survey launch: the death of organic reach on social media

If you work in digital comms you'll be aware of a storm coming down the path. It's about Facebook. What you post may not be seen unless you have an advertising budget to help promote it. We're launching a survey with the nice people at Deeson Creative on social media and advertising. We'd love you to take part in it. But first here's a take on where we are and where we are headed.

by Emily Turner 

How many people have told you that they’ve seen a tail off of engagement on Facebook and that fail-safe images no longer bring forth the plethora of likes, shares and comments they used to?

If you’ve heard this, you are experiencing what has already hit the private sector hard. Social media as we know it is on the brink of huge change and advertising is about to become crucial to success if you want to carry on reaching fans, followers and subscribers.

Why are the good times ending? Blame those pesky venture capitalists who have asked for more return on investment. We are now involved in a big experiment to monetise social media.

The result will be the creeping of curation and your content will need to be in A-1 condition to bypass evaluation algorithms and reach your audiences.

 In April, LinkedIn turned off products and services pages and switched to showcase pages. They introduced the content marketing score and trending content so they can rank your posts and measure their value for other users. Want to know your content marketing score? You’ve got to share your quarterly marketing budget first.

On Facebook, Ogilvy has tracked brand engagement and found that non-advertising posts appearing in fan newsfeeds have fallen from 12 per cent in 2012 to between 2 per cent and 6 per cent in 2014. They forecast that Facebook will hit 0 per cent at the end of this year.

YouTube is using programming to determine a viral video before it goes viral so they can better target advertising. Does viral even exist anymore?

What does this mean for local government? It means that social media is going to become harder and engagement will decline unless there is ring-fenced budget to boost posts.

If you don’t have budget, then it’s time to get creative with content and where to share it, seeding and feeding other platforms, forums and websites. Google predicts that the future will involve a transition from updating our own websites to publishing content on third-party sites.

The survey...

As part of CommsCamp2014, we’ve joined up with Comms2Point0 to find out how advertising is being used by local government at the moment.

Please help us with a state of the nation report, which we will reveal in July, by filling in this short survey which you can do here.

Emily Turner is content and marketing strategist at Deeson Group Ltd.

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