It might be easy to assume that Facebook is going to go the way of My Space. After all, the Times reports that more than 11 million young people have abandoned Facebook and will not be returning. The appearance of Ello on the social media scene has caused further concern for business owners who think that their coveted customers may retreat to non-ad-supporting Ello. But Facebook is far from done. Here’s what you need to know.
Many Other Key Demographics Remain on Facebook
Even if none of the millions who have left Facebook ever return, Facebook is still the top social media destination for others. International Business Times reports that the older demographics are continuing to grow, particularly among adults over the age of 55. Some suspect that the arrival of the Baby Boomers to Facebook has led to many youth abandoning the platform, but even so, “30 Statistics About Teens and Social Networking” reports that 93 percent of American 12 – 17 year olds are online and over 70 percent of them are on Facebook. It’s only among certain sub demographics that the numbers have sharply declined. It’s up to you to determine whether your target audience is still present. You shouldn’t focus all of your advertising on Facebook, but you shouldn’t abandon it either.
Ello Is Not As Business Friendly
Ello is considered the new up and coming social media site. Some people are even saying that it will replace Facebook, but that’s unlikely. It offers a different experience from Facebook. Currently, you can’t even sign up unless you are invited by someone you know, and advertising is strictly prohibited. Ello does not offer any ad space, nor does it allow paid promotions. The Motley Fool actually lists Ello’s business strategy as being questionable. It hasn’t even been around for a year, so it’s hard to know how it will fare in the upcoming years.
The point is that advertising on Ello will be more challenging than on other social media platforms. It may be a good place to make connections, but users there have a significantly lower tolerance for marketing. Users see it as a community for artists and purists. It may change as the years continue, but for now, it probably isn’t your best choice for investing extra time and energy. And it certainly isn’t competing with Facebook in terms of reach and commercial access.
Facebook Is Quite Adaptable
The other reason you shouldn’t abandon Facebook is because, compared to other social media platforms, it is one of the most flexible and adaptable to your business’s need. Twitter restricts you to less than 140 characters. Instagram and Tumblr focus primarily on images. Vine requires videos. All of these platforms restrict certain mediums to provide a honed focus. That’s not a bad thing. But for most businesses, multiple sources of content are preferable, and Facebook allows you to choose which medium (or even more than one) is best for your customers. You don’t have to make everything into a 15 second video or turn it into a meme.
It Isn’t Useless
If you still haven’t gotten around to putting up a website, Facebook can serve as a good place holder. It allows you to put out your hours, your pertinent information, and your contact details. Of all the social media platforms available, Facebook allows you to put together the most professional looking package.
In all seriousness though, you should get a website as soon as possible. You don’t need to buy an expensive package. You can get help on everything you need from domain suggestion tools to WYSIWYG builders as suggested by this resource from Shopify. Your Facebook business page can work in tandem with your website, and in customizing the two to meet your business’s needs, you will have a professional and impressive front. It’s best to look at Facebook as more of a supplement to funnel traffic back to your website rather than the main event.
When you’re evaluating the social media playing field, you’ll probably note more doomsday reports on Facebook. With some sub demographics leaving the social media giant and other players competing for users’ attention and time, you might be tempted to retarget your social media investment. But you shouldn’t write Facebook off. Many other demographics still focus their social media time on Facebook. Additionally, Ello, the bright new face in social media, is not the best choice for most businesses and is not so friendly to their marketing. More importantly, Facebook is one of the more adaptable social media platforms, and it can still be quite useful, particularly if you haven’t gotten around to setting up a website. So even if you decide to reallocate some of your marketing resources and put less into Facebook, don’t abandon it entirely. It still has some value for businesses, and for some key niches, it’s vital.