Facebook ‘Likes’ are difficult to balance. On the one hand, it’s easy to get obsessed by accumulating virtual thumbs-ups at the cost of failing to input your time into other aspects of your business; and on the other hand, your Facebook page can act as a great marketing tool for your business in general, humanising it to the public, and it can tell the story behind the scenes, so ‘likes’ can boost business, and generally be of high value.
However some business pages are beginning to lose ‘likes’ like there’s no tomorrow? If this is the case for you, it may be time to analyse your page to see if there’s a problem – or even one at the heart of your business itself.
A sudden drop in Facebook interest may be nothing to do with your business whatsoever. For one thing, recent technical changes have resulted in Facebook culling a lot of ‘fake’ accounts, which may explain your missing likes. Some businesses have noticed a quantity of ‘likes’ suddenly disappearing at once, this is likely to be due to Facebook’s ‘clean up’ so it is nothing to do with you losing popularity.
While it can be frustrating to lose these ‘likes’ it is important you are marketing your business to genuine people, so there is nothing to worry about.
Incomplete/unused Facebook page…
If your page looks anything less than 100 percent professional, people will lose interest. The most common variation of this is businesses which set up a page and invest heavily in it for a month or two and then abandon it, assuming the hard work is complete.
Nothing turns customers off more than seeing your last update was three months ago. If you’re not consistently turning out interesting, engaging material, people will simply turn off. Make sure this isn’t you. Think about what you emit and make sure you are professional, and look appealing.
Conversely, there is such a thing as ‘too much information’. If you post more than 4 updates a day, people will get fed up with you clogging up their timeline. Ideally, you want to post something engaging in the morning, again for people on lunch break, then maybe one or two more posts for the end of the day maximum. Anymore and people will be seeing more of you than their friends – resulting in a rapid delete.
Make sure you understand social media and what it is about. Bad language, poorly thought out content, and an aggressive tone, will put off scores of potential customers. Common mistakes can be getting too argumentative with other users, being too needy, excessive use of caps locks or exclamation marks and smiley face icons. All is these are a turn off for most people, as it comes across as begging for attention and emits a bad tone.
Facebook users also dislike businesses complaining or generally being unprofessional. This is likely to affect smaller businesses who don’t quite understand the boundary between social/professional. Remember your page represents your business. It might be social media, but your page isn’t the place to air your views and opinions on life and its frustrations, keep this on your personal profile. Consider what your write, and make sure it is relevant to your business.
If you’ve followed the above steps, are reasonably sure most of your ‘likes’ weren’t coming from fake accounts and the problem persists, it might be time to take more drastic action.
First, research if there’s a wider negative perception of your brand in the offline world. You could have the best social media team in the world, but if you’re company is attracting negative press (for whatever reason); people are going to drop you faster than you can say ‘unlike’.
On the other hand if you are small scale and there is no reason for negative press and you’re pretty sure the problem is originating in your page itself, you could try implementing Facebook’s negative feedback checker. Click on your ‘engaged users’ column on your ‘insights’ dashboard and it will give you a rundown of how many people are engaged with your post and how many responded negatively to it. If you’re getting high negative feedback, you can go through post by post and see what seems to be turning people off. From there, you can start to adjust your posts accordingly. It’s a dispiriting process, but one that means you can instantly see how right or wrong your various approaches are. After a week or two of painful lessons, you may be ready to start attracting lost customers back.
At the end of the day, Facebook likes aren’t the be-all and end-all of a business. But they are a useful device for measuring how the public perceive you. While minor drops usually level out over time, a major one can be cause for concern. Keep an eye on your social media output; think about what you are writing, analyse responses, and adjust accordingly to feedback.