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: firstname.lastname@example.org
I’d love to chat with you.