In our latest webinar, “The Battle for Facebook Engagement” our panel of experts talked about everything from exposure and engagement to understanding how to measure success effectively. At the end, we opened up our Q&A and took questions from our live audience. These were some of your top Facebook engagement questions – answered here in black and white!

What exactly is “boosting” a post? I clicked on this once and spent $10 to “boost” a post on our company’s Facebook page and have no clue what it even did!

We get a lot of questions about the difference between ads and boosted posts, where they each show up and what kind of results they can drive.

Facebook Ads are what you see on the right-hand side rail of Facebook—they do not appear in users’ news feeds. These ads only stay visible as long as you pay to promote them. After the promotion ends they will disappear from Facebook.

Boosted posts are just posts that you have paid to promote, or “boost.” These start out as normal, organic posts on your newsfeed. (Did you know on average on 2.6% of your followers will see your organic posts!) When some promotional spend is applied (the “boost”), they will be boosted so that they show up in more news feeds (based on a target audience you identify). Even after the paid promotion has stopped, these posts still remain on your newsfeed as organic content, just without the extra exposure from the paid boost.

Organic posts, boosted posts and Facebook Ads all work best when they are running together. Boosted posts and ads will increase “reach,” which means that more people are more likely to see those posts. The greater reach you achieve, the greater the possibility there is of more engagement too. Since those posts link back to your Facebook page, you may have more people heading to your page and viewing your content. When those new visitors get there, it is important to have a consistent track record of organic content for them to peruse. A history of great organic content is what gives your business credibility and often what leads to the page like and follow – make sure what’s there will have them wanting more!

With Facebook’s new algorithm updates, can I still run contests and special promotions on my Facebook page without getting in trouble?

In our webinar, we talked a lot about “engagement bait,” and it’s an important enough concept to have landed itself in our “Facebook Dos & Don’ts” download (you can still download them for free by accessing the webinar). Deals, contests and other promotions can easily start to look like engagement bait – the kind that will get your post flagged and taken down by Facebook. But that doesn’t mean you can’t still run a fun promotion!

Running a contest or promotion is a great idea, as long as it offers real value to your audience – and you’re careful about what you ask from them in return. It’s when you start saying things like “comment to be entered in the contest,” “like this post to get the offer,” or “follow our page to unlock the deal” – that’s where you get into trouble.

When you put on a contest, make sure it’s one that gives customers something or that helps bring them to your business, but don’t put a stipulation on it. Asking someone to do something on Facebook in order to be entered into a contest or receive an offer just isn’t going to fly.

A great example of how to do this is how we at Vivial market our webinars. During the month leading up to the live broadcast we post and boost different kinds of organic content and ads that showcase the webinar content as well as the special offer that we have in store for our attendees. Anyone who registers for our webinars has access to the presentation, the live Q&A with our experts, our offer and free downloads.

We do ask for those who are interested in all of that to fill out a registration form, but on Facebook, all they need to do is click the link in any of the posts. What we don’t say is that you must like this or you must share this in order to access the webinar. We provide something we think is of value to our customers and we use Facebook to get the word out!

When talking about “posting regularly” and posting high-quality content that is relevant, HOW often should I post?

There is no definitive rule to posting cadence, that will depend on each different business, what kind of content you have and the relationship you have with your audience. There are general guidelines though that every business should be keeping in mind.

You don’t want to be posting mindlessly but you do want to make sure you get your engaging content posted. How do you know what content is engaging? This may take a little trial and error over time. Pay attention to what kinds of posts see regular comments, shares and interactions and be sure to be mixing in these posts with your other content.

It is important to remember that there is such a thing as “too much of a good thing”. Posting too much of the same content, even if it garners good engagement isn’t a strategy that we recommend. This can go wrong in a few different ways, the first being that the content may fatigue as your followers grow weary of seeing it over and over again. Even if your engagement does remain high, you may find your business pigeon holed into a very narrow view as your followers forget about the other things your business does.

Using Facebook metrics to determine what types of content are resonating with your followers is just one part of getting your posting cadence right – timing is just as important. You don’t want to be posting every hour on the hour(that may not even be appropriate for Twitter!) That kind of hyper-frequent posting on Facebook could feel like spam to your followers.

Once you know what to post, it’s important to do so consistently. Businesses that have steady and reliable streams of new content have a great potential for developing trust with their audience.

If you’re still looking for some more guidance on how often to post, consider how often Vivial’s Social Media team posts for each of our clients. On a regular basis we will craft a handful of posts, around 4-6 each week for each client. You’re not limited to that, especially if you have a special event or promotion to get the word out about. But we recommend at the bare minimum, posting once per week.

For more information about what Vivial can do for your business on Facebook and other platforms, check out our social media solutions!