How To Crack The Facebook Algorithm
For a social media marketer, cracking the ever-elusive Facebook algorithm is their White Whale. Every strategy we craft and content calendar we implement brings us that much closer – Facebook makes modifications that send it plunging back into the icy depths.
As a Facebook user, it keeps the platform manageable and content engaging. As a social media marketer, however, it makes connecting brands and audiences challenging.
In the beginning, you could evaluate users’ likes, comments, and shares to determine what content types to serve up. Now, there are more than 100,000 variables Facebook weighs which causes a significant variation in content delivered to each user’s feed. With 62% of American adults using Facebook as their primary news source, it’s more crucial than ever for brands to understand the importance of quality content and the strategy needed to amplify it.
So, as marketers, what do we do?
Although content marketing is currently winning over traditional display advertising, it’s not enough to fill your website with landing pages, news features, and blog posts. You have to know how to use Facebook’s algorithm to your advantage.
Create Content That Connects
One factor that Facebook measures is the length of a user’s interaction with both videos and Instant Articles (a format that allows publishers to distribute articles to the Facebook app, significantly cutting down on loading time). It’s a simple concept, really: The longer a user remains engaged with a piece of content, the more favor Facebook bestows upon its creator.
You, as a marketer, need to think about creating content that draws your audience in. Concentrate on a robust experience, engaging storytelling and strategic deployment that gets (and keeps!) your audience’s attention.
Get Ready To Go Live
We’ve already talked about the explosion of live video . Not only is it really popular (users currently consume three times more live video than its on-demand counterpart), this in-the-moment content offers marketers great versatility, instant connection and the ability to further develop their social communities.
Live video provides several opportunities for which brands capitalize, from product launches, Q&A sessions, behind the scenes or more regularly scheduled programming. Facebook rewards good content, so a brand can capitalize by producing quality content to help get additional distribution in consumer’s newsfeeds.
Only Post Your Best Stuff
Just because you have the ability to post hundreds of articles, photos, gifs and videos, doesn’t mean your audience is going to see them.
Facebook wants to be known as the ultimate newspaper, and a good newspaper only publishes the most relevant content. An easy way to help you determine what to publish is to test content out on other social platforms with less stringent algorithms and see what garners the most engagement, then adapt that to your Facebook page.
Use Facebook’s Tools To Your Advantage
If you don’t currently use Audience Optimization Targeting, you absolutely should. When Facebook first started tinkering with its algorithm, organic reach went down the tubes. This was especially concerning for marketers that didn’t have a whole lot of budget to put behind paid posts.
To counter this, Facebook lets you optimize engagement by selecting your preferred target audience as well as set audience restrictions by interests and demographics. This makes sure that the right content reaches the right people who are mostly to like, share or comment.
Add The Right Followers
For pages with fewer than 10,000 likes, you can click on a post and see who has interacted with it and see which likers like your page. Why does this matter? You can invite those people to like your page and – boom! – an instantly engaged new follower.
At its heart, Facebook’s algorithm is just another phase into a micro-targeted platform. If leveraged the right way, that can be incredibly powerful. But it all begins with you – you have to understand what affects this algorithm and you have to create opportunities for engagement.