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Insights from Facebook

 

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February 25, 2013

As part of our social media strategy for marketing treadalong.com we created a Facebook page. Standard stuff, every startup does it at some point. If you’re not on Facebook, you’re not going to be seen! Facebook is widely recognized as one of the largest drivers of traffic to your sight, and that was how it was for us as well.

We started our marketing well before we had a product. All we had was a landing page with a video on it explaining what we were building. However, we did manage to rack up a fair number of fans and pageviews in the short time we spent actively publicizing ourselves on Facebook. These are of course vanity metrics, but we had no product so it’s still quite impressive. Of course if we did have a product we would rather measure the number of sign-ups, the number of signed users who returned every day and so on.

At first most of our fans were family and friends. After sending out ‘Like’ requests to everyone on our list we effectively maxed out this pool of people. Soon the number of new likes we received every day started dropping. We tried posting to our page on a regular basis and sharing the posts on our personal walls. We set up a Buffer account and queued up blog posts for the week. Articles like ’10 things to do in Thailand’, ’15 places you must visit before you die’ and so on. We also posted our own blogs to the page. None of it helped.

Yes, people saw that we were posting and some people did like the posts, but simply liking a post doesn’t do anything for the post. When a user likes a post it doesn’t show up on his wall. What is more important is for the user to engage with the post by sharing it or commenting on it. That way the friends of the user can see the post and join in on the conversation. Facebook calls this number ‘Talking about this’ and derives the virality of the post by dividing this number by the ‘Reach’ of the post, or the total number of people who saw the post from our feed.

So how do we get people to share the post and increase its virality? We actually stumbled on this by chance. At some point we queued in a picture with an inspiring travel quote. When we looked at the stats in Facebook Insights, we saw that the virality of the picture was far higher than the articles we had been posting. We decided then to focus only on pictures with quotes and the activity on our page shot up. Our new likes kept increasing and, even better, our weekly reach skyrocketed. We realized that people just didn’t have time to click through the article link we were sharing and read the whole thing. Some people might have clicked on it but never really bothered to read the entire blog post. Since they aren’t reading the post, they aren’t going to share it. On the other hand, with picture quotes it takes a second or two to read. Combine a beautiful picture of mountains with an inspirational quote about traveling the world and living your dreams and people will fall in love with the post immediately. They’ll comment on it and share it with their friends. And their friends will do the same. And so on. And so on. And that’s how you go viral on Facebook.

One final thing to add though. Build a product or service to make use of this virality!

Do you have any insights from your Facebook marketing experience?

 

Get My Growth Templates!

This is the framework I use to grow MRR for my clients by over 20% MoM

it's free!
I'll also send you deep dives into the specific tactics I use to help companies grow