If there’s one precursor to successful social media marketing, it's having a consistently good reach for your posts. By its very nature, social media is a form of community-based marketing which relies on generating hype and dialogue between real people. To get started, your messages need to be reaching the right people...
Optimising for reach is often looked at as somewhat enigmatic. The culprit here may be the seemingly complicated algorithms used by social networks, particularly Facebook, which cap the rate of content exposure by perceived relevance. But just because it can be difficult, doesn’t mean it can be overlooked. On the contrary, it’s a challenge which needs to be overcome in order to unlock each network’s full potential.
Optimising any social media content strategy is a system of trial and error. This is simply because no two audiences, industries or businesses are the same, so there cannot be a catch-all method for success. Social media marketers should be constantly trialling different styles of campaign in order to see what is most successful and which variations result in the biggest reaction for their accounts.
While there isn’t a secret formula for maximising your reach, there are certainly some points to take on board which are likely to guide your content in the right direction…
Audience growth isn’t really audience growth unless it’s your audience
While it might seem counterintuitive, in both the preliminary and advanced stages of social media marketing, businesses should be wary about how they grow their social media audience. The idea that anybody would pay for followers may well seem ridiculous now, but it does still happen and there’s a reason that should be avoided at all costs.
For your organic reach to grow, you need to be growing an organic, engaged audience. While purchased followers may have the delightfully pointless aesthetic effect of inflating your follower/like count, they are by no means going to help you grow your account. On the contrary, an influx of low-quality profiles can actually be a hindrance in the long-run. These aren’t followers who will engage or interact with your content or advocate your brand to a larger audience, they are just numbers that keep your reach rate right down.
Remind your audience why they followed you
While the case for organically growing an engaged audience is truly insurmountable, something that matters just as much is consistency. While a follower might be active in the first place often they will soon forget why they followed you and become less of an asset to you.
To keep those people active and encourage them to always advocate your content and share it among their wider community (bang; reach), you need to make sure you continually feed them a healthy dose of whatever it was that made them respond to your campaigns in the first place. If you successfully monitor your campaigns, this should happen naturally. As you will notice which posts are earning the most engagement and the biggest influx of new followers - these are the formats which should be replicated.
Think visually with your content
Many people would tell you it’s a good idea to use more visual content on your social media. We go one step further - never post anything that isn’t accompanied by some form of visual content (graphic, photo, video, live video, etc.) Social media users are 44 percent more likely to engage with visual content - set yourself a precedent that does not allow for anything less.
Your brand might have to sound different on Facebook
Certain types of business and organisation may have to alter their brand voice. Facebook posts which have a conversational and casual tone tend to get a far better reaction than those using corporate language - a simple concept when you consider that it is a platform which was intended to be social above all else.