Just when you think you have it figured out… a social media network changes their algorithm and it’s back to square one. This situation is probably something you’ve experienced more often than you’d like to remember. But I have some good news for you, there are ways that you can beat the social media algorithm (for at least the next few months!).
But first, it’s important to understand what social media algorithms are and why they were developed. An algorithm is developed by recording user interactions and developing a mathematical model that is updated on a regular basis. The end result is a social media feed based upon what is determined to be of interest to the end-user. Sounds great, right? Well, the real benefits are for the social media sites. By maximizing the time spent on-site by the end-user, there is an increase in potential marketing opportunities because the site can easily connect interesting content to readers.
As of now, here are what the algorithms look like:
Twitter and Instagram: Tweets and posts that show up in your timeline are chosen on the criteria that you interact with these accounts often and you engage with the tweets that these users share.
Facebook: Your News Feed shows posts based on how frequently you interact with the friend or page, the amount of activity that the post generates, the number of times you have interacted with this type of post previously and the type of post that it is (video, image, text, link, etc.)
Snapchat: It’s coming, but as of now, there is no notice of an algorithm that would affect other snappers’ visibility. There are rumors that the list of stories could potentially change so that brands have to pay to have their stories at the top of the list.
Now that you understand what social media algorithms are and why they exist, here are those tips I promised about how to beat the algorithm.
- Ask for a share – this is the easiest way to boost your social media ranking. Whether you want them to like, comment or share your content – it will benefit you.
- Create conversation – Try to create a two-way conversation between your brand and the end user to increase engagement, which will increase the rank of your post. Try trivia or opinion questions, polls or fill-in-the-blank posts.
- Encourage push notifications – when an end-user enables push notifications, they will be notified immediately, regardless of your algorithm score.
- Use “tags” in posts – Since notifications are sent to end users whenever they are tagged on a social media platform, it will encourage them to visit the post and continue the conversation.
- Promote posts – since social media marketing is very “pay to play,” boosting your posts will increase engagement with a very small monetary investment.
- Call out your website on Instagram – include a call-out to visit the link that is found on your profile page. If you can get people off the platform to your website – you can control what they see and can encourage them to take the action you want them to take.
- Include trending topics and campaign-specific hashtags – being relevant and joining the conversation will help to increase engagement. Trending topics are already popular – so use them to your benefit and get the conversation to happen on your networks.