Maintaining a Facebook page is easy in principle, but it's not always so easy in practice. According to analysts from Needham, who cited comScore data, Facebook has more than 1.44 billion active users around the world, and they spend an average of 20+ minutes per day on it, which is roughly 20% of all time spent online. This means that while your window of opportunity to reach an ideal customer on Facebook is relatively small, your chances of reaching any customer at all are actually very high, especially when compared to other online marketing platforms.
To make sure you don’t post too often needlessly, your best bet is to find out exactly when to post. Once you do, you will be able to reach your ideal customers with just a handful of posts. Here are several tips that will help you get there:
1. Create a plan
Before you start posting and advertising on Facebook, create a strategy with a clear goal. Do you want to drive sales? Find email subscribers? Raise brand awareness? Increase the number of fans for your business page? Whatever it is, pick an objective and build a strategy around it.
Next, you should come up with actionable steps that will help you execute your strategy. For instance, if you want to drive sales, then you may want to create a set of ads around your products, with a clear call to action that tells your audience to buy or test those products. You would also need to establish a budget and figure out your targeting tactics.
Once you've run your first campaign, use Facebook Page Insights – a tool that provides information on your page – to evaluate how well your efforts have achieved the goals you've set for yourself and adjust your future campaigns accordingly.
2. Research your audience
To understand when to post, you need to know when your audience uses Facebook and why, which requires you to do a bit of studying. Facebook's Audience Insights tool, accessed through your ads manager, lets you evaluate your potential customers based on their age, gender, lifestyle, education, language, location and similar characteristics. It also allows you to check their past purchase behaviour and how often they are on Facebook in general. Once you piece all this information together and develop your marketing personas, you will have a much better understanding of when to post to reach your ideal audience. Just keep in mind that you need to run several campaigns beforehand in order to attain this data!
3. Choose the right day
Some days of the week are better for Facebook posts than others. According to QuickSprout, the best days are Thursday and Friday since that's when user engagement peaks. On the other end of this spectrum are Monday through Wednesday, which see the lowest engagement rates. Saturday and Sunday fall somewhere in-between. QuickSprout also notes that people tend to be happier on Fridays, which makes it the best day for creating funny or uplifting posts.
4. Choose the right time
The right time of day matters as well. Many sources, including QuickSprout, Fast Company and Huffington Post, agree that the most ideal time frame for posting on Facebook is 1-3 p.m., regardless of the day. QuickSprout gets even more specific, saying that 1 p.m. works best for getting the most shares and 3 p.m. is ideal for getting the most clicks. Meanwhile, Fast Company points out that the worst times to post are before 8 a.m. and after 8 p.m. on weekends.
5. Keep your posts varied
To ensure your engagement levels don't drop off, avoid making posts that look and read the same, because your fans will grow bored and begin to ignore them even on their best days. To solve this problem, make your content more engaging by experimenting with different types of posts, including photos, videos, articles, polls and contests. Just don't stray too far from your Facebook marketing plan.
6. Be timely
Always make timely posts! Take advantage of holidays and other special days by mentioning them in your posts. For instance, if you think your product would make a great winter holiday gift, create a post to promote it as such. Just be sure to kick off your campaign at least one week before the actual holiday – or you may fail to meet your targets. As a general guideline, don’t post anything that feels outdated.
7. Post consistently
Keep your posting frequency as consistent as possible. Even if you only create two or three posts a week, you should keep that frequency the same. Be sure to avoid scenarios where you make 10 posts one week and only one post on the following week. Doing so will make your brand look inconsistent at best and unprofessional at worst. To establish a constant flow of content, create a calendar and start posting when you think you can reach your ideal audience.
8. Don't be afraid to experiment, sometimes
Though you should stay consistent as often as possible, don't always post your content on the same day, at the same time – go out of your comfort zone occasionally and experiment with timing. Whenever you do, however, be sure to monitor the results. You may even discover that Monday evenings are better for your business than the recommended Thursday and Friday afternoons.
Let us help
Maintaining a social media calendar and creating posts for your Facebook page is plenty of work. So, if you are too busy running your business to take care of a Facebook page, get in touch with the social media experts at Yellow Pages – they will not only set up and maintain your Facebook page, but help you build a following, drive digital word-of-mouth and increase traffic.