I’m not going to get into the technical side of Facebook’s algorithm, because we’ll all likely have a brain strain. And, to be honest, it changes so constantly who could keep up! However, there are some basic things you should know about it.
With Facebook, you need to forget about the number of likers and learn to value engagement. Sure, you need to have “someone’’ to talk to on Facebook, but don’t dwell on those numbers too much. It’s more important to have 200 fans who are genuinely engaged in what you have to say, than 10,000 fans who aren’t.
A quick way to measure your audience’s engagement is to look at the “talking about’’ on your Facebook page, beside your profile picture. On the new layout, click “People” next to where your page like figure is.
Two years ago (2012), many suggested to aim for at least a 10% talking about rate. Therefore, ideally you want at least 20 talking about you if you have 200 likers. That sure beats 10,000 fans with 0 talking about you.
Then Facebook gradually began to decrease the amount of people who could see your posts. Currently, in 2014, it’s believed to be at 2% – and likely to eventually reach 0%. What does that mean? It means you’ll need to advertise to get any engagement at all.
So, what does all this mean?
Well, while we still have some sort of reach, here’s how to understand it and use it to your advantage:
- If you post and no one comments, likes or shares it, then basically no one ever saw it. It disappears. (Although, don’t get discouraged if this happens to you. It happens to the best of us. Sometimes it just doesn’t work. Sometimes it’s timing.).
- When someone DOES comment, like or share, your post gets seen in your followers’ “tickers’’, or newsfeeds, on their personal profile. The average person has about 300 “friends’’ on Facebook, which means you have the potential to be seen by 300 people from one person commenting, liking or sharing your post. Ten people like it? Then that’s 3000 people – I hope. Sorry, I was never good with maths. Regardless, it’s great free promotion for your brand!
- If your friend Jenny “likes’’ your post, it will appear in Jenny’s newsfeed. Jenny’s friend Sarah can see Jenny has liked your post and thinks “well, if Jenny likes that page, then I probably should too’’. A personal endorsement is a great way to help build your following.
- The more engagement you receive on a post, the higher it will rank in the newsfeed of Facebook. Most of you will have noticed by now that Facebook sorts your newsfeed by “most popular’’ every time you log in. You have to physically click the dropdown to change it to “most recent’’. Being ranked higher means more people see it. Which means more people are likely to like, share or comment. Which means more of their friends are likely to see your page in their ticker. Which means more people are likely to start following you. Get the picture?
- Be wary of `like’ parties, where you go about liking each other’s pages. Facebook may show 50 of your 1000 followers your post to test to see if it will be of interest. Now, if no one likes, comments, shares, hovers, clicks…. you get the picture… then Facebook stops showing it to anyone else. It dies. So, as I’ve already said, you’re better off to have a small following of really engaged followers than a huge page of people who don’t care that much.
So, you can probably see what your main goal is here with Facebook – to have your audience engage with your posts. More on that later.
Have you noticed more and more people and businesses you used to follow have disappeared from your newsfeed?
If you’d love to learn more about increasing your reach and revenue on Facebook, learn more about my social media coaching package.
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