Now that all the hubbub has died down over the new Facebook changes, I thought I’d take a minute to give you some tips on what you can do to keep your “interaction” level the same or better than what it was before.
The Facebook changes recently announced at the f8 conference consisted of changes to customer’s profiles, including the new Timeline feature. However, after the announcement, Facebook Page admins were left stunned and wondering how this was going to effect interaction from Facebook Business Pages. I’ve been trolling the web ever since trying to find a definitive answer, and, also running some experiments on the pages I admin. It seems that (for the most part) interaction has dropped for pages.
If you have seen a drop in interaction, there are a couple of things you can do to lift that back up. The three tactics below are very basic things, but I feel like they are something that a lot of Facebook Page admins miss or forget about, including myself. When I see the interaction numbers start slipping away, I practice the basics. And, just like weight loss, sometimes practicing the basics are just the thing you need to make a difference.
- “Like” and Comment on Replies and Shares
Something that a lot of Facebook Page admins miss is interacting with their own page. It’s not enough to just post something and sit back and watch the likes and comments roll in. In fact, you might not even get very many likes and comments if you don’t interact with the person who replied to your post. Why? Facebook’s Edgerank (the ranking system they use to decide what the “top stories” are for each person) depends on three things: weight (the type of post), decay (how long since the post was made), and affinity (the nature of the relationship that a specific Facebook user has with your page). It’s the affinity component that liking and commenting on a post helps. If a person has a high affinity with your Facebook Page (meaning they comment and like a lot of your posts) then liking and commenting back only boosts that and makes it more likely for their friends to also like and comment on the post. Don’t forget that it’s called “social” media for a reason. So, don’t forget to be social.
- Ask Questions
As always, ask questions. Questions, by their very nature invite responses where statements do not. I’ve had a lot of success here lately with just asking simple questions on the Facebook Pages I administer. They don’t even have to be specifically related to your business. In fact, sometimes it’s refreshing for your fans if they are not. So, ask away and see what happens.
- Use “Media” In Your Posts
That’s right, another basic, but it’s true. You should add pictures and videos where you can to your posts on Facebook. The reason why is that a video or picture will add more weight (remember, weight is a variable in Facebook Edgerank) to your post. Now, I’m not all about just adding photos all the time, especially if the photo has nothing to do with your post. In fact, if you add a photo that has nothing to do with your post your much less likely to get any kind of (quality) interaction from it. But when it is appropriate, you should add photos and videos to your posts.
But what if you’re not getting any interaction on your posts? The last two tactics still apply here. Obviously you can’t like or comment on someone’s reply if they don’t even reply in the first place. But if you do get some interaction on your post be sure to employ number one.
Also, here’s two bonus tips for those of you who are experiencing a major drop in interaction since the Facebook changes.
- Less is More
Try shortening your post. You don’t have to go so far as to “twitterize” it, by making sure it’s under the 140 character limit, but making your post shorter might give your post more chance of being read. People are increasingly busy these days, so make your post easy to digest, by taking out unnecessary words.
- Timing Matters
And the last tip is to experiment with the day of the week, time of day, and number of times a day or week you post to your Facebook Page. Do you find that you get more interaction at night? Then use a scheduler such as hootsuite (
though this may drop your post in Edgerank TINY UPDATE: Apparently, it’s not such a big deal to use a third party applications (such as hootsuite) to post to Facebook anymore. But there is no verifiable data on this currently. So, experiment away with this. I’d love to hear about your success with this.) to schedule your post to go out at that time. Of course, you can always avoid the possible drop in Edgerank by just setting a reminder in your calendar or on your phone to post at a specific time of day. Don’t want to spend time experimenting? One of my favorite bloggers, Jay Baer, has recently done a study with Argyle Social to find out when is the best time for your type of company to post to social media. Check out the repot and employ some of this research to your own posts.
Try these tactics out and let me know how they go for you. Or, if you have your own tactics to raise interaction and counteract the recent Facebook changes, then share them here. I’d be interested to hear about them.