2016 Update: Facebook has deleted the ability to create and use lists. We have kept this post in case it decides in its wisdom to re-instate them.
If you are running a Facebook page to help market your small business, you know the challenge of battling an ever-changing Facebook algorithm so that your content is shown to the people who liked your page.
Facebook likes fresh relevant information, regularly delivered to your followers. The posts that get the most traction and maximum visibility from the dreaded Facebook algorithm are ones that you share from one Facebook page to your Facebook page, rather than from outside Facebook to your page.
Read more about a Super Easy Facebook Content Plan
But, how do you find great content to share with your followers? If you have been on Facebook for any length of time you have probably “Liked” a whole pile of pages. The trouble is you probably are not seeing their content in your newsfeed, which makes it hard to then share this information with your followers.
The easiest solution is to create a series of “Interest Lists” within Facebook, where you sort the pages you have liked into logical groups. When you need inspiration, you click on the relevant interest list and then you can see the most recent posts from the pages on the list.
Facebook says that lists show all the recent posts and activity from the pages on the list feed but in my experience this information is still throttled by the Facebook algorithm, but to a much lesser degree than your normal Facebook newsfeed.
Ideas for Facebook Interest Lists
Start by working out what sort of things your clients may be interested in related to the theme of your business page, and set up individual lists that gather together the best Facebook pages around that topic.
I have separate lists set up around my interests of marketing; IT, SEO and tech; news; clients and friends businesses; government; humour and a whole host more.
Some of my lists are public (meaning other people can also follow that particular interest list) and others are private (meaning only I can see them). You can choose the level of privacy when you set up your list.
How To Create Facebook Lists
Step 1: From your normal Facebook newsfeed page, scroll down while looking at the left hand column until you see “Interests”
Step 2: Click on the word “Interests” and then chose “+ Add Interests”
Step 3: Click on “+Create List”
Step 4: Choose the pages you want on the list. Scroll through all the pages you have liked and click on each page you want added to the list. Once you have the relevant pages for that list selected, then click “Next”.
Step 5: Name your list and then choose the level of privacy you want your list to have. Facebook defaults to public lists, which means that everyone will be able to see your list. I personally set everything to private on Facebook and only when I know everything is working the way I want, I then change the setting to public.
Rinse and repeat for as many lists as you need.
To make it easier to find your lists rather than having to scroll all the way down to the section on interests, add each interest list to your favourites section. This means your lists will appear towards the top of your left hand column.
How To Move A List To Your Favourites
Click on the word “Interests” in the left hand column of Facebook. You will see the name of the lists you have just created. Click on the little cog on the right hand side and choose “Add to Favourites”. It will now appear in your favourites section.
Rearranging your Favourites
For a final tweak, I like to rearrange the order of my favourites, so the things I use most are at the top.
To rearrange, hover your mouse over something in your favourites section. You will see a little cog appear to the left of the word. Click on the cog and choose “Rearrange”.
You will then see a series of parallel lines appear on the right hand edge of the column against each word. If you put your cursor over the lines you can drag and drop the items around.
Once you are happy with order, click “Done”
Plan B – Follow an existing list
If you don’t want to go through the hassle of setting up your own list, you can simply follow one that someone has prepared earlier.
Follow the first 3 steps we have talked about in Creating Interest Lists, and this time, instead of choosing the relevant pages, you can either click on one of the suggested lists to follow.