Posts not getting much engagement and reach?
It could be because you aren’t optimizing your posts for your audience (and those pesky Facebook algorithms). Try these tips the next time you post to Facebook.
1. Keep your text short
Facebook lets you post as much text as your fast fingers like, but it’s actually better to keep your posts short, around 140 characters (yes, like a tweet) or even less. Social media platforms like Twitter, Vine, and Instagram have trained users to expect short, concise text. Keep it that way on Facebook, too. If you’re including a link, use text as a teaser to encourage link clicks.
2. Videos rule, photos drool…kind of
Videos are now getting more engagement than photos on Facebook. (You’ve probably noticed more videos in your newsfeed lately.) While video takes more time to produce, try experimenting with video every once in awhile to see how it boosts your reach and engagement. You don’t have to be a videographer with fancy (expensive) equipment. The apps available for editing videos on your phone are, well, amazing. Learn more about optimizing videos for Facebook here.
3. Keep your photos square
Photo dimensions on Facebook should be 472 x 394 pixels. However, it’s not a bad idea to keep your photo ratios the same as 472 x 394 px, but at a larger file size (for instance, 2048 x 1551 pixels at 72 DPI), so the quality appears higher for users on Facebook.
4. Shorten links
Shortening your links will make your post appear much cleaner than using a lengthy URL. If you’re using a shortened link, try anchoring the post with a photo to make it standout from other text-only posts. (CSU has a custom link shortener for CSU employees to use, which you can find here.)
5. When posting a link, edit the title, description and photo
If you want to encourage your fans to click on a link, try anchoring a post with the link box, instead of a photo. When you place a URL into a Facebook post, a link box that includes a photo, title and description of the story automatically pops up (don’t forget to delete the URL from the actual post once the link box appears). The link box allows you to edit the title and description of the story, and even upload a larger photo to make the link box standout.
6. Schedule posts
Nobody can be on Facebook all the time. If you have content that you want to post later in the day (week, month, etc.), you can schedule your post for a selected date and time in the future by clicking on the down-arrow button just next to the “Post” button in the bottom right-hand corner of your post. It’s also a good idea to check out your Facebook Insights to see when the majority of your fans are online that day. Learn more about Facebook Insights here.
7. Be conversational, not promotional
Facebook algorithms now lower the reach and engagement of posts that they identify as too promotional (particularly posts that push users to purchase a product or service). Just keep this in mind while you’re composing posts. Think about the types of word you’re using, and if Facebook would view them as overly promotional. Learn more about how to write content for Facebook in this Prezi created by CSU communicators Nik Olsen and Gretchen Gerding.
8. Create a voice, and stick to it
Being a brand on Facebook means you need to give your organization a voice. That voice should be conversational and encouraging of engagement. For example, CSU’s voice strives to make students feel like they’re best friends with their university. It’s witty, informational, a little snarky at times, and always inclusive. Keeping that voice consistent will help build trust between your organization and Facebook fans. If multiple employees are running your organization’s Facebook page, make sure everyone can “speak” like the organization.
9. Tag other organizations in your post
Get extra eyes on your post by tagging other organizations who are in the post. For example, CSU tags the CSU Veterinary Teaching Hospital page when it posts content that has to do with the veterinary hospital. This is key interaction on Facebook.
10. Ask your audience a question to encourage engagement
Ask a question and see if your audience responds to it. This also helps on days you’re low on content.