We all know that Facebook is constantly moving the goal posts when it comes to social media marketing. Anyone who runs a Facebook Business Page in 2014 will understand that it is harder than ever to market your business organically on the platform. A page with over 20,000 likes can see it’s posts only reaching up to 500 people, highlighting that since 2012 organic reach per fan is down almost 10%.
So, where does this leave us?
Facebook chooses who sees what and when. Why? Because it can, but also because on average a user see’s around 1500 posts pass through their timeline a day. If Facebook didn’t filter some of those posts most users would be drowning in content.
To stop this happening Facebook chooses what content it shows you based of a few key factors…
- Your post’s performance – How have other users reacted to your post? Is it popular? Are they liking, sharing or commenting?
- The type of post a user prefers – If a Facebook user prefers photo posts (they tend to interact with these more than videos or text updates) and you post a photo, they are more likely to see it.
- How new the post is – If you post at 9pm and 1000 of your fans come online then, you will probably catch more of them.
The above leads us to one key question, what should we be posting to get the best organic reach?
- Mix it up – Keep the ‘likers’ who are seeing your posts engaged. If they keep seeing the same event flyer, the same colours or the same people, they will switch off.
- Don’t be afraid to ask people to comment, like or share – If you want people to engage, then ask them. Don’t make it sound desperate, but if you don’t ask then you don’t get.
- Run weekly posts – Use a photo of the week, name the cocktail and caption competitions. By doing this, you will create brand loyalty and excitement. Stretch it across all your platforms too. If you are a very visual business like a bar, then try linking your Instagram and Facebook competitions using hashtags, or get customers to @ you.
- Visual content – Even though you should definitely be mixing it up, try to steer clear of just text posts. Use links to articles, memes, videos, Instagram pictures and photos. When Facebook introduced the timeline for brands, visual content saw a 65% increase and has never looked back since.
- Choose your time of day – Pick your time to post wisely by assessing your analytics. Go to insights – posts on your Facebook Business Page to see when your ‘likers’ are online.
What we all have to remember is that even though we consider free Facebook Business Pages a luxury, they aren’t. Facebook is a big money making machine, and they are trying to bully the little guy into paying for advertisements by lowering organic reach. Sure, with the amount of pages people are ‘liking’ increasing by 50% each year, there is more competition when it comes to getting your posts seen. But the truth is, Facebook have even come out themselves and been blunt about the future of organic marketing on the platform…
“We expect organic distribution of an individual page’s posts to gradually decline over time as we continually work to make sure people have a meaningful experience on the site.”
As you can see, they have dressed it up as ‘working to make sure people have a meaningful experience’, but we all know that is code for ‘working to make sure we are cashing in’. It’s only a matter of time until we are all having to pay for the privilege to reach anyone at all.