Facebook has taken an official stand against Engagement Bait, and they have officially declared that they will be demoting posts containing certain words and phrases.
What’s engagement bait? That’s when people post things such as “LIKE this post if you binged Netflix this weekend” or “Share with someone who needs a hug today”. These types of calls to action are very, very common on Facebook, in fact so common that Facebook has decided they are spammy and hurt user experience.
Yes, using reaction based engagement memes was a former best practice. Things in social media change often and what worked yesterday won’t always work today.
Facebook specifically says:
Posts that use this tactic will be shown less in News Feed.
Our advice? Stop using engagement calls to action immediately. This has become a habit for many of us, so make an effort to double check your posts. Don’t tell people to Like, Share, Tag, Vote, or perform any other action.
Yes, this sucks. Telling people to Like or Share is a tried and true tactic to remind people what to do with posts. However, now it will hurt you, so it’s time to find new ways to get that organic engagement up.
Having trouble getting traction? We’ve got you covered!
5 Best Practices for Facebook
1. Have a Fan page/business page. Don’t use your personal profile to promote your blog, website, or services. You’ll also want to make sure you are using your real name, not a psuedonym, to protect your access to that page. Make a spouse or trusted friend an admin, as well, so you will have a backup if your personal profile gets locked out.
2. Video is still rewarded, especially Live video. Interact with your fans and answer questions, or even give a brief recap of your latest post. You can download your Live videos and put them on YouTube, or use snippets on Instagram. Your Live videos can also become part of a portfolio showing you have the chops to do live interviews on TV or radio.
3. Keep outbound links to a minimum. Remember that Facebook’s goal is to keep users on its site for as long as possible – Facebook doesn’t want people to click on your link and leave! Posts containing links are doing very poorly in organic reach. Consider boosting a post for audience development or using a Facebook ad to drive traffic to your website, instead of creating a regular post.
4. Be social. Don’t just be a broadcaster. Develop a community by answering questions and having conversations with your Fans. This also helps program the algorithm so it will show your stuff in those fans’ feeds.
5. Stop thinking of Facebook as a traffic source to your blog. It’s so much more! It’s a place to test out ideas, find out what your readers really want you to post about, and build a deep and loyal community. It’s basically your own personal, free focus group for content and product planning. If you accept sponsored posts, having a thriving Facebook page adds to your value, influence, and reach in the eyes of brands.
Remember, these best practices are current as of December 2017 but things could change at any time! Read the original post from Facebook about Calls to Action, and consider following the official Facebook blog so you’ll always be in the know about Facebook changes.
You might also want to join our free Facebook community, where we post items like this as soon as we find out about them! Jump into the discussion with other bloggers.