As if the funeral of organic reach weren’t difficult enough, brands now find that Facebook is not only becoming really expensive but also complicated due to “like” fraud. Companies wonder why they have thousands of fans in countries like Indonesia, Pakistan, and Iran, where they have few if any customers. One analysis found that as many as 40 percent of “likes” for one life sciences company were fraudulent. And it gets worse. When you look at the Facebook ads themselves — the prices of which were up 437 percent year over year in Q4 2013 — advertisers are paying for less than they believe. Clients who buy Facebook placements are telling me they detect 20 percent to 30 percent click fraud on the site using sophisticated forensics. Rather than offshore likers, bots are decimating ad performance on Facebook according to of VentureBeat. So where are the experts now?
Over the last 2-3 years I have written many times about phony social media experts who are legends in their own minds. These are people that write books to try and get you to purchase them and have their pictures posted on the header of their BLOGs so because they believe the personal branding BS. They are also the ones who are self promotional and love to see their names in business magazines or speak at social media conferences where others tend to worship them like rock stars.
Now with so many questions and issues around the biggest social media property in the world one has to wonder where the hell they are ?
Rule #1: Never trust or hire a social media “expert” unless they have proven that they can drive positive brand objectives. I’m not talking about number of fans or engagement, I’m talking about helping brands sell more because at the end of the day that’s what it’s all about.
In my 15 years in marketing I have never seen such a bunch of self centered, publicity seeking non experts on marketing. Some of these experts issue reports with a lot of “duh” or do nice “infographics” or have images of a little kid with a pit helmet and magnifying glass trying to convince marketers that social media is where it’s at.
We know now that social media is just part of your brand and that it could be even a smaller part of your brand when it comes to conversion. Be aware that these experts are only experts in promoting themselves at your expense.