As we work together to figure out the Facebook News Feed and to find organic ways to boost reach and engagement, we’re bound to come across a flood of tips on how to get more out of our pages and updates. There’s a ton of advice out there. Where should you begin?

Which Facebook marketing tips work best?

I tested the best ones to find out.

Read below to see which tips and strategies worked best for the Buffer Facebook page, and feel free to use our learnings as the basis for tests of your own. There are tons of strategies out there, and you can find one that works for your page. I’m excited to share which ones worked for us.

facebook strategies

Starting with a baseline – How the Buffer Facebook page performs

First things first, if I wanted to know which Facebook strategies might move the needle, I needed to see where the needle was at the beginning. I had to have a baseline of how our Buffer Facebook page was performing so I could compare how well each of the tests worked.

Here’s a look at the past 90 days of data on Buffer’s Facebook page.

  • Average post reach – 652
  • Average post clicks – 49
  • Average post comments – 1.3
  • Average post reshares – 1.6
  • Average post likes – 4.5

I was excited to improve these numbers and to put into practice much of the great advice out there on how to share to Facebook. Here is a list of the techniques I tried.

  1. Post to Facebook at non-peak times
  2. Post more frequently to Facebook – six times per day
  3. Post less frequently to Facebook – once per day
  4. Ask questions in the updates
  5. Change the style of the update
  6. Post only link updates
  7. Post different types of images with the links

Below are the results from the tests. You’ll notice that for each test I’m including the average and the median stats because on occasion the average might have been skewed a bit by a single outlier (a post that got seen by 3,500 people, for instance). Also, our social media strategy focuses a lot on clicks and reach, so those two stats will be highlighted the most. Questions on any of this? Let me know in the comments!

Testing all the best Facebook marketing tips

1. Post to Facebook at non-peak times

Every time someone visits Facebook, they could have on average 1,500 potential stories to see from friends, people they follow, and Pages. A majority of these posts publish during the day with peak times between 8:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. ET.

A Facebook strategy to beat the noise: Post at non-peak times. 

In its study of 5,800 pages and over 1.5 million posts, Track Maven came up with best practices and advice for brands. Among the tips: post to Facebook before and after regular work hours.

In order to land a spot on a user’s Facebook News Feed, try shifting your scheduling strategy from posting during the most popular times in the workweek to the most effective times.

Here’s their chart showing how interactions increase in the morning and evenings, opposite of how posting frequency grows during the day.

I tested this strategy by adjusting the Buffer Facebook schedule to post at the following non-peak times:

  • 7:00 a.m.
  • 11:00 p.m.

The results: A very slight increase overall, a huge increase for 11:00 p.m.

Both clicks and reach stayed mostly the same as our baseline numbers. Median reach increased 6 percent and median clicks increase 10 percent.

But when I split out the times and looked at them separately, the 11:00 p.m. window was stellar. There were 25 percent more clicks on content, and every measure of clicks and reach increased.

2. Post more frequently to Facebook – six times per day

What is the ideal frequency to post to Facebook? We tested all angles of the question to see what was ideal for Buffer.

Our baseline stats come from a schedule where we post three times per day.

Our first test on frequency led us to try posting much more—double, six times per day.

One of the ideas with increasing your posting frequency is that you may be able to increase your total clicks and engagement for the day (without necessarily improving on clicks per post and engagement per post). A greater volume of updates, even if the updates hold steady with engagement, will lead to more total interactions via simple addition. More posts should equate to more everything.

We chose to post at the following six times, Monday through Friday:

  • 5:00 a.m.
  • 8:00 a.m.
  • 11:00 a.m.
  • 11:50 a.m.
  • 1:07 p.m.
  • 4:00 p.m.

The results: A slight decrease

Clicks fell ever-so-slightly (two fewer on average). Average reach stayed mostly the same, while media reach fell nearly 20 percent.

3. Post less frequently to Facebook – once per day

At the other end of the frequency spectrum is the advice to post to Facebook less often. In our case, we tested posting only once per day.

This advice stems from a pair of studies on Facebook frequency by Social Bakers and Track Social. Both studies conclude that sharing five to 10 times each week is the ideal frequency. Five to 10 times per week works out to about once or twice per day.

We chose to post once per day, at 9:00 a.m.

The results: A slight decrease

Nearly a mirror of the above results on frequency. Clicks fell slightly and a bit more so than posting six times per day. Median reach took a big dip (down 25 percent), and average reach held steady.

4. Engage your fans by asking questions

One of the most popular post types on Facebook? Questions.

It’s one of the recommended strategies by Post Planner, and anecdotally it makes a lot of sense for getting more comments, likes, and interactions from the community. The thinking goes that as Facebook notices people engaging with your content, future content stands a better chance of reaching more people.

So we tried this strategy out.

For the past several months, our community champion Nicole has posted an open-ended question five times per week on our Facebook page. These have been great for stirring conversations.

Along with this, we tested asking questions on the links and stories that we shared.

Screen Shot 2014-11-10 at 11.55.11 AM

The results: A big decrease

Asking questions turned out to be the biggest drop of all the Facebook marketing tips we tested. Clicks were down by as much as 50 percent, and reach fell nearly 40 percent. On average, our posts were seen by 250 fewer people.

For comparison, a typical open-ended chat question (without a link) sees a slight bump in reach compared to an average post, and the chat questions typically get five to seven comments. The questions with links received zero comments.

5. Change the style of the update

There are a huge number of ways to compose an update on social media (we counted 71 ways in this post). This seemed like a good opportunity to see what style worked best for the Buffer page.

We tested a wide variety of different styles. Here’s the list:

  • No update text, just a link
  • Multiple lines of text
  • Signature
  • Super short
  • Super long

The first test—no update text, just a link—is one that we noticed a number of other brands using on their pages. Instead of typing in the text for the update, you let the story’s title and description and photo encourage people to click through.

buffer facebook post

Results: Fewer clicks –  We lost about 10 percent of clicks using this method.

For the multiple lines of text, we broke out our updates and caption into two or three sentences and spread them over several lines of the update, giving the update a bit more vertical space in the feed.

Results: Slightly more clicks – Nothing too substantial, but this method did add three or four clicks per post.

The signature strategy is one we picked up from Social Media Examiner. They sign off on many of their Facebook posts, giving the update a personal touch.

Screen Shot 2014-11-10 at 12.44.54 PM

Results: Slightly more clicks – This one did better than the multiple lines style, adding eight to 10 more clicks per post.

When we put together our article on the anatomy of a perfect Facebook post, we recommended keeping updates to 40 characters or fewer. In other words, keep them super short.

Screen Shot 2014-11-10 at 12.46.30 PM

Results: Slightly more clicks – Like the styles above, this test brought a handful of extra clicks per post.

To test the opposite of this, we also published many updates that were much longer than 40 characters.

Results: Slightly more clicks – We saw almost the same increase as we did with shorter posts.

6. Post only link updates

One of the elements that the Facebook News Feed algorithm considers is the type of update that a page uses. News Feed places greater value on link posts versus photos with a link in the caption.

Here is a preview of what a link post looks like:

Screen Shot 2014-11-10 at 12.48.38 PM

Knowing this, I spent a week sharing only link updates to the Buffer blog.

The results: Huge increase in reach

This was perhaps our biggest win from testing. Median reach grew almost 70 percent, and average reach grew nearly 20 percent. Clicks also increased on both measures by nearly 10 percent.

7. Post different images as links

When you share a link post on Facebook, the link comes with a preview image that is pulled from the blogpost (technically it’s pulled from open graph tags in the HTML of the page).

I was curious, What kind of preview image works best?

For our Buffer blog posts, we have a couple different types of main images on our posts: stock photos that we use as background images behind our headlines and a custom-designed teaser image that sits below the intro to every post. Here are some examples.

Main stock photo:

facebook example

Main teaser image:

Screen Shot 2014-11-10 at 12.53.40 PM

If we were to choose which of these images to set as the preview image on our Facebook post, would it have an impact on post engagement? Here’s what we found.

The results: Our main teaser image significantly outperformed the stock photos.

Updates with these teaser images had the single greatest positive impact on clicks out of all the strategies we tried. We saw an 85 percent increase in the average and median clicks per post, and median reach increased by nearly one-third as well.

Our most popular Facebook posts from the past 3 months

In terms of qualitative evidence, it’s sometimes nice to study and learn from the posts that did well. To that end, here are a few of our best-performing posts from the past three months.

facebook example

Our highest-reach post from the past 90 days, the above post was shared when the story was first published and included a link update, using the main teaser image we created for the post.

facebook example

From the past 90 days, this post received the most clicks – 775 total. This was shared as a photo (one we created for the post) with a link in the caption.

facebook example

The reach on this post was not extremely high (better than average for our page, though), yet the click rate was really amazing. Of the 1,000 people who saw the post 254 clicked through to read. My best guess on why is that it was a topic that is interesting to a lot of folks, along with an intriguing image you had to click through to see the complete picture.

Screen Shot 2014-11-10 at 10.30.23 AM

I love the pairing of update text to story in this one. It’s a post that we didn’t write ourselves, and it scored really high in reach and clicks thanks to a catchy update that played nicely off the article headline (and a nice picture to boot).

Screen Shot 2014-11-10 at 10.30.40 AM

One thing I’ve found to be true at a lot of social networks is that people on those networks love to view and click content that applies to the network. So, Facebook content works great on Facebook, Twitter on Twitter, etc. This update is an example of a Facebook topic (organic reach) that many are curious about.

Limitations of our experiments

I’m sure that these quick experiments could be improved in a number of ways, and I’d love to hear from you about how you go about experimenting on Facebook.

Note that these experiments each lasted one week long and that the more samples you can get from your experiment, the better conclusions you’ll be able to draw. By nature of these being weekly experiments, we won’t have the same amount of data as we could if we had tried for monthly or longer. At the same time, we wouldn’t have been able to move fast and iterate quite the same way!

Also know that our conclusions come from our specific experience on Facebook, sharing with our particular audience. Results might vary for you and yours. That’s the fun of testing!

Conclusion: Which Facebook marketing tips work?

We tried seven of the best Facebook marketing tips we had for getting better results with our Facebook marketing. Here’s how they went.

  1. Post at non-peak times – evenings work great
  2. Post 6x per day – no change
  3. Post 1x per day – no change
  4. Post questions – drop in engagement
  5. Change the style of the update – slight increase
  6. Post only link updates – big increase
  7. Post different images as links – original graphics do better than stock photos

Our takeaways: 

  • Share link posts 
  • Share in the evenings
  • Create a main image/graphic for your post

Of course, our results could be different from yours. So many factors—industry, audience, relationship, engagement—will impact the final outcome, so if you want to find the perfect Facebook marketing strategy for you and your page, it’s best to test.

Feel free to start with our results, though. And come back and report your findings.

How do these Facebook learnings work for you? Buffer’s analytics provide a great way to find out what’s working on social media—we’d love for you to give it a try!

Image sources: Blurgrounds, IconFinder, Death to the Stock Photo

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Written by Kevan Lee

Director of marketing at Buffer, the social media publishing tool for brands, agencies, and marketers. We’ve got a new podcast! ?

  • I’m excited to try these ideas. I’ve been surprised that just under 1/2 of my traffic comes from outside of the US which means readers are seeing any given post all around the clock which has made it hard to decide the best time to post. I’m going to try your idea of posting at 11 pm ET and see what happens.

    • Sounds great, Deane! I’d love to hear how this goes for you. 🙂

  • Kevan, loved this post. Such a great resource of original data. Thanks for writing it up!

    • Hi Ginny! Thanks so much! I’m really glad you found it useful! If you’ve had any other experience or data on this, I’d be super keen to hear! 🙂

  • I love how in-depth you went with your testings. I think this could be very beneficial for users trying to increase their Facebook engagement.

    Thanks for these great tips, Kevan! Keep these great articles coming!

    • Awesome stuff! Thanks!

  • We’ve also found that posting on Facebook after 11pm was better overall in our page. I just thought our fans were always late for bed!

    Thanks for sharing!

    • Ha, great one Christian! How late have you been posting? I’ve yet to go beyond 11pm. Maybe I should try even later!

      • We’ve posted at 11:40pm in the time zone where most of our fans are, and we’ve got good reach and interaction, even better than our morning posts!

    • Beth

      Do you think you’re catching the night owls or maybe folks in a different time zone?

      • Most of our fans are in the same time zone, which is different than mine, and when we’ve posted late it has been after 11pm in our fan’s time zone. I do believe they are night owls!

  • Great one Kevan, thanks!
    We will love to see this kind of analysis for Twitter as well 😉

  • TakeActionWAHM

    Is that 11pm Eastern time? It makes sense – East coast people are checking in before they go to bed, West coast people are just sitting down to the TV… everyone in between is surfing FB while they watch Scandal 😀

    • Yep, you’re right! 11pm ET – just in time for Scandal!

      • TakeActionWAHM

        Something I’ve noticed is that sharing other people’s posts seems to increase my reach in general. And sharing another page – say, for instance if I shared Buffer’s FB page on my page – gets about 10x the reach of my regular posts.

        Posting just a status update with no link, no image, nothing else gets 2-3x normal reach.

        I think the real secret is to be natural – the old 80/20 sharing other people’s stuff, and different kinds of posts on a regular basis. I don’t think that doing any single “trick” is going to always work for anyone.

        And of course, the absolute best thing for reach is to have fans that share your posts. If you’re a food, craft or fashion blogger, that’s much more likely to happen than if you’re blogging about WordPress, sadly for me!

  • Thanks for the in-depth article Kevan. I really appreciate the confirmation on posting 6 times a day, because likewise I saw a drop after trying that out too! 3-4 seems to be the sweet spot for me. Also, I’ve been trying the off-peak posting for a few months too. Likewise I seem to pick up some reach for it. But like you, I have international readers too, which could account for it.

    • Awesome stuff, Julia! Thanks so much for confirming some of these findings! I’d love to hear anything else you discover during your tests!

      • Well, likewise questions don’t always work out for me. I think fans often avoid links with questions because then it feels like homework instead of fun or interest. Homework you don’t get paid for either. And even if they do click the link and read, getting them to come back to Facebook to comment/engage is just less likely after they’ve left the page to go read. I’ve come to conclusion that if I want engagement – and that’s the only point of using a question (unless it’s rhetorical) – then I don’t want to send readers away from the FB page where I want engagement. So I don’t use questions that require reading my post, then sending people away from my pages, then come back again. Too many steps. Effective engagement by nature is overall best tied to sticking with the facebook page to have a conversation, not leaving it I think.

  • In essence it seems like Facebook is just becoming like Twitter for content marketers

    • Hi Andrews! Thanks for the comment! Yes, there are growing similarities between the two, for sure!

  • That was really rich post ^__^ I’d like to see posts like that for pinterest 😉 thanks

    • Thanks, Ismail! It’d be fun to work something up for Pinterest!

  • Cristina

    I enjoy read your blog post. Great content every time. In my experience on Facebook posts, I have noticed that if you post using social media tools such as Buffer you get less engagement than if you would post directly from Facebook.

    • Hi Cristina! That’s a really interesting observation! Thanks for pointing this out. Sounds like another good strategy to test!

  • João

    Super useful insights Kevan. Thanks for sharing! Have you also took in consideration the demographics? For instance, considering the % of US likes vs European likes have you considered 2 posts, one at 11pm US timezones and another 11pm European timezones or UTC?

    • Ah, great point! I hadn’t considered that one yet, but it sounds like something that could be very interesting to test. Thanks so much for the awesome idea!

      • João

        Glad I could help Kevan 🙂 Please let me/us know about the results of the tests 🙂

  • Very interesting experiment! I have recently been trying out #6 to see if I get more response on my page. Still early to know the results. This post explains everything very clearly and is greatly appreciated.

    • Thanks! Best of luck with the test! I’d love to hear what you learn. 🙂

  • Kevan, you may have already written a post on this, but do you have data on how much FB penalizes us when we use automatic posting tools like Buffer?

    • Great one, Micah! I’ve heard bits and pieces of anecdotal evidence on this, but nothing concrete just yet. It might be a good one to test and then write a followup. Has it been your experience that there’s a FB penalty for automatic posting?

      • If my experience is any indication, FB gives a very substantial markdown for content that I post with Buffer. It’s very rare that I get significant engagement, and sometimes I don’t get a single “like” on content that is doing just fine on Twitter.

        I wish there were a way to mitigate against this, as it’s a pretty serious issue when good content gets ignored simply because of the (very convenient!) system I use for distribution!

  • I post every hour pretty much round the clock to catch people who are using mobile devices. My posts would be different from yours, because they are only indirectly promoting my business, which is a Facebook page and website for people who love dogs. So the posts are photos, video links, story links and so on. I can’t imagine things being worse posting more than 6X a day, but I wonder what you and others think of what I am doing. Thanks.

    • João

      Hello LPF, i’m curious do you have a constant reach during the day, or do you notice different reach during the day? Since you post almost every hour you are perfect to share those stats 🙂

  • Awesome post, Kevan!

  • Great write as usual Kevan, thanks!

    I’m very excited by the Teaser Image thing, and was wondering when Buffer would allow us to edit the Teaser Image directly?
    Right now it’s taking the automated OpenGraph images, and it’s less than ideal, forcing me to resort to Facebook schedulingi nstead of Buffer when I want to post links to our own blog….

    • Great one, Xavier! I’d love for this to be as smooth as possible for you with Buffer. One thing that I’ve been doing is to set the open graph image in my blogpost settings, so the pic I want comes up automatically in Buffer. I believe if the image sizes are right that you can also scroll through some options in the Buffer composer by clicking on the arrows to the left and right of the image? Not sure if that’s your experience, too. Would love to get this working well for you!

      • Yeah unfortunately it’s an issue with Tumblr… See when I’m using a “text” post it doesn’t allow me to put in a featured image. And any image I embed in the article itself doesn’t get sent to Buffer so can’t use it.

        Meh I might need to switch providers ^^’


  • I work as a photographer and spend quite a lot of time to write long blog post describing my work and my methods, and post them as links on my Facebook page. Those should, in my mind, be good to comment on and share.

    But, the updates that often gets the most interaction are the really trivial ones, often just a snapshot from my work, or a line about things I have learned the hard way by doing mistakes.

    • In general link posts don’t get engagement in the tune of Likes and Comments. But that’s ok. Link posts are purely to drive traffic. You’ll get the engagement on photo posts and text updates.

  • Sian Smith

    What a great resource and insight into Facebook use. Thank you, some great takeaways here too 🙂

  • Hi Kevan (great post as per)

    One thing…

    With Buffer. When we post to Facebook is doesn’t show the post on Facebook with the lovely border and H1 title like it does when you post direct to Facebook. It does show the image and intro but not quite as well as it does in your screen grabs.

    Is there a way to share from Buffer and still get the short intro and title that Facebook draws from the code?

    • Ah, interesting one, Todd! Would you be able to maybe share the url of your Facebook page? I’d love to peek into this one for you. We share using the Buffer extension, and that’s where I grabbed my screenshots. Curious to see how things look on your end!

      • Hi Kevan.

        I tweet your guys at Buffer and I worked out that it was maybe the Buffer link so now I’m sending the non shortened link to Facebook from Buffer.

        I think it might also be due to some sites not having the best on their site too.

  • “One thing I’ve found to be true at a lot of social networks is that people on those networks love to view and click content that applies to the network.”

    Ha! I can back this up — to date, our most successful Google+ post is a link to a piece of content about Google.

    Great job as always Kevan!

    • Thanks, Nicole! Sounds like good validation that network-specific content works great, no matter the network!

  • Going to try the same experiment Kevan. Have a #WonderfulWednesday!

    • Awesome! Thanks, Steve!

  • tlmaurer

    Thanks for your valuable input on this challenging situation for those trying to keep up with changes in FB, Kevan. Takes our efforts from ‘crap shoot’ level to something more defined and focused.

    • “crapshoot to defined/focused” — that’s really great! Very happy to have helped out a little here. 🙂

  • Opentopic

    Kevan, great Facebook marketing tips. The one thing we struggle with, in terms of creating custom images with text, is that Facebook doesn’t allow a post with an image that has more than 20% of text to be promoted. Unfortunately, we don’t have the organic reach we’d like to, so those $5 per post really helps us reach more of our audience. As much as we’d love to create our own custom images, it’s a tough work around!

    • That’s a great point! Indeed! Thanks for the added perspective on that. One experiment I’ve yet to try is how different types of stock photos work for engagement – for instance, there are some really great professional stock photos out there and there are others that have a more light-hearted tone. If I get around to testing this, I’d be very happy to report back what I find!

  • Rajesh SIngh

    Very strange actually, Questions posts generally works best for majority of businesses on Facebook. May be numbers slightly more in favor of B2C.

    • Definitely, Rajesh! I thought that was a surprising one, too! Great insight into the difference between B2B and B2C. 🙂

    • Wasn’t there supposed to have been an algorithm change earlier this year that gave text-only posts from pages less weight, and more weight from profiles? I think I remember that. In that case, it would make sense that a text-only question got lower engagement. Though, I feel like if the question is relevant, it breaks up the monotony of your posts and might surprise you by doing really well.

      • dianne9836

        upto I looked at the bank draft of $5625 , I accept that my sister woz actualie making money in there spare time from their laptop. . there great aunt has done this 4 less than seventeen months and a short time ago paid for the loans on their villa and bought a brand new Car . go to this website…….>> -> START MAKING ONLINE EARNINGS EASILY!!! <-

  • Anthony

    If I may, your most engaged fans are from Egypt which is possible only if you pay to advertise your Facebook page on the Facebook ad platform in order to attract more fans. Because the majority of your fans is not relevant, when you post something, you can’t reach everybody and maybe not the people the most interested in your business. There is a video about that named the Facebook Fraud. You should clean you fans list, and then you’ll see a big increase of engagement which is the real value of social media. Cheers,

    • Thanks, Anthony! Really appreciate your sharing this! I love that Facebook Fraud video – so interesting and I learned so much from it! Curious, how did you go about cleaning up your Facebook fans? Any tips on a good method?

      • Anthony

        This article is very helpful to remove fake accounts:
        Thank you for your blog and your advices. I am glad to be able to give you my 2 cents!

  • I love experiments! So I must admit I loooove this post! Very specific results and actionable steps at the end. Just the way I like it. Thanks so much, Kevan.

  • vseo

    You are right, everyone has their own test. But, there is also a variance factor. You may share links, but if you only do that, you will have a decrease (light penaliztion) after a couple of weeks

    • Great point about variance factor! Definitely a good one to keep in mind. Thanks for sharing!

  • I am convinced that there is no cookie-cutter approach. I represent 18 Clients that range from restaurants, to pre-owned car sales, to private clubs and the success with their posts vary greatly. I am all about engagement and my role as an Admin for my Clients is to give them top-of-mind awareness. I have found that throwing Facebook a few $$$$ for promoted posts and ads is extremely beneficial to increasing reach and the increased reach has increased engagement in most cases.

    • Hi Michael! Thanks for the comment! That’s really great to know. I’ve been hesitant to pay for much on Facebook, but it makes a lot of sense that paying to increase reach can increase engagement for other posts as well. Cheers!

  • JMack

    Interesting. I run a page for an international non-profit, and questions seem to do pretty well for us. Of course, our audience is extremely different from yours, I’m sure. When we create some sort of emotional tie to the donor in our post and ask them to share their personal experience, our posts usually do very well. Our photos almost always do better than our link updates, as well. I think much of this depends on who your audience is, so the best thing to do is test for yourself and see what works! This blog does provide a great place to start, though.

    • Great points, JMack! Definitely test for yourself is the best way to go. So glad to hear you’ve found some content types that work!

  • Thanks for sharing. Great insights!

  • Thanks Kevan for this great post!

  • Jewel

    I have much better luck with questions. I’m not sure “Agree/Disagree” was the best way to test.

    Did you test posting yourself vs scheduling? A number of managers have been noticing reach down for scheduled post?

    • Thanks for the comment, Jewel! I think that testing with a scheduler vs. no scheduler might be one of our next experiments. I’ve heard that perspective shared from others, too!

  • Kyler Patterson

    Great post Kevan. I’ve attempted similar types of tests in ads and I received the most annoying results. What worked in one campaign didn’t work in another. Even when ad sets were separated by Newsfeed and Right Side ads.

  • great diagnostics here guys! thank for doing all the hard work 🙂

  • jewelfry

    Do you think that running a test only on Buffer’s page, which has very low engagement considering the number of fans, is a good barometer? Each page is different. It seems like a better test would be to test different types of pages with more active communities.

    • Indeed! Great point! I think there are several limitations to what we’ve done here, and I’ve no doubt that testing additional pages would give some even deeper insights into what might work on Facebook. Thanks for bringing this one up!

  • Monik Chandra

    Thank you for sharing wonderful stats. I am new to the blogging world and gain lot of knowledge. One thing i would like to share – instead of sharing single image, share group of images that works too (personally tried). If anyone likes to give guidance to a beginner. It would be great help for me. Thanks in advance.

    My facebook page link –
    My website link –

    • Image collages is a great idea, Monik! Thanks!

  • Vincenzo Romano

    And what’s about using hastags on Facebook? I’m making some experiment but without real benefits from them…

    • Great one, Vincenzo! I’ll need to add that one to our next experiments!

  • Kristof Blancke

    Great posts you share Kevan, but I’m doubting the value of this blog post. Off course these tips will work in certain cases. But you can’t compare in this way because of different contents you share. As example: “17 things no one ever told me about creativity” is doing great because a mix of things – also because of the picture you mentioned – but mainly because it’s shown as a numbered list and great power words in a short attractive sentence.

    • That’s a really great point, Kristof! Indeed! There are tons of different factors that may come into play here. I’d believe that Facebook success may very well come down to a post-by-post level rather than a bird’s-eye view of post types or strategy or timing. That would be a great one for maybe a follow-up post!

  • Eileen

    Typo I think, in the number of posts section:

    The results: A slight decrease

    Clicks fell ever-so-slightly (two fewer on average). Average reach stayed mostly the same, while media reach fell nearly 20 percent.

    Should read: “median”. Makes a difference!

    • Ah, thanks Eileen!

  • Thank you for an amazingly detailed breakdown, @kevanlee:disqus. This was a great read. Do you feel like an outcome from this study is that Facebook actually frowns upon differentiated content? Will Buffer stick more to articles and shy away from other content types, then? (Aside from further testing, which I’m sure you guys are always doing) Regardless, this was great info.

    • Hi Rob! That’s a great question. I’ve actually been pondering things in a sort of different direction lately. I’m wondering if a completely flipside strategy – sharing photos of the team, behind-the-scenes stuff and not as many link posts and articles might increase engagement? I’d imagine that a mix still might be best, although from our initial tests it seems we’ve hit on somewhat of a formula that works. And – I feel like I’m saying “testing” a lot! – I think it will be worth testing to see if a constant stream of “formula” posts will end up driving down engagement/reach over time! Lots to still find out!

      • I definitely look forward to more wrap-up posts like this detailing the findings from your tests. It’s always fascinating to see the outcomes!

  • siegrid s.

    I’ve also tried posting many times a day and reach decreased a lot. I think it’s Facebook’s way of encouraging us to use their paid posts.

    I find the bit about posting questions strange too. We get an increase in interaction but this is true when we ask questions related to trending topics.

    I gotta agree with most of your points. I found the same results using those different methods.

    • Thanks for the confirmation on these! And great tip about questions and trending topics! I could see that having a positive impact if I were to try it. 🙂 Cheers!

  • gilcarlson

    This might be of help to you also:
    Social Media Marketing Results of top 93 Companies…

  • The question about Reach has always been 1 of economics, to me.

    1. The obvious one is that FB can earn Income by reducing reach and selling ads.
    2. The not so obvious one is the bandwidth operating costs of FB.It is probably more expensive to send out Image posts, therefore to keep their budgets in line FB must reduce the number of people it will show that post to. If it is cheaper to use Link Posts then they will obviously be able to show that post to more people.

    If Facebook “likes” Link posts…there you have it, greater reach with Link Posts.

    By posting in off times (evenings) the FB news feed is not as cluttered so perhaps they can put your post in front of more people, this makes sense.

    The engagement situation is far more interesting.
    The original graphic is something that I also have been experimenting with to some success…Why?
    The graphic style, for the image like you, SME and others are using right now is a form of branding. As people scroll their News Feeds, a recognizable image is a “safe click”,
    The “Stock” image will not have the same factor of recognition with the viewer, so they may pass by the post all together.

    To me then, your findings make perfect sense, and I will continue to use FB’s hard costs on how to decide which posting tactic to employ to establish a larger reach..
    Thanks for the information Kevan, always helpful

  • Awesome writeup Kevan, this answered a lot of questions for me. Most notably I’ve been reading about posting during off-peak hours but I was having a hard time figuring those out.

    I always liked the question posts but I notice if they get no response that other look down on it and believe you don’t have true engagement, so they back away as well. I think once likes get in the 10k range and higher that this may change though.

    Also, I’ve been experimenting with using Buffer with IFTTT to automate some posts into my buffer queue with some success, and I’ll be adjusting my Buffer post times to get new blog posts lined up better automatically. This is how I’ve been using IFTTT:

  • What I got out of this:

    There is no method to the madness. Your popular posts were popular due to the type of posts they were: As in the “top 10 variety” – or essentially giving a list of tips/ideas to people. Lists, in general, go over very well on the internet – be it facebook, twitter, or what have you, lists do well. Your posts that didn’t do nearly as well weren’t lists. It’s fairly simple.

    I run a page with nearly 400k likes (we’ll be there before the end of the year) and we update 35+ times a day. The frequency of the updates has nothing to do with viewership… except for one aspect: You want at least a 10 minute buffer behind posts. If you post something now then something else a minute or two later, the previous post will get “buried”, and thus lose 80% of it’s organic reach. For us, we post every 15 minutes or so, as that’s a decent buffer. Our posts average 60 organic reach, but that’s average – we have plenty that go well beyond that – usually big news posts or editorials with enitcing titles (top 10 lists, etc), and of course.. image posts – which are by far the most popular thing you can post as a page. Image posts, fan art, memes, they all go viral at much greater rates than link posts.

  • Anna

    I have to really thank you for this post and add my experience with posting times. I have a page for my blog and usually aimed at posting at 8pm-9pm in the evening (Eastern European time as most my followers are in Greece). Now that I’m in the US East Coast I continued posting the same time but it wasn’t successful. One day around midnight EST I changed the page’s Cover Photo and then I thought “who’s going to see that now?”, but in Greece it was 7am, so that means that everyone who checked Facebook before going to work saw it, because there wasn’t anything else noteworthy on their feed! Bingo! Now I do that in my personal profile too!! So thanks again for this post and for all your valuable resources!

  • Ana

    Great article and interesting test! Well done!

  • B. khan

    Thanks for your post, can buy facebook likes from here.

  • James

    how about a simple formula? “Buy REAL facebook likes“. I hae tried buying real facebook likes from smmadmin and that saved me alot of money than advertising on facebook.

  • Carli van Heerden

    What an interesting approach! So great to see actual experiments done with followup results. I have been particularly wondering about the times for scheduled posts – I have been travelling through South East Asia, so have been thinking in 3 specific time zones and when the best post time would be. Any advice on that? Thanks!
    Carli VH

  • @kevanlee:disqus Im finding different findings from you can I can show u all my tests and how about Post Time-Rate of Organic reach in 1 hour 12 hours or 24 hours or all? and how about the sites the content comes from? did you check their PA see if they have social signals?

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  • As mentioned in the blog posting at non-peak times really works a lot whereas increase & decrease in post frequency doesn’t matter a lot. It’s really a helpful blog.

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