When it comes to marketing in the digital age, Millennials understand better than pretty much anyone else just how important Facebook and other social media platforms can be in reaching a target audience.
How to improve organic reach on Facebook: 4 ways to sidestep its algorithm
As valuable as Facebook’s targeting tools and other metrics can be, however, one trend has become increasingly frustrating for small-scale entrepreneurs and large businesses alike in recent years: the continued decline of Facebook’s organic reach.
For those relatively new to the social media marketing game, Facebook defines organic reach as “how many people you can reach for free on Facebook by posting to your Page.” In other words, this is the audience reach you can achieve without being required to pay for promotional posts.
Unfortunately for marketers, Facebook’s algorithm changes have accounted for increased newsfeed competition by prioritizing posts from family and friends, pushing Page content farther into the background—unless you’re willing to pay for newsfeed exposure.
With less likes, comments, and clicks come less engagement with your brand and fewer conversions.
If you don’t have the finances to invest in Facebook advertising, this could leave you feeling rather uncertain about your social media marketing future.
You don’t need to throw in the towel quite yet, however. By implementing a few key strategies, you can sidestep Facebook’s pesky algorithms and improve your organic reach.
1. Fine-tune your targeting
Your company isn’t going to be all things to all people—so why should your posting strategy attempt to be that way?
Many businesses have failed to improve their organic reach simply because they attempt to inundate their audience with a constant stream of un-targeted posts.
While many associate Facebook targeting with paid ads, these targeting options can also make a significant difference for your organic posts. By targeting organic posts to a specific audience, you can put yourself in a better position to have your message reach the people who are most likely to engage with that content.
This doesn’t just improve your numbers of likes, comments, and shares.
It can also help you generate clicks and conversions—the crucial components that drive your business. With the ability to target everything from income to job title, you have ample opportunity to craft specific messages that yield better engagement.
At this point, it should be no secret that Facebook is making a major push for video content.
Chances are you’re inundated with videos anytime you take a look at your newsfeed. According to a recent study, native Facebook video can yield up to 186% more engagement than other posts, while also achieving a whopping 1055% higher share rate.
With those kinds of numbers, it’s easy to see that implementing quality video content is key to engaging your audience on Facebook. Of course, not just any video will do. The best videos use high-quality imagery or animation to capture an audience’s attention right off the bat.
Because Facebook’s auto-play feature keeps the sound on mute unless a user specifically clicks to turn the sound on, it’s also essential that you include captions for your videos.
Many viewers are content to watch whole videos with the sound off—if you don’t add captions, they could miss the message entirely.
3. Enlist your top fans
It doesn’t matter what type of product or service you have to offer—every business has its top fans, the people who actively advocate on behalf of your brand.
You can be certain that these people are present on Facebook as well, and taking a few extra steps to enlist their assistance can ultimately help you yield greater reach and engagement.
A few simple reminders are all it takes to give your super-fans the opportunity to become more actively engaged with your Facebook posts.
Start by explaining to them how they can update notification settings so that your content always shows up in their feed.
By hovering over the “Following” icon, they can change their notification options so that your content is the very first thing that shows up in their newsfeed!
This way, they’ll never miss a post, which in turn will greatly improve your engagement.
It’s even possible for your top fans to get email notifications when you publish a new post—and yes, you probably have followers who are willing to do this.
Other simple steps, such as encouraging people to like and share at the end of a post or even reminding users about the “Pages Feed” can help you improve your organic reach.
4. Facebook live broadcasts
The native-embedded video isn’t the only area where Facebook is making a major algorithm push.
The introduction of live video broadcasts on the platform has led to a major shift in the way users interact with content. Studies have found that Facebook users “spend 3x longer watching live video compared to a video that’s pre-recorded.” Considering video’s already-impressive organic reach, it’s clear that live broadcasts can be highly effective at generating reach and engagement.
Of course, to craft a successful live broadcast, you need to have engaging and relevant content to share. Most marketing experts recommend that you come prepared with several minutes of prepared material (if not more) to ensure that your broadcast shows up in your audience’s feed and captures their interest.
Live broadcasts are an excellent venue for behind-the-scenes looks, special announcements, and other timely content that your audience wants to see in real time. Disney and other movie companies have increasingly used this to live-stream fan events and movie announcements. Some bands have even hosted live broadcasts of their concerts!
With a little imagination and the right type of content, you can turn your live Facebook video broadcasts into a must-watch event.
Despite the diminishing returns many have seen via Facebook organic reach, there’s no denying that the platform’s huge audience offers a lot of potential for your business.
Facebook should continue to play a major role in your digital marketing, alongside other strategies such as crafting high-quality blog and website content and investing in PPC marketing.
By implementing these valuable strategies, you can better position yourself to continue to receive a great ROI from your Facebook marketing efforts.
What do you think? Have you tried any of these tips before? How do you go about improving organic reach of your posts on Facebook? Share your thoughts below!