Tagged: news feed

The “Right Time” to Publish Content

It’s odd to start an article with the phrase “the right time to…”, because there really is no right and wrong in social media.  There is a large grey area around what works and what doesn’t because there is no predicting viral posts.

There is, however, a way to figure out what times are right for YOU.

A great place to start with any social measurement is checking your network analytics.  Facebook has Insights to help you see how your posts do and when they do best.

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Check here weekly to monitor how your posts have been doing and adjust your schedule as necessary to maximize your reach. Pay close attention to what kind of posts get the most engagement and try to post those during your peak user times.

Other social networking sites don’t have built in tools like Facebook to view your metrics, however, there are services that range from free to expensive that will give you everything you need to know about your social accounts.

Regardless of how you choose to monitor your metrics, you should make sure it is being done.  Experimenting with your post times and days is the only way to figure out what works and what doesn’t.  Try making a post on the weekend and making a similar post during the week.  Change up the times of day that you post. Trial and error will determine what your audience will see more of, so don’t be afraid to try new things to get engagement.  If a post doesn’t do as well as you thought, don’t be discouraged. Instead take it as a learning experience about what not to do in the future.

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After a few months of observing your own trends with your content, you should be able to pick up a discernible pattern.

Follow your own data and tailor your posting schedule to the trends.  Don’t take someone’s word about the best times to post because they can only speak to their content, not yours.  So get out there and put your pages under the microscope.  Good luck!

Facebook’s News Feed Algorithm Explained

500x_facebook_macro_0You ever wonder if your posts on Facebook are being seen by all of your followers?

Up until recently Facebook has maintained that all of your friends and followers could see every update you chose to share with them.  Most everyone has had an experience that leads us to believe that this was not the case.  Well now Facebook has finally agreed to be more open with the public on the existence of the news feed algorithm and the updates to it from this point forward.  This is great news for companies and brands that have a presence on the social media site because now you can see how much of your content is reaching your audience.

Facebook has said that no major changes will be coming to effect how the new feed operates but they have been

facebook-edgerankmore clear about how posts are ranked. How often you interact with the friend, Page, or public figure (like an actor or journalist) who posted, the number of likes, shares and comments a post receives from the world at large and from your friends in particular, how much you have interacted with this type of post in the past and whether or not you and other people across Facebook are hiding or reporting a given post determine how visible a post is to the user.

Story bumping is one of the minor new additions Facebook is introducing to help with the problem of post decay.

“When users load up Facebook in the morning, a finite number of stories are shown on screen. They can scroll to view additional stories, but inevitably users leave some unread before clicking elsewhere. Story bumping ensures that when the user logs in to Facebook later in the day, some of these unread stories are brought to the top of their news feed alongside whatever has been posted since they last accessed the social network.”

For business pages, this means that after stories are posted sustained engagement must be encouraged.

facebook-fan-engagement1Gaining comments through effective community management will increase the amount of discussion around a story and optimize it for story bumping, thusly increasing visibility.

Another factor effecting ranking is the Last actor signal that takes into account the last 50 interactions that a user has. People and Pages that are within the last 50 interactions will receive a small bump in ranking value.

Again, encouraging repeated user interaction on a regular basis will give your posts a bump and increase the overall audience.

Lastly, Facebook has mentioned a future plan of attack to compete with the real time edge Twitter has. This update seeks to determine the stories by a specific user that are about a real-time event. It then displays these posts in chronological order at the top of the news feed (like Twitter) but leaves the rest of the feed as it is. It’s not clear what effect this will have on business marketing, but the possibilities could open Facebook up to a more instantaneous dialogue between pages and users.

As Facebook evolves, so must the marketing strategy businesses use to reach a core audience.  Keep the algorithm in mind when posting and your visibility and engagement should increase.