Oops, they did it again.
If you’ve been hiding under a rock or way back out bush, then you may not have heard that on Friday 19th of February, Facebook deleted ‘news content’ from Australian users, including a myriad of Australian media Facebook pages.
Fast forward a week later, and many of these pages were restored, due to fast political action of Facebook and the Australian government.
Yes, Facebook used their power to take away our news, and block our posts, and yet in some ways we’ve always known they called the shots.
After all, we accepted Facebook’s terms and conditions when we signed up to connect with our family and friends on the world’s fastest growing tech platform. That bites, but accepting those terms and conditions is also the price we pay for use of a free platform to attract leads and likes to our businesses.
You can read the detail on most news channels so I won’t go into that, but it is important to note that this is not the first time that Facebook has been in the news in the past twelve months: lawsuits against them have included illegal monopolization, antitrust and unlawful conduct.
What can we learn from this?
This time – small business owners, as well as large business owners across Australia were impacted.
Facebook accounts were even scrubbed in error due to the change, and if you were unfortunate enough to own a media business, well you would have woken up to a deleted page (ouch!).
Most small business owners were not massively impacted outside of being restricted from sharing or posting content on Facebook pages if they were in Australia.
But the scramble that ensued resulted in many unhappy Facebook users and businesses looking for other places to share their content. It also made plenty question their business relationship with Facebook.
And, I continued to repeat what I’d been saying for years:
>> If you want to make money in online marketing you need to stop panicking and start managing your online risk.
Now, would you like some good news?
There are steps you can take, for a healthy relationship with your socials that mitigates the risk and helps you get back power and control of your social media channels.
Let’s take a look at those now.
Step 1: Back up your Facebook Page.
Let’s assume that up until this point you haven’t backed up your Facebook Page.
If you have, congratulations – cue applause! You’re clearly smart enough to know that apps and media can be deleted from the internet.
If you haven’t though, like most of us here, then click here for a simple process walking you through what you need to do.
Step 2: Recognise that your Facebook Page is not your Business.
Your business sits as a standalone.
Your Facebook Page is not your business, nor is your Google listing, your Instagram page or your website.
Any of these platforms can be deleted in a heartbeat and leave you in the dust wondering where your intellectual property has gone.
Create your content offline and then post it to your pages and channels, knowing that you have mitigated all risk if your channels are deleted.
Step 3: Minimise Risk through a Multi-Traffic Social Strategy
Your financial advisor told you not to put all your eggs in one basket: a mix of Australian and international property, shares, cash and gold, they said. You ignored them though and decided to purchase shares in one stock. Guess what, that stock fell, and with that so did your life savings.
You’d never do it financially, so don’t do it on your channels. Be able to pivot to another channel as needed.
For example, right now I have a strategy combining Facebook, Facebook Groups, Instagram and Pinterest. Make sure your selected channels also sit well with your target market and their preferences.
Step 4: Create Your Own Content on an Offline Platform (or Save it There)
If you create your own content, you can use it:
- On Facebook
- On your website
- On Instagram
- On Twitter
- On Linkedin
- And anywhere else you choose to do so.
Your own content trumps other content because you can choose where and when you share it.
You own the intellectual property. You can repurpose it any time, and most importantly, it is yours. It belongs to you.
It showcases your business, your personality and your authenticity.
This is what your clients and prospects want to see. It helps you avoid tyre kickers, because your dream leads will resonate with what you have to offer.
Step 5: Take Your Clients Off Your Social Media and Get them Into Your Sales Funnels
You should be in the process of taking all your leads OFF social media and getting them into your sales funnels as fast as possible.
There’s so many ways to do this, including:
- Creating groups where you engage with your leads
- Setting up “freebies” that your leads actually want
- Running challenges and webinars
- Suggesting your leads should subscribe to your newsletters
- Direct messaging your leads (this needs to be done with great care and attention, please, no spam!)
Leads that engage with you, will buy from you. It is that simple. If not today, then tomorrow.
Step 6: Use Paid Traffic
If all else fails, then paid traffic will still get you results, providing you know your numbers well.
At this time on my personal Facebook feed, I’m really only seeing two types of publicly visible posts: Group posts and engagement, and Facebook paid or sponsored ads.
If we pay Facebook for advertising it seems unlikely that they will take your post down, given there is a direct financial benefit for them as a business.
Currently less than 5% of Australian businesses are using Facebook ads, meaning there are still a lot of opportunities for growth in this area.
However, you need to understand your return on investment and metrics in order to make them work.
Step 7: Sales Funnels Work
While I feel for those affected by these changes, I did see the writing on the wall. This is why I’ve been taking my leads OFF social media and INTO my own sales funnels from day ONE in my business.
And, it’s the reason why I’m not as obsessed with social media strategies as I am with where those leads end up – in a sales funnel.
Your voice and your content matters online. The world truly needs your product, so getting your message out there is vital. Which traffic strategy you use matters less than what you use it for and how you own it.
Your business is worth nothing without a database or email list of interested and active prospects waiting to buy from you.
Start minimising your social risk today
Whether you were impacted by the Facebook changes or not, most likely you are now rethinking how you do business, and rightly so.
Focus on following the above steps to mitigate your risk, and realise that the traffic matters less than the highway and certainly matters much less than the destination – the place where your leads turn into your customers.
CONNECT WITH DANIELLE:
Facebook: Social Media Supermum
LinkedIn: Danielle Arkit
Social Media Supermum
Danielle Arkit, the Social Media Supermum is a mumpreneur who created and grew her online business to $10K days while managing two kids under the age of three and a husband away half the year with no babysitters.
Danielle is passionate about teaching mumpreneurs how to get their priorities right, book out their diaries and attract leads effortlessly to their businesses. Danielle holds an Masters of Business Administration with majors in Marketing and IT and has over 20 years experience in strategic and digital marketing.
She works with e-commerce, service-based and coaching businesses to empower them in understanding and implementing marketing strategies to get and close leads into sales.