Magazine article Marketing

Frontline

Magazine article Marketing

Frontline

Article excerpt

Promoted posts are a quiet revolution in the value of social, says Jerry Daykin.

More content is posted to social networks than anyone could ever consume. Facebook applies its 'Edgerank' algorithm to try to 'surface' relevant content; while unfiltered platforms like Twitter effectively use 'Timerank', showing only the most recent. On some you compete on engagement, on others on timeliness, but nowhere will all your followers see everything you post.

It's easy to criticise Facebook for cunningly decreasing the organic reach of Pages and asking brands to pay more, but it's no coincidence this decline was matched by a steady increase in the amount being published. The more content there is, the less people see of any one piece, whether limited by an algorithm or simply hidden by newer updates.

Worrying what percentage of followers we reach has become an industry obsession, alongside rumours that those fans may be fake, and that all the young people have moved to something new. Never mind that most brands don't truly have a business-significant number of fans in the first place, or that they aren't close to reaching all the youth that definitely is still present.

More fundamentally, though, this focus on fans stands at odds with the penetration objectives of much major marketing investment. This is especially true for big FMCG brands needing to reach millions of disloyal consumers. While paying to reach an already 'earned' audience may feel unfair, the introduction of promoted posts to go far beyond this actually represents a quiet revolution in the value that mass marketers can get from social platforms. …

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