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Social Media Algorithms - What are They and How Do They Work?
Social media algorithms can be a bit of an enigma. They're constantly changing, can be hard to understand, and make it difficult to know what you should post to get more engagement. Luckily, there are plenty of ways that you can use social media algorithms to your advantage.
The goal is to create content that integrates smoothly with the different social media algorithms available for the platform of your choice to promote your business. Most of the time, this only takes engaging content designed for the account (video for TikTok, photos for Instagram, content for Facebook, etc.), but there are other tricks to utilize.
What are Social Media Algorithms?
Social media algorithms are the secret sauce that makes social media work. They affect how your content is displayed to your followers and where it appears in their feeds, which plays a massive role in getting more views for your posts.
An algorithm is just a formula. The designed idea from the social media account provider takes into account the type of content you are publishing, when you are publishing, who you are engaging with, and many other factors. This determines where you will fall in the newsfeeds of your target audience. The better the post, the more likely you will be easy to discover (near the top).
Why do Social Media Algorithms Matter?
Social media algorithms are a big part of the way social media works. They help determine what content you see and how often. A well-tuned algorithm can be a great boon to your social media strategy, helping you find new followers who have similar interests or gain more engagement from posts that have already been shared with your audience.
It's worth noting that there are also negative aspects to using algorithms: they're often proprietary, meaning there's little transparency into how they work. They may favor specific types of content over others (which could lead to censorship), and they rely on artificial intelligence techniques that aren't always accurate.
How to Make the Most of Social Media Algorithms
1 - Use Customer Comments
Social media algorithms show users what they're most likely to engage with. One of the best ways to get your audience involved is by encouraging them to ask questions and leave comments on your posts. This will make it more likely that others will see these conversations, which can increase your engagement.
2 - Tag Related Accounts/Users
Tagging other accounts in your posts helps to increase your reach. It also helps you to build relationships with different accounts and it can help you build your brand, audience, and authority.
3 - Use Hashtags & Keywords
An algorithm's job is to detect patterns, so it's no surprise that it works best when you follow the pattern. The more relevant your hashtags are to your post and its subject matter, the better your chance of getting your content seen by a wider audience.
4 - Post at the Right Time
As social media algorithms become more complicated, it's crucial to understand how your content will be delivered to different audiences. If you're posting at peak times and know who your audience is, then you'll increase your chances of reaching them with a relevant message that encourages engagement.
5 - Stay Consistent
Once you've figured out your publishing frequency, it's time to start thinking about the different types of content that will work best for you. Most social media algorithms are built around the idea that users don't have time to keep up with every single post from their favorite brands, so there's a finite limit on how much content can be displayed in each person's feed. Post consistency as far as day, timing, and the theme will help cut through this congestion.
6 - Use Videos
Now's the time to start if you're not already producing video content. Video is more engaging than text, which means your audience will be more likely to engage with it. It's also more likely to be shared and passed around on social media platforms—which can result in many new followers.
Experiment and Have Fun!
All social media platforms use algorithms. They are a way for the platform to show you content that they think is relevant to you. The more you know about how social media algorithms work, the better your chances of using them to your advantage.
The algorithms are constantly changing and evolving, so staying up-to-date on what’s happening in this space is important.
To become more successful with your social media marketing, it’s important to know how algorithms work. The more you understand how these systems operate, the better equipped you’ll be to make them work for your brand or business.
At 42 North Marketing, we spend a great deal of time and resources staying updated on the latest changes to any social media algorithm and platform. Our team of experienced and professional digital marketers can help your brand get recognized more frequently by the right target market. Contact us today to learn how 42 North can change your social media marketing strategy.