Community, Ponderings

Facebook: The Collective Unconscious (with ads)

I was going to title this article: “Join me on Facebook” but I wanted people to read it.

I should mention this article is rather snarky. Maybe you ditched Facebook long ago and already know what I’m about to say. Maybe you’ll learn something you didn’t know before.

If you came here to be spiritually uplifted, about all this will offer is that you may finally leave Facebook if you haven’t already, and experience the feeling of exhilaration from your psychic energy being freed from the bondage created by Facebook vampirism.

Back in November 2012, I started a Facebook page for The Spirited Quill. Of course I wanted to see if I could drive traffic to my website and this blog, but I approached it knowing & believing that Facebook was not, nor would ever be, a successful way to drive traffic off Facebook. I also wanted to learn how Facebook Insight metrics worked. I like numbers and I was curious as to how things had changed since the investors took over.

By the end of December my page was rolling. The numbers were growing rapidly each day. One day there were 125 just overnight. I started watching how the Insight metrics were fluctuating and began researching the secret society of Edgerank and how it all ticked. I made a special point to read Facebook’s own advice to users on how to run a successful page. I followed their advice with full awareness that it was all b.s.

Toward that end, I posted only external links to The Spirited Quill, my website and Amazon profile. I shared other people’s posts. Posted pretty pictures for some color. A video here and there. Engagement. Fresh content. I even repeatedly posted the below Facebook graphic instructing people on how to get their pages seen in the newsfeed because of certain Facebook changes.

People who commented on this post had no idea where to find the "Interests" lists on their profile.
People who commented on this post had no idea where to find the “Interests” lists on their profile.

 

Then it became personally amusing

My page “Likes” surpassed that of the page of someone that I refer to as a “Facebook Status Poet”. They “write” only on their Facebook status because they have found success in bluffing the masses by placing their page into the category of “Book”. There’s no book published with their name on it. They are not authentic, and cater to the people who crave a news stream of incessant copyright violations, uncredited artwork and/or misquoted quotations upon that artwork.

But this particular person has been tracking (stalking) me on Facebook and other places on the internet for over two years – and continues to this day. I am that fabulous, evidently. A mutual friend revealed to me that this person posted the same instructions from that Facebook graphic on their own page in a mad panic. I was not surprised. You know what they say about people who only follow the crowd….

See, when my page blew past their page in number of Likes, the person went ape sh–. Now they’re trying to catch up to my numbers on Twitter. Sad, but this person has nothing better to do than measure their worth by how many people “like” them or follow them on social media networks. Someone should inform them…

The numbers are meaningless

Especially on Facebook. Facebook claims it’s the viral reach figures that are important in your posts getting seen. Then there’s Organic views. And the People Talking About This, and the Weekly Reach. Don’t be fooled by the Friends of Fans figure. There are nowhere near 600,000 people seeing your page. Trust me.

If you have 2,000 likes, and only 20 people are “talking about” your page, guess what? Only 20 people are seeing your posts. Maybe.

Facebook has everyone in a lemming gridlock. Look around. Notice an increase on businesses posting their Facebook link? Adding it to their shop windows & print marketing? Advertising to “check in here on Facebook”? Even television ads are popping up now with the Facebook logo and “find us on Facebook” tagline.

How is your business doing?

Getting many new customers from Facebook? Are you even tracking those people? The majority of business owners and others with a public Page are not paying any attention. They set up their page and assume it is all they have to do. They don’t have time for the Insights metrics. They see what looks like impressive numbers and log out.

The flip-side to this is that if you do start paying attention, you will begin to lose even more time, energy and even money on Facebook. Working at getting those numbers up in the “right” way will eventually come down to your realization that you’re spending more time promoting Facebook than your own business. Many articles I discovered were written by people who have paid for ads, and yet they received little or no business at all from the effort.

But wait! There’s more!

One bright morning, I sat down with my coffee, logged in and watched as Facebook began a mass deletion of “Likes” from my page. They wiped out 105 people off my page in less than 20 minutes. Who were these people that I’ve lost? I have no way of finding out. Facebook just decided to start deleting my “fans”. I checked with some friends, and they too were experiencing the same thing. Some people I talked to had already lost a lot more than 100 people. I was lucky. A little research uncovered that Facebook admits to doing this to purge “bad profiles” – bad profiles according to their criteria. They did this to some major corporations right after the investors took over, and now they do it to us little guys, too. Your page is not special.

In continuing to test the metrics, I began liking my own page posts with my personal profile, and shared those posts on my own timeline, in groups, etc., per Facebook’s advice. But I went further. I created five other accounts with fake names for the sole purpose of promoting my own page and to see what would happen. None of those five accounts were verified, nor were they deleted in the raid by the Facebook Police Special Deletion Team. Interesting, hm?

Two weeks ago, I deliberately stopped posting as much on my Page. Not only to see what would happen in the metrics, but because the majority of hits to my blog and/or website from Facebook, were Facebook bots, not people. They kept crawling my links, sometimes 10 times a day. They were deleting my fans, allowing spammers to increase posting to my page (they don’t delete those fake profiles?), and have allowed someone to stalk me for two years after numerous reports.

So, I closed my page two days ago. My experiment is done, and I have the satisfaction of knowing that Facebook is dying a slow death and they will be left with the spammers, fakes and stalkers. I say let them rally there and go after each other.

The authentic Souls I met during the time – and you know who you are – we know where to connect. I will meet you there. I would have posted a notification on Facebook that I was closing the page, but the stats show 90% of you would not have seen it.

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