As Facebook evolves the success of your business page will depend on your understanding of what Facebook likes, and more importantly, what they don’t.

Just this past month we’ve been blessed with the opportunity of becoming a Facebook Marketplace Inventory Partner.  With this new value-added service it has allowed us to not only provide a wonderful new sales pipeline for our clients but also have meaningful dialogue about the overall use of Facebook as a business.  Over the past few years Facebook has changed dramatically when it comes to business pages.  What once worked doesn’t work anymore. 

It’s true.  What you’re doing on Facebook right now is probably a waste of time or it’s hurting your reach for when you actually have something good to post!

So through these conversations with car dealers and learning more about Facebook and its services I’ve come up with 6 good examples of things Facebook HATES. 

Yes, by giving you just 6 things to avoid doing I’m freeing you up to have full creative license and post whatever you want as long as it doesn’t fall into any of the categories below!

Facebook Hates Unpaid Posts

Get used to it.  As a business you get treated differently than as a person on Facebook.  I’ll probably say this five more times in this article alone but Facebook is in the business of connecting people.  Facebook isn’t here to help you sell cars.  That’s what sites like Cargurus and Autotrader are for.  Don’t treat a social site like a classified site.  You will fail.

Read what Zuckerberg says about business’ posts

In order to grow your page and reach more potential customers you will need to Boost your post.  Boost means to pay for your post to reach more eyeballs on Facebook and Instagram.  Sure, you can create a post and it will be seen but the reach will be fractions of what it would be for, say a $20 boost. (There’s a good chance you’re reading this article because I boosted it!)

I’m not saying to stop posting organic posts (meaning a normal unpaid post). What I’m saying is don’t only post that way.  If you have something important to say; an upcoming sale, you need to turn a vehicle, there’s a community event you’re a part of…boost it!

Facebook Hates Lack of Engagement

Facebook is in the business of connecting people.  I told you I’d keep saying it!  Facebook’s algorithms are set up in a way that posts are elevated on news feeds when they have a high level of engagement.  Engagement = likes, comments, and shares.  I know, we just talked about how Facebook hates unpaid posts but as I mentioned you can still create organic posts.  They just need some engagement! 

Let’s look at what not to do…Here’s a REAL* post I found.
*I changed all identifiable information to keep this business anonymous

Generic Facebook post

They have over 1,700 page likes but look at this post.  ZERO engagement!  No likes, no comments, no shares.  Why?  Because the post doesn’t invite any sort of engagement.  It’s basically a billboard ad on a social media platform centered around the concept of engaging and connecting people!

When you post something it is your job to do it in a way that makes it engaging.  Ask a question, ask for people’s opinion, bring value with every post.  If you’re about to post something and think to yourself, “I wouldn’t interact with this post”…don’t post it!  Rewrite/redo it in a way that would elicit a response from you.

Ok let’s say you do post something and it’s getting likes and comments and shares.  Don’t sit on it!  Reply back to people who comment.  Maybe ask them more questions so they respond back again.  See what’s happening?  You’re connecting with people!  You’ll see this reflected on your “People Reached” count Facebook provides.  The more interaction the more it finds its way into the news feeds of more people!  That’s how things go viral – engagement.

Ideas for Engaging Posts

  • Create a weekly event:  Tuesday Trivia, Fun Fact Friday
  • Sports rivalries:  “Who’s the GOAT:  MJ or Lebron?”
  • Seasonal topics:  “When is it OK to listen to Christmas music?”
  • Nastalgia:  “What was your very first car?”

Just remember, when people engage on these posts follow it up with more conversation and act like a person, not a car salesman. You’re not trying to sell them with every interaction either.  You can see my examples didn’t particularly fall in to the niche of car sales but that’s ok.  Engagement is key to the long game of sales.  A positive interaction now could bring you a new customer in a year.

Facebook Hates Images with Text

I don’t exactly know the ‘why’ behind this but I have a few guesses.  My guess is that text on an image is hard for Facebook to moderate – harder for the AI to decipher what’s on there.  My other guess is that images with lots of text look spammy and not inviting.

Facebook bought Instagram in 2012 for about $1 billion.  Ever since this purchase Facebook has been trending towards that style platform.  A platform that drives engagement through visual media – images and video.  As such, Facebook has gotten stricter on what images they like and don’t like.  Or as they say, “images with less text perform better”.

Here’s a very helpful article:  About Text in Ad Images

I’m guilty of this.  I’ve done an ad with too much text and boy was it a waste of money! 

Facebook Hates Auto Posts from Other Websites

Take this article you’re reading for example.  It’s posted on our KGI Dealer Solutions website which is built on the WordPress platform.  When I published this article I had the option to share it to Facebook automatically.  Convenient, right?  Too bad Facebook hates that!

Sometimes we fall in to this trap of convenience through automation. It’s important to acknowledge, however, that social engagement and automation by definition can’t really go hand in hand.  You’re either engaging with others online or you’re having bots do your work.  Because of this I think Facebook recognizes these posts as automated and rates them as very low priority.

Are you on Facebook Marketplace yet?

Now, when it comes to dealers specifically, there is a large contingent of you that utilize this method through your website provider.  Every time you add a vehicle it posts it with the some generic text like “Just In:  Check out this Year Make Model”  These types of posts constantly rank as bottom performers.

So here’s my tip(s).  First, don’t post every vehicle. No one wants to follow your business if that’s all they see. Instead choose a specific vehicle you want to post and copy/paste the URL to post it manually. When you paste the url it will create the link preview of the vehicle. Now delete the vehicle url out of the post, and instead add a fun quip about the vehicle!  Don’t just say it’s for sale.  Figure out a way to draw people in to like/comment/share.  Figure out a way to…engage!

Facebook post that is just a link compared to one with a question.

Facebook Hates ALL CAPS

I’LL MAKE THIS SHORT.  FACEBOOK HATES ALL CAPS.  IT LOOKS SPAMMY.

Because of this we have coded our Facebook Marketplace vehicle listings to reformat all caps vehicle descriptions so the car will still post! Just be sure when you post to your Facebook page you leave caps lock off…

Facebook Hates Text Only Posts

Facebook loves connecting people.
Facebook loves engagement.
Facebook loves money.

Following that hierarchy it’s easier to see why Facebook prefers more engaging content on their site.  They want to keep people engaged, keep them entertained, and keep them looking at ads!  Video is now the most engaging content on Facebook.  In a far second comes images and in dead last is text only.  That’s why you even see new features like the “Watch” icon, the autoplay feature that takes you automatically to the next video, and even with text posts now you have the ability to write it on an image background.

Facebook text image

Facebook loves entertaining videos.
Facebook likes good pictures.
Facebook hates text.

At the very least use their more visual text creator as seen above or find an image that fits with your post. Use sites like Canva and Adobe Spark to customize images.

Think of it like your cars for sale on your website. Which vehicles have more traffic (engagement)? The ones with pictures or the ones without?

Final Thoughts on How to Have Success on Facebook

The next time you’re on Facebook as a consumer be mindful of what content you are viewing.  Did you know 98% of Facebook users use the app on their phone? To me that says attention span is short so keep the post short and visually appealing. 

When I’m on Facebook I typically just scroll scroll scroll until I see a picture or video.  Then I stop for a second to view and decide if I’ll like or comment and then I’m off again scrolling, rarely stopping on text only posts or posts that look like ads.

Because I’ve studied the way I interact with Facebook it has changed the way I post for our business. I now like to post emojis with my text to catch more eyeballs.  I also like to always have an image attached to my posts.  As far as content goes I try to provide value or entertainment with what I’m posting.    

Action Items

  • Study yourself and how you use Facebook.  Ask others what they like about Facebook
  • Post only when you think it’s something worth posting, don’t just set it to auto post.
  • Use images at the least…and not stock images if you can help it.  Make it personable. 
  • Get started on the Facebook / Instagram Stories.  They are VERY engaging.
  • List your cars on Facebook Marketplace. Then you can leave your page open to more fun and informative content.
  • Don’t make every post a sales pitch.  Relax.  Have fun and give it some personality!

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If you have any questions or want to look at how we help you market on Facebook for $50/mo please reach out by phone, email, or our contact page.