5 Tips To Write Engaging Status Updates

What's on your mind?I see a lot of small or even large organizations that are present on Facebook, but are not making the best possible use of their presence. Many times, because they are not able to write updates that communicates well to the users. Here, I will go through some of the things to bear in mind when you need to write engaging updates.

If you are running a presence on Facebook, it is a golden opportunity for you to connect with stakeholders, customers or other people who are just interested in what your company or organization does. You may actually have gained a considerable amount of fans who follow your page, because they are expecting you to give them valuable input and updates.

Make sure you are seen

Having a high level of engagement on your updates will also make your status updates rank higher in your fans’ news feed and thus be more exposed. On the other hand, updates that are not working well is more like a vicious circle. If no one is interacting with your content, it is more likely not to be featured in your fans’ news feed and your status updates may never reach a lot of people. Read our blog post on how to improve your news feed ranking based on the EdgeRank algorithm, to know more on this topic.

Here are five crucial tips to bear in mind when writing engaging updates and gaining more visibility:

1. Encourage people to engage
It is ok to be specific about what you want people to do. You won’t get far in being too ambiguous or subtle. When your fans are browsing their feed for updates, they will engage on the content that catches their attention the most. When your fans know what you want them to do, it is much easier for them to do it. Don’t hold back on for instance suggesting: “click here”, “see our photos”, “post to our wall” etc. Also encourage your fans to Like, Share and Comment, if you would like them to.

2. Ask questions
An obvious way to get people to engage with your updates is by asking questions related to your brand or organization. This way you are letting people contribute to your brand and showing that you care about what they think. Asking questions that are easy to answer will give you more responses. Be ready to make conversations with people who contribute with relevant input.

3. Keep it short
No one wants to read through a whole novel, when browsing their feed. Keep the update concise and focused on making just one point clear instead of providing too much information. If you want to direct people to more information, rather post a link along to the post, while making it clear what the link is about.

4. Be visual
Photos, graphics and videos are easier to consume for the users. Posting visual content once in a while will make your updates stand out and visible in the news feed. For instance, attach a photo to your update or create a video with your message instead of writing a text. Furthermore, updates with visual content will rank higher in users’ news feed than plain text.

5. Make it relevant
Remember to not always be babbling on about your own products and services. Instead include it in a context that is relevant to your fans while you are staying true to your brand. Make updates that relate both to your brand and your users’ experiences and give them a chance to promote themselves. Most people are ready to engage with the brands they Like, if there is an obvious reason to do so. You just need to create it for them.


Get Ready for the Bots – on Facebook Messenger

2Facebook Messenger was released 5 years ago and now has over 900 million users. Originally receiving a flood of negativity towards a standalone messaging app, compared to one simple Facebook app, users seem to be warming to it. The decision to make it standalone does make a lot of sense, since messaging is a big part of people’s lives nowadays and Facebook even bought the domain messenger.com to launch a version for web browsers last year. Their 900 million users will more than likely be merged with Whatsapp’s 1 billion users, which means that Facebook will have the personal phone number of every single user – sounds like $19 billion well spent.

 

Open for Business

So that’s humans covered. Where to go next? Facebook is now venturing into their next Messenger-based project: bots. If you haven’t been keeping up, Facebook launched Messenger Platform last month, which holds within it, chatterbots. Luckily, these bots are not machine learning bots, such as the disaster that was Microsoft’s Tay. They do have some humorous replies if provoked but they ultimately steer the conversation back to the subject they’re designed to cater for. Thanks to their highly advanced Send/Receive API, these bots are able to reply with actual structured messages, including links, images, hotel reservations, the weather etc. You may immediately compare this to Apple Siri, Microsoft Cortana, Google Now and Amazon Echo, but what sets bots on Messenger apart is the fact that businesses can develop them, which in turn gives them another way to develop customer service. Simply put, bots could end up changing the world by replacing humans in such job sectors. Without the bespoke customer service integration that Messenger bots provide, the above voice-activated services will most likely not be able to solve business-related queries themselves. Having said that, the way bots behave is very reminiscent of the way Siri does. Maybe they’ll talk to each other one day and we’ll get the best of both.

 

Customer Service and Added Value

So how can these bots work for brands? Well, eventually, every major company in the world will have an account, which will be a first port of call when contacting their company. The reason this is almost definite is due to Facebook’s already-mammoth-sized network of users. It doesn’t get any bigger than Facebook when advertising to individual people, so connecting Messenger bots (as customer sales reps, for example) is extremely attractive. Messenger codes, one of many things taken from Snapchat, will also make it easier for businesses to connect with their customers. One industry example is how bots will almost certainly change how banking works for the consumer, replacing an app or web-based system with a dialogue with a machine that is able to understand your every need. The option to send money within Messenger itself is highly likely too, like Snapchat allows. This could also eliminate the hassle of speaking to a bank’s voice recognition system when calling by telephone – no more time (and money) wasted by the dreaded “I didn’t catch that. Please try again.” These voice recognition systems are essentially bots done badly, but they’re based on voice, which is a lot more difficult to translate into zeros and ones. Plus, you cannot autocorrect your voice (yet). I can see this whole system being replaced by bots – it could even connect you to a human advisor with ease, as you’re most likely already using your phone. Even if you’re using the desktop version or Facebook Chat, I’m sure they’ll figure something out. Besides banks, what other markets will benefit from this? Restaurants, travel and possibly supermarkets with online shopping services are big industries for it to thrive. The healthcare industry could also be a large portion – Healthtap have already created their bot, which isn’t surprising considering one of the first ever chatterbots was called DOCTOR and simulated a psychotherapist. In fact, the potential amount of markets are endless for this stream of interaction – just like it is with human customer service.

 

At the end of the day, customers are moving towards messaging as their preferred choice of customer service. And as generations progress, it will no doubt become the standard – a phone call will most likely be reserved for long, meaningful conversations with friends and family, which in turn will add even more meaning to them. The phone call will no longer be taken for granted, but talking to robots will be.