Have you wondered why your organic reach on your Facebook page quickly dropped or why no one is seeing your posts on Instagram and Twitter? I’m here to help answer these questions, but first…
Cue the ALGORITHM! Now before you roll your eyes or nod off, I just need you to know ONE thing. The algorithm will HELP your accounts, if you use it smartly.
We now know that the algorithm for social platforms are secret and always changing, but there are a few constant factors you can leverage to play in your favor on any social platform.
So let’s break them up into 3 components: First, Engagement…Second, Relevancy…and, Third, Attention.
Remember, the goal of Facebook and Instagram (and every other social platform), is to get people there and keep them there, and in order to do this, it must show what people want they want to see. So the algorithm anticipates it.
There’s a TON of elements to the algorithm but the quickest way to see a change in your favor is, first, to focus on engagement.
Engagement is basically how followers are interacting with an account. On Facebook and Instagram, engagement is measured by things like comments, likes, and shares. On Pinterest it’s things like repins. On Twitter engagement is measured by likes, retweets, and responses. You get my point.
ENGAGEMENT is the surest way your posts will be seen by more people because a lot of interaction on a post means you’ll get more organic reach because people are showing they are interested in what you posted. But getting people to engage is hard, right?
I feel you, and I’ll be sharing ways to make it easier in a future blog post, but, for now, let’s get into the second piece of why your posts aren’t being seen on social media: RELEVANCY.
Algorithms track what you and I and millions of others are doing on social media. The algorithm loves finding patterns in behavior, so if I recently watched a makeup tutorial on Instagram, there’s a good chance the next time I log on, I’ll see another makeup tutorial. If I watched a cute puppy video on Facebook, guess what? MORE PUPPY VIDEOS! In the same way, if your follower likes or leaves a comment on an update you posted yesterday, there’s a stronger chance they’ll see your newest update today.
Why? Because their behavior indicated that your account was relevant to them.
For example, if you’ve ever wondered why you’re not seeing photos from your favorite Instagram accounts, it’s likely because YOUR behavior hasn’t shown that that account is relevant to YOU. If you want to change it, try this experiment for me: go to that Instagram account, like at least three photos and leave a comment. Chances are the next time you login, you’ll see that Instagram account back in your feed.
Why? Because the algorithm knows it’s important to you.
Which leads me to the last component of why your posts aren’t being seen on social media: ATTENTION. The algorithm will favor photos, videos, updates that get lots of attention. I’m not necessarily talking about viral videos (although if one of my videos went viral, I’d be thanking sweetbabyJesus), I’m simply talking about things that get immediate attention from your followers.
A great example of a social update that gets attention is when someone announces a birth of a child. We’ve all seen when one of our Facebook friends shows a picture of his newborn daughter and there’s an outpouring of love and support. This. Is. Attention.
Getting pops of attention are powerful ways to jumpstart how your account is indexed in an algorithm. Now you might be worried about this notion of attention, but before you go create a baby in hopes of an awesome post, I’ll be sharing ways to strategically increase your attention, as well as your engagement and relevancy in a future blog post.
Until then, I want you to go and start conversations on social media. Reach out to new followers, foster conversations with current followers, and find ways to produce helpful, shareable content on social media.