• General Best Practices
Social Media Strategies for Schools Webinar Recap Part 1: Questions About Facebook
Mia Major

Did you submit a question during Monday's webinar, Social Media Strategies for Schools with St. Anne's-Belfield School? We're taking the time to answer every single question.

Since there were so many questions, we will divide this webinar recap into three parts:

  • Part 1: Facebook
  • Part 2: Blogging, Twitter, Instagram, and Vimeo
  • Part 3: Content Management, Online Ads, and General Questions

Today, we start with answering all questions related to your school's Facebook management, tips, and trends for schools.

STAB's Facebook Page

How does the lack of posting on Facebook lead to posts not being seen?

Facebook's algorithms favor active pages in follower's timelines — so those who posts quality content on a frequent basis, reply to comments, and answer messages.

According to Social Media Examiner, Buffer, and The Post Planner, 2-3 quality posts per day is the sweet spot for maximum organic reach.

What was the reason for not using hashtags on Facebook?

Hashtags, according to research, don't actually improve organic reach or engagement. According to a few different case studies — like this one — posts without hashtags had a greater reach than those without.

However, using 1-2 might not hurt you. For example, the average post with 1-2 hashtags received 593 interactions on average, while those with 3-5 only received 416 — and those with 10 or more only receive 188.

As always, give different campaigns a whirl, and decide what works best for your school and campaigns. Try using a branded hashtag you use for a campaign — like #CougarAthletics — to group like posts, #rather #than #posting #like #this.

Do you find that your separate alumni Facebook page takes away from your main page?

No, in fact we realized that the alumni accounts can be far more targeted (specifically for annual giving campaigns and Alumni events) and consistent than if we were trying to manage those posts in and among our division news on the main account.

We do know that we have many alumni who follow both, and we try to engage with each other's accounts often to encourage others to do so as well. Last month we sat down and created an editorial calendar for the alumni account through the end of the school year so that we could be sure that it was posting very targeted items of interest to our alumni.

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Our analytics show great percentage of our audience is on Facebook from 8-9pm on weekdays. Is that normal?

Yes — totally! Think of it this way: your students have wrapped up school, after school activities, dinner, and are either starting (or wrapping up) their homework. Parents, on the other hand, are home from work, and unwinding after their busy day at this time.

It's good to experiment with posting at different times to see if another time frame gets even more engagement.

Do you need a verified account to do Facebook Live from a page?

In short, yes. All Facebook accounts must be verified in order to do a live broadcast. Check out these live broadcasting tips to get started.

I was at a seminar where a Hootsuite user said that Facebook does not like Hootsuite and limits their exposure so you get less likes/engagement. Is this true?

Some case studies of Facebook's algorithms suggest that Facebook favors posted directly via the website. However, Facebook made an official statement that third party automation systems are not penalized by the site's algorithms.

Keep in mind Facebook posts best practices — like asking a question, keeping text under 40 characters, adding an image, or uploading a video — increases your chance of appearing in a follower's newsfeed. Not following Facebook post best practices is more likely to penalize your reach than an automation software.

What are your feelings about having Facebook and Twitter linked? For example, a post on Facebook automatically posts on Twitter as well.

In short, setting up automatic posts is a pretty bad idea. It's not really going to hurt your organic performance in newsfeeds, but your digital reputation will take a hit.

First, different networks require a different language. Second, you end up repeating yourself. Third, it makes you seem pretty disconnected (and even a little lazy).

I know you're busy, but find the time to come up with different ways to share the same story on all networks.

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