Regular listeners will know we’ve been banging on about our lovely Forum and chatrooms and why we want to use it rather than Facebook. Leaving aside the fact that our chatroom is nicer, more reliable and has a better flow than FB, the reason is simple: Crossfire Radio will not be able to keep going if we don’t.
Basically, FB was great at the start to get us noticed and out there, but the sad fact is since FB changed last year, the station no longer has any traction there. FB no longer let groups grow organically with cross promotions etc, and because they want you to pay for any promotion now, block all other attempts other than through their clickads. So when it comes to FB, we have a chicken and egg situation: we need money to pay to grow, but need to grow to earn money. Therefore, we need to get CFR noticed by the external search engines so we can start to pick up more listeners. More listeners mean more ad revenue from the website and possibly more merchandise sales. But even here links to our website placed IN a FB comment or post for example no longer give us any kudos with Google or Bing etc, it simply boosts FB. You may have noticed sometimes when we post links to our Forum or even the player page, FB inserts a FB logo into the link preview!! That effectively steals our search engine points and awards them to FB.
In other words, for our station to grow and cover its costs we have to be noticed by the search engines. We now have to do that directly.
The Search Engine Optimisation work we’ve done and continue to do has made CFR number one when people search Crossfire Radio (there are about 500 crossfire radio stations across the world, so that’s no mean feat), but now we need assistance to get onto the first page when people search “Internet rock music” or “rock radio” or “rock music on the internet” etc. Here’s the good news. Every time one of you interacts with our chatrooms, Google et al give us part of a point. Every point moves CFR up the rankings. What’s more, the more interaction web surfers see in our Forum when they do stumble upon us from Google (other search engines are available lol), the more likely they are to stay and look closer.
Now, we happen to think our Forum already walks all over FB anyway, and new refinements will be added to make it better still, but the fact remains, if we stay on FB, CFR will fail. To that end, we will be closing all but one FB group on March 14th (thereby still giving those of you who still love FB and will never move a way to interact with us). Furthermore, the Forum will have exclusive member only competitions, freebies, secret shows, offers and more, as well as show specific chatrooms rather than everyone being in the CFR Live & Deeplay FB group (as it will be known).
Anyway, this is why we would prefer everyone to move to the Forum, so that CFR can not only survive, but grow and become even better with fully funded server farms that we own, with players that are more robust and have a team of people providing IT support rather than relying on little old me to be free to hack a solution, and more services to compliment the widest legally acquired playlists out there.
So please don’t be offended when we do bang on about the Forum. It’s for the good of your favourite station when all said and done.