Facebook. The virtual land that controls emotions. It has the power to send you to cloud 9 or searching for a quarter so you can call someone who cares. We don’t want to admit that the number of likes, shares, and comments affect how we gauge our success and especially not our self-esteem, but if we’re honest, sometimes we are using it as a means to determine how our business is really doing.
A friend recently observed that her business page is getting fewer likes than it used to. Her first thought was that the posts must be less interesting. That could make sense. But is it true? Time to evaluate the situation.
Why aren’t you getting as many Likes?
Now you see me, now you don’t.
By now, many of us are aware that Facebook has changed its Newsfeed completely to make it more of a “friends and family” platform. Your brand’s posts don’t necessarily show up in their newsfeed like they once did. Your posts now show up under “Pages” on the lefthand sidebar of your fans’ Newsfeed. That’s where your followers have to go to see your content (and every other business page they have liked), causing engagement to drop like a hot potato.
But notice, I didn’t say your posts never show up in their Newsfeed. Facebook's updated News Feed algorithm sets different priorities for which content gets prime News Feed love. So what are these new priorities? According to a private Facebook webinar, you get more exposure when:
The content is shared over Facebook Messenger.
The content is Liked or commented on.
The content receives multiple replies.
"Meaningful interactions" between users take place.
2. “Boost” me up, Scotty.
Sadly, you are now expected to dish out those Benjamins if you want your posts to land in front of your fans’ eyes. It almost inspires the question: Does Facebook really care about being more friends and family-focused...or is that a disguise for other motives? Regardless of the answer, you are now expected to pay for ads in exchange for fame. That doesn’t mean you boost every post. Just supplement here and there and keep those organic posts going.
3. You had me at hello.
Judging your own posts is almost impossible. You are in fact biased. With so much content flooding social media, making a strong impression quickly is key. Here are some tips for creating engaging posts that will pull your audience in. By the way, if you get all the following references, you must be a child of the ‘80s or ’90s.
Sweet Emotion. Are you focused on targeting emotions instead of sales? A picture of one of your products surrounded by flowers on a pretty farm table may not be as inspiring as you think. In Steve Tyler’s words: “You’re talking about things that nobody cares”. If people are interested in the products you sell, they will visit your website. Put effort into connecting with people’s touchy-feely side and they will pay attention. People buy based on how they feel. In case you have lost touch with your feelings, here are some examples:
Be funny - making them laugh can be a challenge, but people are attracted to humor. Funny memes get more likes and shares than your friend’s dinner plate. Even your business doesn’t have to be all business all the time. It’s ok to crack a smile!
Be inspiring - this can be done through something heart-warming or encouraging. If you struggle with coming up with inspiration, share videos that are inspiring! It doesn’t all have to be brand focused and it shows you have a human side...and a life outside of your brand.
Create Excitement - Post a contest or giveaway! Don’t be cheap. Give them something to get excited about! There’s nothing like a little competition and everyone wants to win.
Let’s get visual, visual. What makes people stop scrolling to pause on an image? Striking colors and breath-taking landscapes are a scroll-stopper. But they aren’t the only way to break a scroll addiction. Stop using all those stock images and get REAL! Take candid pictures of your staff, for example, and enhance the photo. There are many easy apps that help you to enhance any picture...you really have no excuse. Use those filters! They can work miracles. Don’t try to appear perfect. People disdain other people’s perfection. They only love their own.
Video killed the radio star. Facebook live is a beautiful thing. DYK that live videos get 3x more watch time than traditional ones? Don’t be shy, keep it rolling for a couple of minutes, at least. Show behind the scenes footage and don’t be afraid to be silly sometimes. This goes along with the theme of people wanting to see your human side. They care about more than just your services and products. When you leave an impression, they will return.
Ain’t nobody got time for dat. Keep it short! Can they read it as it scrolls from one end of their screen to the other? That’s about how much time you have to grab their attention. You can condense that 5 sentence post to 1 or 2 if you try.
Who’s the Boss? A simple call to action (CTA) can work wonders for engagement. One way to do this is through a question. People want their opinions to matter and they love to be heard. Giving them that chance helps you when they leave a comment. Encourage them to speak up instead of asking them to like or share your post. When they leave comments, answer them! Make them feel important and you have won them over.
I wanna talk about ME. Worst Toby Keith song EVER! And a huge mistake in marketing. If all you post about is your brand, interest wanes. Your posts can be relevant without being sales-y and brand-focused. Let your audience know you’re more than what you sell.
4. Use the Force, Luke.
If you want proof of what is working and what isn’t, get a little technical. Take advantage of software that offers you valuable insight into the what, when, and how of social posting. We could literally spend days on this one, but for the sake of sanity, we’ll keep it short and sweet.
Timing is everything. Posting when the majority of your target audience is gallivanting around in Facebook land is the best time to ensure interaction. This awesome chart by Sprout Social can be your Yoda.
Facebook Analytics. Take advantage of the fact that Facebook can tell you which posts are doing the best. You can pinpoint which posts your fans like and build on that. There are plenty of tools available to dig deeper and help you here. Sproutsocial and HubSpot are two definitely worth checking out. Or just hire us and we’ll do all the treacherous legwork for you. How’s that for short and sweet?
We just click. Your ultimate goal on social media is to gain more customers, right? Provide plenty of opportunities for them to click their way to your website.
Always post links to your latest blog post leading with a witty statement or question to create curiosity.
Use website click ads. Use the visual method discussed earlier to create something worth stopping for and drive them to your website by promoting a specific page or product - don’t use a picture of the product unless you do something crazy with it. Remember, products are emotionless.
Explore Messenger ads. There are three different kinds and with 1.3 billion active monthly users, it’s worth considering. The 3 types are:
Standard Messenger Ads
All 3 have significant advantages. Educate yourself. I would do it for you, but it’s almost breakfast time
Hopefully, you understand that in order for Facebook to work for your business, you have to increase engagement with your posts and possibly dive deeper into ads. It’s time to put on your creative hat and get busy.
For an anti-aging approach to marketing, hire us.