It cannot be denied that since the Facebook Pages function was introduced in November 2007, many public figures, businesses, brands, organisations and non-profits around the world have signed up to the platform to connect with their fans and consumers and almost five years later, they continue to do so. However, with Facebook formats constantly changing and EdgeRank playing a large part in deciding what news gets fed to users, some brands are consistently failing to get the most out of their Facebook profiles.
With some social media agencies recommending that brands follow certain guidelines and others recommending opposing approaches, it can be confusing to know the best methods when using Facebook. However, it doesn’t need to be complicated. Below is a set of Q&As that a brand or company might find useful when undertaking any activity on Facebook.
How do we increase fan figures?
Use your existing client or customer-facing platforms to promote the fact that you have a presence on Facebook. Include links to your page on websites, e-mail signatures and other networking sites such as Twitter. Remind your consumers to check out your Facebook community in your television and outdoor advertising, even in-store if applicable. Letting people know where to find you is much more effective than expecting people to know or search on their own – it needs to be as clear as possible. Also, carrying out a Facebook or even a Twitter competition is a great way of recruiting new fans because while they are enticed, competitions often lead to new users learning about your brand and then potentially becoming customers.
How do we get more people ‘liking’ posts?
There are several methods that can be used in order to get more people liking your posts. Firstly, post engaging content – an obvious yet occasionally overlooked point that brands often may forget because they are too focussed on numbers. Facebook is a networking site and brands need to do just that, network with their fans and be conversational whilst maintaining a professional persona. The new timeline layout means that brands can now ‘pin’ posts to the top of their page, which can be an effective way of getting more people to like posts because it will be the first thing they see. Use leading language such as “Click ‘Like’ if you had a good weekend.” Although this is a general example, you can see why it might encourage more people to like a post than if it was very text-heavy without a call-to-action.
How can we boost the number of comments on posts?
This is a fairly simple one – ask for comments. Although this might sound obvious, not all brands ask. Facebook is not a platform to broadcast; it’s a platform to converse and engage with fans and asking them questions will result in comments. The key thing to remember is that Facebook users don’t want to spend a long time answering a question that a brand has asked. So, just ask straightforward closed questions that only need one to three word responses. Quickfire surveys and short polls are both fantastic ways of getting your fans engaged. Once comment figures have increased, then introduce questions which require longer answers, however, it is important to ensure you are not asking too much of your fans, otherwise they will simply scroll past your post and onto the next one.
Can we affect the reach of each post?
The reach of your post is highly influenced by EdgeRank, Facebook’s algorithm. There are several factors taken into account when deciding who is served your content. If these factors are taken into consideration, then reach should remain as high as possible. EdgeRank can be affected by affinity, which is the level of interaction Facebook thinks users have with your page. Weight, which means Facebook decides whether your type of post is something the user normally interacts with, also holds sway over reach. Finally, EdgeRank takes time into consideration, which simply means the age of the post. In order to increase the reach of your posts, ensure you are adhering to the following guidelines; do not post the same link several times, encourage fans to post their own content on your wall such as photos or videos, do not post too much content and maintain a steady flow of activity.