Category: Social Media

SEO

How to Prevent Facebook Hacks

If you’re like most business owners, you’ve invested resources in creating a Facebook business page that engages your customers. You may have spent years growing your following and building trust.

What if something leaves your business page vulnerable to a Facebook hack?

Here is what you need to know to protect yourself—and your business—from a Facebook hack.

How Often Do Facebook Hacks Occur?

Unfortunately, Facebook hacks are quite common. According to the New York Post, as many as 160,000 Facebook accounts are compromised each day. Users tend to be more relaxed about security when using social sites like Facebook, leaving them vulnerable to hackers.

How does this affect your business page? Facebook allows users to access business accounts through their personal profiles. Every person with admin control over your Page is vulnerable to a Facebook hack that could leave your page open to hacking.

Hackers typically gain access to Facebook pages through phishing scams, email attachments with malware, data breaches that reveal passwords, or users’ carelessness (such as not logging out of Facebook or using easy to guess passwords.)

Large-scale data breaches may happen less frequently, but the scale can be staggering. For example, in a widely reported Facebook hack and data breach, hackers gained access to nearly 50 million exposed accounts.

What Do Hackers Do With Your Facebook Business Page?

You’ve likely put a lot of time and money into creating the best Facebook business page and growing your audience of loyal followers. Your audience is tempting to hackers, too.

Hackers who gain access to your page can post their own links, attracting your fans to click on spam links—leaving them vulnerable to Facebook hacking as well.

They might create and approve ads via your Ads Manager to promote malicious content, with high spending that could cost you thousands before you can take action.

They could also use the information stored in your Facebook account for identity theft or to access other online accounts, including hosting, banking, or other social accounts.

All of this can cost you time, money, and the trust of your audience. While you may stop malicious activity relatively quickly and even recoup some costs, you could lose access to your page for a time. The opportunity cost of not being able to market via this platform can have a significant impact on your business.

9 Strategies to Protect Yourself From a Facebook Hack

Many strategies to protect yourself from a Facebook hack are standard online security steps you should use on every online platform. If you haven’t paid much attention to online security, start with the basics, then explore security features in each platform or app.

Hint: If you’ve been using the same password for years across multiple platforms, you’re long overdue for an update.

1. Make the Most of Facebook’s Security Settings

A look at your Facebook settings will lead you to a detailed section called Security and Login. Review each section for tips and information on best practices to keep your account secure.

screenshot of facebook's security settings to prevent facebook hacks

Make sure to scan your computer for malware and viruses regularly. Antivirus software helps spot problems that might leave you open to Facebook hacks, such as keyloggers or redirect viruses.

Keep your software up to date; this ensures you are using the most secure versions of your browser and other apps, including any recent security updates or improvements.

Remember that your business page is only as secure as the people who have access to it. Protect your personal profile, and share security updates and best practices with your team.

2. Create a Strong Password

Passwords are the first line of defense in online security.

Your password should follow the guidelines on each site you use. This is likely a combination of upper and lower case letters, numbers, and symbols. Choose something unique to you, with a tricky combination of these characters to create a password others would find hard to guess.

Do not use the same password on every site. Instead, use different passwords for every online account. For example, you might use one for your secure financial accounts but a completely different password for your social accounts and other platforms that might be easily hacked.

In the case of a Facebook hack, you’ll at least be protected from the hackers using your Facebook password to access more secure accounts, like banking or retirement accounts.

Consider a password manager like LastPass or 1password so you don’t have to remember dozens of passwords. These platforms store all your passwords in one place so you only have to remember one password. They can also generate random passwords that are more secure.

Make sure you never enter your password anywhere except the Facebook app or at Facebook in your web browser.

If you’re using your internet browser, be careful entering the domain into your search bar. Hackers sometimes spoof domains close to the real Facebook domain to capture login information from users who aren’t paying attention.

3. Use Two-Factor Authentication

Two-factor authentication simply means if you ever log into your Facebook account from a new device, the platform will automatically ask you for your password and require an additional security check. This step usually includes entering a security code sent via text or email to a pre-approved address or number.

To set up two-factor authentication in Facebook, visit your Settings page, select Security and Login, and then edit the section labeled Two-Factor Authentication.

Facebook will prompt you to provide contact information to verify your identity when logging in. You’ll also get alerts if someone tries to access your account from an unfamiliar device.

4. Read Emails Facebook Sends Out

Facebook often sends out emails to verify suspicious or unusual activity. Make sure the email address on file is one you check regularly and read the emails you receive in case Facebook is trying to flag suspicious activity.

Staying on top of the risks, being familiar with common phishing attempts, and understanding the latest security recommendations from Facebook can go a long way toward keeping you safe online.

You can see a list of recent email messages sent by Facebook in your account settings under Security and Login, in the Advanced Section.

5. Have Multiple Admins for the Account

How else can you protect yourself from a Facebook hack? Give careful thought to the people you give admin access to for your business page.

It’s a good idea to have more than one admin for your page in case you ever lose access or are unable to log in. If your profile is hacked, another admin you trust can keep the page running and help you gain back your access.

However, that doesn’t mean more is better. Periodically checking to remove people who no longer need access to your page. If someone needs temporary access, grant it at the appropriate level, then remove it when their task or project is complete.

6. Use Proper Page Admin Levels

Facebook provides several page admin levels, which enables you to grant different access to different people. Be careful who you add, and only grant them access they need to complete assigned tasks.

Perhaps you need an employee to post to the page to carry out your Facebook marketing. Review the different levels and their permissions and only provide admins the level of access they need to do the job.

Giving every person you add as an admin the ability to remove and add other admins means they could potentially remove you—with little recourse to regain access. They could also add admins you don’t know and take over your page.

Only people you trust absolutely should have the ability to remove and add admins. This chart breaks down the permissions for each level:

How to report it if your facebook page is hacked

7. Report Any Unusual Activity to Facebook

Report any unusual activity to Facebook to keep your account secure. You can report messages, profiles, or posts right on Facebook to let them know you have concerns about something you see on the platform.

Reporting can allow you to use Facebook more safely and flag any suspicious behavior to Facebook.

If you are uncomfortable with behavior or messages from another user, simply block them to ensure they are removed from your friend’s list or page. This action will also prevent them from messaging you on the platform.

Facebook Hack - Report Any Unusual Activity

8. Log Out of Facebook After Using Shared Computers

Have you ever used a computer at work, the library, or a coworking space? You’ll need to exercise extra caution to log out when you’re done. This step is critical to remember when using accounts that contain personal information.

If you’re using Facebook from a computer you don’t own, always log out immediately afterward. You have no idea who may use the device after you, and staying logged in leaves your account wide open.

If you ever can’t remember if you logged out after using Facebook on a device you don’t own, change your password immediately so your security is never in question. You can also log out remotely from all devices in Security and Login Settings. Protecting access to your accounts can stop a Facebook hack from happening at all.

9. Don’t Accept Friend Requests From People You Don’t Know

Hackers often gain information they need to guess your password by adding you as a friend on Facebook. They may even add mutual friends, making them look like a safe person who is already in your network. Or they may directly impersonate someone you know.

If you don’t know someone, don’t accept their friend request. If the request seems suspicious or duplicated, reach out to your friend by text or email to let them know someone is using their likeness or identity online.

Allowing access to your personal profile can provide access to information like your birthday or high school. This information makes it easier to hack into your business account or impersonate you to gain access to other social accounts, your friends, or even your audience.

Conclusion

Preventing Facebook hacks on your business page requires more than posting engaging content and creating Facebook ads. There are real security risks you need to be aware of to protect your investment—and your customers. Luckily, a few simple steps can help protect you.

Stay up to date on the security features of each platform you use, and protect your personal Facebook profile as well as your business page. Take advantage of alerts, emails, and other notifications to help you act quickly should a Facebook hack occur.

These steps will reduce your risk so you can enjoy growing your audience and connecting with your customers without expensive and stressful setbacks. If this seems overwhelming, connect with us for help so you can focus on running your business.

What steps can you take today to prevent a Facebook hack on your Business Page?

The post How to Prevent Facebook Hacks appeared first on Neil Patel.

SEO

20 Secrets to Boost Your Facebook Organic Reach

Facebook organic reach is down. Way down.

In the past, posting a link on your Facebook or Instagram page could drive hundreds of clicks. Not any more.

Social media referrals have stagnated around 5 percent of all traffic for years.

The average Facebook post will reach just over 5 percent of your followers.

The encouraging news is social media reach is still massive.

There are more than 3.5 billion active social media users.

facebook organic reach guide number of active social media users world wide

But reaching that massive audience is harder than ever before.

What’s the answer? That’s exactly what we’ll cover in this article.  

Let’s get started.

What Exactly Is Organic Reach On Facebook

Organic reach is the number of people who see your content without paid distribution. It includes people who are shown your posts in their own feed or because their friends have interacted with you.

Paid reach is the people who see your content as a result of paid promotions. It is influenced by your Ad targeting options and can also impact organic reach.

But it’s not so simple.

Your content’s reach has a lot to do with engagment — that is how many people like, react, comment, or share your post.

Engagement rates are way up — but organic reach is way down.

And it is still on a rapid decline.

So why aren’t our posts being surfaced more often?

Let me explain.

Why Facebook Organic Reach Is Declining

There are two major reasons Facebook organic reach continues to drop:

  1. More content: More content is being published than there is news feed space for it to be shown. Every minute, more than 510,000 comments and 293,000 statuses are posted on Facebook.
  2. Personalized news feeds: Facebook provides the most relevant content to each user. To increase engagement and optimize user experience, content is tailored to each user’s individual interests.

Can businesses keep succeeding with this decline in organic reach? Absolutely.

You can still get tons of traffic from Facebook.

The network’s ad platform has cushioned the damage for those who’ve made the most of it. The advertiser count to date has surpassed 9 million.

Knowing this, should marketers really worry about organic reach?

Wouldn’t we be better off focusing on Facebook ads?

Yes and yes.

Here’s why.

Why You Need To Think About Declining Facebook Organic Reach

Organic reach is important for several reasons.

Reason 1: Nurture More Leads and Organic Conversions

Many people use social media solely for brand awareness.

That’s fine – but it leaves so much opportunity on the table to drive real results for your business.

Lead generation is one of the missed opportunities.

It also happens to be the linchpin of any successful marketing campaign.

You need to attract potential buyers and funnel them into your sales funnel. When you do this organically, it won’t cost you anything besides time and effort.

In turn, the price of converting these potential buyers into actual buyers will be less.

That’s because the results of an organic campaign tend to snowball. This means that when more people engage with your content, it adds context to your campaigns.

The more organic reach that you have, the better your lead generation and conversion funnels will work.

Reason 2: Reduce the Cost Per Click of Paid Campaigns

Yes, Facebook’s ad product is one of the most intuitive and impressive that we’ve ever seen.

And yes, the sophistication of the audience targeting options is every marketer’s dream.

AdExpresso analyzed over 100 million dollars of ad spend and determined the average ad cost for the whole of 2016.

Here’s what they found:

Screen Shot 2017 07 02 at 1.26.21 PM

As you can see, the average CPC for ads can be very low if you master the other variables.

But here’s the deal:

You can just as easily spend a fortune on Facebook ads and see no return.

This means that to increase the effectiveness of your ads and to stretch your advertising dollars, organic reach is critical.

Reason 3: There Are Tons of New (Under-Utilized) Facebook Features

In the past, your options on Facebook were pretty much posts, videos, and ads. Now there are tons of new features like Facebook Stories, Facebook Watch, Facebook Groups, and Facebook Live.

Many companies aren’t making the most of these features — which creates an opportunity to drive organic traffic by filling the gap.

With that said, let’s look at how Facebook’s news feed algorithm works to surface content.

Then, we’ll dive into some strategies to increase your page’s organic reach.

Understanding Facebook’s News Feed Algorithm

Facebook’s algorithm has changed drastically in recent years. The introduction of reactions and the “Why am I seeing this post” feature has changed how Facebook decides what posts to show users.

facebook organic reach facebook algo history

Facebook uses hundreds of thousands of factors to decide which posts show in a user’s News Feed.

Who you interact with, the type of media, and the popularity of the post are all used as ranking signals

According to Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook now prioritizes posts that spark “meaningful interactions” and posts from friends and family.

There are other detailed data points that come into play:

  • How recently the post was published.
  • How frequently the publisher posts content.
  • The number of likes, comments, and shares on the post.
  • How often the user has interacted with the page posting the update.
  • Past user interaction with the same post type.
  • Negative feedback on the post.
  • How useful the post is.

The list goes on but these factors give us enough food for thought.

What’s Facebook’s ultimate goal for News Feeds?

Like other platforms, Facebook cares the most about its users. It wants to continuously improve their experience with high-quality, relevant content.

Overly promotional content doesn’t fare well with users so Facebook cracked down on that type of content.

To top it off, Facebook is cutting traffic from publishers in favor of user-generated content.

So, how can you drive traffic from Facebook when these algorithmic changes are decreasing your reach?

Let’s take lessons from BuzzFeed.

They boast an impressive Alexa Rank of 147.

facebook organic reach example buzzfeed

Facebook alone drives about 37% of their traffic.

What is BuzzFeed doing right? Besides posting engaging content on Facebook, they’re spending millions of dollars on Facebook Ads.

Now, most people don’t have a ton of cash to spend like BuzzFeed.

So, we’ll take the smarter route that doesn’t require a heavy investment for a small business owner.

Before we look at the secrets to improve your organic reach, here are five things you must avoid doing at all costs on your Facebook page.

1. Don’t Automate Everything

It’s a social platform and your brand needs to have a human touch. Don’t just schedule your latest blog links and product updates. Post your team photos like Zappos.

Facebook organic reach in 2021

Social media marketing should show your funny or creative side like Nutella.

facebook organic reach example nutella

Or, share inspirational graphics like me.

facebook organic reach example neil patel

2. Don’t Just Promote Products and Services

Facebook is based on interest, not intent. Not every update you send out on your Facebook page should be promotional. Rather, 80% of your updates should be social. Otherwise, users won’t hesitate in clicking the unlike button on your page (it’s just a click away).

Instead, use Facebook to build a community. Add value and start conversations with your audience.

It’s best to vary your posts to include different types of content:

  • Brand story posts
  • Authority building posts
  • Lead nurture posts
  • Personal posts

3. Don’t Try to Cheat the Facebook Ecosystem

Buying 5,000 likes for $5. Using clickbait headlines. Bombarding your fans with 10 poor-quality updates in an hour.

facebook organic reach don'ts

It’s a sheer waste of time and money.

Facebook seriously cracks down on spammers. Stick with the Facebook code and stay in their good graces.

Not only that, these manipulative tactics add no real value to your business. In fact, they’re likely to hurt you.

AdExpresso conducted a paid like experiment where they posted an identical video on three of their fan pages. They then paid to boost each post.

The result?

The two pages where they bought likes saw zero engagement, even after Facebook had automatically deleted the likes that were paid for.

facebook organic reach don't buy likes example

4. Don’t Build a Fanbase You Can’t Sustain

The brutal truth about a large fanbase – no matter how targeted – is that your reach will automatically be lower.

facebook organic reach lower for large audiences

This means that you have to put in extra work to create content that is relevant and useful to several different segments of your audience.

Would you rather have a small but hyper-engaged audience or a large and unresponsive one?

It’s a no-brainer.

How To Track and Analyze Your Current Facebook Organic Reach

Now that you know what you shouldn’t do, it’s time to work on what you can do to improve your Facebook organic reach.

The first step is to pinpoint where your shortcomings are. We’ll be gathering some key metrics to measure your performance.

Without this diagnosis, you won’t know where to focus your efforts.

Let’s jump in.

Step 1: Export Insights Data from Facebook

First, click on the “Insights” tab on the left sidebar of your Facebook business page.

facebook organic reach view insights

At the top of the insights page, there’s a button that will allow you to export your data both on a page and post level.

facebook organic reach export data

A window will pop up with three different options for your insights:

Facebook organic reach export data options.

Select your option and click “Export Data.” Your data will be saved onto an excel file.

Step 2: Delve in Deeper to Post Metrics

In my experience, post level metrics are more insightful than page metrics.

Page metrics give a great panoramic view of your performance. Post metrics provide a more detailed look at how users interact with your content.

And that’s what really makes the difference.

To get a deeper view, go to “Posts” and then “Post Types.”

facebook organic reach post types

With the data you collect, you can tell:

  • Which posts have the highest organic reach
  • What types of posts that your audience prefer
  • Number of likes on each post

These will give you a good guideline for launching an effective content strategy.

Step 3:  Fine Tune Your Data and Select Only The Metrics You Need

Not all of the data points will be useful.

Sift through them and choose the ones that make sense for you — and that might vary based on your industry and social media goals.

Here’s the data that will tell you the most:

  • Organic reach
  • Engagement
  • Link clicks
  • Number of people who gave negative feedback

Now that you’ve analyzed your organic reach, it’s time to make some improvements.

20 Strategies to Boost Facebook Organic Reach

Remember that every industry and audience is different. I don’t recommend implementing all of these strategies right now. Instead, look at your data and see where you can make the most improvements, then pick a handful of strategies to try.

Keep what works, ditch what doesn’t, then try another strategy. Rinse and repeat.

1. Build Your Presence and Authority

I know what you’re thinking.

If organic reach decreases as the size of your audience increases, where is the value in growing your presence?

Well, there are still several benefits of having a large presence.

  • You get to add social context to your ads, which makes them cheaper and more effective.
  • You’ll have better posts and page insights to tailor your marketing efforts. This includes both demographic and psychographic data.
  • Your perceived influence will increase, which amps up your credibility factor.

Growing your presence is not about increasing your page likes. The number of likes your page has gives no indication of how your content will perform.

What matters is that you build enough authority to command your audience to action. This means that they will engage with your content more favorably.

Here’s what you can do to increase engagement:

Attract the Right Kind of People to Tour Facebook Page

Random fans are useless.

They don’t engage and they don’t have a positive influence on your marketing campaigns.

This is why I don’t recommend trying to grow your Facebook page at the expense of building a targeted audience.

You want people who are finely tuned to your business interests.

This way, the content you publish will be more relevant to them. In turn, it will have a greater chance of showing up in their newsfeeds.

What can you do to build a targeted audience?

Have a Strong Brand Presence

If your brand is watered down, chances are your audience will be too.

What you want is a brand image that sticks in the minds and hearts of your audience.

Constantly reinforce your message, post content that is relevant to your business, and always be consistent.

Use Audience Insights to Build a Target Persona Specifically for Facebook

Earlier, we walked through the tracking of your page and posts insights. This same information can be used to construct your persona.

Gender, age, background, location, and occupation are all black and white data points that you can collect.

You can then flesh it out with more substantive information like:

  • What are their pain points?
  • What are their interests?
  • What are their attitudes and beliefs towards you business or industry?
  • What are their objections and how will you address them?
Target That Demographic When you Boost or Promote Your Posts

You can create a custom audience modelled after your ideal persona. This way, when you boost or promote a post, you’re more likely to reach those people.

Later, I’ll walk you through the best practices for paid campaigns.

Make Sure Your Like Campaigns are Very Targeted

I’m all for more likes – but not if it’s only a vanity metric.

You want quality over quantity.

There a few ways you can attract the kind of people who care about your brand:

Apart from running like campaigns on your target audience, you can invite people who have liked your individual posts to like your page.

First, plug in your page in the search bar.

Facebook search bar how to increase organic reach

Select one of your posts and click on the group of people who’ve liked it.

Increase Facebook organic reach view posts

This is a goldmine for finding people who already have an affinity to your content.

Browse through to see how many people who’ve liked your posts but have not liked your page.

Invite people to like your page Facebook organic reach

Invite them to do so.

9 out of 10 times, they will.

Add Integrations and Customizations to Your Page

You can integrate your Facebook page with other apps, tools, and platforms. These can increase the usability of your page as well as amplify your marketing efforts.

Here are some of the customizations that you can include:

  • Custom tabs
  • Email capture forms
  • Podcasts
  • Video players
  • Quizzes
  • Polls
  • Landing pages
  • Apps to run contests
  • Appointment schedule apps
  • Blog and RSS feeds
  • Ecommerce tabs
Cross-Promote Other Social Media Platforms with Facebook

If you’ve built a sizable following elsewhere, you can use these platforms to grow your Facebook page.

Here’s what you can do:

  • Leave a link to your Facebook page in the bio of your other social accounts
  • Place clickable social icons on your cover photos
  • Broadcast to your other networks about your Facebook page and ask them to engage

2. Drive Facebook Organic Reach By Publishing Evergreen Content

Too many people aren’t strategic with their social media content.

Whatever your goals are for your Facebook page – be it to generate revenue or drive traffic – evergreen content is the most powerful tool at your disposal.

Freshness isn’t just Google’s ranking factor.

The life of a post in Facebook News Feed is also dependent on recency. If you publish timeless content, then it will be useful for your audience for longer periods. They’ll keep engaging with your post.

Be sure to let users know that they can revisit evergreen posts that they’ve liked and engaged with in the past.

This will lead to an increase in engagement and Facebook will ensure that your post gets distributed further and that it appears in feeds for longer periods.

I challenge you to boost post durability with evergreen content.

drive organic facebook organic reach with evergreen content example

The above evergreen post appeared 18 hours after being posted.

That’s an extremely long lifespan!

For posts that perform this well, you can repurpose them to ensure that you maximize their reach.

Here’s a simple process for repurposing evergreen content:

  • Select posts that have done exceedingly well and continued to provide value to your audience long after it was published. Take a note of them in a spreadsheet.
  • Approach that piece of content from a different angle. Put a new spin on it or change the context. Keep in mind that video content can outperform the same content in text form and vice versa. The key is to test what resonates best with your audience.
  • Publish your repurposed content at different times. This ensures that some fresh eyes get to see and engage with your newly revamped content.

But, what if you don’t want to do the legwork of creating and repurposing your own posts?

Curate Other People’s Evergreen Content

Content curation is not about taking someone else’s work as your own.

It’s about collecting posts from across the internet and sharing it with your network.

But it’s a little more than just stumbling across a post, liking it, and pressing the share button.

Instead, you should treat the curation process just like you would if you were publishing your own content. Spend some time reviewing and analyzing several posts on the same topic and share them with your audience on a consistent publishing schedule.

Prime example: Problogger consistently publishes a Reading Roundup of posts related to blogging.

curate evergreen content to increase Facebook Organic Reach

While they do this on their blog, you can adopt the same concept for your Facebook page.

Here are some examples of evergreen content using curation-type posts:

  • Video tutorials
  • Recipe posts
  • Testimonials
  • Interviews
  • “How To” posts
  • Q & A’s
  • Thought pieces
  • Lists
  • Checklists
  • Industry-specific stats
  • Weekly roundups
  • Company mentions
  • Industry news

How can you ensure that your audience engages with this content?

Ensure your posts have all the persuasive checks and balances.

Coming up with a content strategy is half the battle.

You still have to ensure that you create the types of posts that make your audience want to share and engage.

Some tips for creating posts that captivate and inspire action:

  • Use solid visuals
  • Don’t be too formal
  • Keep it short and snappy
  • Ask a pertinent question
  • Be human
  • Have a clear call to action (I would be careful with simply asking people to like or comment)

3. Create a Facebook Group for Your Most Engaged Audience Members

Facebook is about building communities. A tightly-knit group is the closest you can get to it on social media.

A whopping 400 billion people use Facebook groups.

You’ve got two community options:

  1. Start your own group.
  2. Join a highly engaged and relevant group that serves your business goals.

We’ll focus on number 1, as it is the best addition to your Facebook marketing arsenal.

You can use it to listen and engage with your brand advocates.

Before we get into the steps for building your group, let’s talk about the reasons you may want to start your own group.

Most people form groups around:

  • Their brand/business
  • Their products/services
  • A specific lifestyle e.g. a book club or a journalling club
  • Specific topics e.g. a content marketing group

Of course, these aren’t your only options. As long as you can rally a group of people for a common goal, you’re good to go.

I’ve found that the most valuable groups for business are those that are either brand-specific or product-specific.

Here’s why.

You can use a branded group to build and nurture a community around your business. It also makes for a powerful tool to market your products/services.

Similarly, a product-specific group is geared towards helping customers get the most out of a product or service that you offer.

It’s all about customer success, retention, and loyalty.

You can do live coaching sessions, live Q&A’s, personal implementation feedback sessions, and accountability systems in your groups, to ensure that customers receive the transformation that they paid for.

Let’s get into the steps for creating a group.

Step 1. Create and Name Your Group

Find the option that says “Create Group” to begin the process.

It’s easy to find from your homepage.

After you click on this tab, you’ll be prompted to name your group.

Use facebook groups to drive facebook organic reach

Step 2. Create a Description

Write down your value proposition in your group description and lay down clear rules for posting in the group.

facebook organic reach groups example

Pro Tip: Pin your rules post at the top of the group feed. It will guide new members to act appropriately.

Also, set up your group’s privacy settings properly.

facebook organic reach facebook group privacy settings

Step 3.  Invite Engaged Audience Members to Join

Depending on the type of group, you may have to incentivize people to join.

However, with most groups, the promise of community and support is enough to get them on board.

But in case you need some incentives, you can:

  • Have an actual launch for your group. Why not turn it into an event? You can set up an email capture form to get people on a notification list.
  • Offer a welcome gift to new members. It could be a coupon code, an ebook, or anything related to your business.
  • Offer a bonus referral gift to anyone who recruits other members.

Step 4. Ignite Conversations Relevant to Your Industry

Great conversations help boost post engagement. Don’t solely promote or sell your content and products.

Other ways to increase engagement in Facebook groups:

  • Consider giving active members of your groups admin/publisher status so they can help nurture the group.
  • Do live Q&A’s
  • Create challenges for group members

Step 5. Create a Content Strategy for Your Group

This can include creating content themes and inciting user-generated content campaigns. User-generated content actually drives 6.9x higher engagement than brand-generated content.

For example, you can set a designated topic or engagement theme for each day.

Melyssa Griffin’s group does this very well:

drive organic Facebook reach with groups example
drive organic Facebook reach with groups example

Step 6. Moderate Your Posts

Moderate all of the posts in the group and have a zero tolerance policy when it comes to spam.

You want your group members to have the best possible experience, so weed out the spammers quickly.

drive facebook organic reach by blocking spam in groups

This is a lot easier when you establish in your group rules what qualifies as spam.

facebook organic reach group rules

So, that’s it for setting up a group.

I want to warn you though: Groups require a time commitment. You’ve got to show up to welcome new members and encourage discussions.

Also, as groups grow, engagement decreases. At this point, you may want to consider segmenting larger groups into smaller, more focused ones.

Some people completely dismantle groups with tens of thousand of members because of poor engagement.

You don’t want that.

4. Use Organic Post Targeting

Targeting isn’t limited to Facebook Ads.

You can target your organic posts to make sure that they reach the right people.

While it’s been around for a while, the feature has gotten more useful with the decrease in organic reach of quality content. You can serve your post to relevant customers based on their age and location.

Your post has to at least target 20 people. You might get below this threshold if your page only has a few thousand fans.

Here are the steps to get started with targeting.

Step 1: Enable the Targeting Feature on your Page

Head to General settings to enable targeting from your page settings.

organic facebook reach enable targeting features

Step 2: Create Your Post and Customize Targeting Options

Dig into your Facebook Insights for data about your audience and choose targeting parameters based on your goals.

When you create your post, click the “Public” setting under your page name, and you’ll see the option to set a “restricted audience.”

facebook organic reach targeted audience.

Select “Restricted Audience”, then set the age and location you want to reach. This is especially useful for local businesses or those with multiple target audiences.

Step 3: Run Several Targeted Posts Using Different Parameters

This is so you can test how your content performs for different audiences.

Step 4: Check the Results

Hop on Facebook Insights and check your results. Did the organically targeted post perform better?

facebook organic reach targeting check results.

Compare these social media marketing results with your average engagment rate. Also, figure out the targeting parameter that’s performing better.

In social media examiner’s Experiment with Organic Targeting, a smaller page performed better than a larger page.

But, results will vary based on your audience.

5. Post When Your Competitors Are Asleep

When is the best time to post on Facebook? There’s no easy answer.

You need to consider:

  • Your location and that of your audience
  • Your audience profile (age, interests, occupation, etc)
  • The type of content that you create
  • The scheduling tools that you have at your disposal

CoSchedule reports that the optimal time is between 1-4 PM.

They even broke it down according to the each day of the week:

  • Saturday and Sunday at 12–1 PM
  • Thursday and Friday at 1–4 PM
  • Wednesday at 3 PM

For the most shares and clickthroughs, they’ve cited 1 PM, 3 PM, and 9 AM as the optimal times.

Here are a few more studies and optimal times for any media marketer or business owner to best time good content.

increase facebook organic reach the best times to post

Scratching your head already, aren’t you? Don’t blindly post at any of these optimal times.

Dig into your Facebook Insights. Find out when your fans are online.

optimize facebook reach what time to post

Then, conduct your own test.

Post in the off-peak hours (6 PM – 8 AM) with the maximum possible fans online. Your chances of appearing in the feed increase since other Facebook pages aren’t posting during this period.

Here are the results when Track Maven tested with this social media marketing strategy.

Screen Shot 2017 07 01 at 9.05.38 PM

Jon Loomer also tried posting links at off-peak hours and had positive results with his organic reach.

Facebook organic reach test

The reasons why this strategy is effective (besides less competition) are:

  • If you have an international audience, you’ll reach out to fans in a different time zone.
  • As your post receives higher engagement, Facebook will distribute the post to more of your fans.

It might even boost post views over the newer content published during peak hours.

Note: You can monitor the social media marketing posting strategies of your industry competitors using Fan Page Karma.

facebook organic reach fan karma for competitive analysis

6. Post the Content Your Users Like

Links have work better for driving traffic. Sometimes.

Fred Alberti found that pure links generated 82% more page views than posts with photos and links in the caption.

facebook organic reach with links

Photos have become an unpopular post type with users, and hence, with marketers.

My recommendation is to post all types of updates that add value for your fans, be it links, images, polls, Facebook Lives, Facebook Stories, or even Facebook Watch videos.

Don’t stick with one content form into another just because a certain type of post is (currently) performing better on Facebook. Just like Google Facebook updates its algorithm regularly.

Instead, analyze your data from Facebook Insights to find the type of posts that resonate with your audience.

If you can, try serving value in the types of content that your audience likes.

You can also ask your audience what they prefer and respect their choice.

Simply create a poll within your facebook page:

facebook organic reach poll

Post your question.

poll audience to increase facebook organic reach

You might be surprised by the results! Don’t for get to test new features when they come out.

Facebook Watch, for example, drove tons of traffic when it was first released and a lot of marketers are still not using it!

7. Publish Videos Natively on Facebook

In recent years, there has been a shift to video content.

Facebook Watch views top 1.25 billion monthly users.

Facebook tends to favor video updates, causing media marketers to use more video blog post content.

Native videos are one of the strongest performer in the news feed.

The video plays silently until a user clicks on it. It’s important that your video is high quality from the first frame. It also needs to capture attention, even without sound.

Here are some tips on getting started with Facebook Videos.

To further engage the video viewers, you can add a call-to-action (CTA) to visit your website or a destination of your choice. This can be included in the final frame, or you can boost the video and use Facebook’s Ad CTA buttons.

AdExpresso found that “Learn More”, “Shop Now”, and “Sign Up” are more popular.

facebook organic reach call to action buttons

You also get rich video insights, so you can find out what is working with your audience.

facebook organic reach video insights

If you want, you can pin a video to the top of your videos tab on your Facebook page. Just click on “Feature this Video.”

BuzzFeed got 1.7 million views for a featured video.

facebook organic traffic pin video

The featured video also appears prominently below your About section. Social Media Examiner used it to promote their upcoming event.

facebook organic traffic pin a video example

You can also embed the video in a blog post. It’ll make for a good multimedia experience for your blog audience and it can also increase the engagement on the Facebook post.

But, can you embed videos from YouTube or should you upload them directly on Facebook?

Naturally, Facebook favors native uploads over embedded videos from YouTube or any other third party. A business owner should not be intimidated by this media marketing strategy.

facebook organic reach native videos have a wider reach

This SEJ study was performed for two weeks on three Facebook pages – Search Engine Journal, Stunning and Interesting Facts, and Did You Know.

Here is a detailed breakdown of the numbers.

facebook organic reach test results

Native videos also offer a better user experience and are usually cheaper to promote.

You can use native videos for Q&A’s, product launches, and co-creating with other targeted users.

8. Test Your Posting Frequency

How often should you post on Facebook? Well, it depends.

Massive websites like Huffington Post, Telegraph, and The New York Times publish a huge amount of content every day. They also push their content aggressively on Facebook.

For the average brand, this isn’t realistic.

Don’t be tempted to post 20 times a day.

Engagement actually decreases when you post too often.

The rule of thumb is to keep it between 1-3 posts/day, depending on your following.

facebook organic reach how often to post

Here are a few takeaways on the frequency of posting for social media marketing on Facebook:

  • Avoid posting more than the recommended one to three times a day. It can overwhelm your audience.
  • You can post more often at widely different times if you’ve got an international audience. That’ll help you reach out to different segments of your audience (who live in a different time zone or log in to Facebook occasionally).
  • Always post high-quality content. Engage your audience with humor, inspirational, and educational content.
  • You can be successful, even with a higher posting frequency, by providing great content variety. Mix your posting schedule and post types.
  • Test your page frequency. Only your data can reveal your audience’s exact response.

9. Partner with Other Facebook Pages in Your Niche

Awhile ago, I shared a case study on how I used Instagram to earn $332,640 in 3 months. I struck deals with Instagram influencers (having a huge following) to post links to my landing pages.

You can use a similar strategy on Facebook.

I reached out to Facebook Pages having less than 30,000 likes, for my Nutrition Secrets project. I offered a shoutout for shoutout deal to Facebook pages in my niche (about 1 in 10 pages accept such requests).

This helped me to increase the number of likes on the Nutrition Secrets Facebook Page. Any business owner will appreciate the simplicity of this media marketing strategy.

Similarly, have a look at the Facebook pages of media websites like Huffington Post and Elite Daily. They both have millions of Facebook fans and a similar audience (for certain types of content that they publish).

They share each other’s blog posts on Facebook regularly. This boosts post views for both parties while providing good content they didn’t need to create. This is simply smart media marketing.

Here is an example of a Huffington Post blog post shared by Elite Daily’s Facebook page.

boost facebook organic reach by cross promoting example

And, here’s an Elite Daily blog post shared by Huffington Post.

boost facebook organic reach by cross promoting example

Wired and Refinery29 also seem to have a similar partnership.

boost facebook organic reach by cross promoting example

To achieve good results from this strategy, you’ll need to strike deals with pages that have tens of thousands of likes.

This means you need to have a solid influencer outreach strategy.

Here’s what you need to consider:

  • Is your target influencer the right fit, contextually? Your brand needs to resonate with their audience. Promoting your brand to a misaligned audience won’t have an impact.
  • How much reach do they have? Your influencer doesn’t need millions of followers. They just need a solid enough reach to make a difference.
  • How much authority do they have? It’s critical that your influencer has enough influence to inspire action among their audience.
  • What’s your leverage? If you’re targeting someone with a massive following and authority, you need to have something just as valuable to offer.

10. Use Word-of-Mouth Marketing to Grow Your Brand

There’s no better way to generate buzz for your brand than to turn your customers, employees, and fans into advocates.

Word-of-mouth marketing is the practice of leveraging devout fans to spread the word about your business.

Think about brands like Apple, Microsoft, and Nike.

They are known for their die-hard fans who constantly promote their products and content.

The best part?

Most do it without any paid incentive.

You, too, can leverage word-of-mouth marketing.

Here are some ideas:

  1. Reach out to the right people. Engaging your employees is one of the most effective ways of cultivating a culture of advocacy. Give them a reason to rave about your business!
  2. Offer rewards and loyalty points to customers.
  3. Give referral bonuses for recruiting more people into the network.
  4. Have top-notch customer service. You can use Facebook Messenger bots to communicate and provide value to customers.
  5. Create special brand content that your advocates can share with their networks in real-time.
  6. Always measure the effectiveness of your advocacy program. You can track sales from referral links, engagement on branded content, and the overall performance of your advocates.

11. Put Your Email List to Work

Do you ever wonder how I receive hundreds of shares and comments on every blog post I write?

It’s triggered by my email subscribers.

I simply email them, informing them about my new post. They kick off the interaction and sharing on every post.

Jay Baer shows us the similarities between an email list and Facebook fans.

drive facebook organic reach with email list.

So, how can you inspire social actions from email?

Simple social media marketing suggests starting by adding Facebook share buttons to your email newsletters. Some email platforms, like Mail Chimp, make this easy.

Otherwise, you will need to create an HTML version of your email and create custom code for the share buttons.

Here’s how:

drive organic facebook reach with emaiel example

Convince and Convert further recommends sending out your popular and interesting status updates to your email list on the same day.

This increases reactions and comments on the post and drives engagement on your Facebook page.

You can also combine this email list with the Facebook group strategy.

Ask your subscribers to join exciting conversations on your exclusive Facebook group.

Killer Strategy to Increase Facebook Shares

Say you already have a few hundred social media shares on your post. How would you like to increase the number of shares to a thousand?

You need to plan a strategic email outreach campaign to influencers, transitioning from just a good content strategy to boost post views.

The guys at Vero devised such an outreach for their email marketing best practices guide.

The result?

They have 10,000+ shares on the guide.

12. Run Contests to Drive Facebook Organic Reach

Facebook contests are a simple way to increase your presence quickly.

But it’s a little more than just luring fans with a free gift.

Here’s what it entails:

Step #1: Set a Goal For Your Contest

Do you want to increase engagement? Grow your fan base? Generate more leads?

Whatever you decide, ensure that it is specific and measurable.

Step #2: Select What Type of Contest You’ll Run

If your goal is to generate leads, then your entry method should include a mechanism to capture those leads, for example, an email grab.

If your goal is to grow your Facebook fan base, you can require participants to follow and like your page to enter the contest.

Do you see how your method of entry should be tailored to your goal?

Step #3: Determine the Rules of Entry

Before you do so, be sure to check out Facebook’s guidelines for running contests and challenges.

increase facebook organic reach with contest rules

You’ll still be required to set your own rules for the contest.

Simply write up a brief letting participants know how the winner will be chosen, who’s eligible to enter, and the details of the prize.

Step #4: Decide How to Select Winners

With most contests, the winner is usually chosen randomly.

If your promotion is a challenge, then you will need someone or a group of people to judge the entries. Alternatively, you can have a voting system to pick a winner.

Step #5: Choose a Prize and Develop a Promotion Strategy

This is where most brands fail miserably.

If you don’t pick your prize carefully and promote your contest, there’s a good chance it will flop.

Always pick a prize that is relevant to your business so you avoid attracting people who are in it just for the freebie.

Here are some ideas for promoting your contest:

how to promote a contest to increase facebook organic reach

13. Share Posts From Your Facebook Page on Your Facebook Profile

This strategy is for avid Facebook users. You should have at least 1,000+ friends on your personal Facebook profile to drive significant results.

The strategy is simple to boost post views.

You first share a post on your Facebook page. Then, you share it from the page on your personal Facebook profile.

 share a post to boost organic facebook reach

WPChronicles increased their reach from 5 people to 134, by using this strategy.

Keep in mind, this strategy isn’t scalable and you might annoy your friends if you do it to much.

However, you can use it occasionally for posts that add value to your Facebook friends.

Pro Tip: If you just started your Facebook page, you can quickly build your first 100 fans and get social proof. Just use the “Invite Friends” feature.

boost facebook organic reach invite friends

This feature can also be used to grow your Facebook page from your email list. It isn’t available to all Facebook pages, though.

Using it is simple. Upload your contacts from MailChimp, Constant Contact, or any other of the email services. Facebook will find them and ‘suggest’ that they like your page.

14. Drive Organic Facebook Traffic With Hashtags (Used Carefully)

We’re all familiar with hashtags and how they work.

But what’s the deal with them on Facebook?

Do they have impact on a post’s reach?

Let’s see.

BuzzSumo analyzed more than 1 billion Facebook posts from over 30 million pages.

Their study seems to agree with the general consensus that Facebook users are prone to hashtag fatigue.

Posts with hashtags performed worse than those without.

facebook organic reach hashtags lower reach

Does that mean that marketers shouldn’t use hashtags on Facebook at all? Not exactly.

There’s a lot of utility in Facebook hashtags.

It’s a matter of experimenting with relevant ones to see what works in your industry and for your audience.

They should also be used in moderation — one to two hash tags maximum.

Why so little?

Post Planner reported interactions are highest when one to two hashtags are used.

facebook organic reach hashtags

While the consensus is that you shouldn’t hashtag everything, Facebook is still built to accommodate their use.

This means that you can get quite a bit of functionality out of them without adding hashtags to all your posts.

Here’s how.

Create Your Own Hashtags

There’s no special protocol for creating hashtags.

Anyone can do it.

I recommend making your hashtags unique to your brand so it doesn’t get confused with anyone else’s. It’s also smart to use the same branding style hashtags on all social media platforms so there’s familiarity across channels.

Pro tip: Use your branded hashtags as a metric to track your brand equity on Facebook. Their popularity will give you a good indication of how many people are buzzing about your business at a given time.

You can also point your audience to the URL’s of specific hashtags so they can participate in the relevant conversations.

Use Hashtags to Make Your Facebook Group Easier to Navigate

Facebook creates a unique URL for each hashtag used. This means that you can use them to search for content.

This is particularly useful in groups when you don’t want evergreen content to be buried. Simply hashtag them so users can continue to refer to these content pieces by conducting a quick hashtag search.

For example: If you create content themes like I’ve recommended, your users can find all published content for each theme by searching for the unique URL.

Take Advantage of Facebook Trending Topics

Ever heard of newsjacking?

It’s when someone piggybacks on a trend to gain exposure for their brand.

We’ve seen it is best to use hashtags sparingly.

But if there’s ever a prime time to use them, it’s when they link to a trending topic. This way, you tap into the traffic and increase your exposure.

I must warn you: This strategy requires caution. You don’t want to be hopping on a trend that may do you more harm than good.

15. Go Against the Grain to Stand Out

Listen:

A big piece of the organic reach puzzle is competition.

You have to fight for the attention of your audience.

Want to know the best way to always be ahead of your competitors?

Find your differentiating factor and flaunt it.

Both your visual and written content should stand out.

Some pro tips for your visual content:

  • Avoid blues and grays at all costs. These colors are dominant in Facebook’s theme which means you’ll morph into a user’s news feed. You want to use colors that will stop someone in their tracks. Red, yellow, and orange are great options.
  • Create multiple visuals per post and A/B test to see which one performs better. After you’ve conducted several tests for your posts, you’ll begin to see a pattern emerge. Your audience likely responds to a few designs better than the rest.
  • Add call-to-action buttons on the actual image. This is because you want as many visual cues as possible to let users know that they should “Click Here.”
  • Don’t use stock photos. Transparency and authenticity matter on Facebook. Create your own images to humanize your brand and share visuals your audience can connect with.
  • Capture and keep attention with short captions on your visuals. Posts with 80 characters or less receive 66% higher engagement.
facebook organic reach fewer characters
  • Ask questions. Posts with a question have higher engagement than those without.
facebook organic reach ask questions.

16. Take Advantage of New Facebook Features

Facebook’s constant app updates are no secret.

The changes come fast and frequently.

But here’s the thing:

They may fly under your radar if you don’t make it a priority to stay informed. That’s because new features are almost always released in different segments of the platform at different times.

You can take advantage of these updates.

When you get in on them early, you get the early mover’s advantage. This means that you can master it faster than anyone else and tap into the new capabilities for the benefit of your business.

Some recent updates that provide golden opportunities:

  • Facebook Messenger Bots: You can use these to engage with users and persuade them with targeted messenger sequences.
  • 360-degree Photos and Videos: This gives you the ability to capture a 360, panoramic view. You can use this to showcase the human element of your brand by capturing group shots, events, workspaces, and more.
  • More Intuitive and Flexible Video: Users no longer have to manually tap to play a video. In addition to the autoplay update, you can now watch a video while still scrolling through your news feed. The video will automatically minimize at the corner of the screen.
  • Facebook Stories: If you’re familiar with Snapchat and Instagram stories, you’re no stranger to this format of visual content. The feature is driving a ton of traffic and engagement.
  • Facebook Offers: You can create and share coupons, discounts, and other promotional offers on your Facebook business page. These Offer Ads can even be created to work in combination with other Ad campaigns. You can also track how they perform in ad reporting.
  • Facebook Watch: Facebook Watch is a streaming video tab inside Facebook that offers viewers access to longer-form videos from creators.
  • Facebook Marketplace: It’s not just for selling items around your home, Facebook Marketplace can drive business as well.

17. Create an Effective Facebook Paid Marketing Strategy

You must be wondering, “I thought this was about organic traffic?”

Here’s the thing:

Paid reach can funnel into your organic reach and extend the lifecycle of your posts.

This means it will be shown to more people and users will be able to interact with your content for a longer period of time.

How is this possible?

It’s simple.

People can still see your post even though they weren’t targeted through paid distribution.

The audience that you pay for may decide to share and engage with the post. In that case, it will gain an organic reach when their audience also engages.

Now let’s get into how to run effective paid promotions for your posts.

Step #1: Install the Facebook Tracking Pixel on Your Site

The Facebook pixel allows you to track the specific actions taken on your website and other landing pages.

Better yet, it allows you to build custom audiences so you can retarget people who’ve visited your website.

If you havn’t installed it yet, go to your “Ads Manager” or “Power Editor.”

drive organic traffic with facebook pixel

You’ll be prompted to create a Pixel if you don’t have an active one.

After you’ve created your Pixel, you’ll receive a tracking code that you have to copy and paste into the header of your website.

To easily place the Pixel on your website, you can do one of two things:

  1. Use Google Tag Manager to place the code in your title tags without messing around with your website’s HTML files.
  2. Use a WordPress plugin called PixelYourSite. After it’s installed, get your Pixel ID from your Ads Manager and simply copy it into the settings of the plugin. There’ll be no need to play with codes and title tags.

And that’s it!

Do this once, and you’re good.

Step #2: Gain Traction Organically Before Paying

We’ve seen how organic and paid reach work hand in hand.

This is an effective way to ensure that your ads reach more people at a cheaper cost.

Some tips for organic promotion:

  • Share your post multiple times on Facebook. Make sure you vary the format as well as the time that you publish.
  • Reach out to influencers to share your content with their networks.
  • Post to other Facebook pages and groups where you’re allowed to.

Step #3: Create Your Ad or Boost Your Post

You can either run an official Facebook ad or a boosted post campaign.

At first glance, they appear the same.

So what’s the difference?

A few things.

  • Ads are created using your Ad Manager while boosted posts can be run directly from your business page.
  • You must first publish a post on your page to boost it whereas an ad does not need to be on your page.

This means the strategy of promoting posts organically first, is best suited to boosted posts.

Let’s get into the details.

How to Boost a Post on Facebook

First, find the “Boost Post” button under your post.

boost post to increase facebook organic reach

Select a goal:

facebook organic reach ads set goal

Narrow down your audience.

You can opt for:

  • People who like your page
  • People who like your page and their friends
  • People who you choose through targeting
facebook organic reach choose your audience

Set your budget and duration of your campaign.

facebook organic reach set budget

Finally, ensure that your Tracking Pixel is turned on.

facebook organic reach pixel

So that’s it for boosted posts.

What about actual Facebook ads? The concept is not much different.

Put these steps into action.

Step #4: Create your Ad using Ads Manager

Head to Facebook Ads Manager.

Select an objective for your campaign.

You have way more options than a boosted post.

facebook organic reach use paid ads

But you can only select one objective.

facebook organic reach choose campaign type

Step #5: Define Your Targeting Options

You can either:

  • Create a custom audience: To reach people who’ve already engaged with your business. For example, you can import your email list to form a custom audience.
  • Create a lookalike audience: To reach new people who are similar to an audience you already have elsewhere.
  • Use a saved audience: If you’ve run ads in the past, you can use the same audience.

Select your ad placement.

facebook organic reach set ad location

Set your budget and schedule.

facebook organic reach set ad budget

Format your ad, write a click-worthy caption, and add an eye-catching image.

After you’ve finalized the creative elements, you can place your ad order and you’re set to go.

Pro tip: Read this post on how to make your Facebook ads better.

Step #6: Use Retargeting

Have you ever visited a website, and ten seconds later, be shown a Facebook Ad from that very website?

Chances are you have.

When marketer’s abuse it, this could get annoying for a consumer.

Imagine continuously been shown ads for a product you already bought or a website you were never really interested in.

In any event, this is still one of the most powerful tools in a marketer’s toolbox.

It’s where you’ll experience the full capability of the Facebook Pixel.

If you implemented Step 1, yours should be fired up and ready to go.

So, how does retargeting work?

It allows you to target your ads to people who’ve demonstrated an interest in your business.

Here’s a visual representation of the process:

facebook organic reach use retargeting

As you see, this is brilliant for recapturing lost leads.

The whole premise is that it’s easier to convert someone who’s already engaged with your business rather than a total stranger.

Now:

Your retargeting ads are set up with the same steps that I detailed above for a normal ad campaign.

Your targeting is the only variant.

facebook organic reach retargeting ads

Something to keep in mind: Retargeting campaigns take some time to gain traction. Set a goal, decide on a time frame, and commit to running your ads for the duration of that time frame.

Step #7: Determine the ROI of your Facebook Ads

Let’s talk about results.

Facebook campaigns aren’t difficult to set in motion.

Yet, many marketers don’t see the results that they hoped for.

But here’s the brutal truth:

Unless you track your ads, how much they cost, and the return you’re getting, there’s no way you can keep optimizing your performance.

So which metrics should you be tracking?

  • Conversion rates
  • Number of times an ad has been served to a user
  • Return on dollar investment
  • Click Through Rate (CTR)
  • Cost per Click (CPC)

These are all available in your Power Editor with Facebook’s Ad reporting function.

Analyze your results and work towards improving them.

18. Harness the Power of Facebook “Dark Posts”

Facebook “dark posts” have been around for a while.

Yet, they’re one of the most underutilised marketing tools.

Is the concept as sinister and shadowy as the name sounds?  A bit.

“Dark posts” otherwise called unpublished posts are news feed style ads that don’t get published to your news feed. This means that they won’t be found on your timeline or in your fans’ feed.

So what’s the point?

You can:

  • Create as many ads as you want without turning off your audience
  • Split test several elements of your ads to select the highest performing variations
  • Decide to expose only the high impact ads to your organic audience and be confident that they’ll perform
  • Stay in Facebook’s good graces. Your page will be less promotional which is what Facebook’s algorithm favors
  • Personalize your ad copy for different segments of your audience

Now that you know the benefits, here’s how you can put unpublished “dark posts” to work for your business.

Head to Ads Manager, then follow these steps from Facebook.

facebook organic reach dark posts

You’ve created an unpublished post, aka a Dark Post.

19. Grab Attention and Inspire Action with Persuasive Copy

If you’ve had any success on Facebook, you already know that the creative elements are the variables that matter.

What does this mean for your Facebook strategy?

You need to test different aspects of the creative. This includes split testing your copywriting and visual elements to find the highest performing combinations.

It will serve you well for both paid promotions and your organic reach.

We’ve already been through the visual elements.

So let’s talk about copy.

The purpose of persuasive copy is to:

1. Improve Your Click Through Rate (CTR)

CTR refers to the number of people who click through to your website after they’ve been served your ad.

If it’s low, that’s a pretty good indication that your ad copy and visuals need work.

CTR is not a metric that will make or break your media marketing performance, but you also don’t want to get it wrong.

That would mean leaving a better result on the table.

2. Lower your Cost per Action (CPA)

An action will depend on what your conversion goal is.

It could be:

  • Video views
  • App installs
  • Ecommerce store visits
  • Page visits
  • Shares, comments, and likes

Any action that you want users to take when served your content comes into play here.

The less it costs you to drive these actions, the higher your conversion rates.

So, what does persuasive copy have to do with CPA?

Well, users will only move on a solid call to action (CTA).

In turn, the strength of your CTA’s depend on your copy.

How to Craft Compelling Facebook Call-Actions That Convert

  • Always tailor your CTA to your conversion goal. Generic, one-size-fits-all copy won’t cut it.
  • Use exclusivity to amp up perceived value. This goes hand in hand with urgency. In fact, words used to convey exclusivity can also be used to drive urgency.
  • Create urgency to give users an extra push. Think of relevant words and phrases that evoke a sense of now. The fear of missing out (FOMO) will kick in and users will have a greater chance of taking action.
  • Eliminate weak verbs like download, save, learn, and find out. These lack the energy and punch to get people excited. If you must use them, add urgency words to modify. For example: CTAs with “Now” at the end always convert better than those without.
  • Don’t get caught up in the rules. Yes, the tips above have been proven time and time again to generate results. But your audience and what they respond to is what matters. The other elements in your content also factor in so don’t look at call to actions in isolation.

20. Focus on Value and Don’t Worry About Reach

As a marketer, everything comes down to conversions and ROI, Right?

The organic reach of your posts on Facebook is like a secondary metric.

Jon Loomer puts it perfectly.

does facebook organic reach matter

If you go after reach rather than valuable content, you’ll be trying to game Facebook’s algorithm.

Deja vu?

Remember Google cracking down on black hat SEOs trying to game their search results?

Every platform wants to improve the experience of their users and increase engagement.

So, don’t go around chasing Facebook’s organic reach.

Instead, share every post with an objective.

  • With links, you want to get clicks and drive traffic to your website.
  • Status updates should be focused on engaging with your audience and getting comments.
  • Share graphics to inspire your audience and get engagement.
  • Share videos to primarily get video views. The CTA in the video can be used to drive traffic to your website.

The organic reach of your page is not the best performance indicator.

So while you may want to amp up your game, you need to consider how much reach is enough to justify the time and effort it takes to build your Facebook assets.

Write down the goals you want to achieve through your Facebook page.

Consider :

  • The size of your business
  • The scale of your operations
  • Your objectives
  • Your audience
  • The ROI of increasing Facebook reach

Only then should you devise a Facebook marketing strategy around these goals.

Choose the metrics you’ll use to measure your results.

Don’t let algorithmic changes dictate your marketing strategy.

Conclusion

Facebook is a brilliant marketing tool.

There’s no doubt about that.

The number of businesses that actively use the platform continues to increase by millions, year over year.

But Facebook is not without its challenges.

The influx of published content has led to a downward spiral in organic reach, and the competition for news feed space is fierce.

Things that were once done on autopilot, now require significantly more effort and due diligence.

Will organic reach continue to plummet?

Or will it improve?

Nobody really knows what the future holds for organic reach on Facebook.

Either way, our task remains the same.

We have to get creative in our social media marketing and provide the highest quality content to our audience.

If you implement the strategies that I share in this post, you’ll be well on your way to improving your organic reach.

You’ll also be more skilled at navigating Facebook’s ever-changing platform.

What is your Facebook page’s average organic reach? What strategies are you using to combat organic reach decline on Facebook?

The post 20 Secrets to Boost Your Facebook Organic Reach appeared first on Neil Patel.

SEO

15 Ways to Use Voice Tweets

With roughly 350,000 new tweets appearing on the platform every minute, building engagement via Twitter can feel like an uphill struggle. 

To increase engagement on the platform, Twitter rolled out voice tweets, which let users share snippets of audio to their profile. 

Learn more about voice tweet options and how it’s transforming the ways digital marketers can use Twitter to their best advantage.

What Is a Voice Tweet?    

Voice Tweets allow you to record your voice as an audio clip and send it in a tweet. Here’s a rundown of how it works. 

  • You can record up to 140 seconds of audio.
  • If you need longer, that’s OK. Keep talking, and a new voice tweet starts recording automatically. 
  • Click or tap the “done” button to finish recording. 
  • Send your voice tweet(s) from the composer screen, just like you’d send out regular tweets.
  • Twitter uses your current profile picture as the placeholder image for the audio. Users click on this image to hear the audio attachment.  
Voice Tweets - Twitter Marketing Voice SEO

Users can then listen to what you’ve got to say and engage in their preferred way, whether it’s typing out a reply, sharing your message, or clicking through to your website. Think of voice tweets as your opportunity to stand up and make sure you’re heard among a sea of 280-character tweets.

There’s one thing to bear in mind before you start voice tweeting, though. The picture attached to a voice tweet won’t change, even if you later change your profile picture. 

Ensure you’re happy with your photo before you start voice tweeting. This keeps your messaging consistent and makes it easier for users to find you again in the future. 

Can Everyone Use Voice Tweets?

Not yet, no. It’s only available through the OS app for Twitter, but if you’re running Android or desktop Twitter, don’t worry. Voice tweets are coming your way. 

Can Everyone Use Voice Tweets
  • You can’t quote or reply to tweets using voice yet. It’s only available for original tweets. 
  • If you have a lot to say, you’ll need more than one thread. Threads are limited to 25 voice tweets. 
  • Need more space than 25 tweets? You might be better off making a short YouTube video and linking to it through a tweet. 

Voice tweet transcripts aren’t available yet, either, but Twitter plans on rolling out this feature to ensure more people can enjoy voice tweets going forward. 

Can you use voice tweets for DMs? Not right now, though if voice tweets prove popular, we can probably expect a rollout in the future.

15 Ways to Use Voice Tweets

Ready to use voice tweets but not sure how to get started? Here are 15 ways you can use the Twitter voice feature and tips for creating effective voice tweets. 

1. Improve Brand Personality 

How would you describe your business in three words? I ask because these three words are key to defining your brand’s personality.

Your brand personality matters. It defines how people perceive your company, and it influences which words come to mind when someone describes your business.

Can voice tweets help you build the right personality online? Yes, because it all comes down to authenticity. Eighty-six percent of customers opt for companies with an honest, upfront, and authentic identity, and voice tweets instantly make your brand feel more real and sincere. 

Here’s how to improve your brand personality using voice tweets. 

  • Appoint one or two team members to record voice tweets. Ensure their tone matches your goals. For example, if you’re a B2B company, choose an eloquent speaker.  
  • Review your voice tweet engagement. Are people sharing your tweets or responding to them? If not, consider reevaluating what you’re tweeting.

How do you want people to describe your brand? Use voice tweets to reinforce this message.

2. Advertise Your Business

If you don’t use Twitter, you’re missing out on a significant marketing opportunity. 

  • Twitter has over 330 million active users and counting. That’s a massive number of people logging in every day, and there’s no limit on who you can reach if you target your ads effectively.
  • Once they follow a brand on Twitter, around 50 percent of users complete a purchase. 
  • Since you don’t pay anything to tweet, it’s free advertising. 

Here are some suggestions for incorporating voice tweets into your strategy.   

  • You need to make your point quickly, so keep messages short and simple. 
  • Include sound effects or slogans to reinforce your brand message. There’s no need to limit yourself! 
  • Finish with a call-to-action (CTA) e.g., directing users to your website. 

Want to upgrade your Twitter profile? Consider “pinning” a tweet to the top of your page. With one click, users can instantly discover your brand and build a connection to your business. 

Voice Tweets to Advertise Your Business

3. Promote Your Product 

Roughly 54 percent of millennials turn to social media platforms for product research, so voice tweets provide a great opportunity to shout about your core products. 

How do you get the most from promotional tweets? Well, it’s not just about your actual voice. It comes back to your brand’s voice, too, which is why it’s so important to build a clear, unique, and consistent personality. 

Take MoonPie, for example. They’re successful on Twitter thanks to their distinctive quirky, witty vibe. 

Voice Tweets to Promote Your Product

Their tweets catch your attention because they’re unexpected. For example, tweets like this one would translate equally well into a promotional voice tweet because it’s funny and understated: 

Voice Tweets - Example of MoonPie

Take a lesson from MoonPie. Avoid sounding like every other promotional tweet on the platform by building a distinctive voice, and watch your product engagement grow as a result.    

A final tip. You can also use voice tweets to promote underselling products and services by linking to them in the same thread!

4. Reveal New Features or Products

Marketers already rely on Twitter to launch their new products and services. However, good marketers know how important it is to stand out from the noise and find new ways to attract attention.

Again, voice tweets can definitely help you out here, because they’re an opportunity to showcase what’s unique about you and your product. 

Consider using voice tweets alongside other media, like YouTube videos, to boost the overall user experience. Users are over 80 percent more likely to buy a product after watching a video, so it’s always worth including video tools in your marketing strategy.

Also, according to Hubspot, it’s best to tweet between 8 a.m. and 10 a.m., then between 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. These are “peak” hours, which means there’s a better chance you’ll generate some user engagement than if you voice tweet at, say, midnight.  

5. Announce Brand Giveaways

What’s not to love about free stuff? Everyone loves a good giveaway, so consider using the power of the voice tweet to shout out your latest contest. 

Once you’ve picked the prize, here’s how to talk it up on Twitter. 

  • Set a giveaway goal. Are you aiming for more followers, or are you focused on growing your subscriber list? 
  • Turn your goal into a CTA. For example, maybe users must retweet your giveaway tweet to enter, or they get extra entries if they follow you on another social media platform, too. It all depends on your goal. 

6. Interact With Customers

Did you know that 64 percent of customers expect companies to interact with them on social media? Personalize the user experience and answer via voice tweets. 

If you make individual users feel like they matter to your company, they’re more likely to choose you over competitors. 

Here’s an example of an engaging post you could turn into a voice tweet. 

Voice Tweets - Example of poptarts

7. Act as Customer Service

Dealing with customer service queries? Over 70 percent of users expect companies to respond within an hour. Here’s how to use voice tweets to help.

  • Give your customer service the personal touch by including someone’s name in the reply.  
  • If you’re only online during certain hours, pin a voice tweet to the top of your profile with a rundown of how quickly you can respond to messages and where else customers can turn to in the meantime. 

8. Clarify Company Policies 

Although you have 140 seconds to play with, voice tweets should be short, sharp, and memorable. In other words, they’re an excellent tool for quickly clarifying company policies. 

  • Reinforce key policies through voice tweets e.g., shipping policies, customer service hours. 
  • Include links to more detailed social media posts or pages on your website. 

9. Answer FAQs

If voice tweets work for company policies, they work for FAQs, too.

  • Run a series of voice tweets answering 10-15 FAQs in the one thread.
  • Pin the thread to the top of your Twitter page so it’s easy for people to find. 

End the conversation with another CTA inviting people to respond with questions you’ll answer in the same thread.  

10. Increase Customer Loyalty

I’ll keep this one short and sweet. 

All those questions you answer? Those replies you send? They add up. In time, they build trust in your brand, and customer loyalty grows as a result. 

Put simply, your voice can really grow your business over time. 

11. Invite Customer Feedback

Why not invite customers to share feedback via voice tweet? You can retweet or quote positive reviews and share them with your followers. 

Voice tweets “humanize” product and service reviews for your target audience, which may increase conversion rates in the long run. 

Do you use customer feedback to improve your products or launch new lines? Tell them! You’ll likely boost engagement this way.

Voice Tweets - Invite Customer Feedback

12. Share Stories

There’s power in storytelling. Here’s why you should use voice tweets to build your brand, increase engagement, and even grow your follower count. 

  • Great stories encourage sharing, liking, and retweeting, which boosts your followers and brand exposure. 
  • Stories are an opportunity to stand up for what you believe in and showcase matters to you as a company. This may impress users and encourage them to check out your page.

13. Collaborate With Influencers

Influencers are, well, influential. Users typically respond well to them. With that in mind, why not hire a social media influencer to “take over” your Twitter feed for the day? They might, for example:

  • Engage with followers
  • Talk about giveaways
  • Run contests   

Send them your product and ask for voice feedback. Just make sure you choose an influencer with the same “vibe” as your brand! 

14. Entertain Audience 

At least 60 percent of social media users want entertaining content, which is why it’s so important to bring your tweets to life. Voice tweets can, of course, help you do this. 

  • Choose a speaker with a dynamic and engaging voice. 
  • Focus on short, surprising anecdotes. Remember, there’s no need to use the 140-second limit for each voice tweet.

Pop-Tarts hits the right note here. Could this post work equally well as a voice tweet? I think so. 

Voice Tweets - Entertain Audience

15. Humanize Your Brand

What’s the No. 1 way to build a rapport with your followers? Humanize your brand. Use your voice to show users the real people behind your company.  

  • Voice tweets add another dimension to your brand’s identity. 
  • Talking allows you to showcase your passion, expertise, and creativity online.
  • If you answer questions or interact via voice tweet, you instantly make your followers feel valued.

Voice tweets help users feel like they’re engaging with more than just a machine. This personal touch could be why people choose your brand over another similar company. 

Conclusion

It’s absolutely still worth using Twitter for digital marketing, and voice tweets make it a whole lot easier to define your brand and find your audience. 

Before you start tweeting, choose a strong, distinctive profile picture and decide your brand voice. Once you’ve got this part down, use voice tweets to encourage engagement and humanize your business across social media. 

Need help optimizing your social media platforms? Check out my consulting services to see how I can help. 

Have you used voice tweets yet? How are users engaging with them?

The post 15 Ways to Use Voice Tweets appeared first on Neil Patel.

Marketing

Facebook Blueprint Certification: Is It Worth It?

Update on January 14, 2021 to include current information and insights.

If you’re an aspiring Facebook advertiser, you’ve almost certainly spent time stumbling around the Facebook Ads Manager platform, trying to understand how to replicate these creative ads that you see when scrolling through your news feed.

As always, the quickest way to mimic this approach is to start creating your own ads. You can spend endless hours teaching yourself the ins and outs of the platform, or you can take advantage of Facebook’s free Blueprint step-by-step tutorials to understand how it works.

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What Is Facebook Blueprint Certification?

Blueprint is Facebook’s resource guide to provide modular learning for individuals who want to develop a strong foundation around its advertising platform and its user base. They’ve carefully curated an instructional curriculum for aspiring Facebook advertisers designed to teach you Facebook advertising from beginner to advanced level.

There is tailored information for every conceivable approach you might take when advertising your brand or business on the platform, from building awareness, to generating leads, to increasing in-store sales, you name it; there’s a module on how to build it out.

Facebook Blueprint certification showcases your proficiency level within the platform. If you want to be Blueprint certified, Facebook has curated advanced-level exams. At the time of this post, the exams cost up to $150 USD per exam.

Facebook expanded the Blueprint certifications into nine Pearson VUE moderated exams:

  • Facebook Certified Digital Marketing Associate (valid for two years)
  • Facebook Certified Community Manager
  • Facebook Certified Marketing Science Professional
  • Facebook Certified Creative Strategy Professional
  • Facebook Certified Media Planning Professional (valid for one year)
  • Facebook Certified Media Buying Professional (valid for one year)
  • Facebook Certified Marketing Developer (consists of 2 required exams)
  • Facebook Certified Advanced Marketing Developer (consists of 2 required exams)
  • Facebook Certified Advertising API Developer (consists of 2 required exams)

The score for each exam ranges from 300-1000. To be certified, you will need to pass with a minimum score of 700.

Facebook will allow you to renew your certification for the Media Planning or Media Buying exams for free before your certificate expires. However, every other year, you can opt to take a free two-hour refresher course and a 20-question exam instead of retaking the full 105-minute exam.

For the Developer Certification, if you have an active certificate, you’re eligible to recertify. If your certification has expired, you must retake the exam.

How to Prepare and Study for Your Facebook Blueprint Certification Exam

If you’re ready to become Facebook Blueprint certified, the steps to prepare for the exam are pretty straightforward.

  1. Review the recommended Blueprint Courses for the exam you are going to take. For example, I took the Media Buying Professional exam, so I completed the recommended courses for that track.
  2. Download the study guide for the exam you are taking. Here is the Media Buying Professional guide.
  3. Go through the Facebook platform to understand how the campaign setup works, audience targeting, metrics, events, and the different types of available features on the platform.
  4. Lastly, take the practice exam. Here’s the practice exam for Media Buying Professional certification.

Is Facebook Blueprint Certification Worth It?

Facebook is always changing or improving features within the platform. If you’re not using it on a monthly basis, it may be challenging to stay on top of the new features and avoid making inefficient campaign strategies in your account. Blueprint courses are a helpful tool to learn the latest changes Facebook has made within its platform. Many of the granular specifics around building ads or measuring efficacy left to anecdotal observation in past years are now carefully laid out within the curriculum.

However, if you are looking to become certified, you’ll need to weigh the time and cost to get certified against how useful it is for you in the long term.

Here are a few reasons why Facebook Blueprint certification is worth the investment:

  • You want to upsell your competency at an agency.
  • You want to get hired at an agency.
  • You want to expand your skillset within your current role.
  • You are looking to enter into a new role within digital marketing (e.g., Media Analyst, Social Media Manager, Account Executive, Facebook Developer).

Bottom line: if you’re not working at an agency or looking to develop social media marketing skills right now, I’d recommend steering clear of full certification and stick with taking the free online blueprint courses.

The post Facebook Blueprint Certification: Is It Worth It? appeared first on Portent.

SEO

5 Alternatives to Yahoo Groups

Yahoo Groups was one of the original online communities. You could use it to create or participate in online chats with people from across the world who have the same interests and ideas as you.

A host of new online communication tools have been released in recent years. Many of these new platforms offer features Yahoo Groups doesn’t. After lagging behind their competitors for a few years, Yahoo Groups officially shut down in December of 2020.

Thankfully, if you were a fan, there are a plethora of alternatives to Yahoo Groups. Below, we’ll discuss our favorites so you can pick the best online group platforms for you.

What Was Yahoo Groups Used For?

Yahoo launched Groups in January 2001. Users could post messages, polls, photos, events, files, mailing lists, links to websites, and more. The platform soon became a popular host for vibrant online discussion boards.

If you owned a group, you could also assign moderators to help you run and oversee all the group’s activities.

Online businesses and marketers took advantage of the platform. This is a place where you could easily post a recent blog, image, or file to drive brand awareness and increase website traffic.

I know what you’re thinking—this sounds very similar to many of the online tools we have today. That’s because Yahoo Groups was similar. In fact, you could argue that Yahoo Groups was the foundation for many popular social media and online groups.

At the height of its popularity, Yahoo announced it had 115 million users and 10 million groups.

But a quick search for the platform today will show you this:

Yahoo groups shutdown page

Where do you go from here?

Here’s a list of the best Yahoo Groups alternatives to create valuable online connections with your market.

What Are the Best Alternatives to Yahoo Groups?

If you used Yahoo Groups and want to continue creating online communities with like-minded people, drive traffic to your website, or build brand awareness, it’s essential to look for an alternative that will meet your needs—and the needs of your audience.

Here are five options to consider.

1. Facebook Groups

Facebook has over 2 billion monthly active users, and over 1 billion users participate in Facebook Groups each month.

Besides catching up with old and new friends, creating a group on this platform makes sense, especially for businesses. It can help you position your brand, find potential customers, and build long-term relationships with them.

Like Yahoo Groups, Facebook Groups allow you to schedule group events, share files, images, and other useful tools to continue engaging and connecting with your market.

While many brands may have Facebook Pages, Facebook Groups are where the magic lies because they see a lot more engagement than Pages.

Facebook Groups allow members to start and participate in conversations easily. They can also be private—when you have a closed group, members can engage and share their thoughts in a private setting that can only be seen by group members.

There are three types of Groups to choose from. Depending on your needs, you can create:

  • A Public Group: Anyone can access the group and see what users post.
  • A Closed Group: This is a private group. You can search and find the group, but members still need approval before gaining access to the group.
  • A Secret Group: These are invite-only groups where only invited users can find the group or see what other users post.

Here’s how to create a Facebook Group:

After logging into your account, click the + button from the top right and select Group.

Screenshot of step 1 for creating a facebook group

Next, enter your group name, choose privacy options, and invite people to join the group.

Once you’ve filled in the details, select Create.

Step #2 to create a Facebook group

You can further personalize the group by adding a description and cover photo.

If you want to start a successful Facebook Group for your brand, the first step is to decide on your Group’s purpose.

  • Are you a new brand and trying to increase brand awareness?
  • Are you trying to reach new customers?
  • Do you want to provide a group for your existing customers where you can nurture long-term relationships?
  • Would you like to showcase your expertise and establish authority in a niche market?

Understanding the purpose of your group will help direct all the content you create.

For instance, let’s say you sell a weight loss coaching program that lasts for six months. You can create a private Group for customers who are currently in coaching to share unique content and allow members to support each other.

Creating this type of group allows members to learn more about your brand and get the support they need while using your service.

2. Meetup

The concept behind Meetup is simple—choose what you’re interested in or passionate about, find a local group that shares that same interest, attend events the group organizes, and connect with like-minded people.

The groups you join or create on this platform can be about anything: book clubs, bike rides, business networking, music, or other niche social activities.

Of course, the main difference between Meetup and Yahoo Groups is that Meetup focuses on creating real-life encounters with the people you meet online.

If your business or brand caters to local communities, then Meetup could be a great fit.

Let’s say you own a coffee shop in New York. You can find and join groups of other coffee lovers in the area. Once you’ve joined the groups, you can engage with members, build relationships, and invite them to a company event.

If you can’t find a relevant group, you can create one.

Once you’ve signed up, you’ll go through a seven-step process. This includes:

Selecting your group’s location:

Setting your group's location on Meetup, an alternative to yahoo groups

Choosing topics that best relate to your group:

How to choose topics for your group on Meetup - a Yahoo Groups alternative

Choosing a group name:

How to choose your group name for your Meetup group

Describing what your group will be about:

How to choose your group name on Meetups

It is free for users to sign up for the service. However, meeting organizers pay a monthly fee.

There are currently two pricing options:

  • $4.99 per month for six months. This plan is for smaller groups.
  • $15.00 per group per month for six months. This plan includes unlimited groups and allows you access to attendee emails.

Whichever plan you choose, creating a Meetup group will help you connect with relevant people in real-life.

3. Nextdoor

Like Meetup, Nextdoor is a platform where local communities connect in real life, outside of online communications.

For Nextdoor, you must be a part of a particular neighborhood, as the focus is more on building a good network with your neighbors.

On the site, they explain:

“It’s where communities come together to greet newcomers, exchange recommendations, and read the latest local news. Where neighbors support local businesses and get updates from public agencies, borrow tools, and sell couches. It’s how to get the most out of everything nearby. Welcome, neighbor.”

Nextdoor shares a few similar features to Yahoo Groups, such as file sharing, chat messaging, and wiki pages.

For a local business or brand, creating a Nextdoor account makes sense as the platform has grown exponentially. It doesn’t just focus on residential neighbors anymore. Local businesses, public agencies, nonprofits, and brands are also recognized on the platform.

You can then decide whether you want to create an open or a private group.

For an open group:

  • Anyone in the neighborhood can search, find, and join the group.
  • Potential group members outside the community can still request to join if you send them a link.

For a private group:

  • Anyone in the neighborhood can find and request to join the group.
  • Group admins approve requests.
  • Only members of the group can view messages and discussions.

The platform is completely free to use, but you can also advertise your business or brand using Local Deals to gain traction. This is where you can share discounts and promotions with your neighborhood.

The price for Local Deals depends on your neighborhood and how long you want to advertise, but the average cost is $75.

4. Groups.io

Mark Fletcher created groups.io. You might have heard of him before. He founded ONElist, which eventually became known as Yahoo Groups.

When he introduced Groups.io, Fletcher explained that:

Yahoo Groups and Google Groups both exude the dank air of benign neglect. Google Groups hasn’t been updated in years, and some of Yahoo’s recent changes have actually made Yahoo Groups worse! And yet, millions of people put up with this uncertainty and neglect, because email groups are still one of the best ways to communicate with groups of people. And I have a plan to make them even better.

Groups.io is an email-based service with features that include:

  • Integration with other popular products, such as Slack, GitHub, Facebook Pages, and Dropbox
  • Hashtags to help keep group messages organized
  • Unlimited chat rooms

Groups.io is a Freemium product, which means the basic features are free to use, but you can pay extra to customize your homepage, access extra storage space, schedule events, and send reminders.

The best part about Groups.io is that there is no advertising! If you spend a lot of time online, you’ll appreciate this.

5. Discourse

Another popular online discussion forum is Discourse. Users can use it as a discussion forum, mailing list, or chat room.

Creating an online group on a different and unfamiliar site can be an overwhelming process. There’s a free 14-day trial, which you can use to help familiarize yourself with the platform and see if it can be a good fit for you and your needs.

Like Yahoo Groups and the other options on our list, Discourse is an online discussion forum that allows you to create discussions, share links, files, and integrate with various devices and online tools.

If you’ve been on online discussion forums for a while, you’ll know that some users don’t follow the rules. The platforms we’ve covered so far allow group moderators to filter out inappropriate content and users.

On Discourse, the focus is more on community moderation. However, they do offer various moderation tools, including the ability to move posts to an existing topic, merge with other posts, or delete.

Members who’ve displayed consistently positive behaviors earn likes and badges. Furthermore, they can help to maintain and moderate content and resolve disputes.

There are three pricing plan options:

  • Standard: $100 per month
  • Business: $300 per month
  • Enterprise: You’ll need to contact them for a custom quote

Conclusion

A lot has changed in the world of online communication. Yahoo Groups was once a popular pioneer of online communities, but it’s closed down, like many other trailblazers. Thankfully, there are plenty of advanced Yahoo alternatives to choose from.

Whatever you decide on, I hope you found the above information helpful.

Can you think of other alternative online groups that are great for building connections?

The post 5 Alternatives to Yahoo Groups appeared first on Neil Patel.

km-import

What Facebook Watch Means for Marketers

It was only a matter of time.

Just like Amazon, YouTube, and Netflix before it, Facebook officially entered the video streaming game with Facebook Watch.

What is Facebook Watch, and what does it mean for you your marketing strategy?

What is Facebook Watch?

Launched in 2017 to select users in the U.S. via mobile, desktop, and TV apps, Facebook Watch is the company’s entrée into episodic streaming video.

Videos range from mini-documentaries to live sporting events, courtesy of partnerships with Major League Baseball. There was a set group of publishers at launch, but the company opened it up to other creators.

How Does Facebook Watch Make Money?

Facebook Watch is monetized through ad breaks. The producing partners earn 55% of ad break revenue while Facebook keeps 45%.

what does facebook watch look like.

What Makes Facebook Watch Different From Other Streaming Services?

The streaming video space is undeniably crowded, so Facebook had to find a way to make Facebook Watch stand out. There are three main ways Facebook Watch is different, all of which bode well for its staying power.

  1. Original video content: Viewed through a new tab called “Watch,” the content is mostly exclusive to Facebook Watch and can’t be seen anywhere else (with the exception of the live content available through deals like the one with Major League Baseball).
  2. Free: Because it’s monetized through ad breaks, Facebook Watch is totally free for the viewing audience. All they have to do is be logged in to their Facebook account.
  3. Personalized: Finally, and perhaps most importantly, Facebook Watch is hyper-personalized in a way no streaming platform has been before.

The New “Social Viewing” Trend: Facebook Watch Alternatives

Facebook Watch’s personalization takes advantage of everything users already love about the platform – it’s personal, and it’s social. People love getting recommendations for the things they love, and they love sharing those things with friends.

  • Facebook Watch provides personalized recommendations in its Discover tab, using fun, Facebook-esque categories like “Most Talked About,” “What’s Making People Laugh,” and “Shows Your Friends Are Watching.”
  • Subscribing to a show instantly connects Facebook users with fellow fans through show-linked Groups.
  • During a show, Facebook users get access to a live comment section where they can chat with other viewers and friends in real-time.

All these features indicate a strong focus on social viewing. While the social viewing trend is new, we have seen it before.

For example, Tumblr launched its video chat service Cabana (which is now defunct). The app functioned like a Tumblr/FaceTime hybrid, where users could see friends’ reactions in real-time as they all watch a video together.

cabana video app, facebook watch alternative.

However, Tumblr didn’t have the massive audience that Facebook enjoys.

Social viewing veteran YouTube made some changes, too. YouTube added in-app chat to its Android and iOS apps.

Previously, users could only share videos out to other apps, such as Twitter or text message, but now conversations can also happen natively on YouTube.

The interface is similar to Google Hangouts and appears to be YouTube’s answer to the messaging functionality offered by Instagram and Snapchat.

youtube in chat messanger similar to facebook watch

When multiple social media platforms follow suit, it’s a sure sign a new trend is here to stay. Social viewing is not going away, so how can marketers take advantage of it?

What Facebook Watch Means for Marketers

Facebook has 1.82 billion users who sign on to the site every day. For anyone who’s wondering, their monthly active users just hit 2.7 billion.

Either number means Watch is a major initiative at Facebook that marketers should not ignore. Facebook plans to integrate Watch episodes into the News Feed, and the company has a track record of using the News Feed to drive new features to success.

Here are four ways Facebook Watch is changing the game for marketers.

1. Ads Will Likely Become More Important for Facebook Advertisers

In an increasingly internet-marketing-savvy world, people are getting better at tuning ads out. Google actually gave up on its right sidebar ads and removed them.

Fortunately for advertisers, Facebook Watch holds great promise.

There’s a lot of noise in a Facebook user’s News Feed, so it’s not always easy for your ad to grab attention. With video, you have a captive audience who is stuck watching your ad. They can’t simply scroll down their feed to get away from it.

Longer videos will increase the effectiveness of ad break and mid-roll ads. If Facebook adds social engagement functionality within the ads themselves, such as reactions and sharing, they’ll perform even better.

Traditional television has been on a downward trend for years. Facebook Watch is accelerating the shift of ad dollars from TV to digital and mobile.

2. Facebook Watch Gives Influencers and Social Creators a Powerful Channel

As promising as the ad breaks are, it’s notable that Facebook Watch publishers can opt-out of them entirely.

Instead, they can make money through product placement, as long as they tag the sponsor for transparency. This has huge implications for budding videographers, actors, singers, and documentarians who hope to fund their growth via influencer partnerships.

The rise of the influencer owes much of its success in large part to YouTube. But Facebook Watch could be even more fruitful for influencers.

For instance, Facebook Watch opens up viewing patterns that are less search-oriented than YouTube. Users who watch or subscribe to programs will see those appear in their News Feed along with the other daily updates from friends, rather than having to go to YouTube to check for the latest uploads.

This gives influencers the opportunity to increase engagement through video, as fan affinity with influencers will become even more important.

3. Facebook Live Is Important for Brands

Facebook Live, along with Instagram Live, quickly gained popularity with brands.

Facebook Live allows brands to humanize themselves and connect with fans in real-time. The live shows and events on Facebook Watch do the same.

What resonates with your fans? Do they prefer a structured video format, or something more casual? How often do they want to watch?

Daily shows in particular could be a goldmine for brands. The frequency keeps users coming back, ensuring a lucrative return for product placement or ad breaks. That consistent association with their favorite show could help consumers fall in love with your brand.

4. Facebook Watch Changes the Game for Video Content Marketers

Facebook emphasized the community aspect of Facebook Watch in their official announcement:

“Watching video on Facebook has the incredible power to connect people, spark conversation and foster community,” said Daniel Danker, Facebook’s product director. “On Facebook, videos are discovered through friends and bring communities together.”

Three of the four bullet points in the release mentioned connection and bringing people together. Even the few seed shows Facebook funded are touted as “community-oriented” video series.

It makes sense: The sense of community is what led people to fall in love with the platform in the first place.

Because of this, Facebook Watch videos tend to see higher sharing and social engagement rates than other platforms.

The current list of Facebook Watch programming focuses on reality shows, mini-documentaries, and sports coverage – aligning it more with YouTube than the heavy dramas and comedies of other streaming networks.

But while YouTube optimized for how-to and short-form content, Facebook Watch expands opportunities to longer-form videos as well as pure entertainment and passively consumed content.

Video content marketers should create content that fits into those categories and fosters real-time community discussion. Perhaps for the first time, content should be created with the platform in mind first and foremost. Successful videos on Facebook Watch will encourage and facilitate real-time conversations.

Conclusion

Facebook Watch is great for all marketers. The people on your paid social team will enjoy seeing more eyeballs on their ads, and the organic folks will get more “authentic” opportunities to align themselves with influencers.

More and more, brands want to be seen as friends, not corporations. Facebook Watch lets them do just that. If you are ready to give it a try (or improve your strategy), check out this advanced guide to Facebook Watch.

Have you tried Facebook Watch? What results have you seen?

The post What Facebook Watch Means for Marketers appeared first on Neil Patel.

SEO

How to Generate Leads From YouTube Live

YouTube Live is a vastly underutilized tool that should be in every marketer’s arsenal.

It’s easy to look at your Live video options and think that Facebook is enough, but that just isn’t so — not to say that Facebook Live isn’t important. It definitely is.

But people watch billions of hours of YouTube every day.

That means not using YouTube Live is like holding onto a winning lotto ticket until it expires. You wouldn’t do that, right?

Live video is such an effective marketing method that I believe everyone should be using it.

So I’m going to show you how to set up and effectively use YouTube Live to grow your business and convert viewers into leads.

The good news is that you can start producing effective Live content in a matter of minutes.

But first, you need to understand just how powerful Live video can be for your business.

Why Use YouTube Live Video?

Live video has been around for a few years, but many marketers still stick to the “tried-and-true” digital marketing methods like blog posts and social publishing.

This means they’re missing out on a huge stream of leads when they neglect live-streaming services.

80% of people would rather watch a video than read a blog post.

new york magazine stats about live broadcasts youtube leads guide

You’ll also notice that 70% would prefer to watch your Live video on YouTube.

So why aren’t you using it yet?

Most likely, you’ve found that YouTube Live isn’t quite the plug-and-play system that services like Facebook offer.

Facebook is easy!

Your audience is there, so it definitely doesn’t get any hate from me.

But you haven’t tapped into that 70% demographic yet, so you can see where the room for growth is.

There are a few more steps involved in YouTube broadcasts, and then comes the problem of figuring out how to actually drive leads.

Let’s start by getting you set up, and then I’ll show you how to start increasing your Youtube leads.

How to Use YouTube’s Live Video

To get started, log into your YouTube account and find your Live dashboard.

If you haven’t created a YouTube account yet, this guide will walk you through it.

Once you login, look for the Youtube broadcast button — it looks like a camera with a plus sign.

login youtube leads

This will take you to YouTube studio — but you might not have access to the feature if you haven’t verified your account.

how to get youtube leads by verifiying your account.

Use your phone number to get your verification code through text or an automated call.

Then enter the 6-digit code:

how to get more leads on youtube verify phone number screen shot

Success!

Once you verify, you’ll see your YouTube Live dashboard.

Don’t be overwhelmed.

There’s a lot of information to digest and optimize, so I want to walk you through the most important steps before we get into the tactics you’ll be using.

There are three ways to go live: mobile, webcam, and encoder. Here’s the difference between the different YouTube broadcast types:

different youtube broadcast types to get youtube leads

This is a step-by-step guide to setting up your stream and going live.

You’ll start with encoding software, which is the biggest difference between YouTube and other popular streaming services. You need to find a third-party software to go Live.

Encoders compress your video and audio into a format that’s compatible with YouTube’s platform.

The added benefit is that this makes your content available to as wide an audience as possible. Whether your audience is on mobile, desktop, or tablet, they can see you!

YouTube has a recommended list of encoders that will allow you to stream everything from your Wii U to your smartphone.

get youtube leads encoder examples.

Note to go live on mobile, you’ll need at least 100 subscribers — if you have less, then you’ll want to choose webcam.

If your goal is to stream some of your gaming, you’ll need to use an encoder rather than a live screen share on your PC.

The encoder you use depends on what you need, and you have plenty to choose from.

For example, let’s say you want to record an interview-style video from your webcam. Simple enough.

You’ll want to use an encoder like the open-source system calledOBS.

youtube broadcast encoder obs example  get youtube leads

It’s easy, intuitive, and free.

There are more flexible options out there, but this is a good introduction to YouTube Live streaming.

A paid alternative would be something like VidBlasterX. Depending on what version you get, you’ll be able to stream in HD and have access to robust community support.

But let’s install OBS to keep things moving. Download it and go through the typical installation process.

Then click through a few more boxes until you get to one that looks like this:

download obs to get youtube leads

Make sure you optimize for streaming. If you accidentally click the other option, it’s not the end of the world, but you want to make sure you’re ready to go with as little fuss as possible.

The next window to look for is one that looks like this:

download encoder for youtube broadcasts get youtube leads

You’ll need to make sure you set your stream type to Streaming Services.

The service you’re using is YouTube, obviously. And you’ll want to make sure you’re on the Primary YouTube ingest server.

Once you’ve settled all that, it’s time to click back to your YouTube channel and acquire your Stream Key from the Live Stream dashboard.

stream key for youtube broadcast get youtube leads

You’ll notice that my Stream Key is protected, and there’s a good reason for that.

You can actually stream on any channel you have the key for, so make sure you keep your key protected.
Now, you’ve set up your encoder, but you’re not quite ready to stream just yet.

You still need to add audio and video sources.

Otherwise, your audience will be watching a blank live stream while you’re fumbling to figure things out.

So, how do you add sources?

That’s easy. At the bottom of your encoder, you’ll see a toolbar that looks like this:

get youtube leads encoder bar

You’ll want to click on the plus icon in the box to add your audio and video sources. The results will look like this:

audio video options encoder youtube broadcast

You’ll also be able to share a variety of items like images, text, or even screen share.

Before you click play, though, you’ll want to make sure your live stream’s information is optimized for your viewers.

Go back to your YouTube Dashboard and scroll down until you see this:

go live on youtube broadcast get youtube leads

Input the proper title, information description, and set the category appropriately.

You likely won’t need to fiddle with the advanced settings just yet, so leave those be for now.

Now, after all that, you’re ready to get started!

On the right-hand side of the encoder toolbar, you’ll see a small menu:

youtube broadcast encoder tool bar screenshot get youtube leads

The first option is to start streaming.

Click it, and then head back to YouTube.

If you’ve done everything right, you’ll see this:

youtube go live tool bar

That means you’re live streaming!

Share the link on your Dashboard to watch your audience grow.

How to Gain YouTube Leads with Live Video

You’ve set up YouTube Live, but now you need a strategy and content that will convert viewers into leads.

You still need to create actionable content, or else you’re just wasting your time.

Any content you create relies on the resources you pour into it; video is no different.

Plus,creating videos is an effective way to establish thought leadership, teach users about your product, and boost social proof.

But how do you do that with Live Video?

YouTube Broadcast Option 1: Host a Celebration

Who says business has to be boring? You have plenty of things to celebrate!

Maybe it’s your 10,000th customer, you just hired your 10th employee, or you’ve been in business for ten years.

Whatever the occasion, you can use Live video to spread the celebration to the world.

How does this work?

It’s pretty formulaic, so I’ll share it with you and then show you an example:

  1. Build excitement with announcements and social sharing.
  2. Plan the event. Coordinate what you want to say and share to keep everything engaging.
  3. Build a buzz. Share stories, failures, and successes. Build rapport with your audience.
  4. Broadcast. Go live!
  5. Post the highlights. Share your video in the following days and weeks with your followers.

Take this example from Results Fitness.

They built excitement with posts like this:

results fitness youtube broadcast example celebration get youtube leads

They even shared a four-part series of posts with success stories from their gym members over the years.

Then they went live for the pre-party before their official flash mob to build excitement.

The results?

They saw an immediate increase in membership sign-ups following the event. Pretty cool, right?

Just from sharing a big celebration, they were able to grow their bottom line and push into their 17th year with a win.

YouTube Broadcast Option 2: Be Interruptive

If your audience is used to reading your blog posts a Live video will come as an interruption to the pattern you’ve created.

If you’re doing the same thing every time, people get bored.

When they get bored, your competition will find them and steal them from you.

Instead, catch your followers by surprise with a live stream.

You’ll grab their attention like never before. You can also provide little touches, like including the office dog in your video, to keep the momentum going.

A great example of this is when Jason Carr, a news anchor from FOX 2 in Detroit, started live streaming from the back of a Cadillac on his way to a new job.

Only, his audience didn’t know he had a new job yet! As Carr said it, he was on his way to “parts unknown.”

It wasn’t until later that his audience realized that he was walking into a new job to meet his coworkers.

So use Live video to be interruptive and spice it up this week.

YouTube Broadcast Option 3: Engage Viewers

When you go Live, no matter the reason, do your best to interact and respond to comments.

I once watched a Live stream where a trusted professional was explaining a very technical and widely-discussed topic.

But he ignored the comments.

It was so infuriating to watch all the questions and inquiries go unnoticed and unaddressed. It made me want to turn the video off.

What if one of those questions leads to a sale?

Even if you need a moderator to help pose questions, it’s worth it to engage with your audience.

Or you can promise to go back and answer any unanswered questions after the fact.

Your goal is to keep the conversation flowing. Do that, and you’ll find yourself with the opportunity to demonstrate your knowledge, workspace, and engage in future Live events.

YouTube Broadcast Option 4: Get Personal

Your audience wants to connect with you. That means your Live video shouldn’t be stuffy and formal.

Find ways to be open and honest about mistakes, or show them something cool about what you do every day.

Callaway Golf has a great example of a very personal Live video. They decided to live stream a walkthrough of the office of the famous golfer, Arnold Palmer.

They showed off some really cool memorabilia like this honorary jersey and an entire wall stuffed with golf clubs.

callaway golf youtube live broadcast get youtube leads

What a cool way to keep things personal, right? Keeping it real will help your audience listen to what you have to say.

Being open and honest about mistakes you’ve made will make people want to engage with you more.

Statements like “I tried to only rely on blogging, and it nearly killed my business. I want to share with you…” are golden.

You’re showing vulnerability. Your audience will love the highs and lows, and ask you to share more.

YouTube Broadcast Option 5: Offer Private Access

Our final way to drum up interest in your YouTube Live event is to share something so cool that your audience just has to be a part of it.

Like, send a rocket into space.

spacex launch youtube broadcast get youtube leads

SpaceX has taken to using YouTube Live services to broadcast their highly-anticipated rocket launches, including sending Elon Musk’s Tesla Roadster into space.

There’s nothing more exciting than getting to T-minus one minute and waiting for a rocket to blast into space.

Why not give people direct access to that event?

To make it even better, SpaceX includes a simple timeline to show you how far into the launch the rocket is.

timeline of youtube broadcast from tesla get youtube leads

Isn’t that just awesome?

I realize you probably won’t be launching any rockets into space.

But you do have your own exclusives and cool features that you can give your audience access to.

Start a stir about your new product launch, or offer exclusive info and require an RSVP from your followers.

Do what you can to create a community around your Live event and metaphorically boost your brand into space.

Then go Live and offer valuable, actionable content. Rinse and repeat.

YouTube Broadcast Option 6: Call Your Audience to Action

If you’re getting traffic, why stop there? Keep the momentum by asking your audience to do something.

I noticed when I was watching the SpaceX Live video that just before launch, when viewership would be at its peak, a small animation popped up that looked like this:

CTA on youtube broadcast get youtube leads

At the height of anticipation, they were asking me to Like and Subscribe! It was perfect, and I had to share.

There are plenty of ways to call your audience to action, though.

One great trick I like to use is to have a specialized landing page for my Live video.

I’ll invite my viewers to visit that specific URL to get something in return, like a consultation or helpful guide.

I also share that link in the video description and the chat section, just to make sure they can find the right link.

I do everything I can to keep momentum in a forward direction. If people like your content, they will want more.

Keep your audience moving with well-placed calls to action.

Conclusion

If you’re not using YouTube Live to generate leads, you’re missing out on a powerful tool for growing your brand.

Even if you’re using other live-streaming services like Facebook, you’re failing to tap into the millions of viewers that flock to YouTube every day.

This guide will help you set up YouTube Live and start streaming in a matter of minutes.

Use your new live-streaming capabilities to celebrate with your community, and remember to keep your persona approachable and honest. Disrupt your normal flow of content creation, or give your fans access to an exclusive or memorable event.

Above all, don’t forget your call to action. Your audience needs direction, and it’s up to you to give it to them.

What’s your favorite way to generate leads when you go Live?

The post How to Generate Leads From YouTube Live appeared first on Neil Patel.

SEO

Why You Should Audit Your YouTube Channel

How do you ensure your YouTube channel is reaching the right audience and helping you achieve your marketing objectives? By performing a YouTube audit.

With over 2 billion active users, YouTube is among the world’s most popular social media platforms. Roughly 73 percent of US adults have a YouTube account, which means it’s an excellent opportunity for marketers to generate new leads and promote content.

But, if you want to make the most of this channel, you need to ensure your content is high-quality, targeted, and optimized.

Why Your YouTube Channel Needs an Audit

YouTube isn’t just a social media platform. It’s also a highly sophisticated search engine, just like Google.

In other words, you need an effective YouTube search engine optimization or “SEO” strategy to maximize your chances of:

  • Appearing in video search results
  • Reaching the right audience
  • Converting users into subscribers and, ultimately, paying customers

If you’re totally new to SEO, you might find this video helpful.

A YouTube audit reveals how well your channel is performing and whether it’s helping you achieve your business objectives.

Among other things, it will help you understand:

  • Which videos have the most views
  • If people watch your videos all the way through
  • How many subscribers you have
  • Whether your videos appear in search results

Keep in mind that over 500 hours of new content appears on YouTube every minute, which means there’s fierce competition. Everything on your channel should be geared towards standing out and providing value.

Roughly 50 percent of shoppers use online videos to decide between different products. What’s more, a whopping 90 percent of users discover new brands just by browsing their favorite YouTube channels.

That means there’s a huge opportunity to find new customers and build brand trust— if you provide users with valuable content. A YouTube audit is the best way to check if you’re leveraging your channel to its fullest potential.

Ready to overhaul your channel and ensure you’re getting the most from your video marketing strategy? Let’s get started.  

YouTube Audit Phase 1: Analyze Your KPI Performance

You need to understand how your channel is performing right now. This is where KPIs, or key performance indicators, come in.

What exactly are KPIs, though? Well, they’re metrics that help you assess how effectively it’s generating results for your business. On YouTube, that might include watch times, views, impressions, and clicks.

With KPI data at your fingertips, you can take targeted action to improve your content, increase your subscriber base, and boost your YouTube rankings. For example, you can track where your viewer traffic comes from and your most popular videos.  

You can access these KPIs through YouTube analytics, which is the platform’s metrics tool.

  • Log into your YouTube account
  • Click on your account avatar at the top right-hand corner
  • Choose “YouTube Studio” from the menu options to access the analytics center
YouTube Audit KPI Metrics

At a glance, you can see exactly how your channel is performing and access specific KPIs for more advanced information.

YouTube Audit Analyze your KPI performance

Pay special attention to which videos are doing well — and which ones aren’t. Consider adding all your videos to a spreadsheet you can edit as you work through the optimization steps.

OK, so stage one is completed.

You have your KPI breakdown, and now it’s time to take action and improve your performance. Ready to move on to stage two? Let’s check it out.    

YouTube Audit Phase 2: Make Updates

This phase is where you get to work. Keep in mind that not everyone needs to work through every step on this list. It all depends on your KPI analysis and your specific business objectives.

In phase two of your YouTube audit, we will:

  • Reaffirm your brand message
  • Update and optimize your video descriptions
  • Organize your videos, so they’re easy for users to find
  • Include relevant, engaging CTAs where appropriate
  • Cut old content if it doesn’t serve your brand message

I’ll walk you through each step.

Consider Your Channel’s Branding During the YouTube Audit

Branding is a great place to start your audit. Why? Because YouTube is a visual platform.

Color can boost your brand recognition by up to 80 percent, so it’s crucial you spend time designing unique visual branding to stand out from your competitors.

How do you do this? First, establish your brand identity and create a clear, consistent marketing strategy. Consistency can improve your revenue by around 23 percent, so ensure your messaging translates well across all platforms before moving forward.

Once you’ve established your identity, you’re ready to begin, starting with the highlight video. This video showcases what your channel stands for. It shows users what people can expect if they watch your content.

In other words, choose your headline video wisely. Here’s a good example.

Tasty is a home cooking channel. The highlight video is a product review for a home air fryer, which speaks to their target audience.

YouTube Audit Consider Branding Your Channel

What else can we say about Tasty? Two things. They use a colorful, branded avatar, and an eye-catching channel banner.

YouTube Audit Visual Marketing Brand Design

Google recommends a minimum banner size of 2048 x 1152 px, with your aspect ratio set to 16:9. You can use platforms like Canva to resize and optimize both your avatar and your banner.

Remember, successful marketers know how important it is to consider branding from a user’s perspective, so look at your channel objectively.

Remove or Replace Offensive or Off-Brand Videos

If content doesn’t serve your marketing strategy or is not consistent with your branding, delete it!

Do any videos feel “off” or outdated? Are they inaccurate or wrong for your channel? Simply remove them and give your channel an instant uplift.

Here’s how:

  • In YouTube studio, choose “videos” from the left-hand menu
  • Scroll to the video you’re deleting and click the “delete forever” option
YouTube Audit Remove Offensive Videos

Just make sure to update links if any of your content sends users to those videos.

Update Metadata

When it comes to a highly competitive platform like YouTube, metadata is your friend. Metadata is the collection of words and phrases you use to describe a video’s content.

Examples include:

  • The video’s title
  • Any HTML tags you use to tell YouTube’s algorithm what the video is about
  • The description, or snippet you provide in the description box

Remember, YouTube is a search engine. It uses keywords, or key phrases, to connect users with the search results they’re looking for. Using the right keywords in your metadata can seriously increase the chances of ranking in search results and finding the right audience.

Here’s an example. If someone searches for “curling iron product review,” here’s the first result:

YouTube Audit Update Metadata

You’ll notice the channel creator uses “curling iron review” in the title, and it’s in the thumbnail, too.

There’s also mention of curling irons in the description and caption, so all signs point to this being a curling iron video:

YouTube Audit Is metadata important

Every video should have a relevant title and meaningful description to help users decide if it’s what they’re looking for.

How do you edit your own metadata? It’s simple.

First, go back to the YouTube Studio and open “content” from the left-hand menu. You’ll see a list of all your videos.

Next, click the little square to the left of your video and select the “edit” button when it pops up.

YouTube Audit and Metadata

Work through each option, starting with the title.

Optimize Content for Chosen Keywords

Keywords are the search terms users type in when they’re looking for videos. If you don’t use the right keywords in your metadata, people won’t find your videos.

That said, how do you know which keywords to include? It all starts with keyword research.

Let’s work through an example.

Say I have a video on how to make chocolate chip cookies. I start by Googling some terms I might search to see which ones bring up video results. (This is also a great way to find inspiration for new ideas!)

If I search “chocolate chip cookies,” or “how to make chocolate chip cookies,” Google shows me YouTube videos.

“How to make perfect chocolate chip cookies” is the top result, so including “how to” might help me rank higher in YouTube rather than just calling it a chocolate chip cookie video.

YouTube Audit Optimize Content For Keywords

On the other hand, if I search for something general, like “baking,” I don’t see any videos. This tells me to use a more specific keyword.

Next, use Ubersuggest to check:

  • How often people search for your chosen keyword
  • Which other search terms appear most often

This helps you identify which terms to use in your title and description. Once you’ve identified your keywords, you can optimize your videos.

Here’s how:

  • Start by renaming your video with the chosen keyword. (Make sure to use it naturally)
  • Write a short description and include your keyword near the start so it shows up in the preview.
  • Use other keywords as meta tags and in the description. (If it makes sense to do so)
  • Customize your thumbnail to include the keyword.

Organize Videos Into Playlists

If someone likes your video, chances are they want to see similar content. This is where playlists come in handy.

YouTube playlists are like shelves in a physical store. You group similar videos together in a playlist, or shelf, and visitors browse through your collection.

Here’s why they’re a great idea.

  • If someone likes one video in your playlist, they’ll watch more. This engagement counts toward your total “watch time.” The higher your watch time, the higher you rank on YouTube.
  • You can increase views on lesser-watched videos by including them in a popular playlist.

Want to set up a YouTube playlist? You can create and manage a playlist in YouTube studio.

Make sure to use keywords in the title to increase your visibility in the search results, and only include relevant videos in each playlist to keep your messaging consistent.

Optimize CTAs

The best way to generate leads from your YouTube channel? Include direct call-to-actions or CTAs.

CTAs direct people take action, such as:

  • Subscribe to your channel
  • Visit your website
  • Follow you on social media
  • Comment on videos
  • Download an ebook or subscribe to an email list

Here’s an example from one of my own videos. As you can see, I’m using two CTAs.

  • I invite people to click through to my website to learn more about traffic generation.
  • I also direct them to watch another video.
YouTube Audit Optimize CTAs with Ubersuggest

See how CTAs might generate more leads and increase your channel engagement?

Placement’s important, too. Here’s what you should know.

  • Include subtle CTAs like “leave a comment below” throughout the video to increase user engagement.
  • Use YouTube cards to link to other videos or include different CTAs throughout the video, like polls.
  • Place a CTA at the end. If someone enjoys your content, they’re more likely to subscribe or visit your website at this point. You can use YouTube’s end screen feature to do this.

You can find these tools in the video manager section of your YouTube studio.

YouTube Audit Optimize CTAs

Watch All Your Videos and Make YouTube Audit Recommendations

Now it is time to implement everything you’ve learned. Watch every video from start to finish, noting problems and changes you want to make.

Here’s what to consider.

  • Relevance: Is the video on-brand, accurate, and relevant?
  • Metadata: Are you using keywords in the title, description, and tags? Have you optimized your thumbnails?
  • Quality: Could the video be more content-rich? Or is it too long?
  • Playlist: Does this video belong in a playlist?
  • CTA: Did you include an engaging CTA at the end? If the video is old, could you update the CTA to a more relevant one?

Conclusion

The bottom line? Just because you have YouTube subscribers and people watch your videos doesn’t mean you’re using your channel effectively.

Remember, YouTube is more than a social networking site. It’s a whole search engine all of its own, so you need to keep basic search optimization strategies in mind if you want to stand out.

Remove outdated content, tweak your meta descriptions and CTAs, and ensure you’re sending out a strong, consistent brand message. Check out Ubersuggest if you need some more help with keyword research and optimization.

Have you performed a YouTube audit on your channel? What did you discover?  

The post Why You Should Audit Your YouTube Channel appeared first on Neil Patel.

SEO

Twitter for SEO: How To Use Twitter to Boost…

Twitter is has a massive audience, making it a great platform for advertising products and services, or sharing your content.

If you aren’t using Twitter to boost your brand, you’re seriously missing out.

According to Statista, Twitter has amassed more than 330 million active monthly users.

twitter for SEO twitter users

But there’s a better reason to build your brand on Twitter, besides the capability to reach the large, diverse audiences it provides.

Search engines actually use social signals from social media to rank your website. Likes, shares, and comments can have a massive impact on SEO.

According to cognitive SEO, the higher the average number of shares, comments, and likes a brand has, the higher their website rank actually is.

social signals Twitter for SEO

That’s crazy, right?

If you use Twitter correctly, you can boost your brand’s search engine rankings just by posting on the platform.

That’s because Twitter lets you build a large following and gain the attention you need to boost brand awareness.

More brand awareness = more searches about your company.

You might be wondering, “Where do I start?”

Exposure is key. For starters, you need to promote Twitter trends, your tweets, and your account to get your name out there to as many people as possible.

Twitter for SEO Tip #1: Promote, Promote, Promote

Twitter ads are a surefire way to gain tons of visibility, generate leads, and grow your audience. Therefore, promoting content on Twitter can help you rank higher.

The best part is that you can target specific, custom audiences.

One brand that is currently using an effective Twitter strategy is Rothy’s, a sustainable shoe company. Their Twitter content is on-brand, impactful, and engaging.

Rothy’s shoes are not only made from recycled materials, but they’re also machine washable. And the brand doesn’t let their Twitter followers forget it.

twitter SEO, twitter trending example rothys

One way to enjoy the same success as Rothy’s is to promote your own trends or “tags.”

Promote Twitter Trends

On Twitter, trending or “viral” topics appear on the Discover tab, within the Twitter app, and on the left side of the page.

When you promote a trend, it will appear in those locations.

twitter trends example

The more people that use the tag, the more exposure you’ll gain.

Promote Tweets

Promoted tweets are just regular tweets that appear for users who don’t follow you on Twitter.

The only difference is that Twitter will add a tag to these tweets that read, “Promoted by (your brand’s name.)”

twitter for SEO twitter ad example

Users can like or retweet them like any other tweet, but you have to pay to have them show up in a targeted audience’s timeline.

Promote Accounts

Promoted accounts put your entire Twitter account in front of users you’ve targeted to help grow your audience.

As many as 85% of people say that they find new businesses on Twitter through promoted accounts.

Promoted accounts appear within people’s timelines in the “Who to follow” section and search results.

twitter for SEO promote twitter accounts ad example

A small tag will appear under your account name that says, “Promoted.”

You shouldn’t just be promoting your account, tweets, and tags to targeted audiences, though. Be sure to add targeted keywords so Google is more likely to recognize your tweets.

Twitter for SEO Tip #2: Use Targeted Keywords

You optimize your website for the keywords you want to rank for.

Why not do the same with your Twitter account? Add keywords right in your Twitter bio, for example, so that Google associates your account with relevant keywords.

Use these same keywords within your tweets or as a caption alongside images you post.

Users who are searching for these terms on Twitter will then find your page. Your tweets will get more exposure, which will boost your SEO.

The best part is that keyword searches on Twitter account for misspelling, synonyms, slang, and more, just like on Google.

If a user searches for “love pizza,” broad match results might include, “loving pizza” or, “I love pizza.”

You know which tweets, tags, accounts, and keywords you want to promote. But which audiences should you promote them to?

Twitter for SEO Tip #3: Select Your Twitter Audience

You can target Twitter ads to certain audiences so they appear in search and in their timeline.

You can select additional audience features and add keywords to any ad campaign. You can even import multiple keywords.

twitter for seo choose your audience example

Campaigns will show up in both search and timeline by default.

You can customize where tweets appear if you prefer one over the other, though.

And adding tailored audiences only takes a few clicks.

You can upload your own list or you can put a code on your website to collect visitors, purchasers, or downloaders.

It’s important to note that uploading your own list can take up to three hours.

twitter for SEO how to upload lists

In addition to promoting your content, using targeted audiences, and selecting a custom audience, you should also use relevant hashtags.

Twitter for SEO Tip #4: Use Relevant Hashtags

There are several ways to use relevant hashtags.

You can be on the lookout for trending Twitter topics you can use to generate more attention.

With this one, make sure that you research and understand what a tag means before you use it.

For instance, you might not want to use the tag “#WhyIStayed” to promote your pizza, since that tag originated as a way for people to share stories about domestic violence.

You can also create a branded hashtag (that you can later promote) as Toyota has done with the tag “#LetsGoPlaces.”

It’s right in the company’s Twitter bio.

twitter trending, twitter SEO toyota letsgoplaces example

By creating a branded tag, you’ll encourage other Twitter users to use the same hashtag on posts that they share featuring your brand.

twitter for SEO example #letsgoplaces

Rothy’s has accomplished the same kind of brand awareness with the tag “#LiveSeamlessly.”

twitter for SEO rothys example #liveseamlessly

You can even find out which hashtags influencers are using with the help of a few tools.

Like Twitonomy, which will show you a list of the top ten hashtags for the industry influencers you search for.

twitter for SEO how to find top hashtags

Finding trending hashtags in your industry at any given time is important, too.

Hashtagify is a great tool to try out since it will reveal the top 10 hashtags related to the keyword you search for.

For example, if you want to see the most popular tags related to the word “SEO,” type it into the search bar.

The site will show you the tag’s recent popularity and trend information.

twitter for SEO tools hastagifyme

From there, you can see a full list of related hashtags.

twitter for SEO find related hashtags

You can even view a list of top influencers related to that specific tag.

twitter for seo find top influencers

If that isn’t enough, look at Twitter’s tailored trends for more ideas.

Twitter for SEO Tip #5: Check Out Twitter Trending Topics

Tailored trends, which Twitter introduced in 2012, give you a list of topics based on your location and the users you follow.

Twitter trending topics can help you stay current on topics that are important to your audience. Keep an eye on these lists and make sure that your selections are as close to the audiences you’re targeting.

To change your location, just click on the “Change” button.

twitter trends example Twitter for SEO

Then, enter the region/country and city that you want to see.

twitter trends set location

That’s all there is to following Twitter trends!

Now, if you aren’t already adding images and video to your tweets, you should. They will give you more exposure than tweets without them, which is great for SEO.

Twitter for SEO Tip #6: Add Images and Video

According to WordStream, tweets with images receive 18% more clicks than tweets without them.

More clicks = better rankings.

Make sure that you only include images that are relevant, engaging, and high-quality.

Mr. Peanut’s account using this image is a great example:

twitter for SEO tips use images example mr Peanut

Video views can have the same effect as images.

According to Insivia, 82% of Twitter users watch video content on the platform.

Add a short video to your next tweet to promote your product, brand, or service, like this one from SMILF.

twitter for SEO example SMILF

Giveaways and polls are another great way to interact with followers, find new followers, and most important of all, gain attention.

Twitter for SEO Tip #7: Run Giveaways and Polls

One simple way to leverage Twitter to boost your search engine rankings is to run a giveaway based on retweets.

To enter, people complete an action, like retweeting one of your tweets.

You can include a link to your website or your most recent blog post in the tweet to boost that page’s rankings.

Or, just add a branded hashtag like the Pittsburgh Steelers did in a Twitter giveaway.

twitter for SEO giveaway example Pittsburgh steelers

Be sure to offer the winner a prize and announce to your audience the date that you will be choosing the winner.

Running polls is just as easy as running a giveaway, if not easier.

BuzzFeed has even created an entire Twitter account dedicated to polls, which currently has 119,000 followers.

You can use polls to settle a debate or interact with your followers by asking questions, like Airbnb.

twitter for SEO airbnb poll example

The engagement you’ll gain from giveaways and polls will boost likes and retweets, improving your overall search rankings.

Remember how I said to include a link to your website when running giveaways? You should add those to regular tweets too, especially if you post blog content regularly.

Twitter for SEO Tip #8: Share Links

The power of links on Twitter is huge. Sharing them can maximize the reach of your content and web pages.

Since Google recognizes links, tweeting URLs is a quick way to use the power of Twitter to boost your rankings.

That’s one of the reasons I share links regularly to promote my new blog posts.

twitter for SEO tips example from Neil Patel

By sharing links, you’ll direct and drive traffic right to your site, which Google will love.

I like to use a URL shortener like Bitly to optimize my links before I share them so that my links don’t take up too much of my character count.

If you don’t have a blog, tweet out links to your products or web pages on a regular basis, like Free Radicals does.

twitter for SEO example of posting a product

Just be sure to share relevant and helpful information regularly, not just links to your products.

Twitter for SEO Tip #9: Tweet Consistently

You may think that more is better when it comes to tweeting.

But Google might actually see that approach as spam.

Plus, you don’t want to post too many tweets in a row to your followers, or you might annoy them into clicking that “unfollow” button.

Stagger tweets throughout the day and during times when your followers are the most active.

One tool that makes scheduling tweets easy and efficient is TweetDeck.

To schedule tweets, just write them out and select the date and time you want them to go live.

twitter for SEO tools tweetdeck

Another great Twitter management tool is Hootsuite. You can integrate other social media accounts with this tool, too.

You should also use a tool like Tweriod to determine when most of your followers are online. Buffer does this in their platform as well.

twitter for SEO twitter tools tweriod

Those are the best times for you to tweet because your tweets will get maximum exposure and attention.

Aside from following all the rules I’ve already named for boosting your rankings through Twitter, the most important one is to actually interact with your audience and reply to them.

Twitter for SEO Tip #10: Interact with Followers

This tip might seem obvious, but people often overlook it.

Imagine if Wendy’s hadn’t replied to Carter Wilkerson? #NuggsForCarter would never have become a trending topic that brought Wendy’s tons of publicity.

twitter for SEO tip interact with followers example

It can be hard to gain interactions on Twitter. Considering that users send over 350,000 tweets every minute, your tweets can easily get lost in the crowd.

That’s why you should engage with the people who are already talking to you to gain the attention of users who aren’t yet.

By creating personalized replies that relate to your specific industry and audience, you’ll build up tons of engagement for a boost on Google.

Encourage users to interact with you by posting relevant tweets, talking to industry-specific followers, mentioning other Twitter users, and responding to mentions quickly.

By interacting with followers, you’ll gain more retweets, mentions, and likes. And that means better rankings.

You should also reach out to influencers who can share your tweets, brand, and account with their audience.

Twitter for SEO Tip #11: Do Influencer Outreach

Since exposure on Twitter is the key to gaining likes and retweets, look for influencers who can give you exposure to their Twitter audience.

Twitter influencers can boost your credibility quickly because they’re already credible within your industry.

When an influencer talks about your brand, products, or services with their Twitter audience, their trusted followers will head to your page to check you out.

When trying to reach out to influencers, it can be helpful to:

  • Create meaningful content that is shareable and valuable to your industry
  • Develop long-term relationships with influencers rather than viewing them as people who can give you a quick, short-term boost
  • Retweet tweets from influencers with whom you want to engage
  • Collaborate with influencers by writing guest blog posts for them or allowing them to write guest posts on your blog

Several tools help find influencers in your industry if you aren’t sure who to reach out to.

One of them is Klear.

twitter for SEO tools influencer marketing Klear

Just select the social network you want to search through, the skill or keyword you’re interested in, and your location.

That’s it!

Another great tool for finding influencers in your industry is BuzzSumo.

Just search for a keyword, and you’ll find influencers that relate to that topic.

twitter for SEO tools BuzzSumo

The tool will even show you the page authority, domain authority, number of followers, retweet ratio, reply ratio, and the average number of retweets for each influencer within the results.

Conclusion

Twitter is an absolutely massive social network.

But you should never think of social networks as being isolated from search engines. It’s actually quite the opposite.

Google pulls tons of information from social sites like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

The more exposure your posts get (such as likes, comments, mentions, and retweets), the higher your search engine rankings will be.

That’s because Google uses social signs to recognize certain web pages and brands.

But you have to use Twitter in the right way.

It’s all about gaining exposure and attention. Start by promoting your account, your tweets, and your tags (sometimes known as trends).

Use targeted keywords on Twitter just like you do on your web pages and blog content. Google will recognize the keywords associated with your brand on Twitter, too.

Be sure to use relevant hashtags and research a trending tag before you tweet something that contains it.

Add images and video to your tweets to increase engagement, and be sure to share links back to your website to direct and drive traffic.

Tweet consistently and schedule out your tweets in advance to maintain a regular posting schedule. Post during times when your followers are most active.

Finally, don’t forget to engage with followers as often as possible and do some influencer outreach to get your name out there.

How do you use Twitter to boost your search engine rankings?

The post Twitter for SEO: How To Use Twitter to Boost Your Brand appeared first on Neil Patel.

SEO

10 Alternatives to Google Hangouts on Air

Google has an impressive resume of highly impactful, successful products. For instance, products like Google Search and Google Docs are used by millions around the world daily.

But no business is perfect. Even the most inspired innovation can fail if the market just doesn’t get into it. That’s why, over the last few years, Google has started to cut their losses and kill products that never quite hit the mark.

Google Play Music, Google Glass, and now Google Hangouts on Air have been retired, which may come as a surprise to users who relied on these products.

Don’t worry, though—it’s not all bad news! While you may have lost your favorite live-streaming service, there are plenty of Google Hangouts on Air replacements.

What Was Google Hangouts on Air?

Google Hangouts on Air launched in 2012, with Google adding live-streaming and community elements to their already existing Hangouts platform.

At the time, it made perfect sense. Effective live-streaming services weren’t particularly well-designed, so Google had a massive window to establish themselves in this space.

Their plan worked for a while. Google managed to get President Obama and Pope Francis to live-stream on its platform. Combine this with a list of solid support features, and Google Hangouts on Air managed to attract quite a few users.

This usage didn’t last long, though, as the market began to flood with competitors. Eventually, YouTube Live began to pick up steam, and live video was a more natural extension to that platform. Over time, it became clear Hangouts on Air should be absorbed by YouTube Live.

The 10 Alternatives to Google Hangouts on Air

Here’s a list of ten Google Hangouts on Air replacements on the market. Whether you’re live-streaming a podcast, a Q&A, or your cooking channel, you may find the tools you need here.

1. Be.Live

Google Hangouts on Air alternative Be.Live

Be.Live is a simple, reliable streaming tool. If you’re looking to expand your audience and reach, Be.Live lets you stream on sites like Facebook Live and YouTube Live.

You can sign up using your Facebook or Google accounts and quickly set up your stream in either space.

Beyond that, there’s a surprisingly deep level of customization in Be.Live’s presentation. When you start using Be.Live, you’ll be able to add your logo, custom frames, and branding colors to the stream.

If you want to go even further, you can add name tags and agendas to the lower third of the screen during your streams. You can even download your streams in HD once they’re over and upload them to Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Whether you’re looking to stream on Facebook Live or YouTube Live, Be.Live could be a strong Google Hangouts on Air replacement. You can try their basic plan for free to test it out yourself.

2. Discord

Google Hangouts on Air alternative Discord

Discord is often seen as a gaming-centric platform. While there are certainly plenty of gamers using this service, what makes Discord stand out is their emphasis on two things: community and transparency.

This is a live-streaming tool that works best if your community is already on Discord. This doesn’t mean it’s off-limits to you if your audience doesn’t already use it, but it may take some extra legwork to get people on board.

If your audience and products revolve around gaming, you want to try Discord. It lets streamers display the games they play and the activities they’re engaging in. This is a fantastic Google Hangouts on Air alternative if you’re looking for a way to engage with this demographic.

3. Zoom

Google Hangouts on Air alternative Zoom

At this point, you’ve probably heard about Zoom. In fact, “zooming” seems to be the word used for video chatting, even if a different platform is being used! But there’s a good reason it’s on everyone’s mind: Zoom is a robust live-streaming product.

One of the most compelling points of replacing Google Hangouts on Air with Zoom Live is that many communities are already familiar with Zoom. Millions of people are using Zoom daily, whether for work, school, or catching up with old friends.

Getting users to adopt an entirely new service or tool can be challenging, no matter how loyal your community is. Zoom’s level of familiarity may make it easier to retain your audience while you transition from Google Hangouts on Air.

Zoom offers a variety of features like virtual hand raising and polling to keep your community engaged. The fact that they let you stream your webinars and meetings to multiple platforms simultaneously is just the icing on the cake.

4. Streamyard

Google Hangouts on Air alternative Streamyard

Streamyard is built around a simple idea: create an experience for live streamers that’s easy to learn and use.

This platform doesn’t ask you to download anything; it runs in your browser. If you already have a following on LinkedIn, Facebook, or YouTube, you can live-stream to all of them using Streamyard.

Streamyard recognizes complexity makes it difficult for streamers to connect with their communities. If you’re looking for a Google Hangouts on Air replacement that removes technical barriers and limitations, this is a tool you’ll want to try.

With useful features like audience comments popping up on screen and call to action buttons in your streams, Streamyard simplifies your live-streaming process so you can focus on what matters most: your audience.

5. Talky.io

Google Hangouts on Air alternative Talky.io

In the hunt for your Google Hangouts on Air alternative, you’re going to find lots of products that promise to offer more. Many alternatives promise more features and integration.

But Talky.io doesn’t take that approach. Instead, Talky addresses a smaller niche, focusing on providing a simple video chat tool designed for groups of up to 6 people.

What Talky lacks in features, it makes up for with its simplicity and ease of use. Using Talky is as simple as starting a chat and sending your room link to the people you need to chat with.

In a sea of feature-heavy tools, Talky might seem underwhelming at first. But if you’re looking for a Google Hangouts on Air replacement anyone should be able to use, this may be a fantastic option.

6. OBS Studio

Google Hangouts on Air alternative OBS Studio

For a lot of streamers, this is the gold standard of live-streaming tools. What makes OBS Studio so noteworthy? Simple: the customization.

Aside from being a free, open-source software you can download and start using instantly, it’s sponsored by some of the biggest names in live-streaming. Facebook, YouTube, and Twitch have all supported OBS Studio. It’s safe to say if you have a favorite streamer, they’re likely using this.

Who is OBS Studio for? Well, it’s technically for everyone looking to start live-streaming. This depth makes it such a powerful tool, but it can also present some issues.

Think of it this way: OBS Studio is like Photoshop, with most other alternatives being more like Canva. OBS Studio is often a great tool for veterans of the live-streaming world and those not afraid to get their hands dirty.

7. Twitch

Google Hangouts on Air alternative Twitch

Speaking of noteworthy live-streaming tools, we can’t ignore the current king of the live-streaming world: Twitch.

The company that put Mixer out of business, there’s no denying Twitch is one of the most popular live-streaming tools on the market. And while many think Twitch is a platform primarily about gaming, that’s not the case.

Businesses regularly promote their products on Twitch with marathons of shows. Art and philosophy streams have also started to take the spotlight, with a heavy emphasis on community engagement.

While it can be challenging to establish a presence on the site, success on Twitch may mean a massive increase in your community size and quality. It’s worth looking into if you’re looking for a Google Hangouts on Air replacement.

8. Spreaker

Google Hangouts on Air alternative Spreaker

Spreaker does one thing, and they do it exceptionally well: it supports podcasts.

Whether you’re looking to host, create, distribute, or even monetize your podcast, Spreaker has something for you.

The reason Spreaker made the Google Hangouts on Air alternative list is simple: there aren’t enough tools dedicated to podcast live-streamers. What really makes Spreaker stand out is they go above and beyond for podcasters.

With Spreaker, you can publish your podcast quickly and easily using their Content Management System. From there, you can distribute your podcast across major podcast platforms.

Spreaker handles monetization, too, letting streamers auto-insert ads at any point in their podcasts.

If you’re serious about podcasting, Spreaker is a tool you should consider.

9. YouTube Live

Google Hangouts on Air alternative YouTube Live

If you’re wondering which of these tools Google wants you to use, it’s probably YouTube Live. Initially, Google tried to merge Google Hangouts on Air with YouTube Live, but the transition didn’t go incredibly well.

Still, there’s an appeal to using YouTube Live. Aside from the rich infrastructure YouTube and Google offer—plenty of features and a robust support system—live streaming on YouTube is made simpler by one thing: the platform understands user expectations.

When users are on YouTube, they already expect to consume content. This means when you create live content for them to engage with, it’s probably an easy transition for them to make.

Likewise, if you love the Google Hangouts on Air ecosystem, you’ll probably feel right at home in the relatively similar YouTube Live ecosystem.

10. Facebook Live

Google Hangouts on Air alternative Facebook Live

As far as innovation goes, Facebook Live doesn’t offer much that YouTube Live and Twitch don’t. That said, Facebook Live does have one ace up their sleeve: when you stream on this platform, you have access to billions of people.

We can argue about how impactful social media sites like Facebook have been in popular culture, but one thing is for sure: everyone and their grandmother is on Facebook. This means if you want access to a massive audience, being on Facebook may be a good idea.

Their live streaming tools aren’t as robust as others on this list, and the tools aren’t tailored to a particular industry or genre. But, Facebook has a reach that’s second to none.

Conclusion

Seeing your favorite live streaming platform vanish is frustrating. But there’s no reason to worry about the future of your content. As long as you’re willing to explore and adapt, you’re sure to find the right tool for your brand.

Gaming, cooking, and art streams have great community-focused tools like Twitch, Discord, and Talky.

Streamers looking for massive audiences and reach can use Facebook Live and YouTube Live.

Whatever you’re looking for, you may find the right Google Hangouts on Air replacement right here.

What alternative to Google Hangouts on Air is your favorite?

The post 10 Alternatives to Google Hangouts on Air appeared first on Neil Patel.

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