Thanks to Timehop, I’ve recently been reminded of the days that I used to share everything on Facebook. And I do mean everything.
For example, on this day five years ago I managed to avoid a hang over from the previous nights antics. I also ‘had’ to go shoe shopping.
Yup, riveting stuff, pretty sure my friends on Facebook were stoked to read those updates.
It made me question, how often should I post on Facebook?
If you ask Hubspot, they’ll tell you that depends. And I’m sorry to say, they’re right!
In fact, their latest benchmark data found that unless you have over 10, 000 followers on Facebook there is actually a decrease in interaction when you post more frequently.
Companies with less than 10,000 followers that post more than 60 times a month receive 60% fewer clicks per post than those companies that post 5 or fewer times a month.
And with the new algorithms, it’s no wonder. Facebook has been working really hard to prioritise content shared by friends over content shared by pages. Forbes explains some of those changes here.
Which is great for users, except for, you know, those pesky ads. But I guess by now we all know that if we are not paying for a product, we are the product.
So what does that mean for you? And how can you make your post show up, and stay, on your followers Newsfeed?
It’s pretty simple, stay interesting! Yup, it’s not about how much you post, it’s about what you post. Content is everything.
You know your followers. You know what they want to see. *Spoilers* it’s not every.single.thing you have to do that day.
But incase you are hard up for ideas, here’s bufferapp’s The Anatomy of a Perfect Facebook Post
A perfect Facebook post:
- is a link
- is brief—40 characters or fewer, if you can swing it
- gets published at non-peak times
- follows other posts on a regular schedule
- timely and newsworthy
So how often do you post on Facebook, and more importantly, what do you post on Facebook?
I’m going to put a question to you. It’s not a comfortable question, and one that I don’t like to ask. But I’m going to do it anyway.
If Belle Gibson took her own life, could you say 100% that you had nothing to do with it?
Like most of you, I have been disgusted by the acts she is accused of. I have shared articles on Facebook and I have even liked the Facebook page ‘exposing Belle Gibson.’
But it was not until yesterday that I read this and realised that we have gone too far.
“Former classmate Meg Weier said that Ms Gibson was quite strange.” Taken from the dailymail, UK.
Well, fuck me, she must be guilty!
We have clearly run out of things to say about this issue, but we’re finding something to say anyway.
It got me thinking back to Charlotte Dawson, and her suicide that many believe was caused by cyber bullying. After she died we talked a bit about cyber bullying, but then we just kinda moved on. Did we not learn anything?
You see I was bullied as a kid and it sucked! Like, really sucked. Like, yes- I did think it would be easier if I didn’t have to get up the next day- sucked.
But I would go home, or hang out with my friends on weekends and escape my bullies. I didn’t have to worry about them. They weren’t in my house; they didn’t enter my personal space. So I got through it with the support of my friends and family.
Ms Gibson’s bullies are in her home. They are on her phone, her tv, her computer. She really can’t escape it. Her mental health must be absolutely on the edge.
Sure, she may not have cancer like she claimed, she may not have the scans to prove her illness, but just look at the facts here guys—anyone who has gone through what she went through, what she has put herself through, is clearly very unwell.
I get that people are angry; I understand that Ms Gibson may have actually made a lot of people really unwell. You know what, I’m a bit angry too.
But I am going to take a different path. I am going to advocate for her safety and the safety of her child. I am going to offer my support to Belle Gibson, a young girl whose mental health must be very frail.
And I get that you can’t advocate with me, and that’s fine. But let’s stop the cyber bullying before it’s too late.
Social media is viral.
That’s a case of viral gone right.
But what happens when it goes wrong.
The thing with social media is that as soon as you hit send- it is out there. Even if you remove a tweet or Facebook post, followers have still seen it, some may have even screen shot it and that post can continue to be shared.
Have a look at this incident that occurred on Black Milk Clothing’s Facebook timeline.
After posting this image fans of the brand were outraged. This brand was built on a community of followers who interact on their social media page, and have regular meetups. The brand really sells them a lot more than just clothing. And a lot of these fans were outraged.
They pointed out that this image was in poor taste and went against the Black Milk “commandments”: [i]
COMMANDMENT #1 – YOU SHALL BE EXCELLENT TO ONE ANOTHER
COMMANDMENT #5 – YOU SHALL NOT MAKE CRITICAL COMMENTS ON OTHER WOMEN’S BODIES.
The administrator went on to do something inexplicable. They started replying condescendingly, deleting posts, and then went on to block fans. Keep in mind these fans are also paying customers, many of whom had been there from the start.
It took 24 hours to remove the image and issue and apology. In the process they lost around 10,000 followers and their reputation was forever damaged.
This fiasco really went viral when Huff Post published an article: Black Milk Clothing Illustrates How Not to Use Social Media.
They eventually issued an apology here, but it really has taken them a long time to come crawling back from a PR disaster that could have been avoided by a simple apology.
Here’s what I would have done:
- After initial offence caused I would have removed the image, and accept that I’d made a mistake.
- I would have acknowledged the people to whom I’d offended with a DM.
- I would apologise, and apologise publicly. Heres something I whipped up using google and paint:
Now check out this post taken from the American Red Cross (@RedCross).
This seems like the ultimate disaster. A Red Cross employee thought they were tweeting from their personal account, but actually tweeted from the official account.
As a social media manager it is a huge fear of mine. Initially, check and double check that this does not happen. Be careful, and probably best not to tweet and drink.
But, if it does happen here’s exactly how to deal with it.
PR disaster avoided.
The PR team had obviously accepted a mistake had been made. They acknowledged their audience and in their own quirky way they apologised.
One of the biggest challenges faced with being behind the growth in social media in any organisation is to try and get those who do not understand it, to love it.
Social media is a lot of things. It is new, it is now and it is public just to name a few.
It is also incredible and exciting.
Yet so many people in upper management overlook the role social media can play in the growth of any organisation, and consider it a tick box exercise. They’re okay with it, they let it go, but they don’t necessarily support it and they rarely contribute to it. Why? They simply don’t love it.
I have worked in two organisations communication departments. The first organisation had a gun of a social media manager, and my role with social media was the planning side of things which kept the upper management off her back. Essentially I always had to explain the why and the how whilst she did the what.
It wasn’t easy for her, although she’d never admit it, to continuously manage upwards as the upper management had high expectations and minimal resources.
And by resources, I mean people.
“It’s ironic that most companies spend 50% to 70% of their money on people’s salaries. And yet they spend less than 1% of their budget to train their people. Most companies, in fact, spend more time and money on maintaining their buildings and equipment than they do on maintaining and developing their own people”[i]
But they did a lot of things right too. They encouraged staff to all incorporate the organisations branding in their social media, and had begun looking into a social media policy to ensure reputational risks were kept at bay.
They, primarily the social media manager, ensured that the staff LOVED social media!
“To take full advantage of social media on an enterprise level, you need senior leadership to push social media practices organization-wide and become agents of change themselves.”[ii]
The benefits of having the entire organisation involved in social media is far greater than simply brand promotion.
Having the entire organisation on board, means your content will remain fresh, interactive and interesting to your audience.
“People are more likely to communicate through both word-of-mouth and social media when they are engaged with the product, service, or idea.”[iii]
When I first started at my current organisation as the social media coordinator, I had a challenge in front of me. Whilst no one was against social media, very few people were particularly ‘for’ it.
I would spend hours trolling through the organisations website trying to find content for social media. Luckily, the Twitter already had a strong following and the Facebook wasn’t entirely unloved. I had a good foundation to start from.
Now I actually have to schedule people in to share their content. I have staff working on images to share on social media and I recently recruited volunteers to assist with social media at our annual conference.
Getting my colleagues to LOVE social media means that I am able to curate a higher quality of content.
It also means that you can work as a team through any reputational risks that present themselves through social media. If you are confident that your organisation is as passionate about social media as you, you can walk into the office of the relevant manager (or director when the case calls for it) and discuss the best management plan when this risks rear their ugly head.
“This prevalence and open nature of the platform that is bringing an entirely new set of reputation risks to businesses, with implications on their wider perception management strategy.”[iv]
It is crucial, as the social media voice of the organisation, that the facts you share are correct. And the best way to get these facts are from the subject matter expert.
Remember, your organisations social media accounts are representative of the entire organisation. The BEST way to represent the entire organisation is to have everyone not just on board, but passionate about the social media plans you create and the implementation of such plans.
“Social media literally is the means by which your business can relate to, exist in and influence human communities. In short: social media is human interaction. Taking part in social media means your business must become more human to be more successful.”[v]
In part two next week I will share with you all how I went about implementing this organisational shift.