Throughout Facebook’s ever-changing algorithm, one metric continues to remain supreme: Engagement. Engagement is a popular word for social media marketing and is applied any time someone has liked, commented, or shared your content.
We consider engagement an important metric because it determines what users see your future Facebook posts after your initial campaign has expired. Someone who likes or comments on your content is more likely to see future content, which is why one strategically boosted post can be effective for ongoing communication. If executed properly, a purposefully boosted Facebook post can drive community engagement with little investment and positive results.
We’re offering our best practices for using a boosted post to drive community engagement. More specifically, to drive traffic to a website, have people Like your Page, or to simply gain more impressions. Read on to learn more.
Check your Objective
When boosting a post on Facebook, the platform allows you to select an objective based on what you’d like this post (and the money behind it) to accomplish. Would you like people to send you messages, buy your product, visit your website, or sign up for a mailing list? Different objectives will change the design of your post and encourage users to interact with it in different ways. Aligning the objective of your boosted post to the brand and goals of your company’s Page will direct the community on how to engage with your content.
Know the Community
To authentically foster sound community engagement, the content being published must be relatable and relevant to the neighborhood. What events are happening in the community? What public policy discussions are happening at the local level? What is their town newspaper? The answer to these questions requires monitoring or listening to the community—either through a monitoring software or organic research. Understanding the dynamics and factors that drive the community will allow you to develop relevant content that will resonate with the town’s residents.
Visual Assets to Get Attention
It is not an exaggeration to stress that in the 21st century, a post designed to drive engagement must have a visual asset. Pictures, Infographics, Videos, Charts, or Quotos are just some of the examples that enhance engagement. Any of these assets will grab the eye of the ever-scrolling reader and force them to slow down and fully consume the post, ideally informing them of something that is relevant to their community and your Page’s brand. Additionally, the visual helps the community remember your content and Page, planting the seeds for better engagement in the future.
Ask a Question
Asking a question or soliciting feedback from a boosted post is another way to drive community engagement. If you’ve been monitoring the community to understand it’s demographics and politics, then you can probably ask a thought-provoking question in a post to stir conversation. Something as simple as “What are your thoughts about the new _______ in town?” not only demonstrates an understanding of community dynamics, but it also invites people to share their opinion on your post. A person commenting will trigger additional comments, which will generate additional views and engagement. If conversations are unfolding in your comment section, you’re doing something right.
Answer the Community’s Question
If your post asks a question to solicit feedback, you should expect to answer questions from the community if anyone should ask. Two-way communication between a Facebook Page and an online community shows transparency and authenticity, two key factors for genuine (and positive) engagement. When answering a question from a member of the community, be aware of who is answering the post. Are you answering as an administrator who oversees the Page, or are you answering as the page. Our advice is to answer as the Page because this creates an extension of customer service as well as outreach marketing. Being professional and courteous online fosters a level of trust, and encourages people to reach out with future inquiries. Additionally, agreeing upon company guidelines when responding allows a Page to retain its voice no matter who responds to questions from the community.
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by Alex Boonstra