September 30, 2016

How to Maximize Your Facebook Reach — Without Paying for It


Facebook alert

Has the organic reach of your Facebook page dropped to nearly zero? It seems an unavoidable phenomenon in the evolution of Facebook.

According to Brian Boland from the ads product marketing team at Facebook, the decreased organic reach is related to the supply and demand theory. Since there’s a fixed amount of space in the user’s News Feed (demand), and innumerable posts (supply), not every post will make it into a user’s News Feed.

The News Feed is designed to show content that is relevant to the audience, rather than showing all possible content out there. Boland suggests, “it is important to publish content that teaches people something valuable, entertains them and makes them think creatively.” This is the reason Boland says that Facebook’s organic reach is more effective when you take advantage of paid media to meet your goal.

Many users have questioned the importance of having more people like their page. Boland explains that the value of more Facebook “likes” is that it makes your ads more effective. The process generates better auction prices for ads and increases your business’s credibility. Users respond more positively to ads from brands, especially those their friends have liked.

The good news is, Facebook is modifying its content ranking algorithm to position the best posts higher in News Feeds. Although Boland points out these algorithm changes are another reason for declined organic reach. Many have found this change improves user experience and enhances the quality of ads on Facebook. In a nutshell, Boland predicts that, as Facebook continues to grow, organic reach may continue to fall.

But that doesn’t spell the end of everything. There are still ways to maximize your reach on Facebook organically and make your posts more visible. Here are  some suggestions about how to maximize your Facebook exposure — without paying for it.

Create Engaging Content

Create good, quality content that people actually want to see and increase engagement with your fans. Re-share old content that is highly beneficial to reach different audiences within a short span of time. Make sure the content is relevant to your audience.

Share Up-to-Date News and Trends

Facebook ‘likes’ are the most popular forms of user engagement. Comments and shares are also an important aspect of social engagement. It has been observed that comments and shares of post engagement increase by 16 percent year over year and 40 percent quarter over quarter. However, this is only possible when viewers see the latest news or content based on current trends. So experiment with new styles of content for your audience.

Dig Deep Into Data

It is possible that status updates might work best for one business while videos and links may be the most effective for another. Dig into Google Analytics to see your Facebook website conversion for insights into what works best for you and determine the best time to post your content on Facebook. The Facebook Insights tab is the best place to see when your fans are online under the section “when your fans are online?” This gives you a clear picture of how many of your fans are online each hour or during specific days of the week. Ideally, when you have the most fans online, that’s the best time to post your content.

Increase the Frequency of Posting

Once you review your Facebook Insights, you will most likely notice that there’s really never a time when none of your fans are using Facebook. People tend to remain on Facebook for an average of 30-60 minutes. So if you post content only once a day, you can only reach fans who were on within that time frame. To reach more people, post content multiple times a day. Focus on the quality of your content and the preferences of your audience.

Understand the Facebook Algorithm

It’s necessary to understand the Facebook algorithm to understand what drives users, so you can determine how well you can affect engagement. EdgeRank does a constant calculation between users. To know what goes into the calculation you need to know the basics.

  • The freshness of interaction: the more recently a customer has interacted with your page, the more likely your page will show up in their feed. More frequent posting with varying subjects gives users more chances to engage with your post.
  • Type of interaction: there are different actions a user takes to affect EdgeRank. They can like your post, share your post, comment, click links and follow your page. Different kinds of content attract different forms of engagement.

Utilize Facebook Insights

With Facebook Insights, you are better equipped to see who your posts are reaching. Look at age, gender and location to make sure you are reaching the people you want to reach. Facebook Insights can reveal which content is working for the audience you are trying to target.

Story Bumping

Through story bumping, Facebook ensures that your audience sees content that is highly relevant, even if it’s a little bit older. For instance, when your friends like or comment on an old photo, it tends to rise to the top of your News Feed. With story bumping engaging content will be pushed to the top of a user’s News Feed. The more people engage with your content, the more people will see that engagement in their News Feed.

There is a feature related to story bumping called Last Actor. Facebook favors any page or person you interacted with you during your last 50 interactions.

Create a Fan Base

Creating good quality content frequently and consistently helps you create a fan base. The best way to hit the right target is to use Custom Audiences to target people who are not your current fans. Use Lookalike Audiences and Graph Search to find people who are similar to your fans and like specific pages and interests relevant to your niche.

Use the tactics above to maximize your Facebook reach and organically create your fan base.

Facebook Photo via Shutterstock

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William Johnson


William Johnson William Johnson belongs to the most creative field of digital media - web design. He is currently an Editor at Big Eye Deers and he is obsessed with the latest trends in ecommerce, SEO and social media analytics. He has been a regular contributor to leading online portals such as SEMrush, Small Business Trends and SocialMediaToday.

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33 Reactions

  1. This is very useful to me, particularly using the insights and custom audiences. That last part’s a really good idea.

  2. This is EXTREMELY insightful. Thank you. Will be reading and rereading this.

  3. Aira Bongco

    I think the most effective way is to create an existing fan base and make your content to be so irresistible that anyone would be insane not to share it.

  4. Great roundup and very helpful. Thank you!

  5. Nice tips to increase FB page likes.

  6. Helpful! Thank you.

  7. Thanks for great article!
    Still have a question, for how long since a person likes the Page, the Page’s updates appear in person’s feed every time the Page posts?

  8. Really great article! Very insightful! A good read indeed.

  9. This is a great article. Thank you so much for sharing. It is much needed!

    • Anita Campbell

      With Facebook and other social sites gravitating toward “pay to play” and native advertising, knowing the ins and outs of Facebook is more important ever. Those who understand the social platforms and how best to use various features, will do better than those who have only a surface understanding and who don’t take the time to keep up on changes and learn them.

      – Anita

  10. Useful post, hope correct usage is made towards getting maximum from social networking site like Facebook. But it is also important to notice that unnecessary or irrelevant things needs to be stopped.

  11. I have a question Paid Reach… My company’s FB doesn’t use it, but in our analytics from FB it shows data from Paid Reach… How is this possible?

  12. Thanks for the article, William, you are absolutely right, posting unique and engaging content in the right time to the right audience will definitely maximise the social reach and popularity.

  13. Brilliant post! I still really struggle with Facebook but I’m going to go through this again and formulate a plan to try and increase reach and such. Thanks.

  14. This is all really obvious bread and butter stuff… I was hoping I’d learn something from this article. Nup.

    • Anita Campbell

      Hi Peter, thanks for your comment, although I don’t agree. Some of it may be obvious to you. But there are others who don’t know this information.

      Even for someone like me, who has multiples pages and profiles with nearly 70,000 friends and fans, I found new things to think about. “Value is in the eye of the beholder.”

      – Anita

  15. This really helpful, I’ve been struggling with reaching out to more people on Facebook. Hopefully now I’ll be able to change that.

  16. This is really insightful…I manage my work Facebook page and I have to rethink my strategies to widen its reach and this post is a great place to start.

  17. Very helpful article. I think you should mention crowdspeaking as well. Platforms like Thunderclap and HeadTalker are emerging ways to get the word out free and break the annoying algorithims Zuck and his buddies set up.

  18. Aira Bongco

    I think the easiest is to have contests and to have a fan base. This way, you can cross-promote with other pages and have a share of their fan base. I think that is the only method that I found that worked aside from Facebook ads.

  19. Thank you so much for the great content! I’m printing it to use with my team!
    Best regards from Brasil! =)

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