One of the primary challenges marketers are facing using social media, Twitter and Facebook in particular, is that their messages are not reaching their audiences. Twitter and Facebook have different challenges in this area, but some social media pros have discovered an easy trick that works on both platforms to help more of your audience see what you write.
The problem reaching your followers on Twitter is a little more obvious; it’s mostly due to volume. The number of tweets sent each day far outnumbers how many status updates are posted on Facebook, and Twitter doesn’t filter your feed so you will see every single tweet for the people you follow. This means that, for most of your followers, if you don’t send your tweet close to the time that they check their account they probably won’t see it.
On Facebook, the reason your followers aren’t seeing your posts is a little more underhanded. Using the excuse that they are making sure that the newsfeed only shows the most relevant information for its users, Facebook intentionally filters what posts people see and only shows select posts on the newsfeed. This means, if you are a brand, on average less than 10% of your Facebook followers will see each of your posts. Unless you pay Facebook to show them to more people, that is. Now if you want to reach the majority of your following you have to pay Facebook using “Promoted Posts” in order to have them lift the barrier they have put up in front of your followers’ news feeds.
However, some social media experts have found a surprisingly simple way to get more views both on Facebook on Twitter. Post the same thing twice!
On Twitter, if you have to post close to the time your followers log in to get on the top of their feed, then tweeting something a second time gives you a second opportunity to catch your followers when they’re logging in. On Facebook, chances are if you post something a second time the filter blocking your posts from your audience will show it to a decent number of people who didn’t see it the first time, once again increasing your reach for that message.
The key to making this strategy effective is that you don’t want to post the exact same thing the second time. Otherwise you might annoy your loyal followers who do see all of your posts. And you don’t want to use this approach for every single update you make. Use this tactic sparingly, whenever you have a truly important and valuable message, and make sure your second post is framed as a follow up or provides a different angle.
One idea commonly used by news sites like Gothamist is saying “In case you missed it” and then re-posting one of their more popular stories. You can see how Tim Ferriss, known as a social media all-star, New York Times bestselling author, and WIRED magazine’s “Greatest self-promoter of all time,” uses this technique on his Twitter feed below.
Notice that the dates on the posts are a day apart, however the link that he is promoting is exactly the same. Mr. Ferriss will routinely post the same link twice, using a different headline each time, in order to see which one works better and also give his content a second chance to reach his audience.
So if you have an important message, consider posting it a second time with a slightly different spin on it in order to reach more of your following. Just make sure you don’t do this too frequently or in a way that is so obvious it upsets your core fans. You want to make sure they stay engaged, while also making sure your posts reach out to your more distant followers who may not always be paying attention. This strategy, if used right, can help you do that.