Open up your Facebook app. Look at the 2nd post. Does it say “Suggested App” or “Suggested Post”? Keep scrolling. Do your friends like a certain business page and, hey, you should like it too? There is no avoiding it, Facebook ads are everywhere. And it’s not just the big guys like Microsoft, Apple, Adobe, or AB-INBEV that are paying. Small boutique shops, local restaurants, and local salons are stepping up and putting ad dollars behind their posts. With 65 million business on Facebook, to be heard, you have to pay to play. Does this mean Facebook organic posts are dead?
Let’s take a look at the numbers
- 65,000,000 Businesses on Facebook
- 41% of Small Businesses use Facebook
- 5 daily posts/day by brands on Facebook
- 75% of brands promote their Facebook posts
As you can see by that last statistic, brands know they must promote their posts. Organic reach is pretty much a thing of the past. Need some proof? Check this. There was a 52% decline in organic reach the first 6 months of 2016 according to social publishing tool SocialFlow. It’s really nothing new, with each algorithm update, there is a decline. If a person doesn’t interact with your page, they’re less likely to see something you post.
Is it any wonder though? Go up a few paragraphs. 65 million businesses are on Facebook. That’s pretty staggering. It’s easy for your content to get lost in the shuffle. The key to getting your message heard? Learning what to publish, when to publish it, and targeting the right audience when putting some ad spend behind your post. Let’s break this down, shall we?
What to Publish
The first thing you want to do is finding out as much as you can about your page audience and what they’re engaging with. Facebook Insights is key here. Go to your insights tab and check out performance for the past 30-60-90 and see what posts have done the best.
Everyone knows that video is HUGE on all digital platforms right now. But do mix it up with video, articles, and behind the scenes. As you can see from some of our insights, the posts that have a direct tie to us or our employees have the best organic reach.
Be sure to also check out Facebook audience insights. This will provide some more in-depth information on who is active on your Facebook page and can help with not only content but also ad targeting.
When to Publish
Go back to that handy dandy little Insights tab and see when your fans are online. The best times to post on social media are when the people you want to see the content are on the network. And there are going to be so many different sources telling you different times.
Quick Sprout: The best days of the week to publish to Facebook are any day during the workweek, with engagement being the highest on Thursday and Friday. Engagement is about 3.5% lower on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. And people seem to be happier on Friday (small wonder), so funny or upbeat content will fit right into that “happiness index.”
According to Patel, early afternoon is the optimal time to post on Facebook. 1 p.m. will get you the most shares, while 3 p.m. will get you the most clicks. Anytime between 9 a.m.–7 p.m. will always be better than content shared outside of that window.
Huffington Post: Thursday and Friday are the best days to post on Facebook. Monday and Wednesday get the lowest engagement rates. Generally speaking, the best time to post on Facebook is between 1–3 p.m. and more broadly 9 a.m.–7 p.m. In addition, Facebook use spikes by 10% on Fridays.
Buffer: Engagement rates are 18% higher on Thursdays and Fridays. The best time to post on Facebook has been up for some debate with stats ranging from 1 p.m. to get the most shares to 3 p.m. to get the most clicks, and anytime between before dinner generally. Stats seem to fall anytime after dinner and posting before work is a long shot.
You know your audience best. Learn their habits, use the Facebook Insights tool, Google Analytics and determine the best time for the audience.
Ask me my favorite part of my job, and every time the answer will be Facebook ad targeting! Going into Ads Manager and seeing all the demographics, interests, and behaviors makes me giddy. It’s amazing how granular you can get with targeting.
Custom audiences and look-a-like audiences are great for retargeting so don’t leave them out. Targeting the right person can make the difference of a marketing qualified lead to a wasted impression.
Organic posting isn’t dead, but it’s important to be on point with your organic posts. For example, I got my hair done a few weeks ago and I was trying to figure out if I wanted to stick to the same
salon I usually go to or try something different. I visited the Facebook pages of both salons I was comparing. I ended up choosing the one I usually use because they had a TON of AMAZING photos of their work. When I got there, I asked them about it and they let me know they invested about $300 into a backdrop, ring light, and camera. They made their investment back after about 1.5/2 customers. Not a bad ROI if you ask me 😉