As I See It

When to kill a social media page

Quits 560x315

Do you dare

It’s a scary thought, isn’t it. It kind of feels like failure, like you have personally failed on behalf of your company or even your own business. The comments never came. Nobody shared your posts. Your content never reached more than double figures…

So you had to do the right thing and kill your social media page. Deactivated; sent to the virtual glue factory, consigned to a never-to-be-spoken-of again history…

Been there

I know first hand how hard it is to just throw up your hands, say “I gave it my best shot but it’s just not happening”, and throw in the towel on a social media page. Every day, I would post great, informative and genuinely helpful content with slick graphics. And consistent too. No skimping or ‘forgetting’ the odd day. By all accounts, Facebook (but this story could apply to any platform) should love my content and serve it to many more of my fans than they did.

BUT the fact is they didn’t because the page’s ‘fans’ simply didn’t care. And that’s really what it comes down to: no amount of great content or nice graphics are going to work wonders if fans are not engaged in the first place. That’s why building your page’s ‘Like’ count is such a worthless metric. It’s as easy to hit that ‘Like’ or ‘Follow’ button as it is to never cast an eye on the page again.

What was the value? I probably didn’t ask myself often enough that key question: “if I post this, would someone really want to consume it, love it and share it with their friends?”

It is just the fickle nature of a social media user.

It’s not the end of the world – really

So why should the folks working on these pages beat themselves up about it? To feel some kind of guilt over not getting thousands of fans or comments is just plain irrational.

Now, in this case I’m talking about using Facebook as a B2B page so you are probably now thinking, “Well you were kind of asking to fail there” but I’d disagree. Facebook has over a billion users so I think it’s fair to say that a good portion of those are involved in running their own business or could be interested in our product. Setting up the page was admittedly based on assumptive thinking and it was ‘taking a punt’ to some extent. Then there is the whole business of actually engaging with an audience. Simply putting out great content is never going to cut it when your potential audience is already ambivalent.

But my philosophy is – try, fail, learn, do better (and try and fail less next time round!).

The idea didn’t pan out. It’s been two years. We tried different ways of posting, using different styles of content, being an active member of the community and actively encouraging people to share our content. We also tested paying to growing our fan base in the hope that would drive up awareness/engagement…and well, um, any social marketing pro will be able to guess how that panned out.

So I guess what I’m trying to get at is don’t be scared to try something but also don’t be afraid to recognise something that ain’t working and taking appropriate action.

Question: Have you managed a social media page and wanted to close it but either worries about looking like a failure? Or conceded to keeping the page going in the hope things get better?

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