Facebook is in the process of pulling the biggest bait-and-switch in history. They have spent years persuading umpteen brands, businesses and boy-bands that the best way to invest Internet marketing dollars was to build up huge numbers of Facebook “Likes”. A big Facebook fan-following, we were told, was the key to social marketing success.
Well, now they’ve got you hooked, and now you’ve spent thousands encouraging your customers to “Like” your Facebook page, Facebook is going to take it all away.
Unless you pay. Over and over again.
Multiple reports have emerged saying that Facebook is in the process of “throttling” organic page reach down to just 1%. That means that if you have 99,000 fans you will be able to reach less than a thousand of them when you push out a post. Facebook isn’t free any more.
“The change was described to me by a source as a cataclysm for businesses, something Facebook is calling the extreme throttling a ‘strategy pivot’ they’re slowly telling brands one by one so as not to start a panic.”
Big brands and their agencies are already starting to freak out, by which I mean they are pissed. Gawker’s James Del:
“Facebook may be pulling off one of the most lucrative grifts of all time; first, they convinced brands they needed to purchase all their fans and likes — even though everyone knows you can’t buy love; then, Facebook continues to charge those same brands money to speak to the fans they just bought.”
Facebook is currently refusing to confirm these reports but it seems there is enough evidence emerging to be confident that this is now happening. And really, why would anyone be surprised that if you give all your customers to Mark Zuckerberg, you might come to regret it?