the answer to Facebook’s financial woes, but as of this moment, Facebook’s stock is down 2.7%.

So the question is: Would Facebook intentionally lower the reach tied to non-promoted posts just to force people to buy promoted posts? If this were the case, it would be an extremely shady move on Facebook’s part. But as the blunders of Google have proven time and time again, multi-billion dollar companies live in a sort of moral grey area.

With pressure to show investors that Facebook can turn a profit, twisting and turning the site’s share percentages seems like a natural move. If most companies and artists rely on Facebook to get the word out about their product, they will obviously feel the squeeze of share numbers dropping. If the average number of people reached through regular posts continues to drop, a creator’s reaction will most likely be to turn to promoted posts. For a while now, Facebook has been the primary free advertising location for businesses, bands, and creators; Facebook could now be asking for us to return the favor.

If Facebook is lowering the rate of fans reached through normal posts, it doesn’t specifically mean that you need to purchase promoted posts. Obviously, as a creator you want as many people as you can get to read your updates. However, having a ton of eyes on your posts doesn’t mean automatic interaction. At the end of the day, interaction with your posts comes down to how well you are marketing yourself as a creator. Think about whether you are communicating with fans and posting regularly. If that isn’t the case, then it is doubtful a sponsored post will help you out.

We reached out to a Facebook representative about the drop in shares and were told, “The number you are trying to reach has been disconnected.”

Have you seen a dramatic drop in your audience’s interaction on Facebook? How about a drop in organic views and reach? We want to hear from you. Make some noise below.

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