Do you want more reach with your Facebook posts? Wondering what types of organic content Facebook favors?
In this article, you’ll discover content ideas that work with Facebook.
What Is the Widely Viewed Content Report for Facebook?
From analyzing your organization’s own Facebook marketing results to reviewing competitors’ pages, you have plenty of opportunities to research the organic content that works best on this social media network. But each quarter, Meta does the work for you.
As its name suggests, Meta’s Widely Viewed Content Report (WVCR) summarizes the most popular content published during the previous quarter. On the surface, this report aims to provide transparency and show users how the social media network operates.
But for marketers, the WVCR offers a much more in-depth analysis. In addition to exploring the most popular feed content, the report delves into the pages and domains that drive the most views and clicks. The report also shares best practices and Facebook algorithm insights to help marketers make better use of the platform.
The WVCR is an essential playbook for marketers who use Facebook; however, it comes with a few caveats. First, the report covers organic content only so it won’t help with improving your paid content strategy.
In addition, the report includes data for users from the United States only. If your business and target market are both located in the United States, this report and the tips below will apply directly. But if you do business in other parts of the world, feed content and platform trends may differ a bit.
Finally, the WVCR focuses exclusively on feed content. While it does include both organic posts and reels, it doesn’t cover Facebook stories. Keep these omissions in mind as you review the tips below and consider setting up your own tests for stories and paid ads.
10 Ways to Improve Your Facebook Organic Marketing
Want to get more organic reach, engagement, or clicks from your organic Facebook content? Learn about what’s working on Facebook now based on the WVCR for Q3 2022, and use the suggestions below to improve your organic strategy.
#1: Publish Content That Merits Sharing
Far and away, the best thing you can do to improve organic Facebook marketing results is to publish content that followers want to share. According to Meta’s WVCR, friends’ reshares make up one of the biggest sources of Facebook feed content. Friends’ reshares fill nearly 20% of users’ feeds—second only to original posts from friends.
For many organizations, creating shareworthy content is easier said than done. Encouraging your audience to share posts and reels to their feeds requires much more than a direct call to action (CTA) like “Share if you agree!”
Why can’t you simply prompt Facebook users to share your page’s content? Facebook deprioritizes posts with CTAs that encourage users to take an action on a Facebook post. The platform considers this content engagement bait, as it typically leads to low-quality interactions that don’t generate much value for users.
Instead of creating engagement bait, identify what kind of content your audience genuinely wants to share. Meta Business Suite is a great place to begin your research. Open the Content Insights panel and sort published content by shares. Make sure to select Facebook posts only so you can focus on relevant content.
If your content hasn’t generated many shares or if you’re just getting started with marketing your business, you may need to look elsewhere for inspiration. For example, Business Suite can point you in the right direction. On the Content tab of your dashboard, open the Posts From Similar Businesses panel to get ideas.
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#2: Contribute to Facebook Groups
When you map out a Facebook marketing strategy for your organization, it’s easy to assume that your top priority should be creating great content for your page. But as important as page content can be, it isn’t always the best way to reach your audience.
According to Meta’s WVCR, Facebook group posts account for nearly 17% percent of feed content. In fact, group posts rank just behind posts and reshares from friends, and ahead of page posts.
To include groups in your organization’s Facebook marketing strategy, seek out ones that you can join as your page because some only allow individual members to participate. Start by opening Facebook and switching into your business page. Then navigate to a relevant group and click the Join Group button.
Before you begin publishing posts in a new group, it’s a good idea to check the rules. If the group has rules about self-promotion, you’ll need to take extra care when crafting your posts. Rather than sharing links or publishing promotional content, focus on starting interesting conversations or sharing thought leadership.
#3: Leverage the Unconnected Distribution Algorithm
Altogether, posts created or shared by close connections like groups and friends make up nearly two-thirds of the typical Facebook feed. Yet another sizeable percentage (over 15%) comes from Facebook’s unconnected distribution system.
Compared to the Q2 2022 WVCR, unconnected distribution content has become more prevalent in the feed. That means it’s more important than ever to take advantage of this opportunity for increasing reach.
Essentially, unconnected distribution gives your organization an opportunity to reach users who don’t follow your business page yet. This content appears in the feed as suggested posts, similar to the example above. Users can tap to view and follow the page directly from the post or they can tap to open the menu and save the post.
When content from suggested accounts appears in users’ feeds, they also have the option to like or comment without following the page. Then in Business Suite, your team can reach out to those who reacted and invite them to follow or like the page. That way, you can continue to build an engaged audience and create content your audience loves.
So how can your team leverage the unconnected distribution algorithm? Focus on creating original content such as reels that show your organization’s unique perspective. Facebook also prioritizes content that sparks thoughtful and respectful conversations.
#4: Double-Down on Content That Appeals to Page Followers
As you grow your audience, focus on producing more of the content your followers like. As the WVCR shows, almost 11% of the typical feed includes content from pages that users already follow.
Once again, Business Suite is a good place to focus your research. In recent months, Meta has rolled out advanced analytics, making it easier to discover the content format and post topics that appeal to your followers.
Open the content insights overview tab in Business Suite and confirm that you’re viewing Facebook posts only. Then look at charts to see which media types generate the highest reach and the most engagement for your page.
You can also use the content format charts to see a more granular breakdown of what works for your audience. For example, you may notice that reels or Facebook lives generate by far the highest reach.
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Business Suite also highlights your page’s top-performing posts, making it as easy as possible to identify what works for your audience.
Note that these highlights factor in data for the prior 90 days so you can rely on them for timely Facebook insights.
#5: Limit External Links
When you review your page’s top-performing content, you probably won’t see link shares at the top of the list. You may already suspect that Facebook prioritizes link shares lower than other content types and the WVCR report for Q3 2022 confirms it.
In fact, the report states that over 90% of content that appeared in users’ feeds during this quarter didn’t include external links. In other words, the vast majority of content that appears in the feed includes text, images, or video—without links.
The small percentage of link posts that do appear in the feed almost always come from friends or pages that the user follows. That means if your brand publishes link posts, you can expect them to reach a small percentage of your audience. But you can’t expect it to receive much (or any) unconnected distribution.
While some link posts may be necessary for your business, consider limiting the external links you post. When you do need to share a link, consider including it in the comments instead of in the caption.
#6: Analyze Facebook’s Top-Performing Posts
Whether you haven’t quite hit your stride with content creation or you’re just looking for new ideas, the WVCR offers plenty of inspiration. The Q3 2022 report charts the 20 feed posts that generated the most views during the quarter. Here are a few takeaways from the posts, each of which has generated over 30 million views:
- Share not-so-common knowledge that surprises your audience or offers a new perspective on a common situation.
- Create feel-good content that uplifts your audience and generates positive engagement on your page.
- Ask followers to support a cause that’s meaningful for your business and create a sense of community.
- Entertain your audience with content that’s designed to amaze and delight.
#7: Review Popular Pages and Competitor Strategies
Looking for examples of some of the post suggestions above or more content ideas that you can emulate on your page? Reviewing the most popular pages on Facebook might help.
To get ideas, take a look at the most widely viewed pages in the WVCR, including pages like @totallythebomb, @LADbible, and @placesidratherbe. Keep in mind these aren’t necessarily the pages with the largest audiences but they generated the most feed views in Q3 2022.
Competitive research can also help with inspiration, especially if the competition has built a larger audience or regularly generates more engagement than your organization’s page. With Business Suite’s benchmarking tool, you can build a list of competing pages and keep an eye on their content.
To create a list of competitors, click the Add Businesses button and search for a Facebook page. Business Suite automatically compares your page to the competition in terms of page likes and published content.
To explore feeds and get content ideas, click any of the pages on your custom list.
#8: Share Trending Content When Relevant
It’s true that Facebook tends to prioritize original content and deprioritize external links. In fact, the 20 most widely viewed domains accounted for 1% of feed content views in Q3, while the 20 most widely viewed links accounted for just 0.01% of all feed content views.
Does that mean you should omit link shares completely from your Facebook content? Not necessarily. However, it is a good idea to rethink the kinds of links you share and consider posting trending content when it’s relevant.
According to the WVCR, the domains that feature most prominently in the feed are other social media and content creation platforms like YouTube, TikTok, and Tenor. Yet news sites like CBS, Today, and CNN are also widely viewed. In addition, the report lists the most widely viewed links including content from sites like Business Insider, CNBC, and Insider.
To share the kinds of links that tend to be widely viewed on Facebook, visit the popular sites highlighted in the report. You can also find trending content by browsing the Inspiration Hub in Creator Studio, which lets you sort popular posts by type and platform.
#9: Split-Test Posts to Find What Works
As you adjust your page’s content strategy and experiment with new types of posts, you may not have much data to guide these decisions. But with Business Suite’s A/B Testing tool, you can experiment with multiple options and determine exactly what works for your audience.
To access this tool, open the post composer in Business Suite and click the A/B Test icon.
Then create up to four versions of the post. You can change the caption, image, or link for each post to see what your audience responds to best.
Once you publish the A/B test, it runs for 30 minutes. Business Suite automatically determines the winning version based on impressions and engagement and then publishes it to your page.
Note that the A/B Testing tool doesn’t currently support video. However, Meta appears to be testing an A/B tool for reel thumbnails so Business Suite support for video experiments may expand soon.
#10: Avoid Problematic Content
Now you have several ideas for things you can do to improve your organic Facebook marketing. But it’s just as important to know what not to do when you create and publish organic content.
After all, Meta deprioritizes content that doesn’t fit the platform’s community standards. That means fewer followers are likely to see this kind of content and Meta isn’t likely to recommend it to people who don’t yet follow your page.
In short, avoid publishing posts that:
- Feature unoriginal content
- Depict violence or explicit content
- Encourage using regulated products, especially sales-focused content
- Show cosmetic procedures
- Make exaggerated health claims
- Promote deceptive business models
- Include content that third-party fact-checkers can disprove
Meta may also deprioritize content that fits into categories that users often hide or report. In addition to engagement bait, avoid publishing clickbait and low-quality landing pages and ensure that any giveaways or contests you post meet Meta guidelines.
In 2022, marketers have seen Facebook add more recommended content to the feed and prioritize media like video and reels. If your organic Facebook marketing performance has declined as a result, use the tips above to recover lost ground, connect with your audience, and make more progress toward your goals.
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