Facebook Oh Facebook, Where Art Thou Oh Facebook?

Or perhaps it should be Facebook Oh Facebook, Where the Heck are You At?

- important piece at the end, so skip down if you must.

Lots of questions about edgerank and interest lists in the last few weeks, and here’s a new one to add to the mix. The “get notifications” option on business pages. To get there a fan has to hover over the like button on your business page to get this option.

A Facebook spokesperson said, “We are currently rolling out the ability for people to receive notifications from specific pages, friends or public figures that they are connected to. This feature will help people keep up with the people and things that they care about most.”

I heard about this several weeks ago, and was waiting for the option to be available so I could test it. As of now it looks like about ½ or more fan/business pages have this option enabled. I finally have it enabled on a bunch of pages I like including some I admin, so of course gluton for punishment that I am, had to go play investigate it some more.

I’ll be blunt, I think this sucks.

No really I do.

It sounds great, BUT when implemented it means that a page you have enabled, “get notifications” on will then give you a notification in the globe at the top left of your page, every single post they make, and every single page you have enabled the notification on. A lovely bright red number in the box at the top.

A bubble will pop up for about 10 seconds in the lower left portion of your newsfeed saying there is an update, if you happen to be online at the time as well.

Ok, well why do I think this sucks? Well as a test I went to 10 business pages that post frequently, that I have liked (and I like them quite a bit anyway) and added get notifications to them. In under 5 minutes I had 8 notifications.

While this might seem nice from a business perspective, from a user’s perspective this is awful. I’m now going to get encouraged by every page that I have already “liked” and they are going to try to get me to add them to my “get notifications”.

Fine, but I really don’t care about every single update most pages post. What’s going to happen is a big clamor to have that option enabled by fans, and then a mass exodus of people unchecking (and possibly unliking as well) that option.

As a business owner if you are going to encourage people to enable that option for your page you better be darn tootin that every single post you make is interesting/funny/informative/engaging or else fans/likers will basically take you off their lists (and again possibly unlike your page).

In order to disable the get notification option, someone has to return to the page itself and uncheck the option, in testing the 10 pages I enabled when I unliked the option, I unliked ½ of them by accident and had to relike them again. (Just something to think about.)

Which brings us back full circle to conquering Edgerank, I’ve still not seen anything official from Facebook saying adding a page to an interest list makes it come up any higher in your feed, or that it makes it come up at all in your feed. Testing I’ve done has not come up with any reason to believe that, and several other marketing people I know have been running similar experiments. Several businesses have been saying they think it’s making a difference. While I don’t see it or see proof of it, it certainly can’t hurt.

To reiterate on Edgerank:

The purpose of EdgeRank, in Facebook’s words is “to aggregate content that a person will find interesting. It displays stories based on their relevance rather than in chronological order.”

To keep an edge up on Edgerank so more fans see your posts:

Post Photos, the more the better

Post updates with links/URLs (website or other internet addresses)

Share from other Facebook Business Pages to your own page

Content has to be interesting, think before you post. Keep in mind funny and informative posts get shared and commented on the most.

Which brings us back to the get notifications option, your going to have to make it interesting to keep/fans likers engaged and interested. All this is doing is upping the game.

This is important……

Up until recently every page a person who has liked/fanned has had the option “Show in Newsfeed” automatically checked. It appears that any NEW pages someone likes now has to also manually check that option, NOT just like the page. The option appears when you hover over the like button as well.

So pages should be encouraging people, especially NEW people coming to their page for the first time to “Like” and “add to Newsfeed” not necessarily “Like” and “Add to interest lists” or “Like” and “get notifications”.

On a separate but somewhat related note: I said this this morning in the lecture I gave locally, and it’s something I think most business page owners are not taking to heart as much as they could. If you are relying on “just” your current likers to interact with your page, you will not ever grow your page. You have to advertise that you have it first of all. And this means putting the url/web address of your page out there, on your website, on your literature, on your email signature etc. Don’t wait for people to come to you and your page, go out and get them. If you need some ideas of where to put that information, here’s a few: http://chefforfeng.wordpress.com/2012/11/06/30-places-to-advertise-your-facebook-page

About Chef Forfeng

Innkeeping Tip and Tricks: Please check out some marketing ideas for Inns and B&Bs, Blogging ideas, Facebook Tips and Social Media Tutorials http://chefforfeng.wordpress.com/marketing-for-lodging-resources/
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One Response to Facebook Oh Facebook, Where Art Thou Oh Facebook?

  1. Thank you for this article, Heather. I’ve seen loads of owners getting into a panic over FB changes and begging anyone who will listen to click the “Get Notifications” button. I’m so pleased I read your earlier blog articles, and I resisted the temptation to get swept along in the stampede!

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