[Episode 92] Facebook privacy concerns have been hot topics this week for 2 big reasons: (1) Facebook has publicly stepped out to announce that they are shifting the focus of the platform towards avenues that are more private like Messenger or Stories… coupled with the fact that the guy who has been largely responsible for the newsfeed has recently left the company… and rumors are flying that the newsfeed will be gone soon (which would have big implications for businesses)… and (2) in light of that announcement, people don't think they have privacy on Facebook as it is (which makes their current initiative eye-roll-worthy) and they believe Facebook is selling their information to advertisers on the regular.
Today I'm going to lay it out for you – what advertising and privacy really looks like – and what you should be doing to prepare for these upcoming changes with Facebook & their shift towards private interactions.
First, I want to talk about Facebook privacy concerns as they are right now – what does Facebook know about you, how do they know it, and what do they do with that information.
- We know that Facebook knows a lot about us – what we're interested in, where we live, when we're traveling, what we purchase, and more…
- Here is a quick run down of how they know so much stuff about us:
- you tell them – they are able to analyze the data you input to your Facebook profile directly
- you are being Pixeled – they use the Facebook Pixel to track your actions across apps and websites that are using the Pixel.
- you provide data through location services – they are able to see where you are logging in from on your phone – so they know where you currently are, where you live, and when you are traveling based on where you're logging into your Facebook account from
- What they do with that information – Facebook does in fact allow marketers to target based on these things (where you live/travel, websites you visit, content you consume, products you purchase)… but they do NOT allow marketers to know WHO exactly we're targeting – which does in fact preserve your privacy. If you target an ad to women, living in my zip code, with school-aged children – then, I am likely to see your Ad… but you will never know that “Meg Brunson” was the one who saw the ad…. Facebook is NOT using this data to destroy your right to privacy and profit off the unethical sale of this information… they are using this data to curate your Facebook experience so that it's relevant to you. So that the ads you are seeing are ads that you don't mind seeing – things that interest you. It's a win-win for advertisers and consumers alike. I can tell you I don't mind getting ads when Converse has released their newest colors and prints – I welcome them (my husband on the other hand…). If we removed the ability for Converse to target based on my data, I would likely miss that content and my feet would sadly stay in last seasons styles.
- I am not saying Facebook never makes mistakes – they are humans too – and they've been hacked and had to learn difficult lessons and put new safety plans into place… which is a big part of the reason why they are always changing – trying to stay ahead of ambitious hackers, and provide the best user experience on the platform.
Second, I want to address the recent announcements by Facebook and what you should be doing to prepare.
- I love that Facebook keeps us up to date with their plans – it means that we can take an active role in testing and monitoring our marketing efforts.
- What we should not be doing is over-reacting, freaking out, etc. – yes, Facebook changes things all the time, and we adapt to those changes. Panic will not help anything
- Take some time to attempt to understand the reasoning behind Facebook's actions – if we understand why they are doing what they are doing, it often helps us shift our mindset and make it work for us!
- You should ALWAYS be diversifying and trying new things. I LOVE Facebook, but I am also on other platforms – like podcasting! If Facebook disappears tomorrow I know that I can still reach you right here on this podcasting platform.
- You should also ALWAYS be testing! Facebook says that they like the looks of messenger and stories… guess what they said 3 years ago? That they liked the looks of Facebook Live!! They are trying to help us here – it's not that THEY want us all in stories, but they are seeing trends that they want us to be aware of. People are using stories and messenger more often – so we should be tinkering and testing in those areas. And that goes for both organic and paid content! We need to start thinking about how we can work stories into our organic strategy – but we also need to design some ads to be optimized for stories (I smell a future training!!).
- The best thing you can do – honestly – is follow someone who is keeping their finger on the pulse of all of these changes… and you're listening to this podcast… so I think you're already doing that. Since leaving my job at Facebook I've made it my mission to help other entrepreneurs and small business owners navigate these changes. I'll be attending Facebook's annual developer's conference, F8, in just a couple of weeks – so make sure you're also following me on Instagram where I will be sharing tons of Stories related to what they discuss and reveal! I will also share insights through the podcast – but given the topic of discussion, let's focus a little more on stories here!
About The Host
Meg Brunson has been marketing to moms for nearly a decade. After leaving her corporate job at Facebook in 2017 to be a more present mom to her 4 daughters, she founded EIEIO Marketing; a digital marketing agency focused on Facebook Marketing for family-first businesses.
Through highly targeted, results-driven, Facebook Ads she's delivered results for her clients that include: doubling their lead volume, generating 62% more sales than the in-house team, attaining a 16x return on ad spend, and reducing the cost per lead by 99%!
After helping her daughter launch her first business, Storytime With Kiki, at the age of 10, Meg began hosting the FamilyPreneur Podcast: an interview-style podcast for parent entrepreneurs, raising entrepreneurial children.