March 9, 2017
Although businesses and advertisers use Facebook’s platform, Facebook is still, above all, a social networking site for friends and family. Facebook, fueled by the desire to keep its users loyal to it’s platform, constantly improves news feed by conducting surveys through the News Feed Quality Program. In a few of its surveys, Facebook found the five types of content users hate seeing on their feeds.
1. Promotional Posts
You don’t need to conduct a survey to know that people hate advertisements on social media. (Look at the rise of adblockers). If you want to publish promotional posts on Facebook, post in moderation. Otherwise, your followers will lose interest in your page overtime. Rather than publishing only promotional posts, include posts that are beneficial to your followers. For example, if you’re in the fashion industry, post lookbooks, outfit of the days (OOTD), or style guides. If you’re in the B2B industry, post informative content such as ebooks or infographics. Post valuable content, and your followers will scramble for more.
2. Frequently Circulated Posts
Because of numerous complaints from users, Facebook de-emphasized accounts and pages that frequently reposted the same content. If you incessantly post the same image, video, or article, your reach will plummet, and your page will rank low on news feed.
Granted, reposts are a necessary part of your social media campaign. The fight for the top spot on news feed is highly competitive, especially for business pages. Typically, only as few as 24% of page posts appear on people’s news feed. This means only one page post can appear on someone’s news feed per session. Although reposts are a great solution to this dilemma, spamming your page and your followers’ feeds with the same post is unprofessional and desperate. Eventually your followers will grow tired of your repetitiveness and unfollow you. If you want to repost content, do so sparingly. (One repost every few months will do.)
With the use of deceptive and inaccurate language, spam posts trick users into clicking a link that directs them to a website containing ads or a combination of frequently circulated content. For instance, spam posts will claim to link to a photo album, only to take the viewer to a website filled with ads. If you post spam, your followers can flag your post as spam, hide your post, or, worse, unfollow you.
4. Likebait Posts
You’ve likely seen this one before. Scrolling down your news feed, you run into an image of a smiling grandmother captioned “Like this image if you love your grandma. Ignore this if you hate your grandma.” Posts that encourage people to take a desired action, whether it be to like, comment, or share, are called likebait posts—and Facebook hates them. Facebook found that, on average, people find likebait posts to be 15% less relevant than other stories with comparable numbers of likes, comments, and shares.
Think of people who post likebait posts as cheaters: they didn’t earn the engagement they got by posting relevant, valuable content that resonated with their followers. Instead, they commanded people to engage with their post.
5. Clickbait Articles
Clickbait articles contain sensationalist and misleading headlines that encourage people to click to read more. Because of clickbait’s misleading headlines, readers are often disappointed with the content they see.
It’s tempting to post clickbait articles because they often get you the clicks you covet. However, acquiring clicks in a deceptive manner will decrease your credibility. If you want to attract people to your post, write honest and accurate headlines that summarize your article’s topic.
If you think Facebook won’t detect your clickbait posts on news feed, think again. It determines whether or not an article is clickbait by looking at the amount of time people spend reading an article away from its platform. If people click on an article and spent a few minutes reading it, it’s not clickbait. If people click on an article and immediately return to Facebook, it’s clickbait. Facebook also checks whether or not the clicks ratio is significantly higher than the engagement ratio.
Everyone wants to get great engagement and click-throughs, but deceiving readers with clickbait, likebait, and spammy, promotional, and frequently circulated posts are not the way to go. In fact, these type of posts will lower your reach and cheapen your brand. Rather, post trustworthy, interesting, relevant, timely, and shareable content. These are the posts people love.
Do you post any of the five posts Facebook hates? Comment your answers below or share this link to friends.