By most measures, Facebook is the world’s most popular social media platform.
It’s not really close. Facebook has more than 2 billion users worldwide, with the United States and India accounting for the highest numeric shares. More Americans are on Facebook than not, and most users check their profiles at least once per month.
In short, your organization can’t afford not to have a robust Facebook presence. Nor can you and your key employees, as its human representatives.
This much is clear. What’s less clear is how you can drive traffic to your Facebook page(s) without going all-in on an expensive social media marketing campaign. How can you be sure your organic engagement tactics are working as intended?
Start with these tried and true strategies for sustained follower engagement. Use them in concerted fashion and you’re likely to see improvements to all manner of engagement metrics, from follower counts to “likes” and shares.
1. Run One Contest or Giveaway Per Fortnight
Sounds like a lot, right? Maybe. We’re talking 26 contests or giveaways per year, give or take.
Think you can keep up the pace?
Before you look for paid interns to fire, a reality check is in order: Facebook contests and giveaways needn’t be extravagant. You’re not giving away the farm, so to speak.
Precisely what you give away is up to you. Generally, you need to put enough skin in the game to get your followers genuinely excited about the promotion, without destroying your marketing budget three weeks into the quarter.
The best giveaways often involve something of unclear value. It’s not uncommon for company execs to give away lunch — that is, to literally sit down to lunch with the winner, whoever that may be, and chat about whatever he or she sees fit to discuss.
You might go in a different direction. Your audience will to some extent determine how you proceed. But the sooner you dispense with the notion that Facebook contests aren’t cost-effective, the sooner you’ll drive serious engagement from heretofore invisible followers.
2. Make Sure Your Followers Know How to Reach You
Your Facebook page is a crucial interface with the wider world, but it’s not the only one you’ll need. If your followers don’t know how to reach you elsewhere, your organization is certain to miss out on potentially valuable leads. Take a hint from the Facebook page for national insurance provider Freeway Insurance and ensure that your contact details are fleshed out, your website is clearly listed on the page, and your other social handles are prominently displayed.
3. Don’t Go Overboard With Hashtags
After all these years, Hashtags. Are. Still. Overused.
That doesn’t mean there’s no place for a hashtag or two in your Facebook content. The trick is finding the exact right opportunity to use the exact right hashtag. The public tires of hashtags; you don’t get many mulligans on this one.
4. Treat Every Post Like Your High School English Teacher Is Reading
On Facebook, quantity — or regularity, if you prefer — really does matter. The last thing you want is to catch your audience napping because you haven’t posted anything meaningful in three weeks.
Quality is just as important, if not more so. That’s why this simple rule of thumb is so appealing. When you treat every Facebook post like your high school English teacher is critiquing it from afar, you’re more likely to create excellent content that wows your audience and establishes your page as one to watch.
5. Get Into a Regular Video Publishing Groove
Set a goal to publish at least one short Facebook video per week.
For smaller companies without dedicated production teams, this could be aspirational to start, but don’t discount the groove. Putting together high-quality, informative videos is no longer a time-consuming, high-budget affair.
Oh, and it’s not like your video content is single-purpose. You can always post your vids on YouTube, where they may find an even wider audience that overlaps little or not at all with your Facebook crew.
6. A Meme a Day Keeps the Churn Away
Okay, this isn’t a real saying, and it’s not actually true. You’re always going to deal with customer churn, no matter how much value your products or services deliver. People are fickle; you know this.
However, posting one Facebook meme per day is absolutely within your reach, even if you lack a full-time meme maven (otherwise known as your social media manager). Memes are super easy, and super fun, to make. You don’t need any special fluency with photo editing software to make a lasting impression (literally and figuratively).
If you lack the time to make your own memes, check out online meme libraries, which somehow manage to surface hilarious new combinations every week.
7. Connect With Thought Leaders (And Peer Pages)
Like LinkedIn, Facebook is very much about thought leadership. Your followers will judge you — harshly — for your associations here. It’s important that you don’t disappoint them.
If you don’t (yet) occupy a position of prominence in your field or industry, Facebook is a great way to rise by association. Spend a few minutes each day searching for and following thought leaders relevant to your organization. Your Facebook company page should also follow relevant company pages with more visibility in your industry.
Facebook Still Has It
Facebook has been in the news a lot lately, and not always for the right reasons. The company has a lot of work to do to regain trust lost after years of scandal and broken promises. Users have every right to feel betrayed by what’s happened.
Unfortunately, corporate users and their key employees can’t afford to abandon Facebook altogether. The platform remains too central to the global social media ecosystem, especially in high-income regions like North America and Europe. For better or worse, Facebook is here to stay — for the foreseeable future, at the very least.
This being the case, it’s high time you embraced Facebook’s true organic engagement potential. Your competitors surely have.