How to get a better post reach on Facebook

Desk with Social Media and Connection ConceptThere are 41,000 new messages posted to Facebook every second. That’s more than a million posts in a minute.

With all of that competition, no wonder it’s hard to reach a large audience. Most brands see their organic reach percentage go no higher than 10%. It’s easy to get complacent with such low numbers, but there is a better way.

You can use several tactics to improve your Facebook post reach. The key is to understand how Facebook judges different posts.

The Basic Formula of Facebook Post Reach

Neil Patel is one of a handful of social media gurus who have turned digital marketing into a science. He’s written extensively on the topic of Facebook marketing.

The basic formula that Facebook uses to select posts for the news feed, according to Neil, is as follows: User Interest + Post Performance + Creator Performance + Type of Post + Recency of Post = Post Value.

Facebook measures the relative value of every possible post, then serves the most valuable ones to a user’s news feed. When the user refreshes the page, Facebook double checks to look for even more valuable new posts.

You can simplify Neil’s formula even more. There are ultimately two variables in your Facebook success: Content creation and content cultivation. Here’s how to get better at both.

Creating Valuable Posts

The first step is to create your content.

All good content uses imagery. That’s why the classic meme, usually in the form of a photo with two lines of text, is still prevalent on the internet. You don’t need a lot of time or energy to enjoy an image meme.

Start with the photo, even for longform articles. For videos, make sure you’ve got the best possible thumbnail. Your content’s success absolutely hinges on the quality of its cover photo.

Beyond that, you need to delight and surprise your visitors. After you successfully hook someone’s attention with your image, how will you thrill them with the content itself? This comes down to having truly remarkable content.

If you want more advice on this, check out Seth Godin’s book Purple Cow for a brilliant discussion of creating great stuff.

Cultivating Value Within Your Content

The second step is to cultivate value.

If you post a brilliant piece of content at 3 a.m. and never promote it, it won’t get attention. That would not cultivate the value of your work.

Yet, as crazy as it sounds to post content at 3 a.m., many business are following equally bad strategies. They post on an unpredictable schedule and hope for the best. If fans don’t engage with the content, they throw their hands up in the air and say “it was bad luck.”

Cultivating value starts with the habit of consistent social media activity. Follow these rules at all times to create a good foundation for Facebook success:

.   Post once or twice a day. You can curate content to fill in the gaps

.   Respond to all comments on your posts

.   Cross-promote with other brands by posting their content and having them post yours

If you post every day, people will notice your consistent presence on Facebook. Seeing your brand becomes a habit.  As a result, your fans will start liking more of your content. That’s important because part of the Facebook formula is “Creator Value,” which is the measure of how often people engage with your account.

The other aspect is “Post Value,” which is a measure of how well your post is currently doing. If you post new content and nobody likes it in the first hour, it’ll lose a lot of value. You have to guarantee that your content gets engagement right after it is posted.

You can get immediate engagement by asking a few of your friends to like the post right away. If you have a mailing list, email a small segment with your list. You can choose a different 5% of your list to contact for each social media post, generating consistent engagement without exhausting your email subscribers.

Content + Promotion = Success

Following both steps of this guide’s simplified Facebook formula will move you towards a better post reach.

When you create great content with killer lead images, you grab initial attention. It will thrill the people who read and watch it. Since your content is so remarkable, it gets more shares and word-of-mouth traffic over time.

When fans engage early and often with your content, Facebook notices. Your creator value goes up and it gets easier to reach people. The upward cycle feeds into itself, driving your brand to the top of the social media heap.

Social media favors brave and forward-thinking brands. If you are courageous, you can achieve an excellent post reach percentage on Facebook.