Should you be posting cute cat pictures to your Facebook business page?
I’m a cat lover. I have a private Twitter list full of cat accounts. It’s a place I go when I’m feeling stressed. My Facebook feed is full of posts from cat pages and I may even spam my friends with pictures of my very own meowsers from time to time.
It doesn’t stop there. Let’s just say I border on being a mad cat lady.
Cats are a massive part of my online life and I’m not alone. The Cat has become the unofficial mascot of the internet.
Can you imagine an internet world without a cat meme? A cat playing piano? A cat swinging off a ceiling fan? A cat on a Roomba? Let’s face it, they may not be man’s best friend but they are cute and they are funny.
Given the popularity of cats you are almost guaranteed good interaction if you post a funny or cute cat picture to your Facebook page but should you do it? Is it a good idea?
In this post I’ll look at the four questions you should ask yourself before you post that cat picture on your page.
Question 1: Does your audience like cats?
I know it’s shocking but not everyone likes cats. In fact, even the internet seems to prefer dogs to cats.
When you are planning a content strategy for your business it’s important to know and understand your customers. To do this create ‘customer personas’ that represent segments of your audience.
Ask yourself if your customers are:
- Male or Female?
- What age are they?
- Where do they work?
- What sort of house do they live in?
- How do they spend their days?
- What do they dream of?
- What problems do they face in their everyday life?
- And most importantly, do they like cats?
How can you find the answer to these questions?
1. Use Facebook’s audience insights tool to find out more about your existing audience. In the example below you can see that I analysed how many people who liked my page, who lived in the countries I target liked cats.
The answer? 200, that’s less than 10% of my audience. Maybe cat pictures aren’t for me.
2. Interview some of your existing customers. The best way to understand your customers is to talk to them in person. Make a phone call, meet them for coffee and have a chat.
3. Run a survey. You can’t meet all of your customers and potential customers in person but you can reach more of them with a survey. Tools like Survey Monkey are free to use and make creating questionnaires and collating the responses easy.
Once you have completed your research you’ll know if your ideal customer likes cats or finds cats funny. If they don’t then don’t post that funny cat meme.
Question 2: Do cats fit into your brand persona?
It’s not just your customers that have a persona, your business should too. This will be made up of your brand values and help you define the language and tone you use when you talk to customers.
For example, people will expect a very different tone of voice and language from a page representing a lawyer to a page for the local pub.
Having a consistent voice is important, it helps your customers get to know you and trust you. Before you click publish on that feline fancy, ask yourself if it fits your brand.
Question 3: Is it a good cat picture?
Facebook’s latest algorithm update pretty much crushed the reach of pages that don’t get shares. Assuming you answered yes to question one and two a cat picture could be just what you need to encourage those shares and hit the reach jackpot. But before you shower your followers with kittens look at what you are about to share.
Just because cats are popular online it doesn’t mean that any old cat picture will go viral. The internet is awash with cute cat pictures, what is special about yours? Does it provoke an emotion? Is it funny? Cute? Silly? Sad?
Find an inspirational cat quote to overlay on your photograph or spend some time brainstorming funny captions that fit your cat image.
You could even run a caption contest on your page and create memes from your audiences suggestions.
Question 4: Does this cat photo serve a purpose?
Gaming the Facebook algorithm with great cat pictures is one thing but is it worth it? Will the right people share? Will it bring in a new audience of potential customers?
Cats can work well as awareness content. Content that introduces new people to your brand but be careful not to overdo it. Once you have captured the attention of your audience you need to nurture them, let them know more about your business and persuade them to sign up for your newsletter or avail of a free trial.
Sadly if you’ve answered no to any of the four questions above, cute cat pictures may not be appropriate for your Facebook page.
This is a reality I had to face some time ago. My audience is primarily comprised of dog people. As much as I love cat content myself the facts tell me my audience doesn’t.
If you answered yes then you need to start finding cute, shareable cat content to delight your audience. Unless your business is cat related take care not to overwhelm your audience with cats but posting regular cat memes could help you grow your audience and engagement.
Although it turned out that cute cat pictures weren’t a good fit for my Facebook page I do try to sneak them into my content from time to time. Look carefully at my blog posts and tutorials and you’ll often find a cat hiding in the background.
This keeps me happy without annoying my customers.
Why not keep this flowchart handy so that you can make a decision that is best for you?
Do you like seeing cute cat pictures in your Facebook news feed? Have you seen an increase in reach and engagement when you include cats in your Facebook images? Leave me a comment below.