That Time When Facebook’s New 20 Percent Text-to-Image Ratio Crushed My Soul

When Facebook announced yet another change to their policies, I read it and then instantly forgot about it. I’ve never seen the point in complaining about the continuous changes implemented by Facebook. No matter how many changes they make, they still remain king of the social media empire. However, this time I feel the need to stay something.

I work for a small non-profit and have an advertising budget of approximately zero. Each year, my non-profit hosts two major fundraising events, which is the only time I am allowed to spend money to promote our cause. In the fall, we had great success promoting our 5K/10K race on Facebook, so when the time came to create my budget for our Cook-Off event, I made sure to budget $500 for promoted status and Facebook ads.

Yesterday, I posted a small ad asking our readers to make a $10 donation in the spirit of Valentine’s Day. I pulled a graphic off of our website and cropped it down to an appropriate Facebook size, completely forgetting about Facebook’s new 20% text-to-image ratio. I set my status to promote with a $10 budget.

This morning I logged on to check the status of my campaign and was greeted by this error message:

fbook campaign

The campaign was successfully running when I went to sleep last night, but by this morning, somebody from Facebook had axed my campaign.

As a paying customer, I can’t foresee any reason why the content of my ad should be limited to only 20% text. In fact, beyond posting explicit content, I can’t really see any reason why Facebook would hinder anyone’s ability to advertise, especially someone who is paying to do so.

Thanks to many changes to the Facebook algorithm, pages continue to see a huge decrease in traffic. Facebook has made it almost impossible for content to be successfully shared by small organizations without paying for promotions. I understand Facebook is a business, and their goal is to make money. However, thanks to their new limitations, they just lost $7.41 from me. As a result, I am seriously reconsidering my advertising buy, an additional $500 loss for Facebook. While I’m sure the loss of my measly ad buy won’t cause Facebook to shut down their operations, if you multiply my experience across all the other pages who are being turned away by Facebook, I’m sure it adds up to a nice chunk of change.

In the beginning, Facebook was a great resource for non-profits and small businesses to promote at a low cost. Now, it seems that Facebook have abandoned the little guy in pursuit of bigger fish. I would really like to see Facebook take a step back and create a non-profit tool to help those who can’t afford expensive ad buys but still need get their message out into the universe.

With promoted trends on Twitter costing a whopping $200k, non-profits and small businesses have hit a wall when it comes to advertising on social media networks. With the expansion of price options for promoted status which now go for up to $50 a pop, Facebook advertising is on track to soon to be too expensive for many organizations.

All I have to say is, et tu, Facebook?

What do you think? Sound off in the comments section or by Tweeting us at @smcdc.

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