When using Facebook (or any other social media platform) to market your business, the foundation of your strategy is engagement. Without sufficient engagement, nothing else will happen. Whether you are generating leads, driving sales to a store or just building your brand, it all starts with engagement.
“Engagement” is the term Facebook uses for the defining the amount of interaction between your audience and your content. The number that summarizes all the engagement metrics employed by Facebook is called EdgeRank. EdgeRank is a combination of three statistics:
Affinity measures the amount of interaction fans have with your Facebook Page content. If one of your fans either likes, comments or shares several times a day, that fan has a much higher affinity than the fan that only interacts once a week. The more fans you have who actually do things with your content, the higher your Page’s affinity rating.
Weight measures the kind of activity your fans are involved in. The big three are like, comment and share. The heaviest of the three is share because it demonstrates the highest recognition of the value of your post. If it is good enough to share with your friends, it must be pretty good. Liking is important, but the least weighty of the three because it involves the least commitment. Comment falls somewhere in the middle.
Time measures the time factor involved in your content. As time goes by, decay sets in to your EdgeRank, creating a strong bias toward updated, relevant content. You influence this by updating regularly so that your fans have fresh content to interact with every day. Even an item that gets lots of comments and shares ranks lower as the calendar slips by.
You want to work at increasing your EdgeRank for one simple reason – it’s the cheapest way to get your postings into your fans’ newsfeeds. Most of your fans do not visit your Page to see what you have recently posted. They only see your content on their newsfeeds. The newsfeed, however, is selective. Facebook only sends items to a newsfeed if it deems it to be relevant – in other words, if the EdgeRank is high enough. So although you may have 1,000 fans, if your EdgeRank is low, only a few of them may actually see your post on their feeds.
On the other hand, with a higher EdgeRank 800 out of 1,000 fans might see your post. In that case, your chance of getting more comments and shares also increases. When 10 people share your post, an additional 2,500 people will potentially see it, because the average fan has about 250 friends. Sharing sends the post directly into their newsfeeds. That is the exponential power of social media to deliver a message.
The key word to consider in all of this is relevance. If you want greater engagement, you must post content of the highest relevance.
Are you posting the kind of content that your fans are most interested in? If you are not getting the results you want it simply means that you aren’t posting the content your fans want. If your Facebook Insights tell you that your engagement is growing, then you know your content is exactly what your fans are looking for. Give them more of it and give it to them every day.
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