What the Facebook ban on Australian News has taught us?

On February 19, 2021, Facebook made the shocking decision to ban Australian news sources from sharing content on their Facebook pages.

Since then, many Australian businesses have woken up to the knowledge that their social media presence can be entirely wiped clean at a moment’s notice. The following you’ve grown, the community you’ve created and the positive reviews that you’ve received can all be removed in an instant, and you would be forced to start again from square one.

The ban has made it abundantly clear that if you are solely relying on one social media platform to market your business, you are doing it wrong.

What Would This Mean For Your Business?

89 percent of customers now look at reviews prior to buying a product or service from a business [1].

As the world (and reviews) move online, more and more people are turning to platforms such as Google, Facebook and Yelp to help them make an informed decision on whether to trust and support a business. This means looking at social media posts, reading through the website and reading online reviews from other customers.

When Facebook banned Australian news sources from sharing information, they prevented businesses from being able to reach new customers, share information and engage with the customers they already have. While only temporary, this had an immediate impact on many businesses, with many business-owners revealing that their pages were banned despite having nothing to do with the news.

Despite reaching out to Facebook support and appealing the situation, as of February 24th, many of these small businesses still don’t have their Facebook pages back. It’s unsure how long it will take until they get them back.

Now imagine if a platform such as Google decided to ban Australian businesses?

Google is the most popular platform for reading online reviews, with approximately 57 percent of customers admitting that Google reviews are the first thing they look at when searching for a business [1]. Spending on average 31 percent more on a business that has positive reviews compared those that have negative reviews or no reviews [2], banning Australian’s from using Google would mean a significant drop in revenue overnight.

How Can You Prevent This From Happening To Your Business?

There are a few different actions you can take to prevent social media bans from impacting your business.

1)Diversify your social media platforms.
Don’t be afraid to diversify your platforms, and invest in marketing to grow them. While having your business on one platform is a great start, as we’ve seen it can be easy to lose a platform in an instant, so diversifying your platforms to protect your business is a smart move. Hiring a marketing agency such as Boost Social to help develop your digital strategy and grow your presence on a range of platforms will save you time and help you grow faster.

2)Communicate with your customers outside of social media.
Blogs and eNewsletters are both popular options for communicating with potential and existing customers, as they allow you to promote deals, discounts and new products directly to your customers, without the risk of having to deal with third-party laws.
Recent studies have shown that 80 percent of businesses who utilise blogs reported acquiring new customers as a result of their efforts, so it well and truly pays off [3].

3)Utilise third-party platforms.
Third-party platforms such as Boost Reviews are able to store and display your reviews, without the risk of losing them. Unlike platforms such as Google, Yelp and Facebook, Boost Reviews allows you to manage, store and display your reviews on your website, available for your customers to see and safe from the digital giants.

What Now?

Quite simply, the best thing you can do is to refresh your digital strategy. The February 19th Facebook ban for Australian news sources has made many business-owners wary, and as we move further into the digital age, events like these could well happen again. We don’t know.

Investing in your online presence is important for any business, but if you want to truly safeguard yourself against further bans, you’ll want to develop a bulletproof (and Facebook-proof!) digital strategy. Hiring an agency such as Boost Reviews to manage and store your reviews, create a digital strategy and diversify your presence online is a sure-fire way to ensure your business survives and thrives during the digital age.

For the month of March, we’d like to give you an exclusive deal to help diversify your socials and improve your reviews. If you’d like a free consultation or to find out more about how we can help your business, give us a call today.

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