Facebook organic growth will drop to Zero and with that in mind, they want you to show better content. So what qualifies as better content? The recent dumbing down of the algorithm, means you will have to spend money to boost your post as well as attract eyeballs from a chosen region—while dealing with fake Facebook likers who come from massive click farms found all over the world. How can you spread your influence, engage and convert such eyeballs through Pages?
When starting your FB Page, the first thing you rely on is to get your friends to ‘like the page’ but that’s not enough. It ends there and you have to gain new followers to your Page and not leverage only on your friends. The only way is to advertise in FB to get people to like your page that exist outside your immediate circles. For this, Facebook requires you to pay for the first tier of service. Then after that hit you with a second tier payment plan to ‘boost your post’.
For large corporations, paying FB isn’t a problem. The problem is with SMBs or small medium businesses who have a limited advertising budget.
How do SMBs avoid paying such fees? Facebook says you have to create good content, the content should engage your audience. To do this, here are two golden rules.
Comments count as Engagement
This is the most basic rule. You need to get people to engage with your content and not just like it. Liking it is pretty useless these days. What makes for great engagement? Interesting or controversial content which gets people to put their own spin or two cents worth into it. Now that might seem like a lot to ask but it’s not that difficult if you constantly bring up interesting issues. Once people leave their comments behind, it counts towards your engagement scores. Again, brands try not to be controversial as it goes against their corporate image. Small businesses won’t have such a rigid policy so they will have more freedom to post stuff that big brands won’t indulge themselves in.
Content that is Most Shared will earn you Free Publicity
Yes, you see how things go viral. There are tricks to doing this that goes against the grain of popular brands. For example having a list of 10 things you can do with a particular product and how it can make your life easier. Content that is often shared are simple things, like using baking soda to clean stains…which big Brands are loath to discuss since they might have a $19.99 cleaning solution that does the same thing. People who share your post will help you go viral!
Other contents shared include entertainment, scientific facts and even local news pertaining to current affairs. What people don’t share is their porn sites so don’t go adding this to your page time lines.
Liking a post isn’t enough anymore. This is part of the algorithm that Facebook wants to snuff out.
Likegate is a thing of the Past
Likegating competes with Facebook’s own ad serving system to promote apps, and these can be web apps to mobile apps. This is probably the only reason why they issued a Jihad banning such acts.
You must not incentivize people to use social plugins or to like a Page. This includes offering rewards, or gating apps or app content based on whether or not a person has liked a Page. It remains acceptable to incentivize people to login to your app, check-in at a place or enter a promotion on your app’s Page. To ensure quality connections and help businesses reach the people who matter to them, we want people to like Pages because they want to connect and hear from the business, not because of artificial incentives. We believe this update will benefit people and advertisers alike.
What FB doesn’t tell you is that if you incentivize people to ‘switch on ALL notifications’ for a particular page, you can reach out to 100 percent of all your followers. This is something they do not want even though the feature has been introduced for anyone who follows a page.
Page and app owners resort to collecting data and getting you to approve the permissions needed to post to your timeline but often this is a tricky affair. What shows up on a person’s timeline might not show up on others. Liking a page does nothing now for organic growth. It will not bring you fame or fortune or encourage fans to throw their used underwear at you in adoration. It is through sharing and comment engagements that determine your content’s life span.
Now, Facebook Pages will not be serving up anything from now on to benefit you, as a Page and business owner. You have to get smarter so what’s there to call?
Move your Facebook Pages Activity to Facebook Groups
Often ignored, Groups is the nerdy cousin of Facebook Pages. I have stressed this before in a previous post and now there is even a far better reason for this. Facebook groups has its own mobile app on iOS and Android.
So what can you do on Groups? How can I brand myself for Group Activity? The answer is pretty simple. You have to reshape your content to suit users instead of just spamming them with the latest offers and promotions.
Hey, if I do that for Pages, would it work too? Technically it might but with a lid put on FB Pages now. You’re not going to get any eyeballs without paying Mark and his team. Remember I mentioned the ‘boost post’ feature for Pages posting? Well your likers or followers will not be seeing any of your post if you don’t ante up on the money.
Groups Mobile App does everything you wish your Pages would do. For example, it has a list of groups with number notifications. This means that even when a person does not turn on all notifications from your Group, he or she will still see the number of newsfeed updates the moment the app is open. This is very useful for people who use this app to keep in touch with the groups they follow. At any time, they can engage with the group and peruse the news items within each group. Group post can be moderated so if someone starts to spam your group, you can kick them out.
All your comments and engagements will result in a group notification. This bodes well for brand owners who take the trouble to answer to every post and comment made within their own user group. What’s more Groups is immune to the algorithm set up by Facebook for promotional purpose. The Group Mobile app will allow you the chance to engage with your fans who have signed up with your Page without having to pay for the ‘boost post’ fees stipulated by Facebook.
Reinventing your Page Post to suit Group Post
This is relatively easy. Put yourself in the shoes of your consumers. What would make a good content for them to read and engage with you. Don’t just ask them to buy something outright or come down to get a promotional service. The secret here lies in a strong content strategy. Here are some tips.
Develop, create and curate content that would be useful or entertaining for your group members
Post blog items that relates your business. Give useful information that they are not aware of. Don’t assume the role of snake oil salesman and try sell members again and again with a sales pitch.
Engage with Questions and Surveys
In groups, you can conduct your own research with a click through survey question to determine how they feel about issues and questions they might have about your business and service practice. Remember to reward them for taking part.
Post Epubs Files to Members
In your group dashboard, you can post PDF publications (limited to 25mb) where members can freely download. Here you have a chance to go more in-depth with your business and services of even for that matter, serve up a promotion catalog of all your products or services.
These steps will help you build brand equity that is pretty hard to come by these days in the online world. It is certainly worth the effort to go this way instead of subjecting yourself to the new algorithm set up by Facebook. Your content strategy is not about sending out promotional invites but instead offer knowledge that puts your business or service in better light.
So spend some time, develop a cohesive content strategy and get ahead of your competitors. The lazy ones will always get left behind so don’t be one of them.