There is an art and a science to maintaining an engaging and exciting Facebook page. I'm going to share some tips to dramatically improve your Facebook page with easy to implement strategies. Using the tools that Facebook provides, your brain power, and a smart mix of content, you can have a fantastic Facebook page in no time.
699 million people log into Facebook daily, so it's apparently a network that deserves your attention and tweaking the way that you post on Facebook can make a huge difference. You don't need to spend more money; you need to create interesting content in the way that will interest your Facebook audience and appease Facebook's Edgerank. It's totally doable.
From Rebekah Radice, the keys to creating a memorable Facebook brand are:
- Share your story in a real and authentic way, allowing prospective clients an intimate look into who you are and why they would want to work with you.
- Create content that caters to your fans particular by crafting content that speaks to their wants, needs, and desires.
- Discuss what matters most to anyone in need of your product or service. Avoid ever using Facebook to discuss immaterial, vapid or otherwise irrelevant topics
The Art of Facebook
The art of Facebook is mixing your media. Facebook allows four different types of posts:
- Text only
- Photo posts (with or without text)
- Embedded link
Posts with text only get the most engagement while posts with questions get 100% more comments. Text posts perform better with less than 80 characters, but I vary the amount of text that I post. The key is to post a variety of different post styles to keep your page fresh and interesting. This also appeals to Facebook's Edgerank which I'll discuss in a bit.
UPDATE January 25, 2014: Facebook recently updated its algorithm, and it appears that they may now be favoring posts with an embedded link. You can now change the photo on a post with an embedded link which is new with this update. From Facebook “the latest update to News Feed ranking treats text status updates from Pages as a different category to text status updates from friends. We are learning that posts from Pages behave differently to posts from friends and we are working to improve our ranking algorithms so that we do a better job of differentiating between the two types. This will help us show people more content they want to see. Page admins can expect a decrease in the distribution of their text status updates, but they may see some increases in engagement and distribution for other story types.”
There are three types of ways that people can interact with your post on Facebook:
Likes are the lowest hanging fruit, shares would be second regarding the appeal, and starting a conversation in the comments is the goal on Facebook. So, while it's great to get a lot of likes, more comments will lead to your content getting more views on Facebook. When you create a post, it has the possibility to stay in the Newsfeed for 24 hours. It goes back into the Newsfeed each time someone likes, shares, or comments on it. This is why engagement on your posts is so important; it helps recirculate your post.
I realize this seems like common sense but have you looked at Facebook recently? A lot of Facebook pages are getting this wrong. To get a perfect photo, you have the following Facebook's size guidelines.
1. Facebook images should be in the 1:1 aspect ratio for a timeline photo preview that isn't distorted. I load square pictures at 1000 x 1000 pixels, and this scales perfectly on the page.
2. Cover photos are 851 pixels by 315 pixels. When you post a new cover photo add text including a link to your website in the photo description to maximize the spin through the Facebook newsfeed.
If you have weak design skills or don't have time, please use a professional designer to create your images. If you only take one piece of advice from my article, use great images in the proper format.
[pullquote position=”right”]People want to be entertained. Use the art of visual storytelling to grow your Facebook page.[/pullquote]
The Science of Facebook
What is Edgerank? Edgerank is the science behind Facebook success. “An Edge is everything that “happens” in Facebook. Examples of Edges would be status updates, comments, likes, and shares.”
Look at Edgerank as Facebook's formula for popularity. If your post does well, more people will see your future posts. The more popular you are, the more popular you can become. How can you sit at the cool kid's table? Just like high school, you need to conform a bit. Sorry, it's just a fact of life on Facebook.
The formula is affinity, weight, and time decay.
1. Affinity = the relationship you have on Facebook. “Affinity is built by repeat interactions with a Brand's Edges. Actions such as Commenting, Liking, Sharing, Clicking, and even Messaging can influence a User's Affinity.”
To do well in the Affinity section, post great content that keeps people coming back for more. Use witty text and great photos with questions to pull people in and invite them to comment on your page.
If you're looking for great content to share on your Facebook page, sign up for the HASO email list that Guy Kawasaki and I started. It's our raw curated content sent out in a daily email digest.
2. Weight = “Weight is a value system created by Facebook to increase/decrease the value of certain actions within Facebook. Commenting is more involved and therefore deemed more valuable than a Like.”
Create a conversation on your Facebook page with interesting quotes, asking questions, and posting content that gives people the opportunity to state their view or opinion. This is where asking questions to engage people comes into play.
If you're stuck on how to post differently, check out Post Planner to get some ideas for ways to vary your text.
3. Time Decay = How long has your post been live on Facebook? “Time Decay refers to how long the Edge has been alive; the older it is, the less valuable it is.”
The timing of your posts is important. Check your best posts to see when you posted them and use the analytics in Facebook insights or Buffer.
Here is the caveat, if you mess up your Facebook Edgerank, it takes time to build it back up. You could give up your seat popular kids table, and people will not see your posts in their timeline if you tank your Edgerank. The good news is that you can build your Edgerank back up so make sure that you experiment wisely and monitor your Facebook insights.
A great way to see how your Facebook page is doing using the LikeAlyzer tool. It's a fantastic free tool. “LikeAlyzer helps you to measure and analyze the potential and effectiveness of your Facebook Pages. It allows you to monitor, compare and explore all the possibilities of your Facebook Page by evaluating your activity to ensure your success.”
Experiment with your Facebook content.
- Mix up your posting times to test your audience
- Stay relevant to the topic of your page, so you don't confuse people
- Add variety to your posts
- Be interesting or forget about posting at all
- Post consistently and space your posts apart, so you don't clog your fans newsfeed
- Use Facebook Insights to see what content works well and do more of that
Use calls to action (CTAs) on your posts to encourage conversation or activity.
It's essential to keep calls to action in the voice and style of the page. You can simply ask people to LIKE the Facebook page and SHARE a post if they like it. This works on many Facebook pages, but I don't use it very often since it doesn't seem a natural fit with the content I share. Examples of CTAs:
- Ask questions as a text-only post
- Post a quote and ask a question
- Post a promotion and ask your followers to take action by clicking the link
- Pin it for later with a link to a Pinterest pin
Resource: 7 Types of Facebook Questions to Ask to Build Engagement on Facebook
[pullquote position=”right”]Mix art and science to create your perfect formula and boost your Facebook page activity.[/pullquote]Use These guidelines to help you build a fantastic Facebook presence. The most important thing is to gauge what your Facebook fans like and give them more of that while providing some surprises and variety. I'm sure that you can apply the art and science of Facebook and dramatically improve your Facebook page too. Please consider this a guideline and experiment to see what works best for you on your Facebook brand page. I look forward to hearing about your results!
What works for you on your Facebook page? Do you have any favorite Facebook pages that you like to follow? I'd love to hear what you like about them and how they engage you with their content.
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