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Chapter 11 – Boost Engagement With The Viral Post Formula
How Likes, Shares, and Comments Help Your Posts Go Viral. Master EdgeRank
The more social actions your posts get, the higher they will go on the EdgeRank scale, and the more people will see them.
However, not all social actions are created equal. In fact, EdgeRank Facebook gives a weighting to each of the four main social actions your fans can take on any post. Based on 8 years of testing my posts on Facebook it seems that social actions rank iIn the following order, lowest weighting to highest, they are:
Like, Share, Tag, Comment
While Likes have the lowest weighting of the social action scale, they are the easiest to get and can really move your posts up quickly on EdgeRank, get your posts seen by more people if done correctly. Now, I don’t know this for sure, but I heard from a Facebook insider that if you can get three or more people who are not friends with one another to click the Like button within the first five minutes of your post, it will get grow your posts’ reach quicklyl shoot way up on EdgeRank. I’ve personally found this serious intel to be very accurate.
When your fans click the Share button, this will carry a higher weighting for EdgeRank, mainly because it’s harder to get people to share. Also, sharing is usually done on current, relevant topics between close friends or within one’s own tribe.
The highest EdgeRank ranking in Facebook’s algorithms for your posts seems to be is to get comments. This is the most interactive a fan can get and will increase the chances of your posts being seen by the most people. Many experts believe that Comments carry a 5- to 8-times-greater EdgeRank weighting than Likes alone.
Next, we will learn how to get comments.
How to Get Comments to Get Your Post Seen By Thousands and Grow Your Tribe
How do we get our tribe of over 300258,000 to make comments on our posts so we stay fresh and in front of people? We use all the tools you have learned up until now and put them all together.
It’s important to understand that people will mostly see posts in their News Feeds, and many will see them on their phones. So it’s important that if you want to get a Like, you need a relevant topic or a powerful image, and you need to make it really easy for people to comment. “Yes or no” questions are great for this. Asking for very short one-word answers like “Agree” or “Disagree” works great, too!
Here are some examples of posts that you can start using today.
In this post, we asked the following question: “Yoga should be taught in schools. 1 = Agree, 2 = Disagree. Tell us what you think.”
Because this post got 331 comments, 1,204 Likes, and 76 Shares, it ranked very highly on EdgeRank Facebook’s Algorithms and was consequently seen by over 22,000 people! The best part was we got over 300 new fans that day, mainly from this one post.
Remember, we are using positive valence and adding an emotional charge in the comments to improve the viral potential of our posts.
Here’s another example: “This cat is better at Shavasana than I am. 1 = True, 2 = False.”
And another: “What will you be in 2013? Write one word: ‘Fearless,’ ‘Honest,’ ‘Happy.’”
“Real” or “Fake”—What is impossible anyway?
Attract Your Tribe by Rewarding Your Fans
One of my biggest secrets for growing a huge tribe of loyal Facebook fans—who may become paying customers—is to reward our fans as much as we can. One simple way to do this is to feature your fans on your Wall and Timeline cover photo using a photo contest.
Since our page is called “Yoga,” we do a daily yoga pose contest where our members of our tribe submit photos of themselves on our Facebook Wall. Next, I’ll show you how to get their e-mail addresses to build your list.
Use Questions to Get Comments and Get Your Posts to Go Viral
How do I create content my tribe will love? The most important thing in creating content that your tribe will love is asking your tribe. The great thing about Facebook is you get instant feedback, so one way you can ask your tribe if they love content is by posting a photo on the Wall of your page. If that photo gets no Likes—guess what? Your tribe doesn’t love it. They just told you and gave you instant feedback that that was not content that they love.
Conversely, if you do a post that gets tons and tons of Likes, thousands or tens of thousands of Likes, clearly your tribe loved that. So, you want to post more and more of that kind of content, and we’ll show you exactly how to find those customers.
Always Deliver Value
While humor can definitely add an air of lightness to your posts, it has its place and should not take precedence over posts that immediately offer value. In fact, your first posts on your Facebook page should all offer high value instantly. You have probably seen Facebook pages that are not well-designed or well-thought-out and that offer little-to-no value for customers. These pages do not succeed in engaging or reaching customers, and some people hesitate to Like such pages for fear of getting spammed in their News Feed.
In fact, page Likes translate to the perceived value that your customers have for your page. Hence, it is important to match your content with the emotional need that your customer is trying to fill. What does your customer really want? Be sure to offer content that is oriented to what they want—and not to what you think they want.
How do you find out what kind of content your customers really value? Well, the main way is through interaction. If you want fans, then simply posting content is probably enough. But if you want customers, you will need to understand what it is that they want and desire, and then, create content that meets these needs. Guesswork usually fails. It is best to ask and find out. Remove any misunderstandings and clarify what your customers want, need, and are looking for. The way your fans interact with your posts will show you how your Facebook content can grow virally.
Facebook Polls (Only In Groups)
If you have your own Facebook group, or if you are in a group, one of the best ways you can find out what your customers want is via a Poll. While this used to be available on your page and personal profile, Facebook now only allows you to create a poll in groups. Asking questions via a poll is a great way to engage your tribe. You can get them to vote on responses and also allow them to include their own responses to the question. It’s a terrific way to find out who your customers are and what they really want.
Think about what kinds of Facebook Polls you can create that would help you gain insight into your customers. It is best to keep your poll relatively simple and easy to answer. Choose a poll question that helps you by revealing customer desires and aspirations. For example, what are some common problems that your customers face? What are three things that you want feedback about from potential customers?
There are lots of ways that polls cannot work, and one thing that’s important for your tribe is to try out different polls to find out what will work. So, when you’re asking your customers what they want and what they need, if you put out a poll and no one responds to it, understand that your tribe and your fans didn’t care for that—they didn’t like it, they didn’t want to answer it, and they weren’t motivated by it in any way. So, what that means is you have to try something new.
If you remember that most of your marketing won’t work, most of your poll questions won’t work, most of your posts and most of your content that you post won’t work—what you’re doing when you’re posting any of these things, including questions and polls, is you’re testing. You’re trying to sort through the stuff that doesn’t work in order to figure out what does work.
Remember, 80% or more of your efforts won’t work, and maybe 90% of it won’t work—but about 10% of it will. So, you need to test and find that 10% that works, so you can then post the types of Facebook polls and questions that will work. Why do all this trial and error? This is where you’re going to find your customers.
Testing Things Out
You will find that each niche has a different appeal. You will have to test things out to see what works in your niche. Across all niches, though, photos, videos, and quotes typically work well.
Post the same photo several times over a week and change the copy. Test with short copy, long copy, and content that varies in tone: serious, funny, sentimental, controversial, etc.
Test things out at different times of the day. For example, maybe for your niche, you can reach more people on a Sunday afternoon than you can mid-week. Also, try tests for both before and after work hours.
Test out different formats and different content at different times and frequencies. Test and find out what works best for you. You may want to consider tracking your posts, recording the number of Comments, Shares, and Likes received per post, as well as the date and time posted. Here is an example of tracking for our client Max Simon and his page for Big Vision Business:
Speaking in an Authentic Voice
It’s vital to speak in the same voice as your customers, and Facebook is the best place I’ve ever seen to find your customers’ voice. So, when you ask your customers questions using polls or on your Facebook Wall and they’re responding to you, they’re going to respond in a specific language. What I mean by that is, they use specific words that will relate to themselves, their lifestyles, and their needs and aspirations. You want to then communicate to your customers in those specific words.
By using your authentic voice, and by simply being real and being yourself, you can grow a big tribe.
Here is a great example of my good friend and student, Vanessa Chamberlin, who has a great company helping women ignite their inner fire and love their life:
The less you worry about offending people with your inner truth, the more you will be speaking to your real tribe, those who will love you and whom you were meant to serve, and to whom you can devote 100% of your effort to helping.
That tribe is going to be your customer base, so you want to be asking your customers continually what problems they have, so that you can create solutions specifically for them. Make sure that you’re doing something for the greater good. I’m assuming that if you’re reading this book, you are working toward the greater good, and the more that you have an authentic voice, the more you can help people solve their needs. In turn, your business will grow, and you’ll be able to help even more people in this world.