Getting Organic Reach on Social Media is Challenging But Achievable
The simplest definition of organic reach is “How many people can you reach for free on a social media platform?” These days, it’s not so easy to reach your target without using paid ads, and one reason it’s so difficult is that major social media players have changed or adjusted their algorithms during the past few years.
But while becoming aware of the algorithm playbook rules can help guide your social media strategy, a little knowledge about demographic targeting, content strategy, engagement, timing, and promotion can go a long way toward boosting reach in a natural and no-cost way.
5 Ways to Increase Your Organic Reach on Social Media
1. Know Your Target, Then Choose Your Platform Accordingly
If you want to figure out which social media platforms are best for your product or service, you’ll need to know which platforms your target customer tends to visit. For example, a younger customer base is more likely to use TikTok, Snapchat, or Instagram, but LinkedIn is better for a business customer.
Once you decide which platforms you plan to use, take advantage of all the tools available on that platform to better zero in on your target customer (like filters, hashtags, live feeds). Next, be aware of how each platform uses algorithms. Hootsuite has provided handy guides to the algorithms for these four social media networks:
2. Prepare a Content Strategy
Take demographics a step further and dig in to find out about your target customers’ interests in a way that relates to the product or service you’re selling. Many of the social media platforms offer analytical tools that provide insights about their users, and you can also discover which types of content are valuable by studying your competitors.
If it makes sense for your product or service, consider using video content. Videos can engage viewers for a longer period than other types of content, and they’re typically easy to digest.
Schedule your content so that you’re posting regularly. Your goal is to establish and maintain a presence and to build community, goodwill, and loyalty. Plan to provide value to the readers – whether it’s ways to solve problems by using your product, helpful tips, or even funny, entertaining stories about your industry or your company.
Many experts say it’s important to post content that doesn’t expire – otherwise known as evergreen content. Because your goal is to get people to share what you post, you’ll want your information to remain relevant even if it gets shared months after your original postdate.
3. Find Ways to Connect and Engage
Of course, you’d like your readers to feel connected with your brand and interact with your business page. That can-do wonders for building loyalty. But engagement is also a factor used in Facebook’s algorithm. When people like, comment, or share, that counts towards engagement and will help to increase your rankings.
So, what are some ways to connect and engage? You can ask your readers to provide feedback on your product or invite them to share their own experiences. Customers appreciate when a company takes the time to listen to their concerns, and even if they write to talk about a negative experience, a skilled social media moderator can help to re-establish goodwill. Besides working to boost your engagement rankings, asking your customers for feedback is a great way to learn more about them and who you can better serve them in the future.
4. Post at the Right Times
It’s not only post frequency that matters but also when those posts show up on a user’s timeline. Social media users like new content, so they’re more likely to read your content if it looks like it was freshly posted. Luckily, we now have some insight as to when are the best times to post.
According to data from the social marketing analytical tool, Unmetrical, here are the best times to post on social media:
- Between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. EST on Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday for B2B brands.
- 12 p.m. EST on Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday are the best times to post for B2C brands.
- 7:45 a.m., 10:45 a.m., 12:45 p.m., and 5:45 p.m. EST.
- For B2B brands, the best day is Wednesday (followed by Tuesday).
- For B2C brands, the best days are Monday and Wednesday.
- For B2B, between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. EST on Monday or Thursday (11 a.m. – 1 p.m is best).
- For B2C, 12 p.m. or 1 p.m. EST from Monday to Wednesday is best.
- 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. EST, Monday to Friday.
5. Promote Your Social Media Pages
Shout from the figurative rooftops that you have social media pages and that you want people to follow or like them. Post follow buttons on your website, include buttons or links on your emails, include the social icons on your business cards, and even post about it in your place of business. The more you encourage people to visit your pages, the greater the opportunity to expand your organic reach.
When Face-to-Face Interaction is Limited, You Can Still Engage with Your Customers Online
Just because you’re not able to gather with your customers these days, it doesn’t mean you can’t interact with them. Let your customers know you’re still ready to serve them and use social media to build loyalty and goodwill.