Thursday, 8 May 2014

Facebook Engagement Life Savers!


As you will all have noticed our Facebook post reach has fallen off the edge of a cliff… A fuckin’ big cliff! A post that used to reach 500 now only reaches 75, which has a knock on effect to our engagement stats. I’m also sure you know that this is no accident.

Facebook have re-developed their post ranking algorithm (similar to Google ranking) in a bid to drive us all towards paid advertising; Facebook Ads, promoted posts etc. They have made it a lot harder for marketers to gain organic success in order to swell the Facebook bank balance (significantly), but as much as I’m verbally ‘throwing the toys out the pram’ – who gives a shit! Just produce better content! Facebook is a business, and businesses exist to make money. Do they not?

You see, as much as Facebook are making it harder to gain a high organic reach they are also rewarding good content and good pages. So this gives you all an opportunity to leave a large chunk of your competition in the dust. That is unless your competition is reading this article…

So now we all know the problem challenge, let me give you the solution; the key to winning the battle of reach & engagement c2014.

Improve Post Reach

I have a lot of tips to provide you here, so I’m gonna cut out the bullshit and get right to it!

In essence, if you can increase engagement on your page then you’ll win this battle of organic reach, and I’m going to show you how to increase engagement further on. First however, there are a few things you can do that will fall favourably with Facebook’s new algorithm:

        1.     The ‘Get Notifications Tab’
Encourage your fans to select ‘Get Notifications’ and they will see everything you post no matter what.

Be humble about it though. Don’t instruct them to do it. Offer it as a solution:

“Facebook’s new ranking algorithm means you might not be seeing all of my posts L. So if you’d like to see them all, and be part of our continual conversation, then select ‘Get Notifications’ as shown here’.


        2.     Link to Quality Content
Facebook are now showing more links in the News Feed. This is one of the biggest changes to their algorithm. So if all you do is post photos then stop right now and mix it up with more links. However, make sure the site you are linking to is a good quality, reputable site. Facebook will automatically grab the meta data (photo, summary text) and display this. Better quality is rewarded with a high news feed rank.

        3.     Don’t Spam
Facebook want to cut out Pages that are producing 'spam posts'. So to do this they are cracking down on what they call "Like Baiting" - You know those posts that are explicitly aimed at getting people to interact with a post? Posts like “Click like if you love long lies”, or “Share this post if you like pizza; comment if you prefer lasagne”? I'm sure we agree that these posts are useless anyway.

Please don't confuse this with the good practice of including specific calls to action. For instance, asking your fans to answer your question in the comments section, or asking them to share your post with people who would benefit from it.

So how can you avoid being targeted?

1. Make sure your posts are relevant.
2. Don't create posts that have the sole purpose of garnering likes, shares or comments.
3. Avoid explicitly asking your fans to 'Like this post' or 'Share this post'. Give them a reason to do these.

        4.     Tag Another Page
Not only will this increase the chances of that page engaging with your post, but all of their fans will see your post too!

        5.     Boost Your Post
I know I’m trying to tell you how to increase post reach without paying, but at the end of the day boosting/promoting a post every now and again will increase engagement on your page. This in turn will shoot you up the News Feed ranks.

You don’t have to spend much. A £10 boost could help you reach ~10000 people, which could be pretty damn good for your business. Remember that every business should put a marketing budget aside. Do you?

Note that when you are boosting/promoting a post, the image you use cannot be more than 25% text.

Improve Post Engagement

So now that I’ve shown you some technical changes you can make, or as Mathew McConaughey in Wolf of Wall Street would say, “acidic, above the shoulders mustard shit”; it’s time to fix your engagement strategy.


The following is a list of ways that will help you get more engagements than Ross from Friends:

        1.     Post When Your Fans are Online
What’s the point in posting top quality content when everyone’s asleep or at work? Play to the stats and post when they’re usually online. This can be seen in your ‘Insights’.

> Click ‘See Insights’
> Select ‘Posts’, and you’ll be met with statistical gold!


        2.     Spark a Discussion
As I’ve said many times, engagement is the key to Facebook marketing. It’s the Holy Grail. So ask questions; get the people talking and discussing in your comments box. This is how posts go viral.

Remember that sometimes to spark discussion you have to light the wick of controversy. Don’t sit on the fence - it’s boring and not worth discussing.

        3.     Be a Learned Master
People love interacting with ‘how to’ content. ‘How to’ content works because you’re offering practical value. Gaining value out of something is a key driver of why we share things.

        4.     Lifestyle Shots
People love to see who’s behind the brand. So make every 3rd or 4th post something light hearted and about you the person, or people, behind the brand.
 
Here’s my girlfriend Gemma and I when we took our Mums out for Mother’s day.

 I know what you’re thinking… She is indeed a lucky girl!

        5.     Shorten Your Posts
Get good at being concise. Posts with less than 80 characters get 23% more interaction. Try it!

        6.     Quote the Best
Quotes get 25% more likes and 19% more shares according to early 2014 statistics. So share some inspiration now and again.

Wrapping It Up

In some people’s eyes Facebook have screwed us over, but life is full of changes and challenges. You’ve got to roll with the changes and use them to your advantage.

I heard a great quote recently that was, “Be better, not bitter”. Write that down on a post-it note and stick it on the side of your screen. The fact is that most brands suck at Facebook marketing. So take the opportunity that’s in front of you.

Hopefully you found this article helpful and you put my tips into practice. If you do I’d love to hear how you got on. So connect with me on one of my platforms and let me know.

11 comments:

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