Think your brand’s Facebook posts just aren’t getting the visibility they were a few months ago? You’re right.
According to the Facebook for Business-distributed deck, Generating Business Results on Facebook, the network has admitted what brands have long suspected — our posts are getting far less exposure than they used to. “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…to maximize delivery of your message in News Feed, your brand should consider using paid distribution, as it enables you to reach people beyond your fan base and move beyond the organic competition.”
Unfortunately for brands, that News Feed competition isn’t exactly a fair fight. In an effort to make the News Feed more relevant to users, the network implemented features that allow users to choose what brands and friends do or don’t appear in the news feed. Also, the more a user interacts and engages with a brand, the more likely it is that they’ll appear in their News Feed. This runs counterintuitive to marketing instincts that focus on SEO as a determining factor. Instead of focusing on terms like best Bluetooth earbuds (see what I did there) marketers need to focus on keeping customers engaged with a particular piece of content within the Facebook environment.
What can brands do to try and regain their former Facebook presence?
Remind fans to ‘follow’ and get notifications.
Remind your fans in a highlighted or pinned post that in order to see your posts, they need to be “following” your page. Include detailed instructions so that your followers know how to follow your page, or ensure that they are already following. If you have dedicated brand advocates, you might also encourage them to “get notifications” from your page.
Analyze successful posts.
Check out your past posts’ performance. What caused them to gain a higher reach? Was it the content? The pages or people that were tagged in it? The people who then shared it in their own feeds? If you can identify what those successful posts have in common, you can adjust your content strategy accordingly and, potentially, gain great visibility for your posts as time goes on.
Begin to explore ads.
Unfortunately, ads will have to be a part of the Facebook marketing mix. If you’ve been holding off on using them, take the time to begin experimenting with the types of ads, audience targeting and budgeting. You’ll undoubtedly find that certain ad types are more effective than others. For example, Sponsored Stories can be an effective way to promote your content, boost your content’s engagement and also help you acquire new fans. You might find that using that type of ad gets you better results than just an ad pushing users to ‘like’ your page.
What tactics, if any, have you explored in an effort to help boost your brand’s visibility on Facebook? Have you tried ads, or are you holding off for as long as possible?