Facebook has never been well known as a blogging platform, but following the revamp of Facebook Notes, that’s rapidly changing.
Notes was launched in 2006 and initially seemed like an afterthought. The idea was that users would find it appealing to leave short notes for their contacts, and it turned out to be a bad one. With its tiny, 160-character limit, Notes had very little appeal to bloggers. Then, Twitter appeared and cornered the market for micro-messaging. Even though Facebook expanded Notes to 60,000 or more characters, it never caught on, which meant that blogging platforms like WordPress were allowed to dominate.
In 2015, Facebook took a decision to relaunch Notes. Spurred on by the success of other long-form blogging sites like Medium, Facebook saw a market for in-depth blog content among its users. At the same time, the social network began to prioritize keeping users engaged and active on the site for as long as possible.
The new iteration of Facebook Notes is a completely different beast. Now, users can create professional-looking blogs with graphics, links, and text formatting that resembles market leaders like Medium. With 1.5 billion Facebook users in the world, smart bloggers can surely use Notes to boost their sales.
If you haven’t explored the potential offered by Facebook Notes, here are some ways to integrate it into your marketing effort.
Promote External Blogs
Linking together external blogs with Facebook pages has been a constant problem for digital marketers. Posting status updates is one way to let people know about new content, but it’s hit and miss. Far more people can be made aware of your blog postings if you highlight them on Facebook Notes as well.
There’s no need to publish every blog in its entirety, but do mention all of your articles as they are published. Include a short summary and the link, with a clear call-to-action at the end of the note. That way, you’ll soon see more Facebook traffic heading to your blog.
Repurpose Old Blog Content
Although you don’t need to publish every word of every blog on Facebook Notes, there’s a strong case for republishing older blog postings a few months after they are published. By repurposing successful blog posts (or brushing them up before republishing them), you can extract every single click-through from the work you put into them.
You can also reach back into your blog archives to find topical articles that can respond to new developments. If you look hard at your archives, you’ll find plenty of evergreen content that is crying out to be read again, and burying it in the recesses of your WordPress site is not going to cut it.
Increase Engagement With Your Facebook Fan Pages
Notes can also be used to enthuse your Facebook community. In the past, page owners have been able to post short comments, videos, and links, but not long-form articles. Now, you can offer users much more information in a form that they can read without leaving your Facebook pages. This should help to make users more engaged with your brand and keep them waiting for your next article.
Keep Notes in Reserve to Plan Your Posting Schedule
Facebook Notes allows users to draft texts before they are published. This means you can create a series of short drafts and plan them out before committing to a particular posting schedule.
You can’t automate posts as yet, but you can visualize how your content strategy could play out. By creating a number of drafts on Sunday or Monday, you can also give yourself a writing target to meet every week, helping to keep your personal efforts on track.
Make Key Marketing Contacts
Notes don’t have to be long-form articles. They can also be turned into professional portfolios or resumes. You can include graphics, so take advantage of this ability by posting beautiful images of your products (if applicable).
Postings like this can be used to make direct contact with high-value customers, journalists, publishers, or trade bodies. If you want to attract attention from influencers or need to land a speaking gig, it’s definitely a tactic worth trying.
Manage any Facebook Crises Proactively
Sometimes even the most loyal Facebook community experiences ruptures. You can’t please all of the people all of the time, which makes crisis management a key business skill.
If you find clusters of complaints emerging or need to address one issue in particular, you can use Notes to create detailed responses. Users will appreciate the effort, and your articles can be used to promote other aspects of your products at the same time. It’s a good way to turn a customer relations crisis to your advantage.
Remember to Backup Unique Content
If you plan to use Facebook Notes as a key part of your marketing strategy, take precautions to protect your content. It’s not yet clear how committed Facebook is to blogging, and if the service is changed, you could lose valuable content in an instant.
If you post unique content to Facebook Notes, back it up and have it ready to repost elsewhere. Try to spread your content strategy across different channels if you have the time. It won’t just hedge against sudden policy changes at blog providers. Running multiple blogs and sites allows you to cross-fertilize between them, amplifying your message.
Not all digital marketers place their emphasis on blogging. However, if you do rely on your blog to generate traffic, Facebook Notes should be part of your toolkit. Notes isn’t going to blow WordPress out of the water. It’s a way to supplement your main blog and link your content strategy to the world’s most influential social media network. That’s why you can’t afford to ignore it.
Originally published 02/09/17.