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Writing Effective Facebook Posts
Posted on October 4th 2011
Some Background: What is EdgeRank?
What you see in your Facebook newsfeed isn't magic; it's controlled by a very important algorithm called EdgeRank. Facebook wants users to be engaged, so EdgeRank is a critical aspect of their business. The EdgeRank factors are:
- Affinity - How often you interact with others (be it visiting a friend's profile or commenting on a page's picture).
- Edge Weight - The type of content it is. A few types are: Photos, Videos, Status, Place Checkins, becoming friends with someone, liking a page, changing your profile picture, etc. Keep in mind, there are general rules, but everyone's Edge Weight is different and Facebook has carte blanche to tweak things at will.
- Recency - The older something is, the less likely you are to see it.
Strategies for Effective Facebook Wall Posts
- Posts made between 8 PM and 7 AM receive 20% more user engagement.
- On Wednesdays, fan engagement is 8% above average.
- Posting one to two times per day produces 40% higher user engagement.
- Posting one to four times per week produces 71% higher user engagement.
- Posts with 80 characters or less receive 66% higher engagement. Very concise posts – those between one and 40 characters – generate highest engagement. Only 5% of all retail brand Wall Posts are less than 40 characters in length, even though these receive 86% higher fan engagement.
- Ask questions to spark dialogue – “question” Posts generate Comment rates double that of “non-question” Posts.
- Fill in the blank Posts receive 9 times more Comments than other Posts.
- Offer fans “$ off” and coupons. Posts containing these offer-related keywords receive the highest engagement.
- “$ OFF” offers receive twice the engagement of “% OFF” offers.
- Avoid complicated Wall Posts. Status-only Posts receive 94% higher than average engagement
Does Using a 3rd Party API Decrease Your Engagement Per Post? YES!
Using a 3rd party API to update your Facebook Page decreases your likelihood of engagement per fan (on average) by about 80%. A Breakdown:
- HootSuite – 69% reduction
- TweetDeck – 73% reduction
- Sendible – 75% reduction
- RSS Graffiti – 81% reduction
- Twitter – 83% reduction
- Publisher – 86% reduction
- twitterfeed – 90% reduction
- dlvr.it – 91% reduction
- Social RSS – 94% reductions
- Networked Blogs – 76% reduction
- Facebook Penalizes 3rd Party API’s EdgeRank
- Facebook Collapses 3rd Party API Updates
- High Chance of Being Scheduled or Automated
- Content is not Optimized for Facebook
What do you think? Are you rushing to unplug linked posts? Have you noticed anything or found any cool studies we missed? Let us know and be sure to Like the Big Sea Facebook Page!