By Eliza Sherman

Facebook continues to change the way content shows up in people’s news feeds, and these changes can impact the way you market on this social network. Facebook is controlling what you – and what your Facebook Page fans see – at any given moment.

You may not know this, but as an individual user of Facebook, the posts you see on your news feed are not the chronological messages published by your Facebook friends. Instead, Facebook uses software to determine which content from which friends to present to you. The order is based on a complex series of criteria that includes how often you’ve interacted with someone on Facebook and how many others have interacted with that person’s individual post.

Now the way your Page posts appear in the news feeds of those who have Liked your page is compromised. Facebook continues to control and suppress how, when and to whom your posts appear. The company’s end goal is to have you pay to advertise with them in order to be seen, from boosting a post to purchasing a regular Facebook ad.

Given the changing landscape of Facebook Page marketing, here are a few things to keep in mind to continue to leverage the popular social network’s powerful potential reach:

  1. Post regularly. While your instinct may be to post much more frequently, doing so can become unmanageable for most small business owners. Many companies post once a day for continuity, posting something in real-time when there is something timely to share. Plan for bigger campaigns periodically so people’s attention doesn’t wear thin. Time some of your posts by checking your Facebook Insights to see when your particular audience is actually on the service.
  2. Plan your posts in advance. Develop a social media editorial calendar that lays out your posts across an extended period of time and that ties content to important events, news, and information you want to share with others. Also be aware of current events taking place around you, local and global news, and trending topics in social media. Don’t post your own information in a vacuum.
  3. Craft strategic posts. Tie your messaging to specific goals that can be measured. A goal could be awareness that is measured by the number of people who have seen or interacted with your post. Another goal could be driving traffic to your website, and you can follow the click-throughs in your website log.

Publish a mix of posts that serve different purposes, for example:

Photo posts and Photo albums – Visuals still attract attention. Accompany them with brief and interesting text content.

Text over image posts – Images with text over them are also called quote images or “memes.” While Facebook might suppress some of these memes, once others react to them, they tend to have more visibility and get shared more often.

Link posts – When you link away from Facebook, those posts might not get as much visibility as when you link within Facebook. Either way, post a combination of link posts using the preview image that is automatically pulled in by Facebook and ones where you upload an image.

Text posts – While a Facebook page with only text posts can be hard to read, text posts can still draw people in. Keep the text short and compelling.

Overall, publish content that attracts the right attention from the right people, gets them to react and interact and ultimately gets them to act. Understand that you may see a decline in visibility of some or all of your posts, and may have to consider setting aside some money toward Facebook advertising.

Aliza Sherman is a new media entrepreneur, author, women's issues activist, and international speaker.

The information provided is presented for general informational purposes only and does not constitute tax, legal or business advice. Any views expressed in this article may not necessarily be those of Nevada State Bank.