Sharing high-quality content on Facebook is one of the best ways to reach more prospects and increase awareness for your insurance agency. However, recent changes to Facebook’s news feed algorithm have made it more challenging to achieve organic reach. That often means companies with big social media marketing budgets now have a distinct advantage. They can simply pay to have their content exposed to a wider audience.
For those of us lacking the luxury of deep marketing pockets, the need to leverage organic reach is greater than ever. Fortunately, there are some strategies that can be used to make your free posts more effective. That means the ability to get your posts in front of more people without paying for it.
Facebook is fast becoming a pay-to-play arena, so the following tips could prove crucial for your insurance agency marketing.
Publish Compliant Evergreen Content
Just like Google, the Facebook algorithm relishes fresh content. That means the newest, freshest content stands a better chance of being shown at the top of people’s news feeds. But that doesn’t mean you must always publish timely content. Sometimes, timeless content will be more successful.
Timeless, or evergreen content, are posts that are not only relevant for a moment. They provide value to an audience for longer periods, and maybe even perpetually. Unlike news pieces that are mainly relevant today, evergreen pieces live on past the initial flurry of activity. New people discover the post and the likes and comments continually increase. That increase in engagement will lead to greater distribution within Facebook and longer exposure at the top of people’s news feeds.
Not sure what evergreen content looks like? Have a look at some great examples over at HubSpot.
Ride the Wave of Trending Topics
While evergreen content works well and can bring tremendous value to a wide audience, there is no denying the effectiveness of timely pieces that are related to a trending topic. People increasingly use Facebook as their primary news source. They expect a mixture of content that keeps them up-to-date with their topics of interest.
When something important happens in your industry, you can be sure that your competition is riding the wave of the trending topic. It is a quick way to gain some exposure and build a positive reputation for your agency’s brand. People may come to rely on you to deliver the latest news and information they crave.
The topic does not always have to be directly related to your industry. If you can find ways to align your brand with a popular story like, for example, something to do with a celebrity, you can gain tremendous benefit from a topic that is already drawing plenty of attention. Join the conversation with trending topics by posting useful links or commentary.
Target Your Posts
Rather than simply hitting publish and sending your posts into Facebook’s content void, you should take a few extra minutes to target your posts. Targeting posts helps ensure that the most relevant people see the posts. The effort is likely to yield more engagement, and your readers will perceive greater value from the content.
You can target posts to specific users based on location, gender, age, and a myriad of other criteria. Enable this feature by clicking “Settings” on your agency’s Facebook page, then “General” in the tab column. Find the row labeled “Audience Optimization for Posts” and click the checkbox to allow the use of the targeting feature.
Use Original Images
While text is still highly valued, consumers are increasingly receptive to visual media. That means things like video, infographics, and images. Facebook have even taken steps to reduce the distribution of text-only posts while at the same time increasing the distribution of others.
Ensure that your content is accompanied by high-quality images. But, you should use stock images with caution, particularly images that have dramatic or humorous text layered on top. Those types of posts have also received the reduced distribution treatment as Facebook attempts to promote more “high-quality” content.
Get Your Staff to Like, Comment, and Share Your Posts
The more engagement your posts receive, the more likely it is that Facebook will show it to people. If you post a piece of content and it doesn’t get any engagement, Facebook will likely bury it. On the other hand, if the first few people to view your post like, comment on, and share the content, it will get shown to more people.
Rather than leave that process to the hands of fate, why not get your staff involved. If your agency employs several members of staff, there is no need for your posts to lead a lonely existence. Get your staff to kick start the social process, which will give off all the right signals to Facebook. When other people see the content, you will no doubt attract more liking, sharing, and commenting.
Posts When Your Competitors are Asleep
Figuring out the best time to post on social media is one of the main challenges for agents. That is not to say there is a shortage of advice regarding this issue. For years, social media “experts” have been considering the elusive perfect time to post. Is it Monday to Thursday at 5 pm, or Tuesday to Saturday at 9 am?
In the end, it seems that every brand must find their own posting sweet spot through testing and monitoring. But perhaps you don’t have to post when everyone else is. If you have content that might appeal to early risers or those who stay up late at night, you could find yourself commanding a more captive audience.
The competition for attention is likely not as strong during the off-peak hours. That provides an opportunity for you to get your posts in front of more people. Test different times during off-peak hours, such as 6 pm to 8 am, to see if you can maximize visibility for your content.Increasing organic views of your Facebook content has numerous benefits including more website traffic, and broader brand exposure. It also means spending less marketing dollars, which can be critical to your agency success. Use these tips to ensure maximum reach for all Facebook posts.