Facebook engagement. Everyone’s talking about it, but what is it and why’s it important for your brand?

Well, engagement is any action, reaction or interaction that a customer or prospect takes with your content on any of your digital distribution and marketing channels, like Facebook.

It may be a like or a comment on one of your social posts. Or a click in one of your marketing emails. Or someone sharing your latest blog post.

These things may not sound like much. But they matter. Because each of these engagement actions will help you grow your organic reach and get your content in front of more people.

Take Facebook engagement, for example. When one of your friends like a post from a brand, that post shows up in your News Feed simply because your friend liked it. Even if you’ve never heard of the brand before.

So, getting people to engage with Facebook posts from your brand will make it more likely to appear in new people’s News Feeds. And the more people engage with your content, the more new people it’ll reach.

All you need to do is make sure you create content that people want to engage with. So here are some tips to help you boost your Facebook engagement:

1. Get your timing right

A Facebook News Feed is a busy place. Not only is there a new cat meme published every 4 minutes (not a real statistic but possibly true), but there are also hundreds of thousands of brands competing for News Feed space all the time.

And with every new post, older content gets replaced and pushed further down a News Feed. So your latest post will disappear down the News Feed at an alarming rate.

As a result, timing is a really important factor when posting. If you post when your audience is more likely to be online, you’re much more likely to be in their News Feed when they login.

There are plenty of social platforms with data and tools to help you work out the best times to post. But – as a rough guide – the busiest times on Facebook are between 7am and 6pm from Monday to Friday.

2. Keep it snappy

According to Hootsuite’s recent Facebook engagement report, an unbelievable 88% of Facebook’s traffic comes from mobile. And there’s not much room for the written word in a Facebook post for mobile.

Write too much on a post and your mobile users will see a snippet of your content followed by an option to continue reading, which they generally won’t click on, regardless of how amazing your content is.

So, if you’re just posting written content, try to keep it as short and engaging as possible.

3. Make it visual

It’s no secret that visual content performs much better than written content on Facebook. Generally speaking – Facebook users engage with snappy, funny caption and some engaging visual content.

For example, if you’re posting about one of your customer stories, why not include a photo of the customer you’re talking about? Better yet, if you can get a video of them talking about your brand, your post will get more views, more likes and, as a result, more reach.

Visual content can take a bit more time. But there’s no need for a photoshoot and a team of designers every time you need a visual. You can easily take and upload high-resolution photos and videos from your phone straight to Facebook.

Try it today and you’ll see results. They may be small at first, but if you stick with it and build more and more visual content into your social strategy from today, you’ll see your Facebook engagement levels grow over time.

4. Use call-to-action buttons

Call-to-action buttons (often referred to as CTAs) are a powerful addition to any Facebook Page. They give you an eye-catching, prominent opportunity to send your Facebook Page visitors to a destination of your choosing.

That may be your website’s homepage. Or it could be a specific landing page that you’ve made for Facebook visitors. It could take them to a reservations page. Or your online store. Wherever you’d like to send people, just put the link in the call-to-action setup screen.

Don’t just paste your link into your page’s About section. Take the time to add a visual call-to-action button to the top of your page to make sure your followers click through to wherever you’d like them to go.

To add a call-to-action button to your Facebook Page, just click on the button below your Cover Photo that says Add a Button. Facebook will then take you through the steps to get it set up.

A person sending a carrier pigeon

5. Reach the right people

Facebook’s targeting tools are very good at what they do.

As has been widely reported, Facebook gathers a lot of data about its users. Not just demographic data like age, gender, occupation, marital status etc. but also data about interests, hobbies and buying habits based on previous engagement and interactions on Facebook.

The result? An incredibly powerful targeting tool that helps you reach your target audience with pinpoint accuracy. And it’s not that difficult to use – Facebook’s targeting tools will walk you through some fairly simple screens and help you create the segments to filter your audience down to just the right people.

All you need to do is make sure you know who your target audience should be. We recommend running some persona analysis to find things that your customers have in common.

Perhaps they’re all interested in the same sport. Or they’re all between 16 and 24 years old. Or they all work in the same industry. Whatever they may be, identify the things your customers have in common and use that to filter down your audience in Facebook.

Once you’ve got that right, you’ll be delivering content to the right people who are much more likely to engage with it, rather than just sending content out there and hoping for the best.

Testing your targeting, trying new segments, measuring the results and trying a new combination of filters is probably the best way to boost your Facebook engagement levels.

6. Analyse the data

The data is where the rubber hits the road.

You may have an idea about the type of content you should be posting or a hunch about the type of people you should be targeting with that content. But if the numbers are showing low engagement, you’ll know it’s not working.

Conversely, you may think that your current Facebook engagement strategy isn’t working because no-one likes or comments on your posts. But then find out that your website traffic from Facebook is booming because people are clicking on your links and telling their friends about your brand.

This is where the data can help. Whether you’ve found it yet or not, your Facebook page has a full analytics suite in the Insights tab at the top of your page when you’re logged in as a Page Admin.

Click on that tab to reveal a whole host of insights about your Facebook engagement levels, who your audience is, which content types work best for you and much more.

Getting to grips with this data may take some time and discipline, but it’s so worth it. And using all that information to make data-driven decisions will help you make better decisions, create better content and drive higher Facebook engagement.

7. Be responsive

This one doesn’t need all that much explaining. It goes without saying – if your Facebook followers are commenting on your posts, liking your page and sharing your content, let them know you’re there and part of their Facebook experience.

If they’re asking you questions about your brand, make sure you reply as soon as you can and definitely within 24 hours to retain their engagement.

If they’re talking to each other in the comments, join the conversation! Not to immediately start selling to them, but just to show the personality and human side of your brand.

And always be friendly, helpful and informative. Even to the trolls.

What’s next?

So there you have them – our 7 top tips for boosting your brand’s Facebook engagement levels. We hope you find them useful and that we’ve given you some actionable advice that you can start working on today.

If you’re wondering who we are and what Disciple is, we’re a platform for communities. We help people, brands and businesses build and launch their own, customised community spaces – interactive, social spaces away from the noise, clutter and algorithms of big social media platforms.

Social networks like Facebook are a great place to start gathering, growing and engaging your online community of fans, followers and friends. But, as your community grows, you’ll need your own interactive space to communicate with your customers. That’s where we can help.

If you’d like to speak to one of our Community Specialists about how our platform can help your online community, click here to get in touch.