This blog is about Graphic Design, Vector Art, and Cartoon Illustration

May 2, 2019

Why it doesn't seem like your Facebook followers are clicking on your links, but they are

If you regularly post a link on your Facebook page, like I often do, because you know that just a picture and a caption (a meme) is really worthless to most people, you may be under the impression that people don't click on links on Facebook. They do, even though it seems as if they don't. It's all about human nature. I'll see if I can explain.

Of course you've seen typical Facebook comments that shows that clearly the person commenting hasn't clicked the link, or read the article. You may have posted "Why the world is like a tomato" with a lot of interesting comparisons, including the thin outer layer, etc., and you see a Facebook comment that says something like "I buy my tomatoes at the Farmer's Market". So clearly all they're responding to is the word "tomato". It can be kind of discouraging, but keep in mind that people who click on links are usually too busy reading the article to go back and make comments. More often than not, they'll read the article, and make no comment at all. You can compare it to the number of people who read the newspaper, but don't write a letter to the editor. I've read a lot of newspapers, and it's never even occurred to me to write to them. And I've read a lot of stuff on the internet, and I really don't comment.

And that leaves you with the question of whether people are reading your stuff? And it's a question as old as advertising - how do you measure it? If you're like me, with a blog like this one, the stats record how many times the page has been viewed. Of course, that doesn't say anything about whether it's read, or understood. Or anything.

Publishing, whether on paper or on the internet, isn't the same as standing in front of an audience. Up on stage you can see the people listening to you. If they're staying there, and not talking to each other, chances are excellent that they are getting whatever message you're conveying. That's the kind of excellent feedback that publishing doesn't give. Comedians can hear people laugh, singers can hear applause, but writers hear nothing.

I started writing blogs back when I did SEO (Search Engine Optimization) consulting. The idea was to help drive traffic to websites, and it still does that. There are many tools to try to keep an eye on whether it's working, the most important being Google Analytics. But these are reports with numbers on them, and that's all. Whether people are clicking your links is really something you can't know any more than the number of people who are buying a car because they saw a billboard. But even though it can't be measured, most businesses keep doing it, because they know that it works.

Thank you for reading this! If you don't comment, I understand.

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