The Facebook algorithm can be a constant thorn in the side of any social media marketing professional. The social network inherently limits your organic reach and as useful as paid boosts may be, you still need those users to engage with your content in order to maintain and to further increase your reach over time.
One thing that you may have noticed, for example is that Facebook users tend to engage more with visual content than they do with straight text-based status updates. If you upload a compelling image or, even better, post an engaging video, you’ve probably got a better shot at attracting those likes, comments and shares. And you’ve got a few more options too, now that Facebook has introduced several new post options “to help you connect with your customers and get the results you want.”
The strategy that you take will naturally depend on the nature of your business and the goals you want to achieve, but it’s become abundantly clear that Facebook is about far more than simple text-based status updates. It’s getting much more rich content that’s really meant to pull users into the side, increase their time on site, and encourage more active engagement too.
The first “new” post option is to share a photo or video. That’s not new. You’ve surely posted photos or videos to your Facebook page before. You might also be familiar with photo albums. What you might not have noticed is that you also have options to create a photo/video carousel that scrolls with multiple images/videos and captions, as well as to create a video slideshow based on 3-10 uploaded photos, plus what they’re calling a “canvas,” where you can “tell a more immersive story by combining images and videos.”
Another post type is to promote your business. This can be done by promoting your shop now button, advertising your website to get more visitors, promoting your page to attract more likes, and sharing your page with your friends to invite them to like it. These are all old hat too.
The “Get Messages” option is really promoting Facebook Messenger. It’s already been possible to interact with Facebook pages as a Facebook user, sending private messages. This has been further enhanced with chat bots. Now, you can put up a post that encourages users to send you messages, because the post itself will include a “Send Message” button. That can be much more compelling for users who may not want to ask their questions publicly.
Let’s say that you are hosting a book signing for the new book that you just published. Or maybe you’re putting together a meetup group for Internet entrepreneurs in your area. Whatever the case may be, you can easily “Create an Event” through your Facebook page too.
Add a photo, name the location, give the event a name and more. You can even tag your event as “free admission” or “family-friendly” if you’d like, as well as add a link to the ticketing website if you are selling tickets.
Things start to get much more interesting with “Create an Offer.” This is a fantastic way to promote an offer and could prove far more effective than the old way of simply posting a text-based update or even uploading an associated image. That’s because the post itself is an offer and really encourages the call to action.
You can choose whether your offer is online, in store or both. Indicate whether your offer is a percentage off, an amount off, a BOGO deal or you’re giving away free stuff. You can still upload up to five photos or one video, as well as define the expiry date and discount code if needed too. This is fantastic for promoting your products or services.
And finally, the last “new” post type is to write a note. Facebook had notes a few years ago and they were useful for longer form content that wasn’t as appropriate for a standard status update. Extended to pages, a note can almost be treated similarly to Facebook Instant Articles, except the content will live wholly within the Facebook container.
Even though Internet users tend to have short attention spans, longer form content can prove very useful when deployed under the right circumstances for the right reason. This provides a rich content experience for your followers and encourages even more engagement.
While it may be true that shouldn’t focus on building your brand on someone else’s platform, Facebook is a terrific place to engage with your fans and to attract a wider audience too. These new post types are simply additions to your existing tool set.