- 02 Apr 2013
I didn't like having to break the news to him, but it's better for him to know. As PR manager for a large organisation, the gentleman I was taking to (not a client) was very proud of the fact that has team had â€œbuilt up thousands of Facebook fans” and was churning out dozens of posts per week. He was astounded to hear that almost no one was seeing them.
What some, like this PR manager, seem to be unaware of is that Facebook ranks content. It's ranking algorithm â€˜EdgeRank' decides what Facebook users see and don't see in their newsfeeds. On average, only about 16% of a Facebook page's fans see any one post. For many pages, the percentage will be lower. And my acquaintance's page is almost certainly well below the average.
In EdgeRank's considerations, affinity is extremely important â€“ how often a fan interacts with your Facebook page will to a large extent determine whether they see future posts. EdgeRank will also start to rank your posts lower generally if you post a lot of content that doesn't get much engagement.
The weight of engagement is also important. Facebook gives shares the highest weighting, so the more shares you get for your posts, the better for their ranking. Comments are given the next highest weighting, followed by likes, and then clicks.
The type of post will also be important. Images and videos are given the most importance, followed by links, and then status updates.
My acquaintance's Facebook page was getting very little engagement. Very few people were liking its posts, no one was sharing them, and there weren't many comments. The posts were dull and uninteresting and much too promotional in content, style and tone. The organisation had built a sizeable number of followers because it is extremely well-known, but it was doing nothing with them. The PR team assumed that most of their fans were seeing most of their posts. The reality is entirely different.
So it's important to keep it engaging. And here's five simple ways you can do it:
1. Post at the right time of day – work out when most of your fans are on Facebook and post then
2. Include a call to action – ask your fans to do something, for instance include an open-ended question, or ask them to spread the word by sharing the post
3. Include an eye catching image â€“ Facebook is more and more a visual experience, and a striking image will help draw attention and motivate your fans to act
4. Keep it brief â€“ no one will read a long post, and indeed they may give a long post negative feedback, which can hurt the ranking of any future posts. About three Facebook lines of text is as much as you should really post. If you need to communicate something more lengthy, include a (shortened) link to the info on your website
5. Keep it uplifting â€“ people are much more likely to â€˜like', share or comment on good news, inspiring thoughts or funny comments