How many times has your social media consultant, the local chamber of commerce, a conference presentation, and your favorite blog encouraged you to create a Facebook fan page?
“It’s the largest social networking site, and you’d be crazy to ignore it!” someone cries out to you.
“You can reach 800 million people with a single update!” urges another.
“Your fans want to identify with you!” insists the third.
What do you do? You follow their encouragements and create a page. You promote the heck out of it — and your friends, their friends, and their lovers click over to “like” the page.
And then — nothing.
Whether you have 100 fans, 1,000 fans, or 30,000 fans, you notice that every time you post an update that is shared among those fans’ walls, a small percentage are liking, commenting, and sharing. You grow frustrated so you change the format of the updates. You post pictures because you know pictures speak a thousand words. You embed video but they don’t go viral either. Same response. You can understand that 90% of blog readers are lurkers but you don’t understand why you can’t tap into the Facebook market. You begin to hate that consultant and those blogs.
I don’t blame you. But it’s not their fault.
Part of the blame rests on your shoulders for focusing on the number of fans. That’s just a number and numbers don’t mean as much as names. Anyone can click a like button; it takes a fraction of a second. Focus on the fans who interact with you, whose names frequently like, comment, and share what you post. Focus on the fans who love you and not the ones who merely like your page.
The rest of the blame rests with EdgeRank, a Facebook algorithm that determines what every user will see in their news feed. Based on the three variables of affinity, weight, and time decay, it is this formula that is the cause of 84% of your Facebook fans to never see your page updates. Simply stated, Facebook assumes the lack of your fans’ liking, commenting, and sharing is enough reason to not show your updates to your fans.
To defeat EdgeRank, you must follow Brian Carter’s 4 tips to increase Facebook page visibility:
1. Try to get more likes and comments with every post. Every post that doesn’t get responses lowers the value of your page. Ensure everyone who posts to your page knows this and is capable of doing the next bullet item.
2. Explicitly tell people why they should like and comment on your posts. This directly correlates to increased metrics.
3. Consider Facebook advertising or showing your page posts as ads to increase the number of fans. Then increase your engagement tactics so you can reach a higher percentage of new fans.
4. If nothing works to engage fans on your Facebook page, remember that lower visibility may increase your cost per customer and directly correlate to losing profit potential. Maybe your page should die and you should use Facebook advertising alone to send people to your website to reduce the number of steps and save costs per customer.