Tech evangelist Robert Scoble, best known for his blog Scobleizer, posted a lengthy roundup of Facebook dos and don'ts yesterday that is well worth the read for social-media marketers.
Check out Scoble's 22 tips for better posting results:
1. Share three posts from someone else about stuff you are interested in. If it's your friend's kids, you'll see more kid photos. If it's tech/entrepreneurialism, you'll see more of that.
2. Write five original posts about the same topic. You'll see even more of that same topic on your feed. I remember when I wrote about the Napa earthquake. My feed, within 30 seconds, became nothing but earthquake news. Most of the time I write about tech news and post videos with entrepreneurs, so most of my feed is exactly that.
3. Turn off as much privacy as you are comfortable with. Especially let people follow you, instead of friend you. Then post some things to public. You'll find your posts start getting an audience you never knew existed. Most of you are way too private. By the way, you can still post to just your family even after you turn on following. Each post has its own privacy.
4. Make sure your bio is up to date and public. Most people don't make it easy to find them. You'll find co-workers and friends start finding you.
5. Put everyone in either "close friends" or "acquaintance" lists. That makes your feed dramatically better. (I've done this on dozens of people's accounts, and it always works.)
6. Unfriend people who do not post to Facebook or engage with anyone else. You'll find your posts start getting reach they never did before. Why? Facebook only releases your posts to a few people at first and watches what they do with it. If you have friends who never like, never share, never comment and never post their own things, they hurt you.
7. Make sure you like, comment and share other people's items. That teaches Facebook what kinds of things you like to see in your feed.
8. Hide things you don't want to see more of. For instance, I hide almost all selfies, things with quotes, things with memes, things that make me stupider. Funny, now Facebook is showing me far fewer of those things. (Each post has a "I don't want to see this" item in the drop down on the right side of each post, which is how you hide things from your feed. I use that every day on many posts, and Facebook continues to get better because of that.)
9. Unfollow people who are too noisy, even your real-life friends and family. If you put them in lists—you did follow No. 5 above, right?—you can still see all their things by clicking on the list. But your main feed will get dramatically better.
10. Check your event page at least once a month. Make sure you decline things you aren't going to and accept things that you will. That makes those events go viral and helps everyone's calendar out.
11. Check all of your Facebook settings once per month, and make sure they stay the same (really important on mobile apps). I find if I delete the app and then reinstall it, all my settings go back to default. Understand each setting.
12. Turn on all security features like two-factor authentication. People who do that generally don't get hacked. Don't care? You will when you get hacked. Do the same for your email and other social services too.
13. Make sure you have at least 10 public posts if you are trying to make friends. Make sure those posts say something about you and your passions. If they are only selfies, don't be shocked when people don't accept your friend requests. (I won't accept anyone as a friend if they don't post at least some geeky/business items to public.)
14. Don't let people post to your profile without your approval. I find that people who do that usually have crappy content, and it almost always is a flag.
15. Make at least 400 friends. People with fewer than that number of friends almost always are crappy at Facebook.
16. If you are going to friend someone with 5,000 friends, you must have at least 50 common friends first. Why? They can't add more friends and use this as a sort of social proof to make sure you aren't a jerk (jerks generally don't keep that many friends). If you are going to friend a normal person, then you better remind them how you know them. And it helps to have at least five common friends first, so they know that you aren't just a spammer.
17. Most content does not get to you. If you want to see more from specific people, visit their profiles at least once a week and engage on their content. Or, even better, put them in a list and visit that list. Lists show all. Your main feed only shows you the most popular stuff from them (and that's not really true: Facebook's algorithms look at a variety of things to figure out what to show you). In general, you are only seeing one out of 10 of my posts, if that. So you've got to visit my profile more often to make sure you get it all.
18. On mobile, make sure Facebook's app can know where you are. That not only makes features like Nearby Friends possible but also makes your feed have a few items from your location.
19. Mostly post using Facebook's native tools/apps/website. Those who repost Twitter into here tend to be crappy at Facebook and engagement. Same with those who mostly use Buffer or other tools like Hootsuite.
20. Engage in your own comments as well as those of others. For people like me, I look for signs you will engage and not just post. Plus, it helps you learn from others and encourages them to comment, which helps get your posts more reach too.
21. You can reorganize the stuff on the left. I show how I do it in comments, but on the Web version of Facebook, you can click little icons next to each item and reorganize them. I put lists up top so I can get to those fast.
22. Treat Facebook like a meal. You wouldn't just serve me pasta with no sauce, right? So, if you only have a feed with your kids' photos, that is like pasta with no sauce. You do have interests other than your kids, right? Same for those who post only selfies. You only interested in yourself? Or those who post only animals. You only interested in animals? Or, those who only post memes. Really? That's what you want to be known for? OK, but I don't need to stay your friend, either. Make sure you make your friends smarter, and show that you have a diverse set of interests.