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I recently came across this headline on Gather, “Facebook to Pay Users for Viewing Ads?” and my first thought was, “They just don’t get it.” The “it” I am referring to is meaningful user engagement. Yes, Facebook is the biggest social network in the world, with a reported 600 million global users, but sometimes exponential growth is achieved in spite of an organization’s flawed strategy, systems and tactics (remember AOL?).
Let me make this clear, material rewards in exchange for participation on a social network is a long-term losing proposition. Check this cool Dan Pink video on what motivates people, in particular the point that rewarding mechanical functions may work, but once you get beyond “rudimentary cognitive function” it quickly tanks.
Note the mention of the word “engagement”, the current buzzword for why brands and companies should use social media. On social networks, what starts as enthusiastic support for the paying organization by its paid supporters morphs into a feeling of entitlement to that remuneration leading to demands for increased compensation and ending in resentment towards the organization — the exact opposite outcome from what was initially desired.
At that point, you not only have a dissatisfied user, you have one with increased voice and influence who knows how to reach your customers very well.
This is the major flaw behind organizations’ misguided faith in raw social media metrics. Read more of this post
A social media professional, doing social media for businesses, organizations and brands.
This blog covers that, of course, plus information, opinion and commentary on life as a native New Yorker. Thoughts expressed here are my own.
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