Not Diversifying Where Your Content Lives Will Crush You

In a statement given by Mark Zuckerberg (co-founder and CEO of Facebook, which also owns Instagram) given this week, he apologized to the Facebook community at how Facebook mismanaged users’ data.
Partially because of this, Facebook lost about $50 BILLION in value this week…
This is not the first time Mark Z. has made statements which have bruised the value of the company.  Earlier this year he announced Facebook would be changing users’ home feed by showing less content from publishers and business pages and more of “what people want”.  Apparently Facebook thinks you really want to see political rants from uncle Joe and shared survey results your grandma posts… interesting.  🙂
What is happening to Facebook?  Simply put, they’re trying to figure out how to keep their users  (1.2 billion people worldwide) engaged.  If they don’t have engaged users, they don’t make money from their advertisers.
The problem arises when FB tries to show its users more content they “want to see” which causes advertisers have less of a chance to have THEIR content seen. If less people are viewing ads, Facebook isn’t making as much money,
If Facebook doesn’t have as many engaged users, it decreases the reasons content creators have to share content on Facebook. Content creators share content for very few reasons. 1. They want to partner with brands to make money. 2. They want to sell services or goods they make to their followers. 3. They simply want to be famous, whatever the reason. If a platform, Facebook or others, doesn’t have engaged users, content creators leave.
Where Facebook goes from here, I’m not totally sure. Here’s what I think could happen:
Investigators continue to uncover scandals about the Facebook’s misuse of users’ personal information sold to advertisers. This will drive their stock price down. It won’t knock them out for good but it will for sure shrink the size and value of their company, significantly. Knowing their information is being sold and discovering what that actually means, users will be turned off and use the platform less, if at all. The more people shy away from Facebook, the weaker that platform becomes for content creators such as you and I.
How will Instagram be affected?
Right now, Instagram is much hotter than Facebook, in my opinion. Engagement is strong, usage is high and increasing, more and more people sign up every day. Sure lots of people complain about their posts not getting seen and the algorithm is so hard to figure out, but overall, people are still using the platform at record rates.
I think Instagram has the potential to surpass Facebook in number of monthly active users. The nature of Instagram is more simple than Facebook and they haven’t done anything horribly wrong to screw it up yet – which helps.
But, and this is a big but, don’t forget Facebook owns Instagram and their number goal is to make money. They’re going to do whatever they think it takes in order to make money.
If by some weird chance, Facebook dies and Instagram follows suit… where will you go with your content? Have you ever thought about that?
Do you have a blog?
Do you have an email list?
Are you on YouTube, SnapChat, Pinterest or Twitter?
Do you even know what Mucial.ly and Twitch are?
Where will your target audience go?
These are questions we all need to ask ourselves. The reality is, if your audience is located in one place and you do not own the platform where they are located, you do not actually own your audience. Whether you have 100 or 10 million followers – you need to have a diversified portfolio of platforms where you share your content.
Make no mistakes – Instagram and Facebook (especially Instagram) are incredibly powerful. My business depends on them, but not my entire business. I’ve made efforts to build my audience on other platforms just in case something happens to them. Have you?
Are you interested in learning more about how to build an audience on platforms other than Instagram and Facebook?  Do you know how and why you should?  Hopefully after reading this article you see the importance of diversification.
If you want to chat more, shoot me an email:   mike@mikesocial.com
I’d love to chat with you.
-Mike

Is it Worth “Boosting Posts” on Instagram?

I spent $130 promoting three different posts on my Instagram page.

I had always seen those prompts that say, “This post is performing better than 90% of your previous posts. Click here to boost it to show more people.” Have you seen those, too?

I decided to experiment with this and put some money behind it to see if it’s actually effective or not.

The results were a little bit surprising… but not too surprising.

Here’s the first photo I boosted:

I put $30 behind this post. It’s a cute one of my wife eating an ice cream cone and the caption was a corny joke about how Reese Witherspoon eats her ice cream (with her spoon) get it….?  😉

There was no call to action in the caption. The prompt on the ad was “view this Instagram profile”.

As you can see, 23 people clicked to view my profile. If I was the one in the photo, I promise it would have been even fewer people that would have viewed it.

This is not 23 new followers… this is 23 people visited my profile. I don’t believe I received any new followers from this post.

Was this post a success? If my goal was to gain followers, which it was, then no – not a success.

I spent $50 on the next promotion. The goal here was to get people to visit my profile so they’d watch my Instagram Story. The particular story I wanted them to watch is the Story that’s in my profile Highlights where I share about my professional background and what I do now for work – help people learn how to do social media the right way.

The results of this promotion were much more effective! 127 profile visits. Assuming every one of those people watched at least the first post on my Instagram Story, that’s not bad, right?

Considering the first post has over 4500 views, it’s not great. I spent 50 dollars to get a very small percentage of the views on that story. Did any of these turn into paying Clients for me? I’m not sure and unfortunately there is no way to track that. Bummer!

Do I consider this promotion a success?  No – $50 is a lot of money for 127 views when you consider how many views that story is at on its own. The number could’ve been worse, but I don’t think it converted into many followers or sales for me.

The most recent post I boosted was this one here:

Another $50 – this time I got 21 clicks to visit my website. I was pushing a free guide my wife and I were giving away. I got 21 clicks! That is more than $2 per click. Not a horrible metric if you’re familiar with how much people spend for targeted clicks on Facebook ads. Was this a success?

In all honesty, I did not think this promotion was going to do well! I was anticipating it to tank. I don’t think that it did, though. I’d say this third promotion was a success. Happy I got 21 people over to my site to claim their free guide. What did I get in return? Their email addresses.

To wrap up my thoughts on whether or not you should promote posts on Instagram, I think we need to look at the purpose of your promotion/post. If you are wanting to get people to simply visit your profile, the best way to get people over there is not by spending tons of money on boosting posts. Save your money, make more content, gain more followers. If, however, you have a very specific purpose for why you want people to go to your website or something such as this, the promotion may be fruitful. I am happy I got that many clicks. Is it still expensive to spend $50 to potentially gain 21 email addresses? Yes, it is. Would I do it again? I would consider it – as long as I have something of great value for the people who will see the promotion.

Two more things:  We made a guide (this is a revised version from the one I’ve previously given out and there are worksheets to go with it now… super cool and very valuable!) to help you discover three reasons your social media isn’t growing, and what to do about it. The guide was written by my wife and I and it’s FREE!  If you want it, click this link here and enter your email, then download.  Last thing: Make sure you’re keeping up with me on my Instagram @mikelemieux. My wife Ashley (@theshineproject on Instagram) and I have a very special and exciting announcement coming up in the next few days and you won’t want to miss it!