As a business, improving your social media presence should be on your daily to do list.
Social media is a complex, ever-changing networking machine, and keeping up with the updates can sometimes make your head spin. Facebook is especially hard to keep up with, because they make regular changes to their algorithm.
Improving your social media presence on Facebook can be very easy if you're willing to put in the work. If you’re ready to grow your Facebook fans, buckle up and hold on - here we go!
When should you post?
Timing is everything in social media; for example, the life of a tweet is only about 15 minutes. That’s a small window to capture your audience's attention, and with Facebook it can be even harder.
Facebook’s algorithm creates a complex system controlling when your posts will show up in your fans’ news feeds. To succeed under this system, you need to generate buzz by getting likes and comments right away. Facebook will see this activity and present your post to more of your fans because of its popularity. I talk about this more in depth in my post about the September 2014 Facebook Algorithm Update.
To figure out the best times to post, access your Facebook dashboard and view your “Insights.” Within your Insights, you can look at a range of data that Facebook has collected about likes, reach, visits, posts, and people. When you select the “Posts” section, you can see when your fans are online and most likely to engage with your posts.
It can take some experimentation to find the best times to post, but you can use the data Facebook provides to time your posts and increase audience engagement.
But what should you post?
It has been said that “content is king”, but why is that? Content is the driving force behind any Inbound Marketing campaign, and giving your audience great content is what positions you as an expert in their eyes.
When your fans view you as an authority, they will come to you for what they need. But what kind of content should you post? Think like your audience - is this a topic they will find interesting? Would they want to share this blog if they read it? Is this a post that they would leave comments on? Buyer personas are a great way to answer these questions.
Writing blog posts and ebooks or creating an infographic can be time consuming, but it’s worth the effort. Writing about topics that your audience will find beneficial is what positions you as an expert and brings them back to you when they need your product or service.
Once you have this content ready, you can share it on Facebook (and other social media platforms). This will grow your reach when your fans like, comment on, and share your posts.
To increase engagement on Facebook, you should also share relevant content produced by other experts, if it will be interesting and helpful to your audience. Choosing content to share can be a bit of a struggle, but just remember to think like your audience.
Your industry and buyer personas will determine what you need to share, but in general, consider industry news, trending topics, general information (weather, national or local news, etc.), and, of course, funny videos of kittens.
Increase your reach by engaging with your audience.
Respond to Every Comment!
This tip for increasing your social media presence may be the most essential of them all. It’s extremely important to engage with people who comment on your posts. Showing your audience that you’re actually paying attention earns you HUGE brownie points.
When you take the time to answer a question or just say “hey, thanks!” when someone comments that they enjoyed your blog post, you show your customers and potential customers that you care what they think.
“Network” with Other Fan Pages
The one big downside to Facebook for business compared to other social media platforms is that you can only communicate with personal profiles when those people have interacted with your page, but that restriction doesn’t apply to other fan pages.
There are several different ways that engaging with other fan pages can be beneficial for businesses. First, when you interact with a fan page on Facebook, their audience can see your comments and may be interested in your business. It’s important not to abuse this with “salesy” posts, but it’s a great opportunity to engage in a natural way with what they’re sharing and bring awareness to your brand.
If you’re B2B company, not only can you interact with businesses who might become customers of yours, but you can connect with ones who have a great product or service that’s complementary to yours, potentially building a 2-way “brand ambassador” relationship.
Whether you’re B2B or B2C, you can also connect with fan pages for communities who might be interested in what you do, but be careful to actually engage with their posts and interests rather than simply insert your sales pitches.
Facebook ads and “boosted” posts aren’t the only way to increase your reach!
When you use these 3 methods to increase engagement organically, Facebook will open the door for more fans to see your posts in their news feeds for free.