How improving your Facebook page can boost your PR success
Just having a presence on the social media giant Facebook is no guarantee you’ll get instant success, like every other PR tool you have to work at it to get it right.
Only then can you work out what gives you the best results and gets your fans liking and sharing your content – which if you remember last week’s blog is your ultimate goal.
You’ve probably heard talk of the mythical Facebook algorithm called Edge Rank. It’s how Facebook manages to show people more of what they enjoy.
While Facebook never admits to how it picks the stories and posts which appear in your newsfeed, it does give some pretty big hints.
But first you’re probably wondering why Facebook calls the newsfeed algorithm Edge Rank. Apart from it’s a cool, techno sounding name which probably appeals to geeks!
Basically, it’s because every piece of content posted and every interaction with Facebook is known as an “edge”.
So, every time you ‘like’ a photo, that’s an edge. When you click on a link, another edge. Sharing that cute cat meme? Another edge. Every interaction you have on Facebook is an edge.
Every possible interaction you have on Facebook is an edge.
So your newsfeed is a reflection of what this algorithm thinks are the most important edges for you.
And the three most important elements in the Edge Rank algorithm are:
- Edge Weight
Starting with Edge Weight
Basically, it’s a formula to decide what type of posts appear higher in your newsfeed.
So, for example, liking a photo is deemed more important than simply liking a business page. Accordingly, it has a greater Edge Weight.
But while there is no official list of ranking for Edge Weight, there are three types of content which are generally accepted as having the greatest value – videos, photos, and links.
So if you want to get your information higher in your followers’ newsfeed think about what you post.
Could you do a Facebook Live video? Or embed an attention-grabbing film?
Make sure the pictures you post are of the highest quality, preferably professionally shot, so people want to open them fully and look closer.
Next, let’s look at Affinity.
Fairly simple, this one.
It’s a score based on how ‘friendly’ you are with someone or a particular page.
So the more you like your friend’s photos and videos, the more you will see of their posts.
Likewise with a page. If people like and interact with your posts they will see more of them.
It’s important though, to know that affinity is purely based on interactions.
So just because you visit a page but don’t interact with it in any way it won’t suddenly appear higher in your newsfeed.
That is why interaction and engagement are so important to be successful on Facebook.
So what about Recency?
Or you might hear it referred to as Time Decay.
It’s fairly self-explanatory, the older your post is the less likely it is to be at the top of someone’s newsfeed.
So, post a stunning video at 7am in the morning and by the time your peak audience is online, Facebook will have classed your amazing post as ‘old news’ and it probably won’t even appear when users log on.
So, you need to know when your audience is online and post accordingly.
You can find all sorts of useful information like this in Facebook Insights, but that’s the topic covered in my next blog.
Facebook is a money-making operation, after all, and it offers users the chance to ‘boost’ posts through paid-for advertising.
While I would never advocate advertising over decent, well-timed and appealing posts, it does have its place.
Especially when you are trying to build your Facebook audience since an advertising campaign allows you to target your readers by age, gender and geographical location.
You can also factor in their hobbies, likes, and other pastimes.
In other words, you can get your message in front of exactly the right audience and then build your followers this way.
You can also decide how much you want to spend each day on advertising and even build up a selection of different adverts to keep the post looking fresh.
There is a great section on Facebook which goes into more detail about adverts – it’s well worth reading.
If you spend time getting your posts right, creating visually appealing adverts and you’re getting lots of likes on your stuff remember you still need to do a couple, more things to get the best results possible.
The first is when someone likes a post invite them to also like your page.
And the second, but most important, is communicate with them.
If someone comments, reply to them.
Answer their questions. Engage them in conversation.
Do what Facebook is meant for – have fun and make being online an enjoyable experience. Then they will want to come back for more!
Lots to take in this week, so my last blog in this series will look at measuring results.
After all, if you’re putting this much effort into getting Facebook right you want to know it works!