Want More Reach on Facebook Posts? Here’s How the Timeline Works.
Hey guys! In this article, I’m going to quickly talk about how the Facebook timeline works. I have a lot of people that are frustrated about why their posts aren’t performing, why their cost per engagement is low, why their click-through rate’s bad if they’re advertising etc etc… so I want to sum it up in this one article that’s going to make it super simple.
The timeline is Facebook’s baby.
The timeline is Facebook’s baby. It’s all that matters to Facebook and even if they make an excruciating amount of money from advertising, the reason they do that is because the user experience is so good. That’s why you check Facebook 8, 9, 10 probably more times a day. If the user experience is bad, if it gets overrun with ads or the posts aren’t relevant or you’re just sick of seeing nonsense, you’re going to stop using Facebook, the engagement’s going to go down and then the advertisers aren’t going to want to pay as much. It’s the user experience comes first before the advertising and they work hand in hand obviously.
Relevant content is the key.
What you need to do is put out pieces of content that are popular or relevant. Popularity is measured by likes, comments and shares. It is not measured by website actions or products sold. If you’re giving away an eBook or selling an e-commerce product, it doesn’t matter how many you’ve sold or how many conversions you’ve had. Facebook doesn’t care about your website. Facebook cares about the user experience and the people enjoying your ad or your posts.
You need people commenting, liking, sharing, engaging and then, it’s going to rank higher in newsfeed. It’s the same on Google Adwords: if you post a bad advertisement and no one’s clicking on it, it’s not going to get up there because it’s all about the user experience. I recently put out a video about jabs and right hooks and how you need to put out valuable pieces of content to build up that trust and build up that engagement and the popularity so that when you do put a right hook out, which is a product promotion post it’s actually going to land and you’re going to get conversions.
You need people commenting, liking, sharing, engaging.
That's how you get into more feeds.
Why does Facebook do this?
The reason Facebook does this is because it used to be in a chronological order. So when Facebook started and they were in universities, there weren’t that many people. It would just be like a timeline of stuff that’s happening, like how Instagram used to be, or how Twitter used to be. Obviously, as they got more people, you didn’t want to see everything because that would just be a nightmare. If you’ve got 2,000 friends on Facebook, seeing every single post from every single one of them, you’re going to stop using Facebook because it’s just too much information, it’s too confusing and that’s probably the biggest problem that Twitter faces is because of that. It’s like a fire hose of information.
Meet Edge Rank.
Facebook uses an algorithm called edge rank, and edge rank strategically picks the stuff that you’re most interested in to get that user experience going. They based your interest on the things you engage with, the pages you like, even how long you scroll on your feed. Yep – if you slow down to read something, even if you didn’t engage with that post, Facebook knows that you are somewhat interested in it! That is essentially how it works – so you want to make sure that your content is connecting and engaging with your audience because otherwise, they’re not going to care, the engagement’s going to go down, the popularity’s going to go down. You’re going to panic and freak out and get frustrated and then, you’re going to put up more sales posts promoting yourself and it’s not going to work.
So! Really quickly just to summarise you want use the ‘jab jab jab, right hook’ formula. Put our more jabs and more valuable pieces of content that people are liking, engaging and showing popularity which will make you show up in the feed, and then you hit them with a right hook (which is a sale / call to action). This is something that you want them to do. If you just do the hook, it’s not going to work because no one even cares and it didn’t hit anybody. You’re just swinging and missing.
The last thing I’ll say here, is you need to post consistently. Posting relevant content is critical, now it’s time to just put a bit more out there. I’m not talking 6 posts a day like some people do (unless you can!) because that’s not sustainable. But you should aim for at least once a day. Whether that’s sharing a photo, a link, a thought, something you saw… getting into the habit of posting once a day will get you in the flow. The easiest way to do this is just post on-the-go. After meetings, when you have ideas, when you see something… do it then and there so you’re getting good content out into the world with consistency.
That’s essentially it! That’s how the Facebook timeline works. For more on this you might also want to read 'The New Facebook Algorithm and What it Means for Businesses'. I’m out of here and I’ll see you next time!