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How to schedule and target your posts right on your Facebook timeline

New to Facebook marketing and looking for some quick posting tips?

Consider this your quick start guide to posting on your Facebook business page, a.k.a. Facebook Posting 101! I'll briefly cover when, what and how often to post, as well as how you can save time by scheduling your posts in the easiest possible way. I will also touch on how to target your posts to your ideal audience and why you should NOT use the Boost Post button! Let's dig in….

Schedule Your Page Posts without leaving Facebook

Did you know that you can schedule your Facebook posts to display at a later date and time right in Facebook – no 3rd party tool needed? While you're at it, you can even target every post you write to reach your ideal client – sorted by age, gender, location, and/or language!

Schedule your Facebook for a future time and date

You can schedule your Facebook posts for a future date and time, right in the timeline post area.

When you start to write a post on your wall, some icons appear below the text box. When you click the “clock icon” on the left, you will be able to schedule your post to appear on the day and time of your choosing. Nice and easy! While I love tools like HootSuite for scheduling tweets and Google Plus posts, I think the built-in Facebook functionality is the easiest option for scheduling Facebook posts.

Why Schedule Facebook posts?

If you are busy and struggling to post on a regular basis, you might find yourself going long stretches without posting anything, only to sit down and post three things in a row to your page. This is really not a good practice! Not only is it likely to annoy anyone that sees everything at once, if someone doesn't happen to be on Facebook around that time, then they're not likely to see anything you post!

If you don't have a lot of time to devote to social media, I would suggest setting aside some time at the start of every week to write up and schedule all of your Facebook posts at once.

By using the scheduling feature, you can write up all of your post ideas in one sitting, but instead of bombarding your fans with a bunch of posts all at once, you can schedule them to post throughout the week.

Don't even have time for that – or no ideas on what to post? Socially Aligned can help with our social media community management services – just send us a message today!

How often and when should I post on Facebook?

You should be posting at a minimum of once per day, and ideally more like 2-5 times per day. How often you post and at what times of day will vary depending upon your topic/industry, the type of info you are sharing, and when your fans are online. I think 2-3 times per day tends to be the sweet spot, but some Pages on Facebook have such a loyal following that they can post more frequently without getting a lot of unlikes and negative feedback. Just be sure to keep an eye on your Facebook Insights while you are experimenting with your post frequency, and make sure your negative feedback doesn't spike when you start posting more often.

Facebook Insights is also where to look to see which times of day and what sort of content is performing the best for you. There are a lot of studies about when to post, but every page is different and I encourage you to see what works best for YOUR audience. That being said, a good starting point would be to post 3 times per day, once in the morning, once around lunchtime and once in the evening. That schedule is most likely to reach people at least once or more per day.

What type of content should I post on Facebook?

Make sure that your posts aren't all ME! ME! ME! SELL! SELL! SELL! While people do “like” pages in order to get deals and special offers, no one wants to be sold to all of the time. Take the time to learn about your ideal client/customer and how you can help them. Focus on delivering value to them, whether that means sharing your own content or linking to helpful content on other websites. The content you share can be directly related to the product or service you sell, or it could be something outside of your specialty.

For example, a yoga studio might want to share information on healthy eating. While this isn't directly related to yoga, if you know that your yoga students are interested in healthy eating then you will be providing useful information that they are likely to appreciate! That isn't to say that the yoga studio in this example shouldn't also post about classes they offer or a special they are running – but they should have a nice mix of messages every day, some sales related and some not.

Another way to vary your posts is to have a good mix of text-only posts, posts with photos or videos, and link posts which display a thumbnail image and link to content. Photo posts tend to garner the most likes and shares, but a good text-only post with a great question can also gain you quite a few comments! Fill in the blank questions and simple to answer questions that elicit an instant response from people usually do very well too!

Ask and you shall receive!

Don't be afraid to tell people what you would like them to do! Simply asking them to SHARE or COMMENT will greatly increase the number of people that do just that. Likewise, adding phrases such as “Click LIKE if you…” can work wonders for increasing the number of likes you get. Sounds simple, but it really works!

Target Your Page Posts

Another great option available right on your timeline is targeting for every post. The following is how Facebook describes this tool:

“Add gender, age, language and location targeting so the most relevant people see your posts in their news feeds. Your posts will still be visible to anyone who visits your Page, even if they are outside of your target audience.”

Target your Facebook Post using the "crosshairs" icon

Target your Facebook Post using the “crosshairs” icon.

In other words, post targeting ensures your ideal clients are more likely to see your post in their newsfeed, but anyone that comes to your actual page wall will still see everything you post. That's generally not a problem, because you shouldn't be posting things that you wouldn't want others to see anyways, but it is something to keep in mind.

You can choose to target by any or all of the option found in the drop down after you click the targeting icon.

You can choose to target by any or all of the options found in the drop down after you click the targeting icon.

While the number of impressions per post may go down when you use targeting, engagement should rise because your most qualified leads are seeing messages they care about. Increased engagement in the form of shares, comments, and likes will lead to more people seeing your post in their feed thanks to EdgeRank.

Another good use of targeting is if you have multiple store locations and one Facebook page that serves them all. If you want to promote an event that's only occurring in one city, target your post only to that geographic location so that your other fans won't see a post that doesn't apply to them.

Should I use the “Boost Post” option?

The Boost Post Button is used to promote a Facebook post.

The Boost Post Button is used to promote a Facebook post.

You might have noticed another button below your post area that says “Boost Post” which is another way of saying promote or advertise your post. While this is a quick and easy way to promote your posts, I do NOT recommend you use the Boost Post option. Your options are very limited when you use this button, the posts are not nearly targeted enough, and your CPC will be terrible.

Anytime you would like to promote a post, I recommend you use the Power Editor in the Ads Manager. To be honest, the Power Editor is very clunky, non-intuitive and complicated to use! It is however, your best option for promoting posts and will get you far better results than using the Boost Post button. Power Editor is a beast to explain though, so I will leave that for a future post! 🙂 Stay tuned!

Let me know in comments if you've ever used any of the features discussed in this post and what you would like to learn about next! I hope you found this useful! If so, please be sure to share it with others.

Author: Julie Lowe

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