The Best Way to Engage with Other Pages on Facebook Timeline

Now that Timeline is here, many businesses are asking how they can engage potential likers and let other communities know about their existence.  The Best Way for “Engaging” on the new Facebook Timeline (on the pages of others) has not changed….

It is now just more important than ever to know what it is.

Comment on Blogs
Start commenting. Just sayin’.

The Best Way to Engage with Businesses on the New Facebook Timeline is this:

Stop Bothering with Posting Wall Posts on other Business Pages.
Start Engaging in conversation instead.

I have got to admit, after managing a few pages over the past couple of years, I had reached a point where I became quite pi..annoyed at those people that posted as their Facebook Pages on our pages. Often very self-promotional (including links) these posts were made without any contribution to the community they were posting on.   It was pretty much a “dump and run” in some cases, with not so much as a hello!  We eventually had a policy to send an educational but kind message to the person advising them of a better way to “engage” and if it persisted to eventually delete posts that were merely self promotional.

But on the contrary, if a post was from a worthy cause or a business that we had a connection with AND the content was useful or engaging for our community – not only would we leave it there, but we would repost it from our page so it would reach a wider audience. And yes, there were those that genuinely added value for our fans in their posts on our wall, but it was for little gain – as most fans don’t visit the wall of a fan page after liking it, and the majority get their news from the news feed.  So, without being reposted, it would just get lost.

So what happens now?

Stop posting about yourself on the walls of others.

Timeline has changed things again.  For starters, any posts that you make as a “Page” pretty much get lost on the new Timeline format, and even if they are visible, there are only a small percentage of fans that will visit the wall of the page.  Most people get their updates via the Newsfeed. I repeat.  Most people get their updates via the Newsfeed.  Timeline has changed the game re visibility of wall posts by others.  Given that posting on the wall is not very strategic anymore, what I do recommend you do is this:

Start to engage and comment on Threads.

Go to the other pages, posting “as” your page.  Contribute to conversations, respond to questions, interact with other fans “as” your page.  This is much more beneficial and much more social. And it will show up on the newsfeed of fans when they look at posts from that page.  Voila. No longer are your comments or contributions buried on the wall (or deleted!).

Other fans and the page owners will soon recognise you as a contributor, and I am very confident that if you do this on the pages of your influencers, your peers (and where your ideal fans or customers hang out) you will get noticed.  As long as you contribute.  And no, don’t go promoting  yourself in the middle of a conversation unless it is very relevant or you are asked about how you can contribute more.

Remember to click “like” on comments that you love.  Be interesting. Be fun. Have personality.  Talk about topics you are passionate about or knowledgable about.  And the “likers” will come. They will not be able to resist coming back to your page and checking it out!

Personally, I like it this way.  The previous strategy whereby businesses would come over and post on pages without really saying hello…well it kind of sounded like the cyber equivalent of walking into a competitor’s business, handing out a business card, not saying a thing and then walking out again.  Yes. This is much better.

Do you post as your page on other pages? How do you do it?  Do you have any tips for building your own page up through engagement on other pages?

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Donna Moritz

Visual Social Media Strategist at Socially Sorted
Donna is the founder of Socially Sorted, a Top 10 Social Media Blog Winner in 2015 & 2016, and winner of the 2014 Best Australian Blogs Competition (Business Category). Donna helps businesses, bloggers and entrepreneurs use visual social media and content strategy to get more traffic, shares and sales in their business. She is a contributor to Entrepreneur Online and Social Media Examiner and has been featured in Forbes, NBC, Yahoo, the Huffington Pos, Entrepreneur and Problogger.
  • Great post, Donna.

    I could never understand why people would come to your page and just spam it with their links without even a hello! I really don’t know what they expected you to do in return – share  it with the world?

    It’s great that Facebook is now giving much less prominence to posts by others on your page.

    I do comment and interact as my page and I like to share content from other pages and tag them, so that anyone interested can visit those pages.

    • Thanks Valerie. Yes it is a bit strange, and I often wonder why people keep doing it when they don’t get a response. However, as you say, Facebook has moved towards engagement over broadcasting so it won’t be an issue much anymore. I think your strategy of sharing content from other pages and tagging them is a good one too. I have featured the timelines of some pages over past weeks and that has been a great way to spark some engagement and visitors. Have fun with Timeline!

  • I have always posted comments to other folks post.  It was and is common courtesy.  And, if they wrote something downright eloquent, I would reference same on my page.
    I’m with you, Donna!

    • Good one Roy! I agree with you, it is common courtesy. I always say that if in doubt, do what you would in real life. If you wouldn’t go up to someone in their place of business, barely say hello, start singing the praises of your own business, then walk away again leaving them holding a business card… then don’t do the equivalent of it online! Thanks for sharing! Enjoy the last of the Easter Weekend!

  • Great post Donna.  I agree with what you are saying and love your analogy at the end of the post (in italics)…that would actually be kind of funny in a strange way. 🙂

    I do have a question, which I think I know the answer to, but I’ll ask anyway:

    To comment on other Pages does my Page have to have previously liked this Page?  And I’m assuming I cannot interact with individual profiles in this manner “as” my Page…is the correct?

    I recently launched my FB Page for my blog, and I am trying to transition from sharing my blog posts and the ensuing interaction on my profile, to my Page (“as” my Page like you referred). 

    Hopefully this makes all makes sense. 🙂

    • Hey Jackie – thanks and great question. Actually, Facebook removed the need to “like” a page in order to comment a while ago, and it is another move by them to make it more about engagement than “likes”. You still need to like a page in order to receive their newsfeed, so worth liking them in order to get updates, but no, you do not need to like the page in order to post on their wall or comment on their posts.
      I think the second part of your question refers to personal profiles and I don’t believe you can post as a personal page in your “business page” mode. If you are just launching FB for your blog, then you are definitely doing things the right way around, as I believe your blog should be the “mothership” or home base for everything. Facebook is a tool (on rocket fuel) for driving traffic back to your blog.

      One thing you can do if you are already using your personal profile a lot (and you get a lot of action over there) is to allow “subscribers” on your personal profile. I intend to write about it soon, but some public figures (ie Mari Smith) have found that they get more subscribers now than actual page likers! So although I still believe that pages are very important (especially after Timeline came in) I would consider allowing subscribers to your personal profile if you are not concerned by making some of your posts public. It depends on what type of blog you have any how much you have used your personal profile to promote it. What is your blog url?

      • Thanks Donna! This is helpful.  My blog url is my name, jackiebledsoe.com.  I have used my personal profile to promote some…but I want to move that promotion completely to my Page.  Do you promote your blog exclusively from your Page or do you use your personal profile as well?

  • Great suggestions.

    • Hey Nicole – thanks for the feedback. Hope you get some use out of it!

  • “Be interesting!”  You’re so right… still need to decide on my Timeline cover …

    Good pointers – thanks for sharing. 

    I just love your domain name / blog 🙂

    Dee

    • Thanks so much Dee – I hope one day I will be socially sorted, but alas with the ever changing landscape I will be forever socially learning like everyone else! lol…. Let me know how you go with your timeline cover – drop me a line here or on Facebook. I would love to see it. We do a Timeline of the week over there too, so we often have some pointers about what works for Timelines! Have a fabulous week!

  • Deborah Taylor

    thanks for this! 
    I always try hard to get a little of my personality over in my blog posts – and will certainly try to do this through my facebook page!

    • You are so right Deborah – it is about personality and being authentic. People love to get to know you so yes, it is just the same for Facebook as it is for your Blog. I always say to do as you would if the person was standing in front of you – have a conversation! I will keep an eye out for your blog posts! Cheers!

  • Hi Donna, 
    Thanks for this wonderful post!  Your explanation is a GREAT help, clarifying just WHAT we’re doing here on Facebook, and WHY.  I love browsing through your blog, and tried subscribing just now, but the RSS button didn’t work.  Problem over here?  Or over there?  By the way, with my first glance at your business name, I thought it said “Socially Sordid”.  I hope that wasn’t a Rorschach test, and I’m glad I was wrong.  

    Talk with you again,
    Robbie

    • Ha ha Robbie, maybe it does get a little sordid some days down here (it has been hot lately in Australia!). I will definitely check on the RSS feed as I used it recently to subscribe with a client and it was working so I will get back to you about that. I am a big fan of RSS too! Thank you so much for the feedback about my blog – I am glad that it is practical and useful for you. It is great to get feedback so that I am writing about the WHY and not just the WHAT. Have you seen Simon Sinek’s TED Talk about “Why” – it’s brilliant if you get a chance!

      • Thanks, Donna.  Glad you enjoyed my feedback.  Your blog really presents some very useful advice, and I’m happy to show my appreciation.  Now, about lightening the background color and darkening the text in this comment section… I’ll be out for a while, actually working, and when I return I watch Simon Sinek’s TED Talk.  Thanks in advance.

        • Hi Robbie – enjoy Simon – it is one of my top 2 TED talks (easy to find on YouTube). I totally agree with you re the background – when I changed over to Disqus commenting yesterday it changed over the way the background appeared, so I am already talking to my web guy to get it changed to a better contrast. Great minds think alike!

    • Hi again – try entering this in your reader – it is working fine here and brings up the feed, so maybe try again later – feed://www.sociallysorted.com.au/feed/rss/

  • Things make so much more sense to me now about posting.  You made the whole picture of FB pages get clear! Thank you!

    • Thanks Ginger – I am glad that it has helped clear it up for you. Keeping up with Facebook can be a bit of a full time job some days ha ha. Have a great day!

  • Things make so much more sense to me now about posting.  You made the whole picture of FB pages get clear! Thank you!

    • Thanks Annette – I am so glad it has helped. Have a fabulous day!

  • Donna, I think what you’re saying has always been true, but perhaps now more people will “get it”. Thanks much. 

    • Too right Debra! It is time for us all to get that social media is about engagement and not broadcasting. I always say that we should do as we would if the person was standing in front of us. Think about how you would handle yourself and what you would say, and do that online! Have a great week!

  • Thanks for the notations.  As far as your question goes about posting “as” my fan page, I really don’t do that much: maybe need to do more!  

    So much of what we do revolves around building quality relationships: thanks for the reinforcement of that idea.  

    All the best to you and those you love, 

    Lee 

    • You are spot on Lee – it is about building relationships, and quality relationships at that! Posting as your page is a great way to engage with other pages without being “spammy” but I think there is still room for a balance between posting as yourself and your page – building a personal brand has become very important. One way you can still bring your “personal” touch into posting as your page is to end your post with: – Lee. It just makes it more personal to sign off as your name. – Donna

  • Oh here bloody here, Donna … I’m SO tired of the spammers. Really tired of them. Get into the conversation – it’s that simple. Social media is not a broadcaster, it’s a place to have conversations and build relationships.

    Another point, if you are commenting as your page, make sure you’re not trying to “one up” the page you are on. I get businesses commenting on my page basically offering their opinion in a passive agressive way that says I’m actually better than you hope your fans can see that. I’m almost at the point of banning two users from my page because of this.

    • Good point Nikki – I commented to someone in the thread above that it is good to strike a balance between your page and your personal profile when posting but to contribute at all times and not be tempted to bang on about your business!  People will check you out because you are interesting and you have something useful to say..so I agree, don’t try to “one up’ – that must be very annoying for you!  I must admit I am enjoying the lack of spam comments on the wall with Timeline.  PS Please ignore the overly dark purple background (I just changed to Disqus (love it) and my background changed with it so just sending a little note off to my web guy to lighten things up a bit!  

  • Thanks for great info Donna.  This is how I thought it was supposed to be.  Nobody ever found value in the ‘dump and run’ dummies.  The only way to make a difference is to contribute to the conversation with something of value… even if it is just your own opinion.  However, if you can post valuable content and back it up with third-party verification, all the better.

    • Hey Shea! Thanks for stopping by. It’s great to have you on my blog! You are right, it was never meant to be about spammy dump and run comments, but a lot of people kept persisting (probably with little benefit). I like that it is all about engagement. Have a great day!

  • Andrew

    thank you for sharing this interesting post with us. It is full of useful information thank you. Great post.

    • You are welcome Andrew – glad you found it useful! Have a great day!

  • mellissa Knowles

    All great ideas! Makes good logical sense. Can you quickly comment on tagging other pages in a status update or when sharing their info? How can you be seen as appreciative and excited about their content as opposed to spammy?
    thanks so much,
    Mellissa

    • Hi Melissa – I think Tagging is still worthwhile, but I really only use it to (a) contribute to another page or give thanks or give a “hat tip” for something – not to promote my own page and (b) to tag names and pages within posts when responding to them. I think if you are genuinely having a conversation with a person or brand, you can’t really go wrong. If it is about sharing, connecting, adding value and providing quality content, you won’t be seen as spammy. If you are not sure, think about how it would look in the real world if you made that same comment in their place of business or home – that sometimes helps! ie you wouldn’t walk in, talk “at them” about your business, and walk out, but you may walk in and talk with them about their business and have a great conversation. I hope that helps!

  • Thank you! This is so helpful.

    • Thank you for your feedback Laura!  Glad you found it helpful!  

  • hey Jackie – sorry I missed this – I don’t promote my blog posts much from my personal page (as I try to keep to the spirit of how Facebook wishes us to promote businesses) so I do most of it from my blog and from my business page on facebook…however if there is a blog post that I think I want to really shout out about or it is about something more general or I have done a guest post then I will. It is about balance. that way, my friends are getting my business come through on the feed all the time. But I am a little different to some – I don’t friend everyone on my personal page – it is the one social media platform where I try to keep it to people i have met or have known online for a while. That is just personal choice, I know I could get a lot more reach if I friended everyone but for me it works at the moment. Hope that helps.

  • Taty Hindes

    Great post once again Donna! But I also think this applies in general to what the purpose of having a social connection is: sharing, engaging, taking an interest.. you know, like real life!

  • Thanks Donna for all the great advice! I try to contribute to other business FB pages so i’m glad to hear i have been doing the right thing 🙂

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  • Ali BIerman

    Great info I had not read any place else–including in the product I bought–which said to post on their walls–though always add value and compliment them.
    What you sahre makes so much more sense. Thank you!

    • Hi Ali – thanks for the feedback, that’s great! Definitely, yes, you can post on the walls of other pages, but I think even more important is to COMMENT on posts on the walls of other pages….(as your page). By engaging in conversation with the page owner AND their fans/likers you get a double whammy….both the page owner and the fans will see that you are someone who is active and engaged on facebook (and you are not just “promoting” your page). I think you have given me an idea for another post! ha ha. But yes, responding to all of the comments on your own page is a great strategy, and one that I think is more than a “strategy” really…it is just natural human nature!

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