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Facebook Promotion Tips for Animal Rescue Groups and Shelters

A Picture = A Thousand Words

But unfortunately, Facebook Doesn't agree anymore.

They "used to" give higher newsfeed priority to posts that included a photo,
or included a link with a thumbnail image.

Then the "powers at be" at Facebook, decided to give
TEXT ONLY posts the best exposure in your fan's newsfeed.

Take a look at this... 

As an experiment, we posted a link to a sweepstakes we were having,
AND we made sure to Include the thumbnail image and preview.


Then... we immediately post the exact same info, however this time,
we did not include the thumbnail or preview (we simply clicked the "X" in the
top right hand corner when the preview box popped up).

As you can see, the "link" post was seen by 2,212 people... 
while the "text only" post was seen by 7,178!

Of course... this has created a problem.

Posts "without" links and photos will now be seen by many more of your fans.

However... people are very "visual" and are attracted to photos. Those that click through to your page from posts have an INTEREST in the subject matter the photo represents. So more "fans" may see the text only post... but you may actually get more "clicks", shares, likes, etc... on a post that includes photos.

How do we know this?

Simple... click through to this link for a moment:

We post this link from time to time on our Facebook page.

It has dozens upon dozens of images on it, each representing a certain t-shirt design. Understand, we post this same link, leading to the exact same page, every time we post the link. The only thing we change is which thumbnail photo is shown.


If we choose the thumbnail of our Go Green! shirt... we sell those... if it is our RESCUED! shirt... we sell more of those... if the thumbnail is of our Rescue Dog Mom shirt... that one sells... even though, every person who clicks though the link, is taken to the same page, with dozens of shirt designs to choose from.

In other words... our thumbnail (photo) of the shirt, attracted people interested in "that shirt design"... and even though they had many different shirt designs to choose from, more buy the one featured as the thumbnail photo.

We originally thought that by posting a link and choosing "one" random thumbnail (photo), people would go "Oh, cute cartoon shirts, I wonder what other designs they have?" and click though to see. But our testing and tracking shows that for the most part, if fans were not interested in what was shirt design was shown in the photo, they wouldn't click though to the page.

How do you benefit from this information? Well... for one, understand that those "We are having an online sale... click here to see everything we are selling." type of posts are much less effective than individual posts with photos.

Whenever possible, try to get some kind of "relevant" photo to go along with your posts. Photos attract attention and encourage interactions from your fans.

When you are trying to reach your fans... this can be challenging. Any "one' post only reaches a small portion of your fans... So posting the same post, at different times during the week will reach many more of your fans. However, if fans do not relate to, or are interested in, the info/photo you are posting... they may not respond.

So successful pages balance repetition (don't want to waste a good post by only posting "once") to expose the info to more fans... with providing a variety of content.

Again... this is something we have tested over and over again.

We have several posts we share with our fans at least once a week, at different times of the day... and we are always getting feedback from fans who have seen the info for the very first time. Sometimes, fans saw it last week, but forgot about it...and were reminded again... and other times, it is one of our new fans that has seen the post for the very first time. 

Based on the latest Facebook changes, we recommend a balance between posts with photos (more likely to attract attention, but reach fewer fans) with "Text Only" posts (Which will reach MORE fans, but may not motivate as many clicks/likes/shares/etc...)

Here is one technique that has worked well for us. 

First, post a photo (or link with thumbnail) on your FB wall, and "pin it to top".

THEN... post a second "text only" post that says "See the photo/link by visiting our FB wall". This way, your first post has a better "click through" rate, because it has a photo... and the second post, which is text only, inviting people to visit your wall, reaches MORE of your fans.

For instance... posting a "go fund me" link with a photo of a pet in need of surgery on your wall, will more likely motivate people to donate... however, being a "link" the post itself will be seen by a fewer number of your fans. So pin it to the top of your Facebook wall... THEN post a text-only post that says "Urgent Surgery needed for our Baby Boy Jake... visit our FB Wall for complete info and photos."

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