Questions about managing a Facebook page―or any social network―take on many forms and in the end relatively have the same intent: “How do I increase interaction?” “How do I get more likes?” “How do I make something go viral?” People always want more out of their networks thinking that a large network equates to success. And they want the success by committing as minimal effort as possible.
My question to those who ask is always the same, “What are you doing to entertain?” The difference between a successful network vs. that of a failing network is usually predicated on this: is the person (or business) focusing on numbers or are they focusing on the likes and interests of the people within their audience? Sure, it may look cool at first glance to have a network of 20k+, but, if you cannot entice interaction from the people within your network, then you are failing.
The numbers (Likes / Friends / Follows) attached to a social network used to be the focal point prior to the evolution of the internet. The thought was that, if your network has 2,000 Likes, then 2,000 people see everything you post. This thought process seemed to develop the how can you benefit me approach, a recipe for disaster within any relationship. We know that to be true, so why replicate it on your network? Why not try the how can I benefit you approach? People do not turn on their TV to only watch commercials just as they do not open their phones to follow networks of companies whose only intent is to sell.
If you are willing to put in the tireless work needed to achieve an active network, then these tips below can help take your networks from hundreds to millions. Facebook may be the focus of today’s discussion, however, these practices can―and should―be practiced across any social platform.
1. Have the Right Intentions:
If you are only willing to allocate minimal time and effort towards your network and give up before the page even has a chance to grow, how can you expect it to grow? Stop focusing on how you or your business will benefit. Profit and sales need to be a byproduct of whatever your initial intentions of the page are.
2. If it Annoys You, it Annoys Them:
Images full of text, flyers, posters, etc., would fill Facebook’s news feeds had it not been for Facebook’s news feed algorithm―Edge Rank. Facebook has a 20% rule, images with 20% or more text on them are not approved for advertisements on both Facebook and Instagram. Their algorithm is set up to hide content breaking this rule as it helps to provide a better user experience (for all of us). Nobody wants that crap in their news feed and Facebook knows that, hence them building their algorithm to defend against it.
3. Less is Not More:
I’ve come across many so-called experts or gurus who will try to tell you that you can only post “X” times per day or to only post at certain times of the day. Data from your page’s analytics will overtime reveal what times are best for you to post but this is determined by the interaction of your network. There is no one size fits all approach. If you take the time to study and respect your audience, they will provide all the answers you need. And if you’re truly entertaining, your network will only want more, not less.
4. Create Your Own World, have FUN:
Its tough knowing what to post to your networks so do not limit yourself. Break free of restrictions, lose the need to feel as if every post has to sell. Seriously, have some fun with your page and then watch what begins to happen.
5. You are not Special:
You are not special. That needs repeated many times to some people. It does not matter who you are, you’re not special and nobody cares about you or your business until you make them care.
“People just saw me as a girl in a bikini in movies kicking butts. It took three and a half years of lots of, like, condescending nods.” This is a quote from Jessica Alba who was speaking at Forbes’ 3rd Annual Woman’s Summit in New York City about her transformation from actress to co-founding a billion-dollar business.
6. Keep it Real:
Authenticity is key and if you had to ask Jessica, she could tell you the importance of being Honest. Everyone has a friend(s) they follow on their news feed who has become a master of glorifying their own life via social media. Perception is reality―but only at first, that thin veneer wears over time. Be honest with your network, do not be afraid to highlight your lows along with your highs and everything in between.
7. Give People Stuff:
Provide value is a convoluted phrase and a lot of people have strange ways of interpreting it. Value takes on many forms and does not have to be in the physical sense of a gift or prize. Value is most important within the experience you create, the information you provide, or the entertainment you broadcast.
8. Risk it for the Biscuit:
In 1974, Philippe Petit, a French high-wire artist, made international headlines for his illegal high-wire walk between the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York City. It was his dream, a lofty dream he turned into a goal. The consequences for this stunt could have sent him to jail or even cost him his life, but, Philippe did not care, his only focus was on completing the stunt―and he did.
If you want extraordinary results you must be willing to take extraordinary risks. Step out into the unknown without attempting to predict the future. Place all focus towards what you want to obtain and surprise yourself with the results.
Philippe risked it for the biscuit and now, over 40 years later, Joseph Gordon-Levitt is playing him in the new film The Walk. Have you ever done anything in your life or business that’s sparked a major production company to spend millions creating a film about it? No? Well get out there and do something extraordinary!
9. Be Patient:
A social network is not going to transcend time nor reality. Sure, massive success has happened fast for some of these overnight internet sensations but they are an anomaly with variables contributing that are unknown. Do not focus on the success of others and assume yours should match.
Put simply, put in the work. That’s the only way to get you to the next step.