There is a common misconception that you have to be advertising on Facebook in order to achieve good reach and what I mean by reach is the number of people or fans that actually see your posts. The organic reach of a page refers to the number of people who see your posts without you having to pay for it.
The organic reach of your page depends on a number of factors. First of all – the number of likes your page has. The more likes or fans (I still prefer the original term :)) a page has the more people are likely to see the posts published by the page.
The engagement levels that you currently have on your page also contributes to the organic reach of your posts.
So what is considered an engagement? If someone likes, comments, shares or clicks on a post – this is considered an engagement. In my experience people are quite likely to click on a post to “see more” if some of the text of a post is hidden. The might not “like”, comment or share the post- but will click the “see more” to read the entire post. This type of engagement is also tracked by Facebook . In my experience this can often be the easiest way to get people to engage.
The higher the engagement levels on your page, the more Facebook will show your posts in the newsfeeds of your fans. If your posts are boring, repetitive and of poor quality and if over time the engagement levels are consistently poor – so too will be the organic reach of your page.
So how do you maximise your changes of achieving higher engagement levels and thus a better organic reach?
1. Use images
Always use an image with every post. Posts will images get 50% more notice. Use images of good quality, for which you have copyright and that are the correct size for Facebook. Facebook posts are 940px x 788px. Canva is a free online graphic design website that makes it really easy to create great images for social media. You can see from the image below how easy they make it to get your image sizing right for all the various social media channels. And with Canva for Work (their Pro version) you can modify an image for all social media channels with just one click.
2. Tag other pages
If you are mentioning other pages – tag them in the post (as well as the image). They will get a notification that they have been tagged and there’s a good chance they may share your post. This works especially well for businesses at a local level.
3. Encourage engagement
Write your post in a way that will encourage engagement or intrigue your reader. Joe.ie and Her.ie are great at doing this.
4. Timing is important
Publish posts when your fans are most likely to be using Facebook. In the insights section of your page, check out the “Posts” tab, where you will find another tab “When your fans are online”. This shows you the best days and the best times you should be posting.
5. Schedule posts
Use the “scheduling” option on Facebook to schedule posts. So if the optimum time for your fans is 10pm at night, you don’t have to be working then. Simply schedule your post to publish at this time.
6. Invest time researching content
Spend time researching content for your page. There are no shortcuts on Facebook. The more time you invest in your page, the more return you will achieve. Remember you need to post about topics that are related to what you sell.
So a B&B could posts about what’s on in their locality, or nice picturesque images or images of local wildlife. Ceol na Mara, a Guest House in Enniscrone, posts beautiful images of the locality as they know this is something that appeals to their customers. In this post they shared an image from a local photographer, Steve Rogers, and then tagged him in the post as well.
A fashion outlet could post about what the celebrities are wearing, seasonal trends or offer advice on dressing for your body shape. Guna Nua Boutique in Ballina are really good on Facebook. They post regularly about fashion trends, give fashion tips and take time to respond to comments and questions.
A music school could share videos of music, free tutorials and general advice. 3L Music know their audience will find this post useful. People are more likely to share posts or tag friends if the believe it to be valuable.
The general rule of thumb is that you should publish non-commercial posts 70% of the time. Remember people use Facebook to be social, to hang out with friends and family. They are not there to read your sales pitches. Pages that just try and sell every time they post have poor engagement levels and as a result low organic reach.
7. Use hashtags
Although hashtags are more widely associated with other social media channels. They are also possible on Facebook. They are search terms, so a great way of being found by people interested in you, your events and stories.