According to Sysomos (a leading provider of social media monitoring and analytics tools), only four per cent of Facebook pages achieve more than 10,000 followers. Facebook may be big, it may have hundreds of millions of users, but all these individuals are thinly spread across many millions of pages.
So, how do you go about building a successful page? And are there any things you can do to make your page more attractive to potential fans and boost interaction? Here are our top tips…
1. Ask for likes
If you don’t ask you don’t get. The first rule to build Facebook interaction is simply to ask for it. Ninety per cent of posts should include some kind of call to action (at the very least, ask a question).
Additionally, add a welcome page – all new traffic should be directed here, rather than your wall. Your welcome page should clearly ask people (preferably in a big bold font) to click the ‘like’ button.
Furthermore, while you can’t prevent non-fans accessing your wall, you can stop them seeing any competitions, promotions or extra features you’re running until they like your page.
Offer your followers something exclusive: this could be a product, sample, discount, or content that’s inaccessible anywhere else. Reward your fans by making them feel special and part of an exclusive community.
3. Simple, straightforward
Make it obvious. Your Facebook page needs to be easy to find, neatly tied to your website (if you have one) and simple to use.
4. Make it useful
It might seem obvious, but your Facebook page’s content has to be utilitarian; for example, you could include tutorials, hints and tips, Q&As and/or advice.
5. Avoid annoying status updates
A guaranteed way to lose fans is publishing constant, relentless status updates – a classic example is ‘what are you guys doing this weekend?’.
It’s important to note that in many cases it’s not what you say but how you say it. So, for example, instead of asking ‘What are you doing?’ ask ‘What a lovely evening, anyone else planning to have a BBQ?’. Keeping posts topical in this way ensures people won’t be put off.
6. Know your audience
Know your audience; be culturally sensitive. If most of your audience is based in America use US rather than UK spellings. It might sound like a small detail but you would be surprised about how many people switch off or stop reading when they notice inconsistencies like this.
7. Use Facebook to create content
This is a great way to create interesting posts that boost interaction and encourage likes. Try the old trick of ‘You know it’s Monday when…’, and collate the answers into a witty article. Equally you could simply ask your readers for advice and tips and turn these into a longer post or blog. Attributing people who contribute will also make them more likely to interact with your page in future.
8. Provide proof
When a post gets good levels of interaction make sure you tell everyone about it – a little subtle self promotion can go a long way. For example, say you created a great article that received 20 shares, write a status update that mentions this and encourages those who haven’t read it to have a look.
9. Make mistakes
Make a few small deliberate mistakes here and there – this will encourage people to interact with your page by pointing out your errors. You may think it’s a slightly underhanded tactic but, as our next point illustrates, it’s important to keep people engaged.
10. Don’t stay idle
Most importantly of all: never stay idle. If your fans stop interacting with your page (by hitting the like button, sharing or liking a specific post, answering surveys or questions, or writing their own post) then Facebook will stop showing your posts in their news feeds.