How To Increase Your Social Media Success | Everett Bowes | Skillshare

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How To Increase Your Social Media Success

teacher avatar Everett Bowes, Founder, 22 To Guru

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.

      Course Promo


    • 2.

      Course Introduction


    • 3.

      Facebook Is Not What You Think It Is


    • 4.

      The Coffee Shop Analogy


    • 5.

      Why Your Posts Get No Engagement


    • 6.

      What Limits Reach


    • 7.

      How To Improve Reach


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About This Class


This course is a deep-dive into understanding how you can “Increase Your Social Media Success”, without having to pay for it!


Anyone who is building a brand or a presence through social media.

If you are trying to 

  • Drive sales
  • Gain awareness
  • Increase leads
  • Increase traffic
  • Promote a product
  • Get clicks, downloads, or views….

This course is for you! 


I’m sure by now you’ve heard if you want to grow your brand’s social media account you need to “pay to play… that means you need to pay if you’re trying to promote or grow your brand’s presence.

But that’s not true!


After this this class you’ll post with confidence because I’m going to show you how to avoid the pitfalls that cause most brands’ posts to fail.

And you’ll feel empowered because you’ll learn the skills to create posts that get much better results!


Why I matter I am a social media and brand-strategy consultant. 

I have worked with companies big and small, from start ups to enterprises… I have empowered thousands of people to stand out, connect, increase followers, gain customers, and generate sales through social media without having to rely on boosting posts.

I am a Best-selling instructor, and I enjoy engaging with my students either here on the platform, or through social media. So I encourage you to ask questions along the way!


In this course I’m going to give you a framework for understanding Facebook and Instagram. 

You will learn:

  • Why your posts don’t get good engagement
  • Why it feels like your followers are not seeing your posts
  • Why it feels like you can’t gain more followers
  • And what you can do about it!

So many people feel defeated with social media.  They feel like they are working against Facebook and Instagram, instead of with them… and the sad news is, you’re right.

So, stop fighting the system! 


  • Increase your reach
  • Increase your followers
  • Increase your engagement
  • and understand what you’re doing that’s killing your posts,

… then you’ll want to take this class!


In this course is we will look at Facebook and Instagram from Facebook’s perspective, not a brand’s perspective.

By changing perspective you’ll see

  • Why most brand posts are doomed for failure
  • And how some simple changes will make all the difference in the world for your reach and engagement!


  • Stop fighting against facebook and instagram
  • End the confusion
  • Gain the confidence that comes with being seen and recognized in social media
  • Feel the joy associated with getting like, comments, shares and followers

Join this class and you’ll learn How To Increase Your Social Media Success!

I’ll see you in class.



Join Social Media Consultant & Brand Strategist Everett Bowes, of We Talk Branding, for this in-depth course on developing the human properties of your brand and start connecting today!

As always, reach out to me anytime! Post your questions and comments from the class in the Community section!

Additional resources: 

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Everett Bowes

Founder, 22 To Guru


PROFESSIONAL:  Hi! I’m Everett Bowes, Founder of 22 To Guru. I’m proud to be a Top Instructor on a number of mainstream teaching platforms, with over 85,000 students worldwide, and over 24,000 reviews (and counting)!

I have more than 25 years of experience as a leader in the fields of Brand Strategy, Creative Direction, Marketing, Social Media, Business, Leadership, Communications, and more. This unique combination of professional experience helps me produce impactful, efficient learning modules and resources on a number of different topics.

TEACHING:  My teaching style is very conversational and approachable. I avoid using technical-jargon and buzzwords that make other teachers feel self-important while running the risk of co... See full profile

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1. Course Promo: Hi. I'm Eva Bose and thank you for checking out my class. This course is a deep dive in understanding how you can increase your social media success without having to pay for it. I'm sure by now you've heard, if you want to grow your brand social media account, you need to pay to play. That means you need to pay, if you're trying to promote or grow your brand's presence. That's not true. After this class, you'll post with confidence because you'll know how to avoid the pitfalls that cause most brands posts to fail and you'll feel empowered because you're going to learn the skills to create posts that connect. I'm a social media and brand strategy consulting. I've worked with companies, big and small, from startups to enterprise. I've empowered thousands of people to stand out, connect, increase followers, gain customers, and generate sales through social media without having to rely on boosting posts. In this course, I'm going to give you a framework for understanding Facebook and Instagram. I'm going to give you an easy to understand explanation that will make social media makes sense in ways it never has before. You'll learn why your posts don't get good engagement. Why it feels like your followers are not seeing your posts, and why it feels like you can't gain more followers and most importantly, what you can do about it. So many people filled the defeated with social media. They feel like they're working against Facebook and Instagram and not with them. The sad news is they are right. So, stop fighting the system. If you're ready to increase your reach, increase your followers, increase your engagement and understand what you're doing that's killing your posts, then you're going to want to take this class. This course is different because we're going to look at Facebook and Instagram from Facebook's perspective, not just the brand's perspective. By changing that outlook, you're going to see why most brand posts are doomed for failure and how some simple changes will make all the difference in the world for your reach and during engagement. I'm a best-selling instructor and I enjoy engaging with my students either here on this platform or through social media. I encourage you to ask questions along the way. This course is for anyone who's building a brand presence through social media. If you're trying to drive sales, gain awareness, increase leads, increase traffic, promote a product, get clicks, downloads or views, this course is for you. Stop fighting against Facebook and Instagram and the confusion, gain the confidence that comes with being seen and recognized on social media and feel that joy associated with getting likes, and comments, and shares, and followers. Join this class and you'll learn how to increase your social media success. I'll see you in class. 2. Course Introduction: All right, let's start off by talking about who this course is for. This course is not for everybody. I know that's not exactly the world's greatest sales pitch or anything, but this course isn't for everybody. If your social media is purely for connecting with friends and meeting new people and you just want like a bazillion likes, this course is not necessarily for you. If you just want thousands of followers because you want to have more followers than your friends, this course also is not for you. But, if you're trying to promote something or promote yourself, this course is for you. Maybe you're selling or promoting a product or clothing or jewelry or art, music, health or beauty aids, make up, your writing, food, your services. It just doesn't even matter. Maybe you're trying to establish yourself as a thought leader, an influencer, some sort of a personal brand. This course is clearly for you. To get the most out of this course, you should have a basic understanding of Facebook and Instagram. I can't put a beginner intermediate or advanced tag on this simply because you can be any of those. If you're a beginner, you don't exactly have experience with the problems that we're going to get into in this course. But wow, what a great way to start. Just jump in with the best foot forward. If you're an immediate or advanced user, then this course is going to really just ring true to you. Because you've experienced a lot of the problems we're going to dive into in this course. There's things like not getting enough reach or a declining engagement rate, slower rate of getting new followers, and so many other issues that being an intermediate or advanced Instagram or Facebook user, you're just going to be able to resonate in a little bit better. If you are beginner, like I said, this is going to help you get off on the right foot right from the very beginning. This course is for people who want to understand why their business related posts are not very successful and what you can do about it. If you're asking yourself, why don't I get more likes or why can't I seem to get more followers? Maybe you're saying, followers, are they even seeing my posts, my current followers? Why do other people's post seem to get so much more engagement than my posts? If you're asking yourself those questions, this course is definitely for you. So what are we going to do in this class. in this course I'm going to give you a framework. What does that even mean? A framework is an understanding, it's a mindset and it's a way to understand the platform so that you can start making content that's going to connect. This material is easy to understand, it's easy to apply and it's actually going to impact your feed today as long as you apply the principles. In this course, I'm going to give you a unique perspective. I approach social media completely differently than most other social media consultants. Everybody wants likes, everybody wants comments and everybody wants followers in their social media. I get that, we all get that. But to get them, we're going to focus on reach. We're going to focus on content, messaging and principles that have not changed and are just not going to change any time. This course covers timeless principles, they're not new untested ideas, they're not going to become obsolete in the next algorithm change. These are tips that are not guesses. This is material based on information directly from Facebook and Instagram. These are not hacks. This is not a way to game the system. This is not going to get you banned. This also isn't going to be information that's going to gain like 1,000 new followers instantly or a hundreds and thousands of new likes. It's not a list of the best hashtags that you can use and it's not going to be a list of the best times for you to post. This course focuses on Facebook and Instagram. The way most social media courses don't, by looking at your posts from the platform's perspective. Now, why are we doing this? Because what you don't know about Facebook and Instagram can totally limit your accounts success. Let's dive into the problem. I separate all Facebook and Instagram users into two categories. There's the first category I call normal people and then the second category I call marketers. You are one of those two people. If you're taking this class, you're most likely a marketer. A normal person is someone that's not even remotely trying to sell or promote anything through a social platform. A marketer however is anyone who's trying to drive a sale or drive traffic or drive awareness about pretty much anything. A marketer can be anyone. You can be a small business owner, you can be an author or an artist, a musician, maybe an Etsy craft designer or maker, whatever Etsy craft person is going to be called. Anyway someone in direct sales, someone who's developing a personal brand or someone establishing themselves as a thought leader or a blogger, influencer and so much more. If you're trying to direct people to buy, download, click, watch, read, visit, whatever.You're a marketer. The reason we have to define all Facebook and Instagram users this way is simply because that's the way the platform is looking at you. You are either a normal user or you're a marketer. The platform experience can be very different depending on the way you self-identify. Your understanding of which one you are, is going to be key to the success of your posts and your overall account. If you are a normal user, Facebook and Instagram wants to help you connect, discover, and share. However, if you are a marketer, the platform is going to treat you completely differently. If you're a marketer, each social platform: Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, you name it. All of them, believes that their platform is the best place for you to connect with your target audience. However, that's what they get paid to do. If you're a normal user, they want to help you connect. It's just that simple. The problem is when a normal user, a normal person changes and becomes a marketer, suddenly things are different. It's not the same experience anymore. If you're trying to connect with an audience and reach more people and drive sales, drive traffic, gain influence, gain mindshare, earn money in any way, again, that's a marketer. When that happens, you're no longer that normal user. Now I know I've spent a lot of time really trying to drive that point home because it's vital. That self-identifying determining who you are. Even if you don't see yourself as a marketer, you may never have seen yourself as a marketer. If you're trying to achieve any of those goals, you are one. When you signal to Facebook and Instagram that you have become a marketer, things change. Suddenly, you'll see your posts don't get the same kind of engagement anymore. Or at least some of your posts don't get that kind of engagement anymore. Suddenly you might get that feeling like less people are engaging, you're getting less comments, less likes, you're getting fewer new followers and maybe you're even getting a sense of getting some feedback that your followers are no longer seeing some of your posts in their feed. In the next lesson, I'm going to explain why and the answer is vital to your feed success. 3. Facebook Is Not What You Think It Is: In the previous lesson, we talked about the two types of users that Facebook and Instagram recognizes. There's normal users and there are marketers. If you're watching this course, like I said, you're most likely a marketer or you're about to be one. The problem is, before now you may never have recognized yourself as a marketer. Now here's the great news. If you're a marketer, Facebook and Instagram believe that there is no better place anywhere to help connect you with your target audience. Their platform, they believe is the best place where you can connect with your target. I largely agree with them. So no billboards and banner ads, not Google ads, newspapers and magazines, not commercials, not phonebooks. What's a phonebook? Signage, nothing can connect a marketer to their target audience better than Facebook and Instagram. That's why so many people, so many marketers flocked to Facebook and Instagram. However, Facebook is not what you think it is. Facebook and Instagram are not what you think they are. I want to change your mindset. What was Facebook built to do? That's what I want you to start thinking about. We might think Facebook was built to connect, discover, and share. It was a place for us as normal users to connect this governing chair. But its real purposes are actually different. Understanding the real purpose for Facebook and Instagram is going to make a major impact on your accounts success. So Facebook and Instagram, they are a mobile focused, targeted ad delivery platform. That's my definition of them. Now, I want to break this apart. I want to repeat that one more time. Facebook and Instagram are a mobile focused, targeted ad delivery platform is disguised as a place for us to connect, discovering and share. So here's a quote straight out of Facebook's financial statements. It says, "We generate substantially all of our revenue from advertising." Another quote, "For the first nine months of 2017 and 2016, advertising accounted for 98 and 97 percent, respectively of our revenue. The substantial majority of our revenue is generated from advertising on mobile devices." Another key statement, "Facebook is a mobile focused, targeted ad delivery platform." The same is with Instagram. Now, if Facebook were a television channel, it would be the commercial channel. I know that sounds strange. A normal user and normal Facebook or Instagram user is going to be oblivious to this. But hear me out. If Facebook was an all ads all the time content, location, no one would use it. So the platform has to do something, to entice people to it and do something in order to keep them coming back over and over again. No one is going to sign up for an app that simply pitches products and services non-stop. So when we think about TV, there's at least here in America, there's ESPN. That is all sports, all the time. There's CNN, that's all news all the time. There's channels like lifetime, which just focus a little bit more broadly on drama more one of their taglines is television for women. There are commercials on each of these platforms, but the commercials are tucked in between; great sports content, great news content, or great dramatic content. If there were too many commercials and not enough content, people would stop watching the channel. They just opt out completely and they'd quit it. Each channel has to balance the number of ads they can air with how much content they need to show. This is the same exact challenge that Facebook is in. They are a mobile focused, targeted ad delivery platform and they need the balance, how many ads they can show with how much content they must deliver. If they don't get the balance just right, people will leave the platform. So that's the essence of my framework. It's a mobile focused, targeted ad delivery platform. Now, let's look at that statement. Mobile focus, what's the big deal? I'm harping on this mobile focused and targeted ad. Mobile focus simply means that Facebook and Instagram is optimized for the mobile user experience. More people access Facebook and Instagram via mobile devices than laptops, desktop and anything else. A quote from the financial statements again, "The substantial majority of our revenue is generated from advertising on mobile devices.The Facebook experience must be optimized for mobile because that's how the audience is experiencing it and targeted ad. Why do I keep saying targeted ads? What makes Facebook absolutely amazing is its ability to target. Nothing. I'm telling you nothing in the world can target better than Facebook's platform. TV, billboards, newspapers, we talked about there's nothing even comes close. Nothing is better than Facebook and getting targeted content in front of the right people. Now, by targeted, we're talking about getting your content in front of the specific people you want to get in front of. Facebook has come under fire in just how specific you can actually target people. If you want to aim at, let's say, women ages 35 to 43 in the Southwest United States that love Nordstrom, they're mothers of newborns and they consider themselves trendy. Facebook can get you there. Now, the problem is this, If you're trying to sell something, promote something, drive awareness of something, again, you are a marketer. Number 1, if you're a marketer, you need to pay Facebook. We're going to talk about that more in an upcoming lesson. Number 2. If you are a marketer and not paying Facebook, you're ruining Facebook. I know that's a harsh statement. We're going to understand that more and some greater contexts in just a minute. Remember the TV analogy. I said, if ESPN shows too many commercials and not enough sports content, people will leave the channel. If CNN shows too many commercials, not enough news content, people are going to leave the channel. The application of Facebook and Instagram assemble. If Facebook runs all of the ads it they're getting paid to run and they allow every user to post all the things that they want to promote, its going to ruin the platform completely. What would ruin the platform? Facebook admits too many ads and irrelevant ads. Those are two different things. Too many ads and irrelevant would destroy the platform. Posts that are really promotions are not vetted, they're not targeted for relevance. Too many people are selling all things these days. Practically everyone it seems like is selling or promoting or influencing or driving awareness to something. If Facebook and Instagram lets all of that content get posted, it would practically turn Facebook and Instagram Into the all ads, all the time channel. There's not enough connection, discovery and sharing going on. Normal users will leave the platform. Facebook needs to get paid. They get paid for ads, promotions for driving awareness, etc. Facebook says, "We generate substantially all of our revenue from advertising." Facebook built an entire infrastructure for ad delivery. If they build it and they maintain it, why should I make money from it and not give them some of it? That's the Facebook perspective. My Facebook doesn't make money off ads. They don't have anything else to make money from. This is their main income stream. Ads are their main income stream. When normal users want to promote, sell, drive traffic, gain awareness, increase influence, or in any way, make money from a post, then they become a marketer. That's what Facebook gets paid to do, they get paid to market. Now let's talk about how this impacts you. Why do most business-related post fail? Why do most posts that are intended to drive sales or traffic seem to just flop? Well, the answer is, it goes directly against what Facebook wants you've essentially created in that, but you didn't pay for it. Therefore, you're littering the feeds of normal users and potentially creating irrelevant content. In addition, you're likely attempting to direct people off of the platform. Maybe you're saying to go to my website, check out my blog, watch my video, download my e-book, check out my art, buy my book. Now, watch this video. It doesn't matter. You're trying to get people to get off Facebook and go somewhere else to go do whatever. All of this leads people away from Facebook. That's practically the last thing the platform wants you to do. Now, it's easy to say, well, they're my followers. They want to see my content. Well, think about how many email lists you opt out of emails all the time. I'm so fed up with it like I signed up to whatever for whatever reason it but I'm constantly getting maybe if I get three emails in a week or maybe three emails a day from an organization, that's it. I'm out and I have no problems cutting ties with, unsubscribe so fast it's not even funny, but we all have different thresholds or when we want to opt out of emails. Well, the same goes true for social media, but it's really different on social media. Like I said, I'll opt out of an email or unsubscribe and then sometimes there's some stores I end up subscribing and an unsubscribing again, I subscribe and unsubscribe, it's crazy. But people are more likely to stop using that platform. People are more likely to stop using Facebook and Instagram then they just unfollow those people who are constantly littering their feeds. It's crazy, unfriending somebody in social media, unfollowing, unfriending someone is one of the most horrific insults you could do. So people would rather quit using all of Facebook simply because of a user or two or three, rather than to unfollow those people. Now, I know that the social platforms have incorporated some muting options where you don't see those posts or unfollow but not unfriendly and so on. I think the majority of people just don't really know how to use those things. But the point still stand that unwanted just because you signed up and to follow doesn't mean you want to see all of these business-related posts. Facebook and Instagram are not going to risk people abandoning the entire platform simply because some users are using the platform incorrectly. How does this framework impact your mindset? I want to know, so send me a message or email me. Put a note in the comments, reach out to me on social media, LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, it doesn't matter. Send me and let me know what your thoughts are. How does seem Facebook and Instagram has an ad delivery platform impact you, impact your feed and your posts. Our next lesson is going to be a really cool strange analogy that I want to introduce to you. I think it can offer you a lot more clarity. 4. The Coffee Shop Analogy: Now that we established this new framework, let's look at Facebook and Instagram another way. We're going to use an analogy. I love analogies because they give us a different contexts, are different lens to view something. Analogies can help make something that's abstract a lot more tangible. In this one, we're going to start looking at Facebook and Instagram like they are a coffee shop. This is going to give you a really super unique perspective of the platforms. By doing this, and I'm going to share some more insight on these principles, but I think it can have a tremendous impact on the success of your posts. Let's pretend you own a coffee shop similar to Starbucks. I want you to think about: what would you allow people to do in your coffee shop, what do you want them to do in your coffee shop, what is not allowed in your coffee shop? Also, what would happen if people break the rules, and then lastly, is everyone required to follow all the rules. What's allowed in your coffee shop? Again, let's say I own a coffee shop. What do I want people to do? Well, I want people to just come and hang out. I want people to hang out by themselves. I want them to hang out in groups. I want them to meet new people. I want them to come with friends or meet friends, make new friends. I want maybe some times where people can entertain other people. Maybe they can do an open mike or karaoke or some literary performance like poetry or something like that. There's something else. Maybe I'd like them to buy coffee. That would be great if they could come to my coffee shop and actually buy something that'd be wonderful, so buy coffee or some other products that would be very much allowed. The primary focus as the owner, what I'm trying to do in my coffee shop, is I want to create this sense of a third place. That was a term that, I don't know if Starbucks and their leadership there coined that term or not, but that's definitely what Starbucks is aiming for. Is to become that third place, it's home, work and Starbucks. I want to create this culture in my coffee shop, of this third place. A place where, it's just so comfortable, people can come, hang out, relax no pressure, and just refills them and so on. Coffee shops put a lot of effort and go to long lengths to try to nurture and foster that feeling. Behind the scenes, even though I'm trying to create this total third place vibe, I've got to sell some coffee. I know that I need to sell some coffee and some products. What's not allowed in my coffee shop? There's three main things that I don't want anybody to do in my coffee shop. Number one: I don't want you to sell your own coffee. That would be pretty bad. If you came to my coffee shop and you sold your own coffee, that's going to put me out of business. The second thing I don't want you to do in my coffee shop, is I don't want you to encourage people to leave. Then the last thing is, don't do anything that disrupts my third space vibe. Don't do anything that's going to be a disturbance. The first thing I said, you can't sell coffee in my coffee shop. Coffee shops sell coffee. Facebook sells ads. You cannot go to a coffee shop and sell your own coffee, and you cannot create an ad, or promotion on Facebook and Instagram, without paying Instagram and Facebook for it. You can't sell your own coffee from a strictly financial perspective, in the coffee shop, I get paid to sell coffee. If I don't get paid to sell coffee, we go out of business. No matter how great this third space vibe a hangout thing is, if I don't sell coffee, I can't stay in business. Well, Facebook must sell ads. If they don't, they will go out of business. No matter how great the connect discover share component is of their platform, they have to sell ads. Number two, you can't tell people to go somewhere else. If you come into my coffee shop, don't come in and tell people, hey, go check out my friend's clothing store. That's going to be annoying. I'm not going to be happy with that. Don't come into my coffee shop and tell people, "Hey, go hang out at the library, go hang out at the mall, go over here, go over there," and especially, don't come into my coffee shop telling people to go to another coffee shop, that's really bad. If you do that, I can't make money. If people don't come to my coffee shop and hang out, I'm not going to make any money. In the world of Facebook and Instagram, telling people to go to a website, or go to a blog, or go to your online store, or your landing page, or anywhere else, is just like telling people in my coffee shop to go to another place, go to another store or whatever. When we make posts that say, "Click here, check out my whatever, go download this, check out my blog buy my latest book." All of these things are accused as basically saying, "Hey, I know you're on Facebook, but leave Facebook and go check this out." Facebook and Instagram are not going to be happy about that. That's going to be really disconcerting. Telling them to check out your video on Youtube is even worse, because YouTube is another social media platform. That's like, again coming into my coffee shop and saying, "Hey, go check out this other coffee shop." I also said that you cannot disrupt my third space vibe. Don't create a disturbance. I want people to come and hangout, be relaxed, refreshed, connect with other people, friends, family, do whatever. I don't want people coming in and disrupting the experience that I'm trying to cultivate and nurture. Constant ads is a major disruption to the platforms experience. If you're on Facebook or Instagram and you're just scrolling through your feed and it's just: an ad, an ad, an ad, cat video, another ad, Taco Tuesday, another ad. It's just going to get incredibly mundane and boring and people are not going to be interested. People don't like ads. People go to really big lengths to avoid ads, at least in America. Not only do we not like ads in general, more specifically, we detest irrelevant ads. Look at the lengths we go to avoid them. On television alone, we have DVRs, so rather than watch a show live, we'll record it and then we'll skip through all the commercials. There's actually buttons on remote controls for DVRs, that you can press the button one time and it'll jump ahead 30 seconds, the length of a commercial. We might actually stream the TV show, instead of watching it live. We're already paying for television service, but we're going to go pay again for the same content, simply so that the commercials can be lessened or avoided altogether. We'll binge-watch series, we might even say, "I'm not even going to watch it until I can buy the entire series." We just go to big lengths to avoid ads in general. Irrelevant ads, like I said, are even worse. They can be confusing, they can be annoying. They're just frowned upon in lots of ways. There's a slight exception to all of this, and I call it the celebrity disclaimer, or the blue check mark hall pass. Celebrities are allowed to break the rules. If Kim Kardashian showed up at my coffee shop and she says, "Go check out the store and buy my latest, whatever it is, " I'm definitely not going to be upset with her. She can come into my coffee shop anytime and she can promote anything she wants. She can sell her own products in my coffee shop, she can tell people to go to a store like, "Hey, go to Nordstrom and by this or that," her latest product or product line, it doesn't matter. I'm just thrilled that she's at my store. I'm thrilled that she's at my store to make these announcements and if she's going to do this on a regular basis, even better. I'm going to gain so much more by her continually coming to my store, to make these announcements. I'm going to gain much more than whatever it is, I'm going to lose on a one, or two, or three-person basis. Celebrities can sell, they can market, they can get away with a lot of different things on a social media platform. They can encourage people to leave, go watch my videos, go to my website, they can do all of these things. Because again, if they're on Facebook and they're on Instagram, the Kardashians were notoriously on Snapchat. It's going to draw so many people on the platform that they don't mind, then they are going to get what I call a hall pass. If you break the rules, and you're not a celebrity though, there are going to be consequences. In my coffee shop, maybe I'm going to ask you to leave. On Facebook and Instagram, they're not necessarily going to shut down your account immediately, although more and more, I'm seeing that happen more increasingly. Instead they're going to limit your reach. What does this mean, reach? Reach is a very simple term. It's how many of your followers see your posts. Let's say you have a 1000 followers. If you're making posts that are basically ads and you're not paying the platform, they're not going to give your content to the 1000 followers, they are going to give it to significantly less people. That's a limited reach. If Facebook or Instagram limits your reach. That means you're going to get fewer likes, fewer shares, fewer comment, potentially even fewer followers. All because people are just not seeing your post. If you really break the rules, Facebook and Instagram will shut down your account. For a long time. Facebook business pages got great organic reach. Organic reach simply means you didn't pay to get any reach. But now, success in groups, Facebook groups, and business pages, it's really changed. Hopefully the coffee shop analogy allows you to look at Facebook and Instagram from a different perspective and shed light on this in a different way. Hopefully that analogy makes the whole platform make more sense for you. In the next lesson, we're going to focus more specifically on, what I call the usual suspects. The things that cause your posts to get a very limited reach. 5. Why Your Posts Get No Engagement: [MUSIC] In this lesson, we're going to talk about what's causing your posts to get a very limited reach. Now, maybe you've noticed you're not getting the same traction on some of your posts anymore. Some of your posts get a small fraction of what your other post get. You're trying to wonder why, you're trying to figure out why. First you have to understand is because you created an ad. Secondly, you have to understand how Facebook is going to treat this post. You're going to be penalized with a really bad reach. That's their reaction to you making a post that's really more of an ad, which is again, how many of your followers are actually getting the post that you make in their feed. Let's talk about an ad-post. I came up with this word, an ad-post is a post that you made, that you're not paying for, but it's really intended to promote something your drive traffic or clicks or something along those lines. The problem with ad- post, there is a number of problems. First is quality. If your post has an ad or a promotion of any kind, but you did not pay Facebook for it, that means it's not vetted by Facebook. Quality has not been approved. Facebook has really strict guidelines for ads. Then they dictate practically every aspect of the post. They dictate the size, the image, the layout, the messaging, the call to action and even more. If you place an ad on Facebook, the right way, it goes through a review process. They're going to review the messaging, what you say, how you say it, the claims that you make, all of these things are scrutinized. They're also going to look at the look and design, the image you use and more. In fact, it often can take you several revisions to finally get your post approved by Facebook. If you don't pay for the post, Facebook can't review it for targeting and quality. They're not going to show it. Your post is going to get really bad reach. The next problem with this concept of ad posts, is you potentially are creating content in the feeds of other people that's irrelevant. Irrelevant ads will be an absolute will have a destroying effect on the overall platform experience. Posts that are actually ads ruin the experience for normal Facebook users because the contents often irrelevant. Irrelevant ads would be a killer for the platform. If your post is really an ad, it's going to get very little reach. Another problem with ad-posts, is there is just too many of them. Now, how many people do you personally know who are selling or promoting something online? In my life, easily 35% of the people I know on a social platform are actually promoting or driving clicks, traffic awareness or whatever it might be to something. Maybe it might even be as much as 50% of the people that I know. That's a lot of people. If Facebook puts all of those people's ads in the feeds, it's going to totally ruin the experience. Is going to feel like the commercial channel, when you hop on Facebook and Instagram is just going to feel like commercials, so it's not a Instagram app, is that commercial app. Therefore, if your post is really an ad, it's going to get very little reach. Then there's another problem with ad posts. It would contribute to a financial collapse for the platform. If you can make posts for products or services without paying Facebook and Instagram, why would anyone pay Facebook and Instagram? Another problem with ad-posts is platform retention. Time on the platform is another major metric that Facebook and Instagram are measuring. Most ads direct people off the platform. Think about it. If you're making a post and you say, check out my website or maybe say, see the video, go watch the video, or check out my blog post, or maybe learn more here, click to download, checkout my resources, go to my store. All of these things direct people off the platform. If you're post encouraged people to leave Facebook or Instagram, they're going to get very little reach. Lastly, the problem with post ads is poor engagement. Facebook knows people are more up to come back or stay on the platform longer if they are finding content that they can engage with. But most ads just inform. They're not something people can engage with. Think about it. How many people pull over on the side of the road because they saw billboard and then want to try to engage with this billboard in some way. Facebook is intended to be this lean into platform at times, not this lean back platform. The more people are engaged, the more money the platform can make. If your posts are informing people about your products and services and not really something people can truly engage with, your posts are going to get very little reach. In the next lesson, we're going to talk about what to stop doing so that Facebook, Instagram don't limit your reach. [MUSIC] 6. What Limits Reach: All right. We're going to start this lesson off by talking about a quick definition again, reach and organic reach. Reach is simply a matter of getting your posts served to your followers. If you have 1,000 followers, that does not mean 1,000 people get to see your content. Facebook and Instagram will determine how many people actually even get your content. Organic reach is a term that basically means you didn't pay to get better reach. Organic reach is that's how far your post went without you having to pay. Now, why is reach so important? Whatever your goal is through social media, you can't achieve it if people don't even see your posts. Getting good reach is vital. This entire lesson is going to cover what you need to stop doing in order to get better reach. First, don't rely on non-people posts. People connect with people, that's what you need to focus on in your feed. There's a lot of feeds out there that are constantly showing graphics, and if you're a marketer and you're trying to promote something, too many times you see the object that people are trying to promote and their whole feed is littered with this, it's terrible. Those posts are going to go nowhere. Making posts with just graphics is so much easier than people posts, but people posts are what get more reach. Remember, people followed you to follow you, so give them you. There's room for making non-people posts and for making posts without you in them, but you need to determine what's the appropriate amount of non-people post your followers will tolerate. Relying on stock photography is also something you should stop doing. Facial recognition tools are a hallmark of Facebook and Instagram, it's amazing what they can do. Stock photography is a signal to the platform that you are a marketer and a photo of you or your family and your adventures, those posts are going to go a lot further, get much better reach than if you have a post that has stock photography resources in them. Don't buy followers. I did this. I had this great idea, I'm going to write a blog post and I'm going to call it, I Bought 10,000 Followers and Why You Shouldn't. I did it. I paid, it was a relatively small amount of money, bought 10,000 followers. It was so horrific, I actually had to shut down my entire Instagram account. I think I went about a year and a half without an Instagram account because it was just such a bad, horrible experience. So don't buy followers, don't buy likes, it's going to come back and hurt you. Avoid all bots and automation. Facebook and Instagram were not built for bots and automation. Facebook and Instagram don't like these systems that bypass the with the platform was intended to be used. They want us to play a certain way and bots that like, there's bots that comment, bots that follow, there's bots that follow and unfollow, they're horrible. You might be able to get away with that right now, but it's going to be totally temporary, it's not sustainable and it's not a way that you're going to built any level of success. Be careful with call to actions, CTA's. On a boosted post, on a promoted post, the post that you're legitimately paying to promote, sometimes one of the biggest mistakes people make is they forget the call to action. By all means, on a paid post, include a call to action, but on organic posts, on a post that you're not paying to boost, a call to action is going to signal to the platform that you're actually promoting something, you're trying to drive a sale, whatever it might be and that post is going to get limited reach. So be careful of call to action language inside of your posts. Don't post external links. Normal users don't post a lot of external links inside of their posts, especially if that external link leads to a place where somebody can make a purchase online. If your post has a link to an online store or download place or anywhere where people can make a purchase, Facebook and Instagram are more inclined to give that post limited reach. Keep in mind also, they just don't want to lose any of their users, so making a post with external links already signals to the platform that you're a marketer, already tells the platform you're trying to get people away from the platform, and the platform is going to be more inclined to limit your reach. I will say you can put links in the comment section, however, a tactic some people will do is they'll have the picture and the caption and then post that, but then in the comment, they will quickly put in a link. Today I think you can still get away with that a little bit, but that's not going to be sustainable. My rule of thumb is this golden rule, if they don't ask, don't tell. What I mean is, in your post you can reference or talk about whatever it is that you're ultimately hoping people are going to latch onto, but if people don't ask for a link, don't post it, don't put it out there, don't just automatically put it in the comments, make it a reply to somebody, or send them a link through a direct message, I think that's going to be fine, but putting a link in the actual post is not going to work, putting a link that's not solicited, that's not asked for in the caption is also going to be a big problem too. Beware of logos. We've mentioned facial recognition. These systems are so intelligent. Faces are hard to really decipher between person A and person B, logos, they're easy. Each platform, Facebook and Instagram are scanning all of the content, the caption content as well as the image content in logos. So you could take a picture of whatever product you're trying to promote and that logo is right there, if the logo is visible, you're likely going to get limited reach as well. I don't necessarily mean like maybe you're out and you're running and you have a shirt and it has a Nike symbol on it, the platform knows you're not trying to sell Nike, you just happened to be wearing Nike, but there's other things that are sold more directly or through people. Maybe you've got artwork and you're selling it on an art website, don't put the logo of the art website on your post, that's a dead giveaway. Beware of hashtags. Now, hashtags are a highly controversial subject and I don't want to muddy the water too much. But think about it. Normal people don't really truly use hashtags. Normal people just make posts, they connect, they discover, they share, they write about their day in their life. They might use a fun hashtag. Maybe a hashtag like birthday or just married or honeymoon, I said a fun hashtag, something like, first time for everything, they're not trying to get that post discovered, that hashtag is just a funny extension of their caption. Hashtags are a dead giveaway. Personally, I am a consultant and I teach marketing, branding, social media strategy. If I made a post on social media and I hashtag consulting, that's a dead giveaway that I'm trying to drum up attention, I'm trying to gain traction, I'm trying to gain more followers, I'm trying to gain awareness, I'm trying to gain promotion, all of these, and because of that, that hashtag alone is going to get me very limited reach. So beware of your hashtag use, that's all I'm trying to say. Other people will tell you that your success is dependent on your ability to leverage hashtags. I think that error is really largely done. You can use hashtags, don't rely on them, don't max out on hashtags, you're signaling to the platform, when you use a lot of hashtags, you're signaling, "I'm a marketer." When you say, "I'm a marketer," Facebook says back, "Then you pay me for your marketing efforts." In our next lesson, we've finished talking about what not to do, let's tackle what we should do. In the next lesson, we're going to dive in what to do to get better reach. 7. How To Improve Reach: [MUSIC] This is all about reach. What we've talked about is how to expand your reach, not limit your reach. How to get your posts out there into the feeds of as many people as possible and not limit and shortcut the success or potential success that your post might get. Now, the very first thing that you need to do in order to get great reach is post great content, post connect worthy content, post content that people can engage with. Post content that's shareable, post content that you can tag other people or other users. I know that this is harder to do, but it's the right thing to do. It's what the platforms are intended to do. When you do it, these posts get great reach, also show faces. People connect with people, so show people, specifically, show faces. That's what we connect with. I work with a number of artists and I help them with their social media feeds. It's interesting that they want to show the artwork in the posts that have just even in their hand in the shot. Maybe just like holding a pen, a marker or pencil or a stylus, whatever. The posts that have even the small touch of a human element actually get better engagement than the posts that don't. That's how vital showing people is to the success of your feed. Don't overly focus on getting the likes. Focus on getting followers, post in a way that people will want to follow you, not just like the post. That's one of my big problems with hashtag use also, is people might think, well, if I use hashtags, I'll get more likes, but people rarely go from liker to buyer. People typically go from follower to buyer, so you want to focus on gaining followers. Show emotion, don't just tell me what you did. Show me how you felt about it, excitement sells, emotion connects. Emotions are universal, experiences are unique. Show the emotion, show the emotion in that caption and if you can show it in your faces, in the actual image and post. Post consistently. People often focus on what's the best time to post, but I actually care more about how consistently you can post. What's the interval of time between your posts? Can it be a consistent amount? Find a frequency that works for you and commit to it. Get on the platform for more than just making your promotion posts. Get on the platform, spend time, if you're only on the platform in order to make your posts for your promotions, your posts are not going to get a great amount of reach. Get on the platform, consume content, and engage. You must engage. If you want your post to show up in the feeds of other people, engage in their feeds. You have to follow people, lots of people. You want to follow them back, you want to like their posts, you want to comment on their posts. If they're commenting on your content, you want to comment back, you want to reply to that. Engaging with people triggers the platform to serve your content into their feeds. Here's a great engagement strategy. Something I'd like to do is before I make a post, I want to go on that platform and just engage for about 30 minutes or so. I want to go on what I call a liking spree. I just want to like as much content as I can. Like, comment, engage anyway that you can. Then make your post, and then after your posts has been posted, engage again for another 15, 20-30 minutes after that. I feel like it just gets so much of a greater reach when you follow this engagement strategy. Follow new people, don't just follow people randomly. Have a little bit more of a strategy in this, follow people that you have a mutual connection with. Marketers are targeting basically blanket, just anybody, but a real person doesn't do that. A real person's going to connect with, and try to follow people that you have a mutual connection with already. Find people that you have mutual connections with and follow them. In my experience, at least up to this point, when I first start following somebody, their content starts showing up in my feed a lot more frequently and your content will show up in their feed as well. Follow new people, especially people that you have a connection with, a mutual connection with. Use as many platform features and avenues as you can. Now, what do I mean? On Instagram, you can make an Instagram post, you can make an Instagram story. There's IGTV, there's Instagram Live. Using as many of those avenues and features as possible will gain you better traction. On top of that, then there's things like filters and you can add locations, you can tag people. The more features you can use of each of the two platforms, the better your posts are going to do. You get better reach on Facebook when you are using multiple avenues. Again, like Facebook post, Business page groups, Stories live, and then on your posts, if you can add location, tag people that you're with. You can put your feelings on there, you are feeling happy and so on. When you do that, again, it's just in my experience when you optimize and maximize the features and the avenues, post tend to get much better reach. When Facebook or Instagram roll out a new feature, use it. Try to use it. Whatever that new feature is, try to use it. I feel like they reward users with reach when they start using any new feature or service that they roll out. Post native content, post content on Facebook that's optimized for Facebook. Post content on Instagram that's optimized for Instagram. Don't post a video that's optimized for Facebook on Instagram stories. A video that's optimized for Facebook might be, the widescreen perspective. The 16 by nine widescreen perspective. But on Instagram TV, it's the portrait video, it's the portrait perspective. Post native content. I also don't like linking my two accounts, I don't like when you make a post on Instagram, you can have it automatically post to Facebook. Instead, just make the post manually. I feel like the post get much better reach when you just make the manual posts, when you optimize the content for each specific platform. Share the good news. That's key, share the good news. Don't inform people, "I have a new book available, I have got a new artwork available, buy my classes, by my whatever, check out my latest products." Don't inform people. Those posts aren't going to get good reach. Instead, share the good news. Making a post something like, so excited my latest class is done, so glad that we're finally launching my new art exhibit. Whatever it might be, just share the good news. Have that emotion part of it is well, share the good news of what accomplishment you achieved, how you feel about it. Those posts are going to get much better reach. Overall, your goal should be connection, conversation, engagement, thought leadership or mental equity related ability. If your goal is something different, your posts aren't going to get much reach. The platform is going to fight you on those posts. If your goal is, driving clicks or getting higher conversions or generating traffic. Maybe it's, hits and visits or purchases and downloads, videos watched, it doesn't matter. All of those things, especially when they lead off platform, are going to be very tough for you to gain traction on those posts.