Status updates are often considered by marketers on Facebook as little more than inconsequential lead-ins to broader, more detailed messages. That particular attitude carried regarding status updates may ultimately result in a marketer’s campaign failing to reach its full potential. Status updates are incredibly important to the overall success of a brand operating on Facebook, especially as it relates to engagement.
Constructing an intriguing status update, either as a standalone piece or the forerunner to a more complete Facebook post, may assist any marketer in increasing his or her engagement numbers. Well-constructed, popular status updates increase Likes, traffic, shares, comments, and other aspects of engagement which subsequently benefit your initial campaign and your brand overall.
1: Keep it Short
The best-performing status updates on Facebook have around 225 characters. Not more, and despite what you may be thinking, not less. Roughly around 225 (180-240 range) is the sweet spot, so this is the first thing to keep in mind.
2: Grab Some Attention
Next up, you have to grab attention with your status updates. If you’re reading someone’s status update, what exactly do you look for? This might not be obvious at first, but as you comb your memory, you’ll begin to understand that all the statuses you actually recall have one thing in common. They were able to grab your attention! So make sure you’re posting something exciting; post something that will stick out.
3: Speak about Yourself
Getting a bit personal is something that usually stands out as intriguing in a status update. It actually shows that the post has a reason behind it and isn’t just spam, for starters. But it also plays into the context of social networking. Businesses can certainly work on their engagement numbers by being a little personal in their status updates.
4: Give Useful Advice
One of the measures of a successful status update is how many people are sharing it and talking about it, and one of the best ways to ensure your status update is shared with other people is to offer some actual advice. Updates that seek to solve actual problems are taken a lot more seriously and earn shares at an exponentially higher rate.
5: Add a Subtle Call to Action
Something as simple as “keep reading to learn the full story” or “don’t forget to check blank” can really make a huge difference. You don’t want to add a very obvious call to action. You’re not necessarily attempting to sell anything with the status update itself. But you do want to provide someone with an action to take. Just be subtle about it and make sure it falls in line with the character count.
6: Don’t be Afraid to Share
If you want people to share your material, then you have to play along with the old “share and share alike” adage. Things can’t work like a one-way street on Facebook. It takes two to tango here, so sharing other people’s material via your status updates shows that you’re an active participant in the social networking experience and aren’t simply trying to lure people in.
7: A Little Inspiration is Great
Most people love a good quote for some reason, and seeing as most poignant quotes are usually very short, a status update is a great place to quote someone. There is an endless supply of quotes out there you can use, and you can find a quote to fit any occasion. So incorporating something like this into your status updates may be a good thing for you.
8: Lighthearted, Funny, Entertaining Stuff
For great tips on creating status updates, read Ensuring Facebook Users Find Your Fish – a good article for everyone who uses Facebook as a tool in their marketing. For a status update, however, you should remember to keep things lighthearted. This doesn’t have to be the case for every update, but try to insert some humor and entertainment. Remember that you’re probably going to be posting at least twice a day, so creating a status update that’s entertainment-based to keep people happy is a good idea.
9: Business links get less attention
Although you can post links in status updates if you want to, this is not always the best option. A link to someone’s post or cool video is one thing, but affiliate links, backlinks to other sites you own, etc., is something that, according to Facebook’s stats, draws less engagement.
On the other hand, a link to your business site doesn’t have to be bad per se. A link to good, relevant content might draw attention no matter where it’s pointing.
10: Switch it Around
If you happen to find a working formula for status updates, that doesn’t mean you have to stick with it religiously. Remember that thing about multiple posts? You don’t need to keep the same tone and structure every time. You can mix things up from time to time, constantly testing new material. Just keep the core principles in mind: Succinct, attention-grabbing, action-inducing, entertaining updates.
It might seem like a lot to take in, but it’s really just a way to streamline status updates so that you can quickly construct a winning update for every new post you plan on launching. In the end, it’s well worth the little effort it takes to create a great status update.
Author’s Bio: Craig Robinson is a professional writer for Qwaya, a technology company specializing in Facebook marketing. If you have more social media marketing questions, feel free to ask Craig on Twitter.