Forrester, the respected market research company, has a history of releasing reports that cast Facebook in a bad light in the eyes of advertisers. Forrester’s Nate Elliott says Facebook’s move to continue to chop down the organic reach of brands’ Facebook posts and the fact that marketers continue to be dissatisfied with the performance of their Facebook Pages point to the fact that brands “don’t actually have social relationships with their customers.” He adds that it is time for marketers — who have been wasting “significant financial, technological, and human resources on social networks that don’t deliver value” (which also includes Twitter, in this report) — to explore new techniques such as using smaller social networks (which are less cluttered than Facebook and Twitter because they currently have fewer users and advertisers clogging up the News Feed and by adding social relationship tools to their own websites. Should you listen to Forresers advice?
Let’s be honest about a couple of things; first, Forrester is a paid research company whose analysts may not have had actual industry experience. Second, you should never follow the advice of any paid research analyst without first exploring what he, she is saying, and more importantly, how what they are saying applies to your industry & product category.
I’m not sure what Facebook has done to piss of Mr Elliot but the fact remains that if you market to consumers you need to have a presence on Facebook. How much that presence actually drives conversion is the key question, but consumers expect you to be there when they want to ask a question or complain about your product. No brand, today, can afford, to alienate any customers in an ultra competitive market.