We’re all familiar with the dangers of wasting time on your personal Facebook page, but you might not realize all the ways your business is also wasting time on the network.
To avoid any potential hurdles to your Facebook productivity, we’ve come up with a list of ways you could be mismanaging important social media minutes.
Continue reading to find out:
- The dangers of republishing without reformatting
- Why failing to test your ads is a costly mistake
- How to save time in the future by spending more time now
9 ways your business is wasting time on Facebook
1. Creating overly promotional content
You’ve probably heard this advice before, but it’s worth repeating. Content creation is time-consuming, and you don’t want those hours of hard work to go to waste. If you’ve been wondering about the reason for that drastic dip in your business’s organic reach, you probably haven’t heard our calls to halt the creation of overly promotional content.
Facebook has been encouraging content creators to replace the straight-up promo material with stories that add value or provide more history for your business’s products and services. Facebook’s algorithm favors posts that aren’t overly promotional Helpful and shareable content has a higher likelihood of being seen by bigger audience
2. Republishing content on Facebook without reformatting
Here’s a thought process that might sound familiar: Instagram runs on beautiful images. Images increase engagement on Facebook. Instagram is part of Facebook. So I should repost all my Instagram photos automatically on my Facebook Page, right?
Even if it may seem like a time-saving technique to automatically post the same update to multiple networks, it might cost you reach on both networks. For starters, your brand’s Instagram profile and Facebook Page may be serving different purposes, so content from one may not fit the overall tone of messaging on the other.
Your audiences on different networks may also be drastically different, so what resonates with your Instagram followers may not quite jive with your Facebook fans. If you want to reuse a photo, make sure to provide enough context so that it is actually of value to your audience.
Finally, these posts just don’t look great a lot of the time. When you automatically share a post to Facebook from your Instagram account, your caption and hashtags go along with it. If you’ve tagged anybody by their Instagram handle, this will look odd in a Facebook post as Instagram usernames are not the same as they are on Facebook. If you’ve used a ton of hashtags, these will also look strange on Facebook.
3. Getting in comment wars
As of April 2017, Facebook Messenger has 1.2 billion monthly active users worldwide. With so many Messenger users, there’s a good chance you can engage with any disgruntled customer here instead of the comment section under a post. If a disgruntled customer comments on your Facebook post, reply quickly and reach out to them via Messenger.
It might go without saying, but it’s also a good idea to stay away from any negative Facebook comment threads from competitor brands. It’s important to be aware of these conversations, but participating in them isn’t necessary—especially if none of the negative claims are substantiated. You risk doing more damage to your online reputation if you do get involved in a comment war with your competition—especially if this is done at the expense of your engagement with followers and fans.
4. Liking irresponsibly
Just like any other Facebook user, Facebook Page managers can like other people’s posts and Pages. In a similar fashion, businesses you’ve liked on Facebook show up in a Liked sidebar on your Page, so you must exercise caution when pressing the ‘Like’ button. You don’t want visitors to your Page to see brands you wouldn’t necessarily endorse as a business.
Select a few partners or clients to like, and let your Liked sidebar highlight your professional relationships. Plus, liking a Page authorizes new updates to appear on your News Feed, and you don’t want to create distraction by liking Pages that will share irrelevant content.
5. Not taking advantage of Automated Rules
Constantly monitoring and optimizing your Facebook ads can be time-consuming. With automated rules, “you can create rules in Ads Manager that automatically update or notify you of changes to your campaigns, ad sets, or ads.”
Instead of constantly having to check and optimize your active campaigns, automated rules can do this for you. For example, you can create rules that:
- Turn off your ad when it doesn’t perform well
- Increase the budget of your ad when more people click on it
- Send a notification to your email address when the number of people who view your ad over a certain period of time decreases past a certain number
Automated rules can help you save time optimizing your ad, but it’s still important to keep tabs on the overall performance of your campaign to ensure success.
6. Skipping A/B tests for your Facebook ads
Facebook allows businesses to run split tests on ads to see which one performs better. This means sending out two slightly different versions of an ad to see which one receives more engagement.
Key areas to test include the:
- Call to action: Try out different ways of asking your audience to engage. For example, you could test whether “buy now” works better than “learn more.”
- Text: Test the length of your ad copy (number of characters), style (a question versus a statement), use of emoji, punctuation, and tone of voice.
- Visuals: Test different images and video, text-only posts versus those with images, a regular image versus a GIF, images of people or products versus graphs or infographics, and different video lengths.
- Format: Test different formats against each other, such as carousel ads, canvas ads, app install ads, video ads, lead ads, collection ads, slideshow ads, and regular photo ads.
- Hashtags: Find out whether hashtags are helping or hurting your conversion potential. Test out the use of multiple hashtags versus a single hashtag, which industry hashtags result in the best engagement, and hashtag placement within the messaging (at the end, the beginning, or the middle).
- Target audience: Test your ads against the different audience segments to see what works best for your business objectives.
Try out different variations with each ad you create, and note the winner of that category. Not only will this save you some time—you’ll also increase the ROI of your Facebook ads.
7. Taking too long to create a Facebook update
There’s nothing wrong with taking your time to create quality content for your audience. But busy social media managers often don’t have hours to spend creating a single update. If inspiration doesn’t strike, do some productive social media browsing to find ideas.
Another solution is asking your colleagues for advice. Run existing posts by knowledgeable coworkers to see what improvements can be made, and what suggestions they have for new content.
You can also take a look at posts that have performed well in the past to repurpose this content for a new post. Try looking for content that can be updated with new information, visuals, or a new angle.
If you’re still not satisfied with your Facebook post it might be a good day for some curated content. If you need help with this, the Right Relevance app (available through the Hootsuite App Directory) lets you easily search and share the most authoritative content currently trending on the social web.
8. Reposting videos from external sources
Social media analytics organization Quintly took a look at 6.2 million posts in 2016 and found Facebook native videos performed better than embedded content. Videos uploaded natively on Facebook saw an average of 110 percent more interactions, and 611 percent more shares.
Additionally, the autoplay feature within Facebook’s native video tool encourages your followers to spend more time engaging with the content. This registers with the network’s algorithm and helps your video get seen by your target audience.
9. Not completing your About section
Sometimes it’s best to invest more time upfront so you can save time later. If you don’t include all the necessary information about your company on your Facebook Page, you risk creating confusion among those who turn to that social account for details about your business.
If you want to avoid spending time answering the same questions, provide a detailed description on the About section of your Page. This includes a brief description of your brand mission, list of products and services you provide, link to your official website, and physical address (if your company has one). Think of this as a frequently asked questions (FAQ) section.
Another way you might be wasting time on Facebook? Page management. Hootsuite makes it easy to schedule posts, share video, and monitor conversations so you can spend time on what matters—connecting with your customers.