First you made your Facebook page exactly how you wanted it; it was all set to be consistent with your brand and you were ready to promote your business.
Then Facebook users started liking your page, essentially subscribing to everything you would post. You get to share your great content with them, and they don’t have to pay. That’s great!
But what happens next?
It can be difficult enough trying to get people to your page and then to like it. The work isn’t over then, though. You have to continue to keep users engaged, and even more importantly, make sure that your posts are reaching and being seen by as many fans as possible. Here’s 7 tips how to do that, organically and paid.
1) There’s a Decline in Organic Reach
This, unfortunately, has been a consistent and steadily increasing reality.
Even with all the paid methods, organic reach isn’t necessarily a bad approach if it is used as part of your whole plan.
I say part of your plan however, because pages only organically reach a very small percentage of their fans. By part, I mean a small part. It shouldn’t be ignored, but marketers are now going to need to be willing to utilize other tactics as well.In April of 2012, it was announced that only 16% of fans were reached organically.
This number has been continually falling since 2013 (which Facebook has blamed on lack of space in the newsfeeds). This article discusses how the trend of it falling will continue.
When it comes to Facebook and your fans, organic reach refers to the amount of people seeing the content you post; they do so in their newsfeed, without it you paying anything to advertise the posts to them, such as through boosted posts or promoted posts.
With more and more content—especially great content—being generated and shared every day, your page has a lot more competition than it used to. It is both easier for users and more engrained in our day to day lives.
Six years ago, how often did you see people taking pictures of their dinners at restaurants? Now you walk into the Chilis and everyone is taking pictures of their burgers on their smart phones, uploading it to Facebook. It has become part of our culture, and our newsfeed gets easily drowned out.
Not only is the newsfeed more congested, it is also affected by Facebook’s algorithm to determine what content is most relevant to individual users. Even if a user likes your page, maybe the algorithm has decided that one of your fan’s other 152 likes is more relevant to display in their newsfeed.
If you want to increase your organic reach, you can read this article for some ideas on how to do it, but again, organic reach should not be your main strategy.
Long story short: utilizing organic reach in order to connect with your fans isn’t what it was a few years ago. It can help you reach a very small percentage of your fans, but you didn’t spend all that time (and money if you hired someone) to build your page, content, and likes to only reach a few of them.
The idea is to connect with as many people as possible.
Making sure your page can reach people organically is a good thing, but it should no longer be your main strategy. This article contains a few strategies that fit in with both paid and organic reach.
Knowing that you will likely be investing some money into some portion of Facebook’s ad system is an important realization, just as it’s important to remember that if you do it right, you’ll get a higher return of investment.
2) Post When Fans Are Online
When a tree falls in the forest and there’s no one there to hear it, does it make a sound?
That’s one of those lifelong debatable questions. What isn’t debatable, however, is the fact that if you post something on Facebook and no one sees it, it has no impact or point. You’ve potentially wasted great content and time.
In order to make sure your posts are seen as much as possible, you should find out when your fans to tend to be the most active. Under your page’s Insights tab, this information is waiting just for you.
Try to upload posts on the days and times when your fans seem to be most active. Whether you’re using other strategies/ad platforms or not, this is a good trick to increase visibility.
3) Maximize Each Post for Engagement
The days are over that generating enormous amounts of decent and even pretty good content was enough to be considered marketing effort.
Not only could users start to feel spammed, but putting out a ton of ok content on your page makes it harder for users to see the great content that you put out.
It’s hard enough competing with everyone and everything else that’s already drowning out newsfeeds; you don’t want to have to compete with your own page, too.
This doesn’t mean that posts should be few and far between, because you still want your page to be consistently maintained and looking active. Socialbakers recommends one post per day, but no more than two.
It does mean, however, that those great (and potentially slightly fewer) posts that you put out need to be optimized for user engagement. Content that will generate questions, likes, comments, and shares will make an enormous difference.
When you upload each post, the goal should be to get the most interaction as possible, every time.
Part of this means targeting the right audience (see step #4), but part of it means reconsidering the content being distributed.
4) Target the Right Audiences
Yes, just about everyone who legitimately liked your Facebook page could be considered your target audience. Inside that one big audience, however, are all types of subgroups that can be broken down and targeted more specifically.
Facebook Ads has improved drastically over the past few years, constantly adding new features so that you can best reach whatever audience you decide to target.
We talk about the importance of targeting the right audience here at our site. It’s more true than ever.
Using different types of audiences, including Custom Audiences, can help each post and ad reach the most ideal portion of your fans and potential audience. If you’re sending out an ad to your fans asking them to download an app, wouldn’t you want to target (and pay to advertise to) those who hadn’t already downloaded it? Custom Audiences lets you do that– use it.
5) Use Promoted Posts
Promoted posts is one way to essentially push your posts into the newsfeeds of some of your fans.
Promoted posts are something you pay for, but have frequently provided worthwhile results. As with other types of Facebook Ads, you have the option of setting a budget per day or paying cost-per-click. You can switch between the two.
If you want to promote a post, you can do so through the Ads Manager or through Power Editor.
Once you go into create an ad, you will be asked to choose an objective.
Choose Page Post Engagement, and you will be given the option of which posts it is that you want to Boost. You then go through targeting audience section, and you are good to go.
Promoted posts, especially if targeted to the correct audience, can result in a substantial boost in your reach.
By promoting your post, you increase it’s visibility, which often increases engagement in turn. As engagement increases, more of your posts will be seen by more users in the future.
To show the incredible results that can come from a successfully promoted posts, I’ll use our site as an example. You can see the impact the promoted post had—having a reach of 400 or 500 before and then skyrocketing to 28.9K, taking engagement along with it.
Want to know the crazy part? It didn’t break our bank in order to promote that post and get those great numbers. It only cost twenty dollars.
Promoted posts work best on your biggest and most exciting news. If you have a new product, for example, that you are excited about and want to talk about, a promoted post would be one good option to broadcast it (in additional to traditional ads).
6) Use #Hashtags
Using hashtags is something we’ve talked about in other blog posts, and it’s something that can be relevant when you’re looking to expand your reach.
Hashtags have heavily started infiltrating various forms of media. Even watching TV now you see hashtags every five minutes on some TV shows (I’ve noticed this trend especially with competition and reality based TV shows like The Voice).
The reason why? Because hashtags link every post about that topic together, sometimes across multiple platforms. After all, we are talking about Facebook here, and hashtags originated on Twitter. Cross-platform advertising is a good thing, especially when looking to expand reach.
Hashtags on Facebook alone lump all posts about a topic together. They turn topics into clickable links. If you’re running a special Black Friday sale, don’t be afraid to hashtag it—someone looking for deals just may stumble upon it. Your post won’t just appear in on your page and in your fans’ newsfeeds, it will also appear on the page of the hashtag you’ve chosen.
You can use hashtags to reach new fans, as well as to encourage engagement and conversation with new fans and old fans alike.
7) Use The Data in Insights
Your page’s Insights (separate from Audience Insights) has a section where you can evaluate how well you’re doing in your attempt to reach your fans on Facebook. You can see your organic reach vs. your paid reach, combined in graphs for overall total reach. Especially with organic reach decreasing overall, your paid reach will likely be much higher than your organic reach.
Under your “Posts” tab, you can also evaluate the reach of each individual post, as well as measuring its engagement, as we saw above in the promoted posts section. It’s here where you can also access when your fans are most often online.
Using Insights will help you measure how effective your campaigns are as well as how far your reach as extended. As you try different methods to better your reach on Facebook, evaluate their success on Insights.