Having a tough time getting your small business social content in front of your target audience? Businesses both large and small have seen a decline in their organic engagement due to Facebook’s algorithm updates to the newsfeed.
To overcome the decline in organic engagement and prevent your brand’s posts from seeing a decrease in reach, your content needs to increase share ability by generating more comments and likes (engagement) without resorting to tactics like engagement baiting. This may seem confusing and hard to do, but it’s certainly achievable.
Understanding the Basics of Social Media Algorithms
The first step in using the Facebook algorithm to your advantage is to understand the basics of social media algorithms - especially Facebook. Platforms such as Facebook and Instagram are designed to prioritize individuals over businesses. This is simply because Facebook and Instagram want to retain a semblance of that old-fashioned Sunday evening front porch visiting experience. This means that an organic business post is only shown to 5% of its audience on average. Facebook shows your post to only the users who engage most with you, and intentionally skips those who don’t typically engage with your posts.
Focus on Driving Shareability
When you put a great post out that connects and gets great traction, here’s what happens:
Say we have 1000 followers. We post something and Facebook puts it in the feed of 100 of them. Only 20 - 30 of your followers will likely even see it since people don’t always scroll through their entire feed (only my mom does). Of those let’s say 15 notice it enough to pause and read. 10 followers might click to read more, like, share, save it, click the pic, or comment. Any of those actions constitutes engagement. This scenario does not paint a pretty picture.
In contrast, let’s say this post was so fantastic that all 15 followers who noticed the post commented, and 5 of them reposted it. Now it’s reposted in 5 people’s feed with hundreds if not thousands of people seeing it in their feed because a person (their friend) posted it rather than a business. Those friends then comment or click or share. And on and on. Now we have engaged people, lots of brand new viewers, and have successfully tweaked our exposure algorithm.
Social Proof is Everything
When you get a lot of shares and other engagement on a post, this will also be great social proof since that post now will have 65 comments and 200 likes. Social proof is the concept that people will follow the actions of the masses. Humans want to be in on things that are popular, and tend to be skeptical of things that aren’t.
Promote Your Posts
How does spending $2 a day promoting posts play into that? By boosting posts, it guarantees that anyone in our engagement audience (including the new eyeballs from our followers’ friend’s friend’s friend’s feed) will see that post in their feed. When you promote your posts, you bypass the algorithm and even tweak it to your favor. This means that your next organic post (a post that’s not boosted) will be shown to more people.
Give Your Audience What They Want
The bottom line is that we want to stay in front of our audience so they see us and remember our brand – because we can’t guarantee they will otherwise. It’s not enough to only go after new audiences. We need to continue to nurture our existing audience as well. Promoting posts on social media is like the digital marketing version of a town billboard or baseball team sponsorship.
How do you give your audience what they want? Post quality personable content that is valuable and relevant to your target audience. Remember to just act natural. Treat your audience like they’re family and Facebook’s algorithm will give you the upper hand.
As our Copywriter, Client Happiness Coordinator, and Social Media Expert – we’ve come to rely heavily on Gina. She’s uncommonly skilled in weaving words together and finding new ways to help the brands we work with engage with their customers. Her minimalist style carries over into her copywriting work, which is part of what makes her so good at brand storytelling!