Do you remember a time before Facebook? If you do, you know that those days are quickly fading into the past.
Nowadays, Facebook is an essential part of a healthy and balanced marketing strategy. It’s the most popular, and arguably most important social media platform in existence. Over two billion people worldwide use Facebook, and that number is steadily on the rise. To put it simply: You need a Facebook presence.
However, what if you’re on Facebook, but Facebook isn’t really doing anything for your business? No one is engaging with you on Facebook. Your posts aren’t getting shared, your page barely has any likes, you have even less followers, and you’ve given up on comments.
Fortunately, hope isn’t lost! In this post, we’ll help you identify the most important strategies for improving your Facebook engagement levels. Let’s get started.
Have a Goal
Everything you post should have a specific goal. On Facebook, your goals may be:
- Get more post shares to increase social exposure for your business
- Build an engaged community
- Get user generated content to use in future marketing campaigns
- Get leads
- Get more traffic to your blog post(s)
Keep your goals in mind as you craft each social post. You’re not tied to one specific goal, though. The goal for one post may be to get more traffic for your blog, and the goal of another post may be encouraging referrals.
Social media is just that– social. Don’t be afraid to ask questions to those who follow you on Facebook. The point of being on social media isn’t to deliver a monologue, but to dialogue with your followers and engage in a conversation. Constant self-promotion is boring, and it can actually affect the future visibility of your posts.
If you spend any time on Facebook, you may notice that organic reach is down. A lot of your followers won’t actually see your posts in their newsfeeds. Facebook determines which posts (and brands) to promote based on a complex algorithm. Although we don’t know all of the factors that go into Facebook’s algorithm, we do know that post interaction definitely affects whether that post and your future posts are seen by your followers.
By asking questions (and getting answers), you’ll increase your visibility not just for that post but for other posts in the future.
To get more engagement, ask the right questions of your audience. Although you want your question to be easy to answer, don’t set it up for a binary “yes” or “no” response. Consider asking an open-ended question that makes your audience think before answering.
If you haven’t tried it already, start asking questions of your audience. Post at least one question each week and make it a special, recurring event (i.e. “question Tuesday”). By implementing a consistent weekly feature, your audience will have something to look forward to each week on your Facebook page.
Keep Your Posts Short and Sweet
Your social media posts should be snackable. Remember that social media is not your blog. It’s not the right spot for lengthy content. Social media users are constantly scrolling down the page. They may pause at an interesting image, read a short post, or possibly interact with a like or share. However, social media users don’t want to spend too long in one spot, which means that a 1,000-word post is probably not a good idea for social and is better suited on your blog.
Of course, you can and should link to that 1,000 word post on your blog. Create a short excerpt (less than 100 words) where you market your blog post to your followers.
Shorter posts often perform better on Facebook because the audience can read and react quickly, hopefully with a positive comment or at least a like. However, longer posts are less likely to be read.
Pay for Promotion
Earlier, I mentioned that organic reach is down on Facebook. One way to improve your odds of visibility is to create posts that invite interaction (like, share, comment). The other way to improve your visibility is to pay for it.
Many social media platforms are adopting a “pay for play” model, and Facebook is leading the charge. If you’ve ever wondered why you can’t reach all of your followers through normal methods (such as posting content), here’s the answer: Facebook wants to make money from you. Facebook is a business, after all.
The good news is that Facebook offers a rich marketing opportunity for your business. You have the potential to reach two billion people through Facebook, although you won’t need to reach anywhere near that amount to have a successful marketing campaign.
One of my favorite things about Facebook marketing is that you can target your content to a very specific group of people, for example:
- By demographics – i.e. People who live in a certain zip code
- By behavior – i.e. People who have visited your website in the last 30 days
- By similarity – i.e. People who are in some way similar to your current customers
Through Facebook advertising, you can target the exact people who are the best candidates for your content, whether you’re inviting them to an event or offering a video demo of your latest product or service. Paid Facebook marketing is a guaranteed way to increase engagement because you can tailor your ads to those who are most likely to benefit from your posts.
Focus on Shareability
Your organic reach can only take you so far. Even paid efforts won’t reach everyone. However, if you can activate social sharing, you’ll be able to extend your post’s reach far beyond your own efforts. So, how do you activate social sharing?
The best way to get people to share your posts is to make each post insanely shareable. Think about how the average person will see and interact with your post, and ask yourself the following questions before posting:
- Is the post funny?
- Is the post informative?
- Is the post thought-provoking or inspiring?
- What benefit will the sharer get from sharing this content with their friends?
Answering these questions every time will help you decide if your post is shareable or not.
One of the most important things you can do to increase Facebook engagement is to post consistently. Not only does posting consistency impact visibility, it also helps to build community. If you can have a theme for each day of the week, your followers will begin to associate that day with your brand, and they’ll look for you. An example of a week may be:
- Interview Mondays (interview an industry expert, a customer, or a staff member)
- Q&A Tuesdays (ask questions for your followers to answer)
- Customer of the Week Wednesdays (highlight a customer)
- Teach Me Thursday (demos, tutorials, etc.)
- Video Live Fridays (go live and interact with your followers)
Post consistency helps to raise your profile and keep your followers engaged with your business on Facebook. Also remember that you can pay to promote any post, which is especially useful in the beginning when you don’t have a lot of interaction and you’re trying to build that community around your content.
Have you considered uploading videos onto Facebook? If not, you should. Facebook videos have higher engagement than YouTube videos. This study shows that Facebook videos are shared more frequently than YouTube videos– 10 times more frequently!
How do you take advantage of Facebook video to increase your reach? Here are a few tips:
- Start b – Facebook videos play automatically. You need to grab the viewer’s attention before they scroll by. You have three (3) seconds at most, so start your videos with a bang.
- Keep them short – The typical video on Facebook is two minutes or less. The sweet spot is often under 60 seconds, so keep your videos on the snackable side.
- Plan for mute – Facebook videos play by default on mute. Up to 85% of Facebook videos are never unmuted, so keep in mind that your audience may never hear you speak. Include captions for every video.
- Ask for the share – Remind the video viewer to share your video with their social circles. You can either ask in the video itself or in the accompanying post.
The one exception to the above rules is Facebook Live videos. With Facebook Live, your audience tunes in specifically for longer videos with sound.
Before you go, check out these additional resources:
- 5 Things Keeping You from Being a Social Media Rockstar
- Developing Your Facebook Ad Campaign: Step-By-Step
- Social Media Tip: The Best Time to Post