The basics of Facebook marketing are simple enough: build a page, post regular content in the form of text updates and pictures, and create a community that’s willing to share your posts and spread the word about your business.
But there is a bit more to it than that. Facebook actually has a bunch of different tools that can help you to squeeze a bit more out of the site, boosting the power of your most effective posts and extending your reach. You are probably not using them… but you should be.
Pin a Post
For example, want to make sure that a piece of information is highlighted on your Facebook page? Normally, you cannot. Every time you post a new update, that post will be pushed further down the page, minimizing exposure and reducing views.
In the top right hand corner of the post though, you can find a pencil icon. Push the icon and the first option is “Pin to Top.” The feature keeps the post at the top of the page for a week, ensuring that everyone who visits your page during that time sees it.
If you are running a sale or offering a discount, or if you know that a particular post has attracted a large amount of attention, you will be able give that post weight while continuing to update your page. It is a valuable way to squeeze more benefits out of your most effective posts.
Pinning draws attention to current posts. But you can also emphasize previous posts in your timeline. From the status box, choose, “Event, Milestone +” and select “Milestone.”
You will be able to enter a headline, location, date and details for the milestone, and include an image that, at 843 x 403 pixels, is larger than usual. That picture then becomes a focal point in a company timeline.
The idea behind milestones is to emphasize important moments such as the founding of the company or the opening of a new store. Use it to also show the release of new products or awards you have won, and you will be able to fill your timeline with catalog images and testimonials.
Increase Your Reach
According to Facebook’s own figures, a post placed on a business page will only reach about 16 percent of the page’s fans. The remainder will not see it. By the time they log back on to the site, the post will have been pushed so far down their timeline, they will have missed it.
That is why Facebook rolled out Reach Generator last year. The feature turns your post into a sponsored story, pushing the post into the news feeds of your fans or into the right hand column. The company guarantees that you will reach 75 percent of your fans each month and half each week.
It is an option that is worth experimenting with if your fans have followed lots of other people and businesses, and if you feel that your posts really should be doing better.
But You Can’t Choose Your First Picture
So you can choose to emphasize a picture in two different ways, and you can make sure that a post is seen by as many as three-quarters of your fans, but what you cannot easily do is change the first picture that appears in the Photos box at the top of your page.
If you want to use a particular image to pull fans into your albums, changing their order just will not cut it. Facebook will still serve the first image you placed in the album. The only option is to delete it and keep deleting until you get the picture you want. You will find yourself wishing there was an easier way of doing that.
Are you listening, Facebook?