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Facebook Reach, Impressions, Engagements and the all-important Algorithm

“Help – Facebook is not showing my business page posts”

“Why has my Facebook reach suddenly dropped”

“How do I get more people to engage with my page?”


If you’re a regular Facebook user, you will probably have come across these questions from pages that you follow, or maybe even experienced some issues yourself.


While it is true that Facebook is continually making changes to its platform, it is not necessarily all bad news, and there are certainly things that you can do to ensure your posts reach their target audience.


Here’s a brief explanation of Reach, Impressions and Engagements.


Reach

This is the number of unique users who see your content


Impressions

This is the number of times your content is viewed – your content could be viewed more than once by each unique user, and so this figure will always be higher than Reach


Engagements

This is the number of times your content has received an interaction, whether this is a like, comment, click on a link, or share


The Facebook Algorithm determines exactly who sees your posts, and is key to your Reach, Impressions and Engagements. It is therefore very important to understand exactly how this works.


The algorithm works by deciding where to position your posts on Facebook, and who should see them. The way it does this is by determining the relevance of a post to a user based on four factors:


Relevance - How often a user generally interacts with your page

Content - The type of content that user typically engages with

Popularity - How many other people have already reacted to the post

Time - How recently it was posted


The good news is that it is really easy to make the algorithm work for you!


Start by ensuring that your page is complete, with up to date contact information, opening times, available services and product offering.


Next, create engaging posts that are relevant to your target audience – keep them informative, in an easy-to-read format, not too lengthy, and with an eye-catching image that is also relevant to the subject matter.


Mix it up – no one wants to see the same message every time. Play about with different images, videos and memes, try changing the format, and find a good balance between useful information, industry knowledge, fun facts and generally heart-warming content.


Make good use of emojis and hashtags – do a little research to find the ones that are right for your business offering.


Make sure everything is current and seasonal, plus keep an eye out for events in your local community that deserve a mention.


Post regularly – keep the momentum going!


You now need to build your following and target audience.


Share your posts with local community and business groups, and tag fellow business owners to build a community spirit – don’t forget to share their posts too, and look out for opportunities to make recommendations.


Encourage your employees to share posts – it’s in their interest to help make the business a success.


Invite friends and family to follow your page – but only if they have a genuine interest in your product or service, and are willing to be active ambassadors for your brand.


Above all, do not fall into the trap of inviting every single person on your friend list, this will be completely counter-productive. Remember that the algorithm places posts in terms of relevance, content type, popularity and time. If your well-meaning Nan, for example, is always liking and commenting on but not sharing your posts, then Facebook will keep showing them to her, and only her – no one else will ever see them. Likewise, supportive friends living hundreds of miles away are not necessarily going to able to help you reach potential customers locally, no matter how many times they like and share.


Check your analytics and page insights to see exactly which posts are working and at what times or days of the week.


Finally, keep at it - "Success Depends On You"!