With all the news coming out about Facebook scandals, should you, as a marketer, delete Facebook?
Short answer: Absolutely Not.
While there may be individuals who are fed up with Facebook and who are deleting their personal profiles, as a marketer, Facebook is still the place to be with over 2 billion people there.
So it is still business as usual for marketers on Facebook just as Mari Smith said in a recent Facebook Live.
Do not delete your Facebook Page because of the Facebook scandal.
Facebook did announce 9 changes that they are making to restrict data access to make sure people’s privacy is more protected.
Some of these changes and other changes they have already announced are going to make marketing a little more difficult, but ultimately these are not show-stoppers.
Brian Solis has some great thoughts in his update about the Facebook announcement that I recommend reading.
Changes that are going to make Marketing on Facebook and Instagram more challenging
- Shutting down Partner Categories in Facebook Ads.
- No estimated Reach on Custom Audiences in Facebook Ads.
- Verification on email list uploads for Facebook Ads.
- No Instagram API.
- Possible limitations on Facebook Page, Group, and Event APIs for the apps you may have used to access these.
Partner Categories will be phased out over the next 6 months – approximately the end of September 2018. Partner Categories are the 3rd party data gathered on the internet and matched to user logins to help target ads more precisely.
I think this is the biggest loss to marketers as we will not be able to target by many precise interests and behaviors anymore.
My recommendation if you are using Partner Categories is to continue using them while they are still available and focus your efforts into getting people onto your email list or at least over to your website so that you can retarget them.
Why I don’t think this is a dealbreaker for advertisers:
- Facebook has gotten better at optimizing your ads around your Objective within the targeting you choose.
- Facebook has a lot of it’s own targeting that works well.
- Facebook Retargeting is one of the most effective ways to advertise.
No Estimated Reach for Facebook Custom Audiences
You still can see the number of people who are in a Custom Audience when you create it. But when you use the Custom Audiences in the ad targeting section, and layer additional targeting on the audience you will not be able to see how many people are targeted.
This was an interesting way to do a little “research” on your audiences to find out what keywords and demographics they might respond to.
The biggest problem with this change is that we won’t be able to tell how much budget to allocate to this ad initially. But when you monitor the reach and frequency of the ad, you will be able to see if you are over-budgeting.
Verification on Email list uploads in Facebook Ads
How Facebook will verify that you are complying with their terms that they have ALREADY put in place remains to be seen. But they will have some verification that you are complying with their Custom Audience Terms.
The terms state that “You have collected the data directly from the data subject, you confirm, without limiting anything in these terms, that you have all necessary rights and permissions to use the data.”
This will hopefully prevent people from using “scraped” data from LinkedIn contact info or lists that people have purchased and do not have permission to market to those people.
Facebook and Instagram API Changes
These changes will affect App developers the most but it may affect how marketers can post on Facebook and Instagram and how tools can access that data.
This change will be an inconvenience for marketers who are using tools but also remains to be seen what limitations will be implemented.
Marketers should not Delete Facebook if it is still working for them
Facebook is still the place to be. As a marketer, you always need to evaluate where your audience is and where your best performance comes from.
With any marketing activity, you need to watch your social media ROI and make sure you are seeing the performance from any platform that you need to see.
I personally think that Facebook will weather this storm because of the changes they are proactively making to protect their users over the marketers.
People need to take control over their Facebook privacy (and ALL of their privacy on any social site) – Facebook is making that easier which is a good thing for users.
There may come a day when Facebook does decline to the point where marketers should consider leaving and delete Facebook. But it’s not today.
What about you, what are your thoughts about the changes and how marketers should approach Facebook? Share your thoughts in the comments below.