Back in May of last year I published an article here on Social Media Today titled “The Perfect Facebook Post – What the Experts Know.” Of course I crafted that title to be controversial, and added a few suggestions within the article to get under some people’s skin. However, overall the article was received well because it offered some key ingredients to developing a fruitful Facebook Post.
With the recent hysteria over Organic Reach and the moxie that Facebook has to decrease Organic Reach in order to make more money, I thought it was time to revisit my original Perfect Facebook Post article.
One of my favorite Social Media experts takes on the topic of Organic Reach quite often, and always with the facts to back up his claims. His most recent blog, published March 24 and titled “Experiment: What Percentage of Facebook Fans REALLY Saw Your Post?” brilliantly takes on this idea that Organic Posts aren’t Reaching the same audience they use to
“The problem here is that we’re so hung up on Facebook’s News Feed filtering that the common refrain is that Facebook kept 90% of our fans from seeing that post. That’s incredibly far from the truth.”
First, Understand What Reach Means
Mr. Loomer makes a great point in regards to true Organic Reach, which should be calculated based on the time of day you published your post and the number of users who were on Facebook during the span of that post. It is unrealistic to consider Organic Reach as a number that reflects the total post views based on your total Fan base when, in fact, perhaps only 50% of your Fan base was on Facebook during the time of that post.
Use Facebook Insights exported data to determine your true Organic Reach for any given post at a specific time on a specific day. This will give you your true Organic Reach, and it might be higher then what you’re probably thinking.
Second, Learn How To Craft The Perfect Post
Using the title “The Perfect Post” is deceiving, because there is no Perfect Post. I’m currently working on an eBook (Shareability, Supercharge Your Facebook Engagement: Tips From the Pro’s) on this very topic – crafting a Facebook post that is engaging and shareable, and through research and my own experimentation with posts, the truth of the matter is that there is no Perfect Post, no template that can be followed and no strategy that is better then another.
The Perfect Post is based off of your brand’s target audience; who you want to reach and why you want to reach them. With that said, here’s what I’ve found to be important aspects of a Perfect Post:
1. Build a Relevant Audience
The key ingredient to crafting the Perfect Facebook Post is to have an audience that is already interested in what you’re going to say. If you’re audience came to your page from a contest or open-ended advertising, no matter how perfectly your Facebook post is created, it will fail. Audience is everything, and your audience must be relevant to your brand, product and services.
Facebook is not about getting the most Fans and hopefully turning those Fans into buying customers. Facebook is about catering to your target audience and turning those highly targeted users into brand advocates, who, in turn, help you build on your Fan base. You might have 5,000 Fans, but, as we learned from the previous story, having more Fans does not guarantee your social media success. – Shareability
2. Facebook Insights
Understanding your audience will improve the probability of a Perfect Facebook Post, so know how to analyze your Facebook Insights. The most in-depth information will no doubt come from the exported data, but if you’re a beginner in this realm use Facebook Insights and the information they give you to determine the demographic of your audience, the type of post that receives the most engagement, and the day and times that your audience is online.
3. What to Say
Say something relevant to your audience, consistent with your brand message, and under 80 characters. Every single post that you publish must be done so with purpose and a clear goal in mind. So, if you’re looking to simply increase engagement with your page, consider an inspirational quote or image. If you’re looking to drive traffic to your website, consider a blog link or discount special.
Pay close attention to your image dimensions both for mobile devices and desktop News Feeds. These dimensions are always changing, but for now the perfect image size for a post to run in the desktop News Feed is 400x400, and mobile News Feed is 618x618. The simple solution and best practice for sharing a photo is to load it at 1200x1200 and Facebook will fit it into both mobile and desktop News Feeds perfectly for you.
5. Call To Action
It’s still imperative that you use a strong CTA in your posts. While there’s been speculation that using Share, Like or Comment in your posts will send a red flag to Facebook, I personally believe that these keywords are ok if used sparingly. The moral of the story, be creative with your CTA’s and be careful. Don’t get spammy!
The Perfect Facebook Post has as much to do with yoru specific target audience as it does with the format you use. Become familiar with your Facebook audience, become a better listener, and you'll know exactly what that Perfect Post looks like.
(Shareability, Supercharge Your Facebook Engagement, Tips from the Pro's coming April 1st!)