In case you haven’t heard, Facebook changed its algorithm in January 2018, to suppress even more advertising and organic publishing from companies, with the goal of featuring more content from people’s contacts.
What does that mean for small business owners who are using this social media platform to increase engagement, drive traffic, generate leads, and boost sales?
First, you may need to pay to play on this platform; however, increasing your ad budget may not help to beat the algorithm. Facebook groups might be a better option than spending money on ads.
Second, consider what you’re posting and how its perceived by your audience. Original, engaging content will be key as you continue to use this platform.
How to beat the system.
If Facebook is your go-to social media platform, consider these tips to help increase engagement and to drive traffic to your site. Each of these tactics done independently might give you a boost, but combining efforts is a better strategy.
- Post photos and videos more than text with links.
- Identify your premium time to post content by day and time. Your business account analytics will be important here.
- Utilize Facebook’s targeting tools on your boosted posts, which allows you to target an audience based on gender, relation or educational status, age, location, language, or interest.
- Pin important posts to the top of your Facebook feed. That way when people visit your page, they’ll see that post first.
- Update your cover photo to keep the page fresh. Tip: When you update the cover image, also add a description to your website or landing page content promoted in the image. When people see the new cover image, they also get a description with an action.
- Promote your page in your email signature and also create a singular email to your clients about liking your page. Be sure to give them three reasons why and/or the benefits of liking your page.
- Create a custom landing page. Then add a tab to that page. It’s a great way to promote a service, free quote, sign up for an event, gain traction for a high-profile piece of content, etc. You will need a third-party tool to create the page. Some are free and others offer various pricing options, e.g., ShortStack, Heyo, Tabsite, Pagemodo, Woobox, and Easy Tab Creator.
- Recycle past, successful content.
- Share user-generated content, such as photos, quotes, and more. For example, National Puppy Day is on March 23. You could ask followers to post a photo of their puppy or a photo of a puppy they would like.
- Remember to post on weekends occasionally. See how those posts perform compared to other posts. If they do well, work that into the schedule each month.
- Tag other Facebook accounts for relevant content.
- Use hashtags to help generate interest in your content. Tip: This is really helpful on trending hashtag days, such as #PhotoOfTheDay, #InspirationalQuotes, #MondayMotivation, #TuesdayThoughts, and more.
- Make Facebook Live events part of your monthly strategy. Tip: Share a monthly question with staff and then video them answering the question. Post the live feed and ask the audience how they’d respond.
There are many ways to engage people on Facebook. What you need to consider, first and foremost, is your audience. Who are they? How old are they? What would resonate with them? When are they online? What media to they react to?
If you don’t know the answers, there is abundant research about each online. Start there.
How will you beat the system this year?