Are your likes killing your Facebook reach?
We all like seeing those like numbers go up, right? But what we love more is seeing people interacting with our content. I would much rather a buzzing page with people chatting, adding value and building their tribe than a page with 10K likes and tumbleweed blowing across the posts.
Likes are a bit of a vanity metric. A bit ‘look how popular I am’!
Back in the olden days of Facebook (y’know, last week..only kidding!) when the algorithm first changed and pages you liked influenced what your friends saw in your newsfeed, businesses became aware that this was a great way to get their page in front of a bigger audience. And so the great likes race was on. People even went as far as buying likes. (Some still do, but really, there is no point. Do NOT do this!) But how useful are 6,000 likers in Bangladesh and India if you don’t even ship there?
Over time, even Facebook realized how damaging these fake likers were and now fights to remove fake and spam accounts.
Why do they matter? Can’t I just ignore them?
Facebooks algorithm determines how often it shows your posts on your followers feeds based on the amount of engagement and interaction you get on them. And if they are fake likes – otherwise known as ghost accounts – they arent going to be interacting and your reach will be penalized. Even worse, if they do engage, and Facebook detects spammy comments on your page or likes from fake Facebook accounts, they will remove your page updates from the newsfeed.
Part of your monthly Facebook page maintenance should include removing fake likers from your page. I have heard of almost instant (within a few hours) results from this and i have certainly seen results in reach on my page too.
Ok, so I am convinced. How do I do it?
Let’s get down to the nitty gritty. How exactly do you remove likes from your page and protect it from further fake likes?
The very first thing you need to do is go to your list of fans. Access this list by clicking on the likes icon and then see all.
*1 – Remove all of the accounts you can see that do not have a profile photo. They are like the famed ‘eggheads’ on Twitter and are most likely either fake or spam accounts. To remove an account, click on the gear icon next to their name and choose remove. It really is that easy!
*2 – Now let’s take a closer look at those who are left. If they look suspicious – perhaps magazine style photos (you can use google reverse image search to check if they are stock photos) – click on over to their profile. See if there are a number of profile photos – and if they are of the same person! – to see if they are an active Facebook user. Perhaps check when they joined Facebook by scrolling down their public feed. Check their groups and if any seem dodgy, or are affiliated with like for like groups or similar then they are probably spammers.
*3 – As a biz owner you should know your target audience. If you are running a biz in the United Kingdom for example and there are loads of likes from India, Bangladesh or Indonesia this will raise a red flag with Facebook – they will assume you are buying likes – so you should delete people who are outside your target audience. If Facebook only shows your page updates to around 2% of your fans, you need to make sure your target audience are the ones in that 2%. (This 2-3% is also why networking is so important to your page!)
*4 – While there are no definitive sources for details on which countries produce the most spammers, the ones I have mentioned above do seem to be quite active in spamming activity. Unless you sell/ship to these countries I advise excluding these countries from your page. Do this by going to page settings > Country restrictions. Either chose to exclude these countries if you are an international seller OR if you are a local biz, then choose only include <your> country.
*5 – Running competitions can be amazing for your page but they can attract the spammers if you do it the wrong way. There are groups out there who are dedicated to finding and entering these competitions – another way of spamming – so make sure that your prize is super targeted to your audience or local only. Don’t use the hashtag for ‘competition’ or ‘giveaway’ as there are also spammers who search the newsfeed for these popular hashtags.
Hopefully after gong through this list you will see an improvement in your reach and interactions. Don’t stress about the number of likes. They will soon pick up again and this time they will hopefully be likers who genuinely value your page and interact and become customers.
Please do let me know below if you have done this and how it went for you! Your success story will hopefully spur others into action!