How to create engaging Facebook content (that people will see)

How to create engaging Facebook content (that people will see)

10 minutes
Hand stretched out holding an old camera with Facebook logo

Facebook has previously made its stance on ‘spammy, low-quality’ content very clear. The platform originally penalised newsfeed content by introducing an algorithm that demoted content linking to ‘low-quality’ websites or landing pages. In 2017 the platform announced it was further looking at advertising and giving less airtime to ads that included ‘shocking, disruptive or malicious’ content. And last month, Facebook updated its publisher guidelines in a call for brands to create more original content.

In a world where we’re bombarded with thousands of messages every day, the thought of spending time and money on an ad that people won’t see is disheartening to say the least. There’s already so much competition out there and marketers are having to work harder than ever to stand out from the crowd. So these new guidelines are definitely worth paying attention to if you want to get the most out of your Facebook advertising spend.

What does low-quality mean?

While brands may have different standards and a different perception of ‘low-quality’, there’s a universal truth when it comes to quality in content. It’s becoming more and more clear that consumers are switching off from traditional advertising methods and instead seeking out brands that they feel they can connect with. Brands that clearly know them. Brands that create stories not just marketing messages. And brands that create personalised, relevant content.

So ‘low-quality’ content could quite simply be perceived as "content that has no relevance or is overly-salesy". Luckily, Facebook has included more information in their advertising policies.

Their guidelines state that ads might be penalised if:

  • They’re not ‘meaningful’ or ‘informative’

  • They don’t give all the details. This could include exaggerated headlines to provoke a reaction or content that has no relation to the landing page or website it links to

  • They use ‘click bait’. While it’s a clear tactic that’s used by social influencers and marketers, Facebook doesn’t promote ads that are deemed ‘sensational’ or ‘deceptive’

  • The landing page associated with the ad is irrelevant and hard to navigate

  • The landing page associated with the ad has a high ratio of ads vs other content

  • They include repeated content or content that has been ‘scraped’ from other sources

So how can you make sure the content you're creating is high-quality?
  • Know your audience. Create buyer personas to really understand who you're talking to and what they're looking for 

  • Make your content relevant to create impact

  • Focus on more useful content (lifestyle-led, top tips, insights) rather than just advertising

  • Use a mixture of content formats to get noticed, from video and GIFS to imagery and blogs

  • Review where your call-to-action leads to and make sure it works within the publisher guidelines

What does this mean for your brand?

The update to brand guidelines will impact all advertisers and if you create ads that continue to be flagged then it may lead to future content being demoted and difficult to find. We all know the value of good quality content and, as mobile content is continuing to increase in popularity and many of us access social media on a smartphone,  content has to be a main focus when creating social ads, regardless of the platform. Our social media manager, Marina Popova, says:

Ads on Facebook work best when there is a story giving people a chance to connect with the brand. We are seeing that campaigns beginning with brand awareness, narrative and values are getting the best engagement. It’s good to see that Facebook is putting quality forward and cracking down on clickbait content.

What do you think of the latest news - do you currently use Facebook advertising? Follow us on Twitter and join in the conversation.

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Hayley Clark
Hayley Clark
Hayley has over a decade of experience, starting out as a journalist before moving into digital content and strategy. She has worked with clients across a variety of sectors (from property and finance to FMCG), specialising in content marketing and helping brands find their tone of voice.
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