We’ve been noticing a trend in our online marketing mix. Our Facebook posts are actually only reaching a fraction of the audience who like us. This begs the question, “Is Facebook still the BEST channel for social marketing revenue?”

Here is what we found – Facebook is hiding posts in your newsfeed. They actually have to; there is no way we could consume of the information available on the channel. Let’s do the math…

The average user has 300 friends and likes 40 pages. Also, each day 4,750,000,000 (almost 5 BILLION) posts are shared across the site each day, which is an average of about 4 posts per user. This means if we login only once a day, over 1,500 posts would load into our feed at that time. Clearly Facebook cannot show us everything or we wouldn’t retain anything! The problem is that Facebook is also using this filter to make money.

The filter is exactly why posts advertisers create only show up in the newsfeeds of a fraction of the users who like them – even when they are “boosted.” Facebook has also begun to limit the scope of organic reach (the users who really do like your page) so that brands must pay to boost posts in order to target them to a more broad and interested user base. Even the US Government has fallen for the Facebook advertising scheme. They spent over $630,000 to acquire over 2 million followers only to have about 2% engage.

But here’s the kicker… brands are not the only ‘advertisers’ on Facebook. This filtering process is not exclusive to brands. It is also placed on users and, therefore, every user (brand or person) has to become an advertiser. Even if the consumer has liked a page and wants to receive their branded posts, the chance is very slim.

Draw your own conclusions on whether you think Facebook can actually hurt your online marketing efforts. Based on our findings, it does not seem like a channel that is increasing the likelihood of success.

For more information, follow Veritasium on YouTube ‘cause science is awesome!

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