Facebook sometimes get a bad rap. It’s a victim of its own success. So many people use Facebook that there’s certainly nothing exclusive or even very cool about it anymore. Are you old enough to remember the days when Facebook was only available to select groups of college students? Seems almost hard to believe that this once-exclusive digital club now has 1.71 billion users.
Within an audience that large you’re likely to find a small, manageable subset of people who are interested in your product or service, but there’s also a lot of competition on Facebook. In order to connect with potential customers (and stand out even a little), you can’t do what everyone else is doing.
Here are some simple but little-known strategies for your Facebook marketing:
Skip the Hashtags
Posting on Instagram? Of course you’ll include hashtags. Twitter? Definitely use hashtags there, too. But what about Facebook? Surprisingly, no. A BuzzSumo study on Facebook engagement found that posts without hashtags were generally more popular than posts with them.
Why? Many people associate hashtags with Twitter and Instagram. So a Facebook post with a hashtag can end up looking like a message sent out across multiple platforms simultaneously. That appears inauthentic to some.
Regardless of why, this is good news. You don’t have to waste time searching for hashtags to include in your posts, meaning you can post faster and easier.
Use Instagram to Post
BuzzSumo is an easy way to search for the current popularity of basically any topic in the social media world. It has access to a lot of data about what trends can be found in social media posts over time.
The same study mentioned above revealed something interesting about images posted on Facebook. Images posted onto Facebook via Instagram have a 23% higher rate of engagement than those posted directly via Facebook.
Why? Instagram posts have a super high rate of engagement. A study from Brand Watch showed Instagram engagement is 10x higher than Facebook!
Posting on Facebook through Instagram is very simple. As an added bonus, you can operate an active Instagram profile without a lot of extra work.
Embed with Facebook
Along with images, you’ll also want to post videos. Video was big in 2016, and there’s no reason to think that won’t continue this year. Don’t use YouTube to post your video on Facebook. Instead, embed videos directly into Facebook. Studies show this will increase engagement.
Facebook video is poised to be big. Last year, Brand Watch found that video accounted for only 3% of all content published on Facebook. Frankly, 3% is way too low for how big Facebook is. Sooner or later, everybody is going to jump into Facebook video and you’ll want to get there before your competition.
Post at the Right Time
Posting times can have a big impact on how many people see your content. So, what’s the best time?
Some businesses will have a very specific posting time that directly relates to the product or service they provide. For instance, if you own a breakfast restaurant, you’ll probably want to post daily specials very early in the morning.
But if you’re not sure, or your product doesn’t particularly lend itself to any specific time, that’s OK, too. For most businesses, especially businesses with a large local customer base, the best time to post is between 10 p.m. and midnight. That’s late enough to pass the busy period of the evening but still early enough that many people are still awake. Plus, those people you miss at night still have a chance to catch your post early in the morning.
Of course, over time your customer base might respond better at a different time. But the two hours before midnight are a great starting point.
Pin Popular Posts
Facebook’s Pin function is often overlooked. Maybe people just associate pinning with Pinterest? But Facebook also lets you pin content, affixing it to the top of your timeline.
You’ll want to pin popular content. When new users land on your page, hit them right away with your best work. Be sure and change your pinned content from time to time, too.
Use the “Audience Insights” Feature
Facebook makes it easy to gather detailed data about your audience. Their Audience Insights tool gives you a ton of info including:
- Hobbies and Interests
The better you understand your customers, the more you can cater your content to their needs.
Do Facebook the Right Way
The techniques above are simple. But they’re also very effective. Facebook is so popular that small strategies can really add up over time.
Do you have any Facebook tips you’d like to share? Share your favorites in the comments below.