Social Media Examiner’s Facebook Success Summit was money well-spent. Information overload to be sure, but there were a few glaring takeaways. The biggest: in order to be truly effective as a business, organization, or personality on Facebook, you must “win the news feed.”
Everyone familiar with Facebook knows that there are two views for the wall: “top news” and “most recent.” According to Jay Baer, and others, the majority of people access their Facebook pages through the news feed. Good news and bad news for Facebook page admins.
In an earlier post, I mentioned that Facebook has an algorithm based on an ”edge rank” that assigns a value to a particular post based on three elements: recency, how many comments and likes an item gets (weight), and an affinity score determined by what you and your friends have liked in the past. the higher the rank based on those three scores, the more likely you will show up in the news feed. So basically, posting once a day probably won’t cut it, unless your fan only has ten friends. In order to “win the news feed,” there are a few tricks I picked up at the Summit.
1. As an admin, like your posts on your fan page. Remember, when you press “like” you will like as an admin, not as the fan page name. Also, ask your friends to like your posts. You don’t need to be pushy, but ask.
2. Maintain an editorial content policy that promotes engagement. Social Media Examiner does a great job of this. Amy Porterfield from Social Media Examiner outlined the editorial strategy that helped them grow their page to thousands in less than ten months.She suggests being very specific–how many times a week to post, what the content will be (poll, hot tips, pictures, video, event, special announcements, or 3rd party links, etc.), what times of day to post, and using multiple admins, if possible.
3. If you do a poll or a question, be the first to put an answer as a way to get the ball rolling. Again, liking or commenting as an admin helps the edge rank. There is a cautionary note here to avoid looking annoying or cheesy. If you are the only one liking and commenting on your page, your content is not engaging. Look at some pages that are doing a good job of this on Facebook to get some tips.
4. Spread the “like” button across the web. The code to embed the Facebook like button is easily retrieved from the developer section of Facebook. http://developers.facebook.com/docs/reference/plugins/like . It’s a quick process–just be sure you know the right width of the hole you need (in pixels). You may have to play with this a little. I suggest you don’t incorporate your feed in your like button–it takes up a lot of real estate on your website. I’ve used it on my business blog, however, as a teaser to get people over there.
5. Be present on your Facebook page. If you are using your Facebook page to push out news items, you won’t show up on too many news feeds. That is a Twitter function. Answer comments, pose questions, “like” what your fans post. Add value to your fans and they will add value to you. Give them content that is worth something. Rule of thumb: for the first 30 days of a new page, only post content that adds value to the fans. Don’t sell anything and don’t promote anything. Just give.
Have you got any other tips?