How To Grow Your Organic Facebook Page Reach

Maybe you too can boost yours by 219%.

Jim Belosic recently wrote a fantastic article on SEJ about how he was able to grow his company’s Facebook organic reach by 219%. Jim is the CEO of the company ShortStackLab which provides a service to easily setup contests, sweepstakes, data-collection forms, and more so this story was particularly interesting because it melded smart marketing initiative with an already unique business model.

Here are some of the key insights from the work and a few suggestions on how you could apply these ideas and concepts to your own.

Getting it started:

  • At the start the fan page had 74,000 fans
  • Each post averaged 200 engagement
  • FB landed in the top 5 for referrals to company blog

They set out to run tests and the result was a 219% increase in organic reach and 171% increase in engagement within the 30 day experiment.

The approach:

  • Find the best days for posting
  • Adjust the type of content that was posted

All fairly simple, right? Well here’s how it went down…

Posting Strategies

In the beginning the company stuck to posting between 3-4 times each day and even took a week off to measure engagement which resulted in a disaster that took some time to repair. They posted much like many of us do which is during the peak times but decided to try posting every two hours.

Shortstack Update

Their reasoning was this:

  • If they posted 3x a day and reached 200 people they would reach 600
  • If they posted 12x a day and reached 200 people they would reach 2,400

This was their log of their post frequency for September 2014:

Shortstack Frequency

They normally posted links to their blogs and to other helpful resources but after digging through their FB analytics they found many funny posts or photos to be highly engaged which was then worked into their overall strategy through business quotes and funny social media photos.

Checking the Insights

The test went on for two weeks; afterward they took a look at their analytics. The approach was basic in sense but provided an appropriate set of data when sorted by engagement:

Table 1

They did the same with Lifetime Post organic reach:

Table 2

Through this data they came to the conclusion that the best times to post to their Facebook page was 6am, 10am, 12-1pm, 2:15-3:15pm, 9pm and 2am.

Using the Data

Now having the information they continued to tweak their strategy a number of ways:

  • Tried posting an additional 1-2 times a day between gaps (3:15pm and 9pm/9pm and 2am)
  • They found a mix of educational and fun posts to be best

So what’s the Takeaway?

Surprisingly the takeaway are the best practices to current Facebook page management:

  • People engage with photos and video because they are easy to consume and share; the occasional graphic post can help keep your FB algo up so that when you post links (or sales pitches) they are more likely to reach your audience.
  • Peaks times are still around those key moments during the day such as when people arrive for work (8am – 9pm), during their lunch hour (12pm – 1pm), afternoon (5pm – 6pm), and later into the night (9pm – 10pm). Though obviously, in this case, it’s important to use your insights and analytics to find the exact time as they did.
  • It’s worthwhile to test different FB page strategies especially post frequency. Many businesses schedule a single post which, depending on the industry, is perfectly fine though some businesses may benefit from posting multiple times. Again, it’s all about the testing.

Give yourself a challenge and set out to spend a few weeks playing with the post frequency and content format. Track your results and take action upon the data and results. You may be quite surprised to see how it effects your FB engagement. Maybe you too can boost yours by 219%.

Still finicky about FB? Give us a call and we’ll get you started on the path to positive ROI for Facebook.

Image by Penywise

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