There’s no doubting that the Mums’ Days Facebook page is my number 1, social media source of traffic to my blog… and it used to be even better until their most recent changes. Buuuuut, as much as it’s painful to lose some of that traffic, I can understand why I should expect to pay a little bit here and there for this fantastic service.

I’m learning all the time when it comes to my Facebook Page (because it changes pretty much daily), and I’m by no means an expert, but within a year my audience has grown from 300 to over 3000, so I thought I’d share some insights and tips from what has been working for me!

Facebook for bloggers: 5 tips for promoting your blog through Facebook. Click here to see how I use my Facebook Page for my blog: http://mumsdays.com/facebook-page-for-blogs/

1. When should I post to my Facebook Page and how often?

Frequency

Consistency is apparently key when it comes to Facebook. Try not to post 10 times in one morning and then not at all for a few days. One of the algorithms that effects how many people see your posts is how many engaged with your last post, so if you don’t post for a few days, it’s like starting from scratch!

Facebook isn’t like twitter; less is definitely more! I am currently experimenting with consistently posting between 4 and 6 posts a day. Some people swear by less and some more, but I’m finding I can get a reach of around 5-10,000 (sometimes more) a week by doing this (oh and traffic to my blog has risen by 150% since I’ve started doing this consistently).

When

Each post has a life of around 2 hours (and you can give it more by joining the conversation) so you want to space your posts out. Post too much too close together and people will stop following or unlike your page.

Facebook does this handy thing of telling you when the people who like your page are online. This is what mine looks like and it only changes marginally from day to day (to see yours go to >> insights >> posts):

Click here to see how I use my Facebook Page for my blog: http://mumsdays.com/facebook-page-for-blogs/

Off the back of this, I know from 3pm onwards my posts will have more potential to reach more people. Day to day I tend to post at 7am (mums are early risers remember!), 10:30am/11am (tea/coffee time) and then 4pm, 7pm and 8:30pm to catch the peak, which is at 9! And, don’t forget to post at weekends.

2. What to post to my Facebook Page?

Traffic is the name of the game and the ultimate aim is to get people to see your blog. Right? So, surely you need to just post 6 links to your blog a day. Right? Wrong!! What a snooze fest that would be for my poor facebook friends and I quickly find that the more links I post, the less engagement I get.

I try to do a 3:1 ratio of general chitchat to sharing my content. So if I post 6 things to my wall in a day, only 2 of them will link to my blog posts (unless it is genuinely relevant to a conversation). And I’ll mix it up; a question, a photo, a link. So, for example, don’t do back to back links to your site, then a bunch of photos, if you see what I mean?

3. What’s the best format?

I haven’t done a full analysis of my facebook reach but again FB tells you on average what works for you (status, link or photo).

Click here to see how I use my Facebook Page for my blog: http://mumsdays.com/facebook-page-for-blogs/

OK, bare with me with this bit…it’s a bit of a number cruncher!

The best in terms of reach is a status update. This for me, typically, is a question either posed by me or someone from the community. More people see it because, I guess, Facebook doesn’t see it as promotional? Who knows?! But, every 9th person engages with this type of post, however, only 1 in around 100 will comment, like or share (which is the important bit!).

Second is the Link. Again I’ll pose a question and then write a blurb, and then link to either one of my posts or another post that I really like. Engagement wise, fewer people will click (1 in every 10) but more people will engage with a link over a status (1 in every 60).

And finally, photos have the smallest reach but the best engagement! 1 in every 8 people will click to see the photo and 1 in every 45 will like, comment or share…interesting, which is perhaps why FB show it to fewer people? Speculation, of course.

So, basically, in order to increase your engagement organically (so more people will see, like, click, share, etc. your wonderful content), you want a combination of posts through the day!

There is of course another option, but that’s where you’ll need your chequebook. See below.

4. What’s the best way to share your content?

Well, there’s the million-dollar question! It’s really hard to say, if I’m honest.

I’ve experimented over the past few weeks only sharing my content as a link (and not including a photo) and that seems to be working OK. But other people swear by adding a photo to catch more attention, and if the stats above were correct, then I would be inclined to agree. However, clicking a photo does not necessarily equate to clicking the link as well!

To be honest, I don’t think that bit matters so much. This is what I think does matter:

1. Think about the way you word it…

You want to make it intriguing so people want to click the link. It’s hit and miss, experiment is all I can say!

I also always ask a question first. This is to encourage people to comment/like, and therefore help to increase the reach of each link. It can be demoralising at first asking questions and getting no response, but stick with it. One day someone will!

2. Don’t share the same link more than once in a week…

The reach of the second one will be pitiful. The only time I do this is if the reach for the first time I shared it was pitiful; I’ll reword the whole thing and try it from a different angle to see if that strikes a better chord!

3. Be consistent…

I said it above, but seriously, I’ve noticed such an improvement in traffic to my site since I’ve committed to this plan for consistently sharing good content (not just my own!)

4. Promote it…

If it’s really important or you think people will really like your post, promote that baby.

I paid £3 last week to promote Beth’s post on How to get a Hair Plan because I thought it was great and thought my audience would really like to see it. In total the post reached 2.1K people, 100 clicked through to my site and I got a few extra page likes to boot. Not bad by my reckoning!

5. How do you increase your Facebook Page likes?

I have just over 3,400 likes at the moment. On a good week I will get 20 more (minus a few unlikes!). At that rate, it’s going to take forever to get to 30,000 or better yet 300,000! So, these are the two ways I have grown my likes quickly.

1. Give-aways

A year ago I did a little ‘like and share’ competition to give away some dummies. Overnight my page likes doubled from 300 to over 700. What the what?! People like the chance to win stuff and the smaller the better, for some reason. I did more give-aways over that month, which took my page upto about 1000 likes. The whole thing took a lot of time but only cost about £20 for postage.

2. Promoting my Page

In July 2014 I had 1,300 likes and by August 12th I had over 3000. This cost about 6p a like and took up none of my time. {The reason I even tried this was thanks to an amazing article by Fawn Weaver, which totally changed my FB life}

You have to work to your strengths. I started to earn money through my blog, so I put the money back into growing the community and my traffic, and I much preferred the promotion route as it didn’t take much time to sort out and it’s incredibly effective. If you don’t have the money to promote, use your other resource, time, and approach some companies to ask if they’d like to do a give away with you.

I don’t actually like to grow the community too quickly as I notice a difference in the dynamic of the page, but there isn’t a £1 a day promotional option on facebook so it’s either quickly or not at all! If you want to make blogging your career, you will need a decent following on at least 3 social media sites.

Facebook Conclusion

So, those are my insights from a year of trying to get somewhere with Facebook! Here’s a recap:

  1. Be consistent: post a regular number of times a day and space them out depending upon when your audience is online (I share 4-6 times throughout a day, from 7am to 8:30pm, but experiment so you can find out what’s best for you)
  2. Don’t over share your content: aim for a 3:1 ratio.
  3. Mix up your content: some links, some photos, some status updates
  4. Think about the wording: you want intrigue and high drama so people will click and comment!
  5. Increase your likes: by running give-aways or promoting your page!

What am I missing? What do you find is really working to increase your facebook enagement and traffic to your blog?

If you’ve got any suggestions or questions about any of this, I’d love to hear from you in the comments below!

Or alternatively, come and join the conversation on the Mums’ Days Facebook Wall!

Brilliant blog posts on HonestMum.com