Facebook was founded in 2004 and since its conception, it has grown to be a major player in social media marketing and our social culture and a great way for businesses to start up. As of June 2018, Facebook has 1.47 billion daily active users.
The world bank says there are just over 17.5 billion people on this planet, which means that over 17% of the world’s population logs into Facebook every day!
This is an enormous amount of people. These people could be looking at your business, but Facebook does not make it easy for you to get your content to those viewers. Facebook was originally intended for you to socialise with your friends and family, that’s why its called “social media”. It doesn’t want your business plastered all over the place, interfering with what people normally use Facebook for, and I can respect that.
It wasn’t always like this, a few years ago, almost all your posts and content was seen by your fans, friends, and family. Until recently Facebook decided to introduce an algorithm or “set of rules” that sorts out everything. It organises the way Business posts are displayed as well as what posts your friends and family create. This way you won’t get neverending advertisements in your news feed, otherwise, it would defeat the purpose of Facebook.
People now go to Facebook to share and connect with there friends and family, purchase products or services and market their business, whether it be big or small.
As stated above, Facebook remains the most popular and most widely used social media sharing platform on the internet, but to take advantage of its business marketing potential, you have to discover ways of making it work for your brand.
The first step is to understand how Facebook’s algorithm works. Much like Google, Facebook filters your newsfeed with the most relevant content it thinks you are most likely to be interested in, it’s based on a number of factors or rules, this gives you a great user experience and that’s one of the reasons Facebook is so popular.
TechCrunch reports what Facebook likes and doesn’t like. Also, there are over 100000 factors that contribute to the way your newsfeed displays posts.
This is what the algorithm looks like:
In other words, the algorithm is simplified like this: your content will be shown to users based on who you are, what you post, the type of content you post, and how new the post is.
Adam Mosseri, the VP of News Feed at Facebook, one of the most vital factors of the News Feed algorithm is who you follow, saying:
So how do you get more likes for your Facebook page?
You could buy fans using Facebook advertising which promotes your page, but not all those likes will be your dream target audience or essentially you don’t have hundreds of dollars to spend on those Facebook marketing campaigns.
Why would you spend that money when you can get Facebook likes for free.
This is what I’m going to discuss, how to get Facebook fans without buying them. It can be done and Im going to guide you step by step on how to achieve it.
Fill out your Facebook business page completely.
This step is one that is a must to do on this list. A lot of people fail to do this. If you just fill out the basics you are missing out on a lot of valuable Facebook leads and areas.
You can add a lot of information to your Facebook page, including your website, Twitter handle, email, phone number, videos, photos, jobs, and much more.
Use this space to fill out as many details as you possibly can. In the description and about sections add keywords that have something to do with your service or business. For eg, if you own a mechanics business include keywords or keyword phrases such as “Mechanic in Brisbane” or “motorcycle mechanic in Brisbane”. Make the sections make sense but try to add these keywords or a combination of them a few times. Think of keywords as search terms you would use to find your business on Facebook search or Google. Click here for a great keyword generator.
Try to make the username as people-friendly as possible by creating one that best describes your business.
Create a catchy Facebook banner and logo by using Canva, it’s a great free online graphic design tool and also Canva for Facebook gives you the option of creating Facebook banners that fit perfectly. Use an iconic brandable design, something simple yet attractive and it will make you easily recognisable.
Also, add a few posts to your Facebook page to get started if this is a newly created account.
Ask your friends and family to like your Facebook page
- Ask your online friends as well as offline friends to like your page.
- Click on the three dots underneath your Facebook banner then choose “Invite Freinds”
- Ask people from your other social media accounts such as LinkedIn and Twitter to like your page.
- Add a Facebook like button on your website or a Facebook feed.
- Add a sign with your Facebook search name or URL on your business’s physical location.
- Add your Facebook name or URL to your business cards, letterheads, and print media.
People won’t like your page if they don’t know it’s there.
Share content that your audience likes.
The previous way to get likes I have mentioned are the easy ways to get likes for your Facebook page if you followed them you should have gained at least a few dozen.
They were the obvious ways to get likes, but they are often overlooked surprisingly.
The best way to get likes for your Facebook page is to create posts that your users will like, and will want to engage with, creating attractive images for your posts is also great and Canva the online tool I mentioned earlier also allows you to create perfectly-sized images for posts.
There are some basic rules for creating posts:
- Try not to add more than 10 words (unless there is a specific need to do so)
- Use emojis
- Try not to use more than 2 hashtags
- Avoid posting a lot of self-promotional content, make it a mix of self-promotional, already viral posts you have found, links to external blogs or sources, contests, questions, and answers, etc. The more people comment, like (especially “Love”, “Happy” or even “Angry”) and engage with your post, the more people will see the post on their timelines. Every time someone engages with your post, all their friends also see the post.
The above guide to creating posts is great for getting organic (not paid) likes and viewers and this is based on hours of research and experimentation. Facebook also has an algorithm for the organic reach of your posts as well as who views your posts, which I have previously talked about.
Use Facebook insights
Facebook Insights is a great tool to use to measure the success of your Facebook page, posts, fans interaction, viewers and much more. You can find the tool under “Insights at the top of your Facebook page.
Once you are on the Insights screen, have a look around if you haven’t already, on the “Overview” tab scroll down to the bottom where it says “Pages to watch”. This is the section we want to explore.
You’ll see a list of pages that Facebook thinks are similar to yours, or previously added pages by your page’s admin.
Click “Add Pages” to add up to five pages from your competitors. Once you do you can click on the page names and see a list of posts that are doing well on their pages. Now you can see what has worked for your competitors, you can leverage that information to create similar posts on your own page.
- Look at the most engaging posts for your top five competitors.
- Make a list of topics and key terms that their audiences are liking the most.
- Head over to Google and search for similar posts or articles, then post them on your Facebook page.
This is also a great way to find inspiration for posts you create on your blog or Facebook page.
To see when your users are online, click on the “Posts” tab in Insights. This will allow you to post when most of your fans are online.
Start conversations on your Facebook page
Facebook is a social media platform after all and its primary purpose is to connect with people through conversations. Have you ever gone to a Facebook page and all they do is post prices and specials, engagement is pretty low.
Tip: If the only content on your Facebook page is your own, the page won’t increase its outreach. User interaction with posts is the key to getting your page seen and increasing its organic reach.
Get people to comment, like, and share your posts. When someone comments on your post it shows up in their friend’s newsfeeds. You can do this by asking questions, running Facebook competitions. Read my article on Optimising your Facebook Business Page, it has professional tips on how to properly set up your Facebook business page for optimal performance. Read Hootsuite’s blog on how to increase user engagement.
If you run a shoe business then post things that people who love shoes like!
Don’t just post links to your website, start conversations.
How do you start conversations on Facebook?
Heres a few ideas to bring out the Facebook guru in you. Remember though the conversations need to fit in with your brand.
Design an image in Canva (once you have created an account click on the green “Create a design” button top left then click on the “More” button then scroll down and choose Facebook post) that asks a question, don’t just use text.
Share related content to your niche that makes the viewer’s life easier, helps them out, answeres a question, such as recipes, DIY etc.
Post already viral posts that you have found on other areas of Facebook. the chances are these will go viral on your page if you have enough fans.
Create a live question and answer session through live streaming or through a post.
Have interactive contests like this one from Fanatics.
Invite people who like your posts to like your page.
The previous few paragraphs were on how to create and find content that users will want to engage with. Content that engages people will increase your organic reach and increase the likes on your Facebook business page.
Whenever someone likes, comments, or engages with your post it shows up in their friend’s news feeds and those friends may interact with your post also.
Tip: Try to get people to “Love”, or even be “angry” when they interact with your post, like creating a post that will cause them to use these types of likes. Facebook considers these emotions to be stronger than just a simple like in its algorithm, and you’ll find that they bring in increased organic viewers.
Now, you can invite those people to like your page that hasn’t already liked your Facebook page. You know that they are already interested in your post, so chances are they will like your page as well.
There’s a little section just underneath your post image or text, click on it and you can invite those people to like your Facebook page.
The benefits of getting people to like this way are double.
Firstly it is the only way to get people who aren’t your friends on Facebook to like your page
Secondly, you are inviting viewers who are already interested in your Facebook page content that you share, so there is a chance they are interested in your business as well.
Facebook live streaming is a feature that Facebook has recently introduced. It allows you to create live videos from your phone, tablet, laptop, or computer to place on your page. people can like, share, and comment on your video.
Tip: Facebook has a preference for live video’s over any other form of content in its algorithm.
Since its conception, it has been a great tool for politicians, businesses, activists, famous people, and much more.
Straight from the Facebook newsroom:
What does this mean?
Facebook live video feeds get preference over other content in your fans’ newsfeeds. They are more than likely to see the live video than recorded videos, text, or image posts.
If your fans are more likely to see the live video then they are more likely to comment, like, and share your live video.
This engagement will mean that their friends will also likely see your video as well.
More people seeing your content will increase user interaction and likes of your page, particularly if you use the method I mentioned previously of clicking on the people who have liked your post then inviting them to like your page.
Want to know how to create a great live video?
Firstly, come up with an engaging idea for the video.
You could host a live question and answer session, much like Social Engine Journal does, you can see all their live videos by clicking on the “Events” up top(this is also something you can do).
You could talk about an event or create announcements for your business or niche. Much like the Brisbane Broncos did.
Kelsey Jones suggests asking industry experts to take over your live stream video for a period so people can get advice.
After you have picked a topic, its time to schedule it. This will let your viewers know when it going to be live and gives them enough time to prepare. You can do this online from Facebook business pages or fan pages, not your personal pages.
Heres how to do it:
- Click on “Publishing Tools” at the top of your Facebook business or fan page.
- Once you’re on the Publishing tools page select “Video Library” from the left-hand menu and then “Live”.
- Copy down your Stream key and server URL(if you need this info nearer to the time you are going to broadcast the live video they can also be found by editing the post in the video library.)
- Click on “Schedule” down the bottom and post an announcement of the live video.
- Finalise your broadcast.
- Make sure you have a plan for customer support and moderation of the live video.
More detailed instructions can be found on Facebook Business: Media & Publisher Help
A good example of this is Google Webmaster Hangout
Get a colleague or an assistant to hang out in the comments section to answer questions, relay questions or add helpful links.
Live video is a simple way to get more interaction with your business and utilize a not yet popular means of marketing your business.
A carefully crafted fan base on your Facebook page can be used to gather leads and customers, increase your business’s reach, increase visitors to your website and much more.
I’ve spent a lot on Facebook advertising, and yes I have increased my brand’s awareness, but to get quality, targeted leads that are genuinely interested in your business products or services, I would suggest using these methods. It takes time, and some effort, but when you’ve earnt their trust and gathered thousands of loyal fans, all that hard work pays off, and you feel like your business is truly worth something.
This doesn’t work for everyone, but try it and see what happens. It may be the spark you are after.
What non-paying strategies have you used to get likes for Facebook?. Id love to hear what you have to say, comment in the section below.
Timothy Allsworth is an experienced specialist web designer, content marketer, and search engine optimization ( SEO, SEM ) expert here at Custom Web Creations Web Design Brisbane. He has over 7 years of real-world experience in the field and loves helping people and their businesses to succeed in an online world through his tried and proven techniques. He has numerous university-level qualifications in Australia. Advanced web programming, database engineering, SEO and SEM specialisations, Google marketing, business marketing are some of his qualifications. He envisions a web design business that prefers quality over quantity and gives the client the best end digital product their money can buy at affordable prices.