It’s Time To Rethink The Value We Place In Facebook

Still begging for likes on Facebook? The quote below is from Machine Head, a band that’s been around since 1992, sold a few hundred thousand albums, and has 1.3 million “Likes" on Facebook.

“I just read a story about Facebook and how the number of shares and interaction has plummeted. And that jives with what we have been seeing too. Yes, we can see you Facebookers! Yes, we can see that, of the 500,000 who were “reached” by last video journal, less than 90% of you watched even 3 SECONDS OF IT! That the average viewing time was 1:19 of a 20 minute video? 1 MINUTE of a twenty minute video! For whatever reason you couldn’t even give us 20 minutes of your time, but you know what? Fuck it, we’re STILL going to try and crack that shell…”

Those 500,000 people on Facebook were probably in the middle of four chats, and going through 13 friend requests while clicking play on that video. That video sat in between breaking news about another tragedy and racist family members parroting FOX News.

Everything on Facebook is engineered to be a distraction. Your time is on the site is a commodity for Zuckerberg and his near 12,000 employees. No one at Facebook cares about your new music video or tour announcements – they only care about the traffic you can send their way so they can monetize it.

They get paid every week, you don’t.

So put your videos on your own website. Put your tour dates on your website. Put your new album news on your website. Point your social media “fans” to your website. Look at the stats. How many people are actually coming to your site? Those people are your fans.

Now, make sure you have well placed links for people to buy your albums. And t-shirts. Or a nice image linking to your Kickstarter Campaign for that new EP you want to record.

Make sure you have a spot asking for email addresses, too. Always be building your email list – you never know when Facebook or Twitter will implode, leaving you with a bunch of “likes” and “followers” on a dead social media network.

Sure, the traffic to your site will be smaller than the number of social media “fans” you have, but like you see above, 1.3 million “Likes” doesn’t get you much. The people who do come to your site, the folks who do join your email list, and who contribute to your Kickstarter – those are your real fans.

Seth Werkheiser is the quiz master of metal trivia at Skulltoaster. He’s also the founder of some music sites you may have heard of, including Noise Creep (2009) + Buzzgrinder (2001). He’s anti-Facebook, anti-clickbait, and anti-growth hacking. You should most definitely follow him on Twitter. Yes, right now.

James Shotwell

James Shotwell is the Director of Customer Engagement at Haulix and host of the company's podcast, Inside Music. He is also a public speaker known for promoting careers in the entertainment industry, as well as an entertainment journalist with over a decade of experience. His bylines include Rolling Stone, Alternative Press, Substream Magazine, Nu Sound, and Under The Gun Review, among other popular outlets.