Howdy! I’m back for another post for my Increasing Engagement Series, this time featuring Facebook!
I see a lot of complaints all over the internet about how Facebook is the worst social platform and how it’s impossible to get any sort of reach without paying for ads.
While Facebook has certainly changed its algorithm making it more difficult for your fans to see your posts unless you pay, there are free ways to at least help optimize your posts to get in front of a larger audience.
Keep in mind, Facebook could change tomorrow making this information obsolete, but this is currently what works in early 2016.
If changes do happen, I will try my best to update this page, or direct you to a blog post to keep you all informed.
Okay, here we go!
Video is on the rise, if you haven’t heard, and if you aren’t using some type of video format to promote your business, you will be left behind.
I know, I know. I don’t like how I sound on video either, but we’ve gotta do it. I have plans of launching a Q & A video series so if I can do it, you can do it.
Anyways, now that we are over the fact that we have to do some video, you need to upload videos directly to Facebook versus uploading to YouTube or Vimeo and then putting a link to your video on Facebook.
Facebook hasn’t outwardly admitted this, but they definitely do not put any preference on updates that are linking to YouTube. They want people to stay on the Facebook platform for as long as possible, so you need to upload your videos directly to Facebook for the most exposure.
Did you know you can segment your status updates as a Page to only be seen by certain individuals of your audience? Many people don’t know about this option, but I think it’s a great tool.
Here’s how it works. If your page already has this featured turned on, it’s easy.
There should be a compass looking like object where you can select a specific audience to see a particular post.
You can either choose “Preferred Audiences” or “Audience Restrictions.”
A preferred audience lets you segment by interests. You can get very granular with your selections: segmenting by people interested in entertainment, weddings, fitness, shopping, sports, etc.
Audience restrictions lets you segment using the following information:
This could be great for bilingual pages, if you have an event in a particular city, a product geared specifically for men or women…the opportunities are endless.
Why post when everyone is sleeping, that doesn’t make sense!
Oh, but it does. According to a recent finding from BuzzSumo, posting at night gives you more exposure to your audience because there is less competition to get into the newsfeed.
Think about it, everyone else posts during the day (including not only other pages but people updating their personal status updates too, which you are also competing with).
Take advantage of the downtime when everyone else is sleeping to post your content and watch engagement increase.
My dad has always said, “You never know until you ask” and even though he’s certainly not an expert at social media (don’t even get me started on the questions he asks me about it…) his comment is totally true.
You never really do know what your audience thinks until you ask.
Asking them questions about their opinion on something is one of the best ways to increase your engagement on Facebook.
Pairing it with an image is a match made in heaven, as pictures hold more weight in the Facebook algorithm than text.
This suggestion goes along with posting at night. Overall, posts that go out over the weekend get more engagement than during the week.
It could be because more people have time to be on social media during the weekends, or that there is less competition from other businesses posting on social media during the weekend. Either way, posting on the weekends certainly won’t hurt.
With people consuming so much information, they only have so much time to read updates. Reading your Facebook page’s update might not be high on their priorities, so you need to keep it short and sweet.
Why does Facebook love Instagram? Well for one, Facebook owns Instagram.
And for two…well, that’s actually the real reason.
If you have a business Instagram profile, you should definitely be sending your Instagram photos to Facebook. Especially since it’s only a one tap task to complete, you have no excuse!
Got something you’re struggling with in your business? Or even your personal life?
Ask your audience for help! People love helping other people out. Especially a small business they follow and care about.
Crowdsourcing for information not only will increase engagement on your Facebook page, but will also help humanize your small business, reminding the followers that you too are human and sometimes need a little guidance.
Here’s an example from Pat Flynn:
This post garnered 127 responses from Pat’s audience. 127 is a small number compared to his follower count, however think if you had 127 people in person giving their response. That’s A LOT of people, right?
Crowdsourcing for information helps your audience feel like they are genuinely helping you out, giving them a more emotional connection to you as a small business.
I hope you found some value in this post! Next time, we’ll be talking about Twitter!