Are you an amusing conversationalist? Are you the life of the party at your family get-togethers? Do you always have an interesting story to share? Can you read a crowd and work the room? No? Then your Facebook business page might be in trouble. If you want to have a successful (and profitable) Facebook following then you need to be doing ALL of these things.
But wait! Before you get depressed and cancel your Facebook account, I’ve got a few secrets to share with you.
Secret #1: You don’t need the wit and humour of Oscar Wilde to engage your fans.
But, you can steal his wit. That’s right – stealing isn’t illegal when you attribute his words (or anyone else’s) as a quote. Sharing beautiful or funny quotes is perfectly acceptable in the Facebook world. People won’t judge you for ‘stealing’. Actually they’ll thank you for bringing something special into their Facebook news feed.
And if they really like it, then they’ll thank you by sharing it onto their friends, or by liking it or by commenting on your post. Trust me it works. I steal/borrow all the time because some days I simply don’t feel very wise or very funny.
Secret #2: Ask and ye shall receive.
But it’s not good enough simply to pop an Oscar Wilde quote up there as a status. You need to direct your fans towards an action. People like to be told what to do… mostly. So add something funny or interesting and THEN ask for a like if they agree, or ask them to share with their friends. Here’s one I prepared earlier… Here are some more examples for you:
- “What do you think? LIKE if you agree!”
- “What’s your favourite ice cream flavour? COMMENT below!”
- “LIKE OUR PAGE if you want instant updates on the latest film releases.”
- “SHARE with your friends for your chance to win!”
- “OMG! So funny! WATCH THIS VIDEO if you don’t believe me.”
Now, you might wonder WHY you need to push so hard to get engagement, right? That brings me to secret #3.
Secret #3: Engagement is important (but pretty simple).
It’s not rocket science. Engagement is one of four things:
- getting a like on your post,
- getting your posts shared,
- getting a comment, or
- getting tagged in a picture.
And it’s GOOD to encourage as much engagement as you can because fans who do it will have a higher chance at seeing all your posts in their newsfeeds.
Secret #4: If you don’t get your fans to engage with you, they’ll never see your posts.
Wait, what? You mean not all your posts get seen? That’s right! On average only 16% of your fans will see your post. Not because they aren’t online and looking, but because Facebook uses an algorithm called EdgeRank to decide what is relevant and what is not. It’s because of EdgeRank that you always see your besties pop up and yet that weird guy you met at a business conference two years ago almost never pops up in your news feed. You never engage with him on Facebook, so Facebook decides you’re not interested in hearing about the latest sci-fi convention he went to!
Secret #5: Yes, there ARE magical times to post.
OK now you’ve got the basics of why you gotta create interesting posts for maximum engagement, when is the best time for super-high engagement?
Post too early, and your post will appear too low in their feed… post too late and they’ll completely miss it.
Like everything, finding the magical spot will come down to testing to see what your particular fans respond the most to. Having said that, these are the windows that tend to work best for most audiences:
- First thing in the morning (5am – 7am):
I personally check my Facebook before I even get out of bed, and I know I’m not the only one! This is the best time to catch your fans while they’re having a morning coffee or commuting to work.
- Lunchtime (12pm – 2pm):
Ever wonder what all those office workers are looking at on their smartphones at lunch? It’s probably Facebook! This is a great time to get in front of your fans with a Facebook post.
- Afternoon (3pm – 5pm):
Not everyone works til 5pm. And many who do still like to peek at Facebook in their afternoon down-time. This is the second highest peak during the day so take advantage of it.
- The night-night post (8pm – 11pm):
It might seem strange to you but for most online socialisers, Facebook is the first thing they check every morning, and the last thing they look at before they go to bed. So why not get them while relaxed and in their jammies?
As an example of how you might track what you do and when you do it, here is the Facebook planner we’ve created for ourselves over at Web123.
P.S. Yes I know you can’t read the words… I can’t give you ALL my secrets! ;-)
Secret #6: Variety is the key to an engaging Facebook page.
Ultimately the thing you need to do with Facebook is create conversations with your fans. Everyone has their own preferences, some people love inspirational quotes, others like fluffy animals, others like practical tips and resources. You have to know what your audience likes. And what YOUR audience likes, might not be what mine likes, and vice versa. So you’ve got to test and see what gets the most likes. Generally I always recommend that your Facebook posts should do a spread of these 4 things:
- educate, or
Just a little warning, yes you’re in business to sell, but keep your self-promotional posts to a minimum, say 1 promo for every 4 other types of posts. Otherwise your page is going to get pretty boring and salesy… and that’s not why people are on Facebook.
Secret #7: People come to Facebook for… fun! (shock, horror!)
This one probably isn’t a secret, but Facebook is for socialising and kicking back. It’s a bit like an ongoing watercooler conversation in the online space. If you’re always running up to the watercooler kids to try to sell them a widget you’ll get a bad reputation pretty fast and they’ll always avoid you (in other words you’ll get unfriended) and that’s bad news for your social strategy. Funny posts will almost always get more attention. Take a look at this recent post of ours. At the time of writing this blog, it’s had 33 Shares and over 70 likes which is phenomenal!
And did you notice that this popular post has absolutely nothing to do with our web business? On the flipside, if you only entertain people they’ll soon forget you’re offering a service and they’ll never buy from you. So try to strike a balance. I really hope this will help you get ahead in the Facebook world, and remember this isn’t rocket science… it’s just smart socialising! Remember if you have any questions at all, comment down below and lets chat! Til next time ABN’ers! Bianca