On March 5, 2015, Facebook announced some changes to come in the near future that would have an impact on fan pages. They would remove inactive accounts such as voluntary inactive accounts and memorialized accounts (people who have passed away). You may be asking: “Why the hell would Facebook do this to me? They already only let me talk to a small percentage of my fanbase and now this &^%&^%.” I believe this is very good for everyone. Now, do I like logging in today and seeing some of our larger clients losing over 8,000 fans in a few hours? NO! But let’s take the emotion away and lose the “I have more likes than you” mentality. The people being removed had no value to these pages at all, and in many cases these people are dead. While I want to sell and add value to as many people as I can, I have yet to find a way to add value and sell to the dead. Whoever figures this out will make Warren Buffett look poor. Over 106 billion people have died while only 6.8 billion are alive today and there were only 1.19 billion active users on Facebook as of last quarter.
Is it normal for Facebook to change how it counts page likes?
In 2012, Facebook went after fraudulent likes and companies who were buying likes against its terms from fake accounts. I think Facebook should go further and regularly remove fake accounts.
Update: In the Smoky Mountain tourism market, we saw this actually have impact on fan counts as of midafternoon on March 14, 2015.
*Note: this is changing by the hour in some cases. This is current as of 10:12p.m. on March 14, 2015. Some pages will be affected more and some have not been hit yet.
What are the benefits?
- Better insights: Now you have a much more clear view of how you and your competitors tack up with much more accurate insights
Lookalike audiences just got even better
- Consistency: Facebook already says they filter out likes and comments generated by deactivated or memorialized accounts on page posts
How big were some of the fanpage likes loses?
The biggest publisher losers were: LiveScience, The New York Times, Harvard Business Review, AlterNet, Bleacher Report, Sports Illustrated, YouTube, Gawker, BBC Three and The Denver Post.
What you should expect:
- Small to moderate dip in fan count/page likes
- If an account is reactivated, the account will be added again as a page like
What can I do to get more Facebook fans?
- Hire us to get the most qualified fans at the lowest cost that will be the most engaged with your brand – Contact Us
- Facebook ads
- Email marketing
- Email signatures
- Lightboxes on your existing website
*Note: On your print ads, please do not put Facebook logos with “Like Us on Facebook.” These do not work and they drive me crazy when I see them.
Thank you for reading,
CEO / Founder IMEG