How We Are Killing Facebook
Facebook. Half a billion people. One of the greatest things to come out of the Internet for many reasons, without it there would be so many social media consultants that would go hungry and have to go back to shilling “video email!” from 1998.
The biggest threat to Facebook and it’s success isn’t a change in format, structure or infrastructure. It’s user apathy. And more specifically when it comes to Facebook for business, event apathy.
This event invite defines all that is wrong with them. I live 2,519 miles from the event location, I’m not single and frankly a “hands-on” singles night sounds like something we should all be doing in private. (You may think I’m picking on the event organizer here. Which I am. If you don’t want to appear in my blog, don’t invite me to events like this. Easy peasey)
Many people have said to me “It’s no big deal, just reply with no, and be done!”
I say “NO” to that. The onus to stop Facebook event spam should not be on the receiver. The logic is the same that email spammers use (if you don’t want it, just delete).
More importantly, if you look closely at that event again, this is the most glaring thing:
3 “Yes”, 19 “Maybe” and 4,552 AWAITING REPLY! This screen shot is just before the event takes place, and the invite had been out there for weeks, so it’s safe to say these people weren’t replying anytime soon.
Read those numbers again.
Notice it doesn’t show the number of people who said “No” which I assume is about 400, since they most likely used a script to auto invite 5,000 “friends” to the event.
Do the math.
It’s not even the 400+ people you’ve pissed off with your untargeted invite to get 3 “yes’s”, which you’ve actually achieved the impossible with: You’ve made direct mail and cold-calling success ratios look good. It’s the 4,552 who never even saw the invite that scares the jeebus out of me.
This isn’t a freak occurrence. Most people I’ve talked to have gotten so over whelmed with Facebook invites to events like these, they’ve either stopped noticing invites or turned of notifications all together (like I have). And that is horrible.
I threw a party at BlogWorld last year. Open bar, 100+ of my fave people, fancy pants velvet rope. 45 people on the invite list never even replied and didn’t know about the event because they stopped checking them long ago. They missed an event that was targeted (only people I knew/thought were going to BlogWorld were invited) and most would have come.
And we have done this. The most social, strongest community in the history of the world, and people have turned to apathy for events. This has to stop.
We must stop:
- Inviting people to a local event that aren’t
- Creating events that aren’t actual “events” but a way to email mass people at once, regardless of reply
- Constantly emailing people who haven’t replied yet with information about your event like the person is coming
- Publicly inviting people to a private topic event (weight loss, confidence, being single). I’ve been invited to 15 different weight loss events in the past 3 months. What are you trying to say?
What can we do to make it better? Invite people to events that are a geographic and demographic match. You know, like actual real marketers do? Stop blasting it to thousands to try and land a few. Every time you do that, a baby unicorn dies. A baby unicorn.
PS – Don’t get me started on the new “groups” feature that adds you without permission and emails you every wall post until you opt-out of each group individuality. That’s for another day and Helen Keller quote.
Do you pay attention to invites? Do you get redonkulous ones?
Scott Stratten is the President of Un-Marketing. He is an expert in Viral, Social, and Authentic Marketing which he calls Un-Marketing. It’s all about positioning yourself as a trusted expert in front of your target market, so when they have the need, they choose you.
Formerly a music industry marketer, national sales training manager and a Professor at the Sheridan College School of Business, he ran his “UnAgency” for a nearly a decade before solely focusing on speaking at events for companies like PepsiCo, Adobe, Red Cross, Cirque du Soleil, Saks Fifth Avenue and Fidelity Investments when they need help guiding their way through the viral/social media and relationship marketing landscape.
He now has over 120,000 people follow his daily rantings on Twitter and was just named one of the top 5 social media influencers in the world on Forbes.com. It’s the only time he’s felt comfortable being compared to Ashton Kutcher, P Diddy and Justin Bieber.
His book “UnMarketing: Stop Marketing. Start Engaging” became a national best-seller before it was released, and recently a Globe and Mail #1 Business best-seller, National Post, Amazon.com, Amazon.ca and Amazon UK best-seller. It was also just named one of the top business books of the year by 1-800-CEO READ and one of the top 10 books by Under30CEO.com. The paperback version was just released to be followed by his second book in the Fall of 2012.
His passion comes out most when speaking on stage, preaching engagement and becoming one of the most sought-out speakers on the subject. See his speaking page for more details.
“One person even told me he stayed up all night after Scott’s talk to rethink his entire approach to marketing his business. He was that inspired when he left.” – Sloane Kelley, Co-Founder, GeekEnd
“An eye-opener of why, and how, we need to start shifting our marketing weight from the broadcast leg to the dialogue leg. And it doesn’t hurt one bit that he made it the funniest and most entertaining presentation we all sat through in 2010″ – Tom Moradpour, PepsiCo, International Marketing Director, Pepsi
His clients’ viral marketing videos have been viewed over 60 million times and he’s recently appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Huffington Post, USA Today, Entrepreneur Magazine, CNN.com, Inc.com and Fast Company and was just named one of “America’s 10 Marketing Gurus” by Business Review USA. That plus $5 gets him a coffee anywhere in the world.