Did you ever wonder why you never see some of your friends in your Facebook News Feed? If you only have 3 friends you probably get to see all three in the News Feed, but if you have few hundred there are most likely a handful that never show up. Tom Weber and The Daily Beast did a one month test to see if they could figure out how Facebook’s News Feed algorithm works.This also applies to business pages. If the members of your organization’s page on Facebook have a few hundred friends and like a lot of business pages, you’ll have to fight for your spot in their News Feed.
The Daily Beast’s one-month experiment into Facebook’s news feed yielded the following discoveries:
- A bias against newcomers
- “Most Recent” doesn’t tell the whole story.
- Links are favored over status updates, and photos and videos trump links.
- “Stalking” your friends won’t get you noticed.
- Raise your visibility by getting people to comment.
- It’s hard to get the attention of “popular kids.”
As a business owner getting started on social media, you may read that and think that it would be fairly impossible to grow your business page, especially if you won’t be showing up in anyone’s News Feeds because you’re new and you don’t get any interactions. Whenever I do presentations I always get asked by those getting started on Facebook how they can begin to grow their page members. Here are the tips I give to all of my clients:
1) Get your friends involved. If you’re a small business owner, or you’re the solo employee, you don’t have much of a choice on this one. A lot of people like to separate their business Facebook from their personal Facebook, but you’re friends support what you do (I hope) and should be willing to join your business page in order to help you grow it. Ask them to join, and then ask them to suggest the page to their friends.
2) Get your staff involved. If you have a business with some staff members, get them on board with being on Facebook. Tell them why you’re doing it, what you hope to get out of it, and what they can do to help. Like your friends, ask them to join the page and suggest it to their own friends.
3) Ask your friends/staff to interact. From the article we learned that profiles and pages show up in the News Feed more often when posts/photos/videos get a lot of comments and interactions. When you’re getting started, ask a couple of friends and staff members to be dedicated commenters. This will also help break the ice for new page members to feel comfortable interacting as well.
4) Put the Facebook logo on your home page. If you’ve already got the traffic on your website, why not tap into that to help grow your Facebook page? If someone has taken the time to check out your website and what you’re all about, it’s likely they’ll be willing to join you on Facebook as well to see what you talk about there.
5) When you get to 25 page members, create your unique URL. A lot of people forget about this, but it’s so important because it will help you market your page. Put that URL on your business cards and in your email signature. To do this, go to facebook.com/username and it will prompt you to create your own URL (facebook.com/whateveryouwant). Make sure you spell it correctly, because it can’t be changed!
6) Keep the posts coming. Even before you start worrying about getting people to your page, you should be worrying about what they’ll see when they get there. You can be actively inviting people to join, but if when they get there they see two posts that were posted over a week ago, they might not stay. Sometimes it feels weird to be posting information and asking questions when no one is responding, but keep it up and over time you’ll see an increase in your interactions. And make sure the posts include a variety of photos, videos and links. Like they said in the article, links are favored in the News Feed over plain status updates, and photos and videos favored over links.