In addition to building great websites, we (The Bivings Group) help clients manage their online campaigns on an ongoing basis.  Helping our clients create and maintain compelling Facebook pages for their organization, cause or business is an increasingly large part of this work.

Based on a lot of trial and error, following are some quick tips for making your Facebook updates more compelling.

(1) Keep your updates short.  Mostly, you should be brief because people are typically scanning through updates in their news feed quickly and  skip over items that are too verbose.  More practically, if you go over 320 characters you’ll see a little “more” button pop up  at the bottom of your update which very few people will click on (see example from WWF below).  I would try to keep updates to under 200 characters, and never go over 320.


(2) Don’t post too often.  On Twitter, posting 10+ times a day is accepted and can actually help you build a following.  For a Facebook page, that is way too much content and will lead to people tuning you out.  I’d suggest posting 1-5 updates a day, with 2-3 being the sweet spot.

(3) Be strategic about the time of day you post.  A recent study shows that Facebook usage spikes at 11:00 a.m., 3:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. ET.  Try to post your updates during those times to ensure that your users actually see your post.

(4) Show some personality.  When you are running a Facebook page for a brand or organization, it is easy to fall into writing updates that are cold and distant.  Writing like an actual living, breathing person will increase your effectiveness.  Zappos and Bonobos are examples of brands that do this well.

(5) Post updates that encourage interaction.  Ask open-ended questions.  Run informal polls.  Posting these kinds of updates will encourage comments and help build your relationship with your user base.

(6) Interact with your base.  If people take the time to comment on your update, you should take the time to respond and/or thank them.  Work to build relationships.

(7) Post photos and videos.  Updates that include multimedia content tend to attract more comments and likes than straight text updates.

(8) Try to embed content whenever possible.  In our experience, updates that are primarily links to external sites tend to attract less interaction than ones where the full update is within Facebook.  So it is smart to try to embed the content within Facebook whenever possible.  What does this mean?  Don’t link to a photo on Flickr, upload it to Facebook.  Don’t link to a YouTube video, post it as a video in Facebook.  Instead of linking to your blog post, consider importing it as a note so users can read the whole thing right there.  Sometimes you have to post a link out, but the more you can keep the content self contained in Facebook the higher your interaction rate will be.

(9) Give your Facebook followers some goodies.  Lots of big brands give special coupons and deals to their Facebook fans.  Make this concept your own.  Raffle off a book or t-shirt.  Release some news exclusively on Facebook.  Do things to make your fans feel special and to give new folks an incentive for “liking” your page.

(10) Experiment and adjust.  The audience for each page is unique.  Try a bunch of different things and see what works and what doesn’t.   Use Facebook insights to see how you are doing.

About the Author
Todd Zeigler
Todd Zeigler serves as the Brick Factory’s chief strategist and oversees the operations of the firm. In his sixteen year career in digital, he has planned and implemented campaigns for clients including the Pickens Plan, International Youth Foundation, Panthera, Edison Electric Institute, and the American Chemistry Council. Todd develops ambitious online advocacy programs, manages crises, implements online marketing strategies, and develops custom applications and software. He is bad at golf though.