What is FACEBOOK?
Facebook is the world’s most popular social networking website. It makes it easy for you to connect and share with your family and friends online. Facebook has even helped the web become more open and social.
Originally designed for college students, Facebook was created in 2004 by Mark Zuckerberg while he was enrolled at Harvard University. By 2006, however, anyone over the age of 13 with a valid email address could join Facebook.
What is Edge Rank?
- An Edge is basically everything that “happens” in Facebook. Examples of Edges would be status updates, comments, likes, and shares. There are many more Edges than the examples above—any action that happens within Facebook is an Edge.
What does Edge Rank Do?
- EdgeRank ranks Edges in the News Feed. EdgeRank looks at all of the Edges that are connected to the User, then ranks each Edge based on importance to the User. Objects with the highest EdgeRank will typically go to the top of the News Feed (there is a small component of randomization).
Edge Rank Algorithm
- This algorithm can be understood as: the sum of Edges, each Edge is made up of Affinity, Weight, and Time Decay. This may sound complicated at first, but when you begin to understand the underlying concept, it’s actually a simple and effective algorithm
Affinity Score means how “connected” a particular user is to the Edge. For example, I’m friends with my brother on Facebook. In addition, I write frequently on his wall, and we have fifty mutual friends. I have a very high affinity score with my brother, so Facebook knows I’ll probably want to see his status updates.
Facebook calculates affinity score by looking at explicit actions that users take, and factoring in:
- the strength of the action,
- 2) how close the person who took the action was to you, and
- 3) how long ago they took the action.
- Explicit actions include clicking, liking, commenting, tagging, sharing, and friending.
- Each of these interactions has a different weight that reflects the effort required for the action–more effort from the user demonstrates more interest in the content.
- Commenting on something is worth more than merely liking it, which is worth more than merely clicking on it. Passively viewing a status update in your newsfeed does not count toward affinity score unless you interact with it.
- Affinity score measures not only my actions, but also my friends’ actions, and their friends’ actions.
- For example, if I commented on a fan page, it’s worth more than if my friend commented, which is worth more than if a friend of a friend commented.
- Not all friends’ actions are treated equally. If I click on someone’s status updates and write on their wall regularly, that person’s actions influence my affinity score significantly more than another friend who I tend to ignore.
- if I used to interact with someone a lot, but less so now, then their influence will start to wane. Technically, Facebook is just multiplying each action by 1/x, where x is the time since the action happened.
- Affinity score is one-way. My brother has a different affinity score to me than I have to him. If I write on my brother’s wall, Facebook knows I care about my brother, but doesn’t know if my brother cares about me.
Each category of edges has a different default weight. In plain English, this means
- that comments are worth more than likes.
- Facebook changes the edge weights to reflect which type of stories they think user will find most engaging.
- For example, photos and videos have a higher weight than links. Conceivably, this could be adjusted on a per-user level–if Ram tends to comment on photos, and Megha comments on links, then Ram will have a higher Edge weight for photos and Megha will have a higher Edge weight for links. It’s not clear if Facebook does this or not.
- As a side note, Facebook may actually rank the act of commenting, liking, visiting a fan page, or even fanning a page differently depending on the source.
- For example, becoming a fan via an ad may have a lower Edge score than becoming a fan by searching for the fan page and then becoming a fan. This makes intuitive sense-the one user is hunting for the page and generally will care more about page stories than someone who had an ad thrust in their face.
- New Facebook features generally have a high Edge weight in order to promote the feature to users. For example, when Facebook Places rolled out, check-ins had a very high default weight for a few months and your newsfeed was probably inundated with stories like “John checked into Old Navy.” Generally, after a few weeks or months Facebook dials the new feature back to a more reasonable weight.
- As a story gets older, it loses points because it’s “old news.”
- EdgeRank is a running score–not a one-time score. When a user logs into Facebook, their newsfeed is populated with edges that have the highest score at that very moment in time. Your status update will only hit the newsfeed if it has a higher score–at that moment in time–than the other possible newsfeed stories.
- Facebook is just multiplying the story by 1/x, where x is the time since the action happened.
- Additionally, Facebook seems to be adjusting this time-decay factor based on
- 1) how long since the user last logged into Facebook, and
- 2) how frequently the user logs into Facebook.
8 Ways to Getting More Facebook Fans
Invite Friends and Customers
This is the first thing that you should do after creating your Facebook page. Invite your Facebook friends, share the page on Facebook and have your employees do the same. Then put your email list to work by announcing your new page to your customers with an email promotion. You should then make sure that “Like Us on Facebook” is part of you email templates — both promotional and corporate signatures.
Grow Naturally — Be Interesting!
No one wants to Like a boring Facebook page. And even if you do somehow drive 100,000 fans to your page, if you aren’t interesting there is no value in those 100,000 people. You can grow naturally by simply being interesting enough that your current fans interact with you. When they like or share your posts, comment or post content on your wall, those activities are spread to their friends. Your fans’ activities act as a recommendation to their friends to like your page.
Fangate with a Welcome Tab
A Welcome Tab should be the first thing a prospective new fan sees when they come to your page. It should lay out what to expect when they “like” you, and there should be a clear call to action to like the page.A truly effective fangate has something of value the brand can offer if the person likes the page that they can’t otherwise get. It’s providing incentive to like the page.
These seem so automatic, but I’ve seen far too many companies that have Facebook pages and you’d never know it by looking at their websites. They either bury mention of their page or don’t mention it at all. A Facebook icon directing to your page needs to be part of the template of every page on your site. That part doesn’t even need to be a plugin, though you can certainly use the Like Box plugin as well. And of course, you must have a Like Button on every page post.
Promote Your Page Offline
Don’t stop at promoting your page online. You need to create offline promotional materials as well. Put “Like Us on Facebook” with a vanity URL to your page on receipts. Create flyers that you can place in windows and by registers. Drive customers to your page on any printed materials you may have, including business cards and mailers. Also use those materials to encourage customers to checkin (more on that later).
Deals Exclusive to Facebook Fans
- One of the main reasons that people become fans of brand pages is to get exclusive deals. If you offer deals that are available only to your Facebook fans, you are bound to have a more engaged audience that pays attention to your posts.
- Run a “whisper campaign.” Once a week, announce a new deal. Maybe even mention a secret code word for fun so that when they go to check out, they whisper that word to the cashier for their discount. Or maybe it’s a matter of getting a blanket discounted rate if you’re a Facebook fan. Or provide a coupon that fans can print out and bring to your store.
- It could even be as simple as letting your fans know of the deals that are available to everyone. Every morning, announce your lunch specials. In the early afternoon, announce your happy hour specials.
You can target Facebook users by interests or location and target friends of current fans. And the amount you want to spend works into any budget. The minimum cost of an ad is $1.
Depending on the barrier to entry, I’ve seen ads that drive 10 fans per dollar spent. I’ve seen others where it costs $1-2 per fan. Depending on your line of business and the potential revenue per fan, either may be acceptable. But it’s so cheap, there’s really no reason not to experiment and see if it can work for you.
Encourage Fans to Promote You
Your first fans are your biggest advocates. There’s a link on the left-hand side of your page for “Share” that allows fans to share you page. Ask your fans to share your page with their friends. You’ll be amazed how far that goes!
What to post on the Facebook fan page?
- 1- A good call to action. For example “Click ‘like’ to…”
- 2- An engaging question “Tell us…”
- 3- A good image.
- 4- Fill in the blanks
- 5- Ask questions
- 6- Focus on what your target audience will be interested in
- 7- Current happenings
- 8- Tips
- 9- Did you know
- Posting ideas• Photos of happy customers
- case studies
- Photos of employees
- humorous jokes and images
Tips to creating engaging Page posts
Use link posts to drive people to your website
Link posts now have a larger, clickable area that helps drive people to your website.
- In your Page’s sharing tool, enter the offsite URL, then hit Enter • The title, description and image are taken from your URL, but you can still customise the text and image of the post
- We have increased the size of the image for these types of posts, so ensure you select compelling imagery that will blend into the News Feed experience
Use engaging copy, images and videos
- Rich media like photos and videos get more attention and help your message stand out in News Feed Lifestyle images like the ones you see from your friends on Facebook are always engaging.
- Try sharing images of your products or photos of your customers enjoying your services.Try to keep your posts between 100 and 250 characters to get more engagement. Shorter, succinct posts are better received
Create a two-way conversation
- Ask your audience to share their thoughts and feedback on your product and services. This is another way to listen to your customers and improve your business.
- Posting content that shows you took their feedback into consideration can build customer loyalty and show you value their ideas
In Action: Modify Watches, a company that creates mix-and-match watches, asks customers for input on product designs and names, and builds ongoing watch designs from this real-time feedback
Share exclusive discounts and promotions
- Offer special deals or perks to your customers to keep them interested and to drive online sales. Include call to actions with links to the most relevant page on your website.
- In Action: BarkBox creates posts with promotional codes. They found that valuable offers like buy-1-get-1-free or discounts over 20% were more likely to be shared and it helped them spread the word about their business. • To improve engagement with your promotions, include clear calls to action, redemption details, and when the promotion ends to add a sense of urgency.
Provide access to exclusive information
- Reward people who are connected to your Page and drive loyalty and online sales by providing them with exclusive information. Make them feel special by sharing exclusive product news, contests and events.
- In action: PhotoBarn created a Mother’s Day 10-Day Giveaway of PhotoBarn products on their Page
- Your audience will be more likely to engage with posts when they’re related to subjects that are top of mind, like current events or the holidays
- Timeliness is also important when replying to comments on your posts. The faster you reply, the more likely fans will engage with you in the future.
- Tip: Post a daily sneak peek of upcoming product sales 2 weeks prior to Black Friday or Cyber Monday
Plan your conversational calendar
- The easiest way to stay in regular contact with fans is by creating a conversational calendar with ideas about what to talk about each week or month
- A content calendar will not only help you post regularly, but will ensure your content is well planned, interesting, and that you don’t miss major business events and news. Find a frequency that works for you and your audience.
Schedule your posts
- To better manage your time, you can schedule your posts in advance and plan for upcoming holiday events and specials
- To schedule your posts, simply click the clock icon on the lower left-hand corner of your Page’s sharing tool.
- Schedule your posts when most of your fans are online. You can find out when your fans are online by visiting your Page Insights and going to the posts tab
- After you’ve scheduled a post, you can manage your scheduled posts by going to the top of your Page and choosing Edit Page and then selecting Use Activity Log
Target your posts
If your posts are meant for specific groups of people, you can target your post in your Page’s sharing tool by clicking on the target icon at the bottom left corner and selecting Add Targeting. You can target your post based upon gender, relationship status, educational status, interests, age, location, and language.
Review the performance of your posts
Check your Page Insights regularly to understand what’s working to keep your posts relevant and engaging. Page Insights will help you understand your audience and what types of content interests them.