Oh, Facebook. What are we going to do with you?
I have such mixed feelings about Facebook this month. On the one hand, they've just implemented a feature that, let's face it, they should have done YEARS ago (or at least in time for Giving Tuesday): the ability to donate to nonprofits directly through their Facebook pages.
On the other hand, users have noticed that brand page reach has taken a sudden downturn. This isn't just anecdotal evidence, either: Execs at Facebook have flat-out said that organic reach for brand pages will decline due to their yet-again-revamped News Feed algorithm (they never tire of tinkering with that, do they?).
What's a cash-strapped nonprofit to do in the face of fewer eyeballs on their content? Well, Facebook simply recommends brand page managers simply buy more ads.
...Thanks, Facebook. Great to know you understand our plight.
The guy in the video below, however, proposes an alternative solution: Start investing more time in other networks. Which, honestly, isn't a terrible idea.
The advice I've always given people regarding Facebook is to post great content that their fans will want to share. And now I'll add to that advice that nonprofits should take advantage of the new donate button as well. But if the people who want to share your content or donate to your nonprofit don't even see what you post or know that you exist in the first place, well...what do we do?
It's not like we can ignore Facebook, with its 1.15 billion users. But is it time for us to reconsider the role Facebook should play in our social media strategy, or dramatically adjust our tactics?
Some people have had pretty good success with email campaigns, where they link to Facebook content in e-blasts and encourage readers to Like and share it, for example. It seems almost antithetical to the concept social media to have to promote content on one medium through another, but maybe that's what it'll take to get eyeballs these days?
What do you think? Is your nonprofit planning to adjust its Facebook strategy based on this news? What tips would you share with other nonprofits wrestling with this conundrum?
Update 12/16/13: Apparently 100% of the money donated through the new "Donate" button goes directly to the nonprofit...but Facebook won't share any information about the donors with the nonprofit. Another good news-bad news situation. [Source: John Haydon]