Facebook… don’t forget the basics!

Facebook is fascinating I think. Particularly from a business point of view. It continues to change and adapt the algorithm  leaving us all scratching our heads about what to do next without shelling out a fortune on advertisement (which ultimately, it wants us to do). I’ve run a fair few Facebook pages over the last few years and am always learning what works and what doesn’t so I wanted to share some of my thoughts and experiences. (I should also say that last year I joined in with a twitter Q &A by Comms2Point0 about doing Facebook better. This led me to want to blog in more detail about my thoughts. )

Ads are good – despite the annoyance of Facebook reducing your organic post reach (i.e the number of people who will see your updates naturally in news feed) the adverts system they use is pretty darn good. You can promote anything from your call to action button, your website, an individual post or your page itself. It also allows you to set your budget, so you can actually just spend £10 to start with to see results. That’s got to be worth a trial right? When you set your budget Facebook will also show you the estimate result out of the potential result (so, paying £10 will increase your total page likes by 25 out of possible 1K, lets say.) You can also choose where to advertise – locations and surrounding radius, ages and interests – meaning you have the ability to seriously get in front of your target audience. You can also advertise direct to Instagram too.

One size doesn’t fit all – When it comes to Facebook pages it’s important to accept that what works for one doesn’t work for another. There’s a lot of advice about the best times to post and on what channel etc, but each audience for every page is different. Your audience’s online behaviour differs to the behaviour of a similar business or organisation. This doesn’t mean you can’t be strategic about when you post and with what you post – because this is key. Make your content useful and relevant and play around with the times of day that you share stuff. In office hours, outside of office hours, lunch times etc. Then use the insights section of your Facebook page (which is free!) to learn about what works.

Don’t give up on organic reach – if you have a Facebook page don’t be disheartened that your messages aren’t getting the interaction they once did, and don’t feel that the only option for you is to pay for advertisement. If you can publish worthwhile content, that’s written well in a great tone with the right links and images then you’re doing it right. Tie that in with your lessons learnt about your audience behaviour (see above!) and you’re on to a winner.

Finally…

Don’t forget the basics of what makes good social media content and behaviour on Facebook (and all other social networks for that matter!) – sign off your responses and messages – put a person behind that page. Thank people – for their comments, their feedback, their follows, their shares. Say hey! – don’t sit quietly for weeks on en, be personable. Share other peoples stuff – it’s not just about you – social networks are about community. Change it up – don’t post the same message at the same time every day, across every profile you own. It will come across as robotic and a little bit boring. People will switch off.

And a couple of last little tips – change your profile pictures regularly. Keep it fresh. Add pictures to your post – From work you do and events you’re at. Use video! Facebook now auto plays video published in your post – remember this and use it! You don’t need lots of equipment and a company to create video content for you, just your smart phone will do.

The new photo carousels are brilliant – they allow you to add more depth to your posts, links and calls to action. British Airways are doing this really well at the moment. You can also create short videos out of pictures too which I think adds a really nice touch.

Being timely is key on social. Make sure you’re checking and responding to private messages in a timely manner because Facebook now tells your audience, and potential audience, how responsive you are. It just makes good customer service sense to factor regular slots into your day where you check for interactions.

That’s it! I hope you find that useful, please share if you do.

Tweet you soon!
Nat x

 

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