Engagement on Facebook and the Talking About This Metric
Maybe you have 1,000,000 likes on your Facebook fan page. Guess what? It doesn’t matter unless your fans are engaged.
Facebook has been making it harder for advertisers to connect with customers. This even includes customers who ALREADY LIKE YOUR PAGE! This is a rude awakening for a lot of marketers.
Why is Facebook doing this you might be asking? It makes complete sense for them. Before Facebook relied heavily on advertising, it didn’t hurt to let marketers and businesses reach people organically through their status updates. But now this is a competitor to their ad product. Facebook has now limited how much fans are seeing content organically from businesses. They are still seeing it, but no where near as much as they once were.
Facebook has also rolled out the “people talking about this” metric. Now you may notice that your page may have 1,000,000 likes but only 20,000 people talking about this. This metric also puts the squeeze on marketers now that their engagement number is public and can be seen by fans and competitors alike.
Furthermore, I believe that EdgeRank (Facebook’s NewsFeed algorithm) feeds off of engagement from old posts. The more posts with high engagement (number of likes, comments, and shares), the more impressions your page will have on fans. This should make it easier to cut through the clutter. But the key is high engagement often. In the next section I will give you actionable templates to achieve high engagement.
For a detailed explanation of the “talking about this” number and a list of actions that are counted in this metric, see this post by Search Engine Land.
12 Ways to Instantly Garner Higher Engagement on Facebook Status Updates
From my experience in managing an assortment of pages with well over 1 million likes on Facebook, I have noticed some posts do better than others at attracting users’ attention.
These posts come from over a year of trial and error. Depending on your page, some might do better than others. The key is to always be testing. One thing you’ll notice in these is that a call-to-action is almost always key. If you want people to comment, tell them to comment. If you want them to like your page, tell them to like your page.
Without dragging on any further explanation, here are 12 examples of status updates that have received great engagement for me. For the sake of example, all of these statuses have been crafted as if posted by the NHL (National Hockey League).
1. Fill in the blank
“All I want for Christmas is a _________ jersey/sweater.”
2. A clever image
3. Click like if…
“Click like if you are excited for the new playoff rules!”
Calls to action are so important in social media marketing. Don’t forget that rule – many marketers overlook this fact.
4. We/I _____ (like this post if you do too).
“The Eastern Conference Finals are set and we couldn’t be more ready (like this post if you are too).”
5. Two options – like this or comment
“Detroit is the top seeded team going into the playoffs again! Click like if you think Detroit will win the cup or tell us who will in the comments.”
This tactic works wonders. ESPN uses this quite often and it works great. Check out their Facebook page here.
6. Rich Curated Content
It doesn’t have to be your content, it just has to be of interest to the user. You may have great content but other interesting content will always exist. Share it with your users.
7. Post on Holidays
“Happy Boxing Day to all of our Canadian fans… eh?”
8. Use Facebook Polls
Facebook polls can be hit and miss, but I have found that sometimes they really take off. Always let users add their own options as well.
9. Ask a question
“Who’s your favorite player coming out of this year’s draft?”
This is simple and can easily be combined with other options. Sometimes it is good to just ask a plain text question. People always have opinions.
10. This or that?
“Ovechkin or Crosby? Tell us below!”
People will tell you if they are opinionated enough on the subject matter.
11. Caption Contest
You don’t even have to give out a prize, people will always answer these. Remember, on this you are looking for comments – not necessarily likes.
“You miss 100% of the shots you never take” – Wayne Gretzky
On the quotations, you are looking for likes. There is no call to action so don’t expect heavy commenting.
“Love ‘em or hate ‘em, the Bruins are HOT!”
This is another option with no call to action, so make sure whatever you say might spur more conversation.
Likes aren’t king anymore on Facebook. This is the age of engagement. Now you should have some actionable examples to spur more conversation and drive more likes and shares on your fan pages. Use the 12 items above as templates – be creative and always keep the user in mind.
Do you have other examples of how to spur engagement on Facebook? Tell me how in the comments below!