Facebook is the social media network bloggers and even social media marketers love to hate. There is a myth going around that Facebook is useless for your blog and generally a waste of time because evil Facebook wants to make money and only will show your posts to people if you pay them. Well, frankly that’s wrong and a load of misinformation! Here’s the deal, yes, Facebook is a business and wants to make money. Yes they do make money off selling ads and such, but the real money-maker is the data they gather about their users. However, they want to keep their users happy, so they only show users what they want to see. How do they know what they want to see? They show users what they interact with the most. So if users aren’t interacting with your posts they won’t see it as often, or potentially at all. That’s not a bad thing though! Do you really care if people who liked your page for “reasons” but don’t interact with or even like your posts see it? Will they act on your post? No. Will they click on your post? No. Will they do anything that’s of value to you? No! So reaching them is just a big old waste. You really should be happy Facebook gives you such a targeted audience!
So if you want to be successful on Facebook there are some guidelines you should follow. Not following them can result in your posts not being seen. Most of these guidelines have been in place to preserve user experience, to keep Facebook’s users happy (because as Facebook users ourselves, I’m sure you can sympathize with seeing a feed full of spammy memes, when you really just wanted to see your best friend’s latest post!). So before you hate on Facebook for hiding your posts, make sure you are following these best practices and not getting in your own way!
NO SPAMMY MEMES
Yes, this deserves all caps and H3, it’s THAT important. Facebook HATES spammy memes! They decrease the reach on them because they are spammy clickbait of no real value! What is a spammy meme? It’s overly generic “memes” (if you can call them that, they don’t count as memes in my book, that’s how spammy they are). Examples are “Like this picture if you love your mom!” “Like this if you love your kids!” “Like this if you breathe air and are reading this right now!” They are not entertaining, they are not funny, and they exist solely to get people to like a status update.
When Posting Links, Do Not Leave the URL In the Status Update
Facebook likes it when you post links, however, they want you to use their visually appealing link option. It gives readers an image, plus an excerpt of the link being shared in a visually appealing format. What do I mean? Your shared link should look something like this:
A good link update includes:
- Description with call to action
- Visually appealing image
- Link Title
- Useful description of content contained in the link
The days of uploading an image and using a separate link are over. Facebook wants you to give viewers a real look at what they are going to be seeing. Additionally, you should also add your own commentary to the link, preferably a call to action or a question of some sort. This will help you increase your engagement with your readers and act as a conversation starter.
Post Links To Places Other Than Your Blog
Facebook doesn’t want you to only talk about your blog, and chances are neither do even your most hardcore fans. Share content from other related sources! Curate content from other bloggers in your niche, or interesting articles, images or quotes you come across in your internet travels. Keep your content fresh and from varied sources.
Schedule Your Posts
This will help you keep your sanity and not spend all day on social media. There is a myth going around that third-party tools like Buffer or Hootsuite decrease your reach. This isn’t true. Use whatever tool you want to schedule your posts with! The key is to time it to post when your fans are online. This is easy to find out by visiting your Page Insights!
The has ALWAYS been the key to social media period! Be a real person, act like a real person, engage like a real person! Don’t just automate and forget about everything! Respond to comments, and messages, and to other pages. Social media is about being social and it seems all too often Page managers forget this. It’s not about promoting your blog (even though it kinda is 😉 ) it’s about connecting with your audience! It’s about being social!
[bctt tweet=”Tweet: Keep the social in #SocialMedia!”]
Post photos and videos! Both of these perform very well and are great for building engagement. Why? People love videos and photos! Instagram posts tend to do very well as well so link that Instagram account to your Facebook page! Remember, as awesome as your image or video is, include a great call to action or thought-provoking question. Sometimes people just need a little bit of direction to start the conversation!
As with writing blog posts or posting to any other social media network you have to be consistent. Don’t expect success if you post for a day at a time randomly with little thought or planning. Pick a schedule and go with it, review it down the line as necessary to see if it’s working. But don’t post and then go silent. That makes it very hard for you to gain a following, folks just might lose interest to your competitor blogs who are actually posting every day!
It takes time and considerable effort to build a following on Facebook. However, it’s not the terrible social media monster some make it out to be! There are many pages totally rocking it on Facebook, and you could be too. Just remember to keep your eye on your goals and abide by the best practices for this social network. If you are ever in doubt, remember, be human, be authentic, be real, be you! Social media is ultimately about being social!
Have you struggled with Facebook? How have you overcome it?
PS. Looking for more insight into Facebook? Add these to your reading list: