If you want your post on Facebook to stand out, show up in more newsfeeds and get shared more often – without paid distribution, it’s essential to know what type of posts work best – so you can create them. While there is no one right way to create the perfect post, there are some best practices you can follow to help make your posts attract attention, be more engaging and get shared more often.
However, before we get into how to create prominent Facebook posts, it’s important to understand why people are on Facebook in the first place and what makes them engage with your content.
Why Do People Engage with Facebook?
There have been many psychological studies on what makes Facebook so attractive and why it keeps us coming back for more. In short, it taps into our pleasure centre – the area of the brain responsible for ‘reward’ processing.
On Facebook, when we get positive feedback or gains in reputation, this area floods with dopamine, a feel-good chemical that plays a principal role in reward-motivated behaviour.
When we like content, comment on or share information, it affirms something about ourselves. We engage in ‘virtual empathy’ showing solidarity for people, causes and opinions. As a result, it makes us feel good, and sometimes we get something in return, like a coupon, or free information – or the holy grail of Facebook engagement – a comment or share of our post.
Outwardly we use Facebook to connect with others, to be entertained, to be informed and to share information. So for a post to be successful, it needs to satisfy one or more of these user expectations.
74% of Facebook users log in every day, with the average user on the platform for 20 minutes. So you only have a short time to stand out, make an impression and get the most results from your efforts.
Here are 11 tips on creating better organic Facebook posts that help you stand out in the newsfeed. Get engagement and attract your ideal clients.
To Stand Out on Facebook here are 11 Tips for Writing Stand Out, Engaging and Shareable Facebook Posts
1. Set a Goal Before Posting Content
Before you hit ‘post’ consider why you are posting this particular piece of content. If it’s purely to post ‘something’ to stay top of mind and attract attention, perhaps you need to re-think it. Random content that has no particular value to your audience, even if you like it, will only dilute your presence.
While it’s great to share content from others, as part of your overall content strategy, it’s vitally important that you are regularly creating and sharing your own original content. As a result, it reinforces your expertise and positions you in the mind of your target audience as a potential ‘solution’.
Social media is an excellent tool for attracting new leads to your website.
If this is your goal, then creating stand out ‘promotional’ posts and adding them to your content mix will attract your ideal leads. If you want people to read your blog post, watch your video or download a chapter of your new book – while signing up to your email list, then it’s necessary to use a call to action and give them a reason for doing so.
If your goal is to create awareness, one of the most reliable ways to attract attention in the newsfeed is to post a photo – with you in it! Take some pics behind the scenes in your office or at networking events, or on route to a conference, even a pic of the business book you’re reading on your well deserved holiday will generate interest. These ‘more personal’ post types help your audience get to know you better, which over time, develops trust.
If you’re after more engagement, statistics show that question posts (along with image posts) create the most engagement on Facebook. So incorporate these occasionally into your content strategy. Asking for an opinion or conducting a poll or survey helps to establish relationships. People are generally keen to give their views, particularly if they think it will help you.
2. Consider the benefits for your intended audience
Why should they read, click, comment on or watch your content? What value will they get from investing time in this content? What ‘reward’ will they receive?
All of your content should have a purpose – whether it’s to educate, inform or entertain. As a business expert that content should in some way relate to either what you do or what you know will appeal to your target audience.
To know this is to know your audience, so when developing content, seek to address answers to the following questions.
This determines the content information to post.
- What are they frustrated with?
- What do they want to learn?
- What are they looking for? Are they likely to share it or engage with it?
This determines the format your content should predominately take.
- How do they like to consume it? Reading, watching, listening?
- What type of content performs best for you?
Give them what they’re looking for in the format they like best, highlight this in the newsfeed and you’ll project an image as someone reliable and informative, which keeps them coming back for more.
3. Use the Right Content Mix
Through testing over time, you will figure out the right mix of content that works for you. The commonly used rule of thirds is a good place to start.
4. Personalise the Post
Writing posts as if you are talking to your ideal client persona, conversationally and using the word ‘you’ will attract the most engagement. Next time you’re scrolling through your Facebook feed, look out for the posts that make you stop and pay attention. They’re most likely the ones that speak to you personally. More so if they ask for your opinion on the content.
5. Use Stand Out Images
If you want to stand out on the Facebook newsfeed – images are a fabulous way to attract attention and show your personality. Keep images aligned with your content and branding and select those that are distinctive and attract attention. A pair of eyes staring straight into the camera works well, as do colourful pictures and images that create an emotion or a reaction.
6. Don’t just Share Links – Share Insights
If curating a link, share your insights on the topic. One way that’s certain to make your post stand out is if it’s a contentious issue or a hot topic. To attract engagement ask your audience to share their thoughts or insights or ask them a question.
Introduce the article you’re sharing with a reason why you are sharing it. Your audience can then decide whether they will click on the link, so make it easier for them – give them a compelling reason to.
7. Use 1-2 Hashtags
Or not – as long as they make sense to use and are relevant to your audience. Facebook hashtags haven’t become such a stand out feature as they have on other platforms. This is probably due to users traditionally searching for keywords rather than hashtags.
Hashtags will only work on business pages and only then if your audience is searching for that particular hashtag. So it makes sense to use hashtags to highlight your post if they are for an event or specific campaign and you are using them on other platforms.
Note: research into Facebook engagement, conducted by Buzz Sumo, found that “Surprisingly posts without hashtags get more interaction than posts with hastags.”
Personal pages are generally private; therefore, any hashtags used won’t appear in search results.
8. Keep posts short
The shorter, the better. 0-50 words is optimum. People on Facebook are randomly scrolling through their feed, scanning the content and generally filling in time. Even though long-form posts may be incredibly informative, attention spans are short, and people may flick past them because they don’t have time to read them. You need to grab attention quickly and effectively if you want to get noticed on Facebook!
9. Post Valuable Content
When it comes to social media content, quality wins over quantity any day. Too many businesses create and share low-quality content and then complain that social media doesn’t work.
Set aside some time to create content you are proud of – in the form of blog posts, case studies, customer stories, videos, podcasts, graphics and images. Repurposing and resharing snippets of these on Facebook saves you loads of time in the long run, plus it gives you regular content to post (that your audience finds meaningful).
10. Use Social Media Branding
Maintaining an authentic and consistently recognisable brand is fundamental to your success on Social Media.
If you want to be noticed on Facebook, to encourage a positive perception of your business, and stand out from your competition – a strong social media brand will achieve this.
Consistent use of your brand colours, image styles, voice and message helps you to be recognised and remembered. It distinguishes you from others in your industry and establishes the all-important ‘know, like and trust’ factors necessary to attract and retain our ideal clients.
If you’re interested in taking your social media to another level by developing a social media brand for your business, this free course will do it.
11. Be Consistent, Connect and Nuture Relationships
Showing up on Facebook, posting, sparking conversations and then dropping out, only to randomly comment a month later will not inspire engagement. Nor will just using the platform for advertising or posting promotional posts. You have to stay engaged in conversation. Even 10 minutes a day will keep you in the loop. The more people interact with your page, the more often you will show up in their newsfeed.
Social media is about relationship building, and we all know what happens when we neglect relationships!
Post, Test, Rinse and Repeat
Finally, find your sweet spot. To really know for sure what’s working for your posts, set aside some time, at least once per month, to analyse your Facebook Page analytics and write up a report.
You can post the same post more than once. Simply change it up a bit. Not everyone is going to see your initial post – they might not check in on Facebook that day, or it may be further down their newsfeed than they’ve scrolled. So repost it a couple of times and test what works best for you.
Test things like the times you post, change up images and headers, reword your post introductions, post on different days.
Above all, don’t give up. Facebook is all about finding and nurturing relationships with your ideal clients, and it takes time to nurture relationships. With consistency, trial and error, you’ll get there in the end. Of course, if you’d like a helping hand, feel free to give me a call 🙂