Ever notice how you may see a post, but other mutual friends did not? Timing of the post is not everything, there is a particular algorithm that Facebook uses that determines what’s in your newsfeed—and that’s called EdgeRank. All posts, pictures, shares, comments—everything you see on Facebook is dictated by this formula and is unique to each user. There are three dimensions to EdgeRank that all work simultaneously:
- The first part of the algorithm gauges your “score” with a person to determine if you see their post or not, which is found from the number of “edges” you have with that person. An “edge” is an interaction you have with a person—a like, share, or comment. If your interactions are limited via Facebook with a person who made the post, you are more than likely not to see it—unless you’ve had some recent online involvement with that person or company.
- The next determinant of whether you see a post or not is how many likes, shares, and general traffic a post is receiving. If it is getting more attention than normal, you may see a post from someone you don’t typically engage with on social media.
- The last consideration in the algorithm is time decay. If a post is receiving abnormally large traffic, it is likely to appear on your newsfeed more and longer than a post that was published just 20 minutes ago with no traffic from someone you hardly gauge with. That’s why it is common to see posts published 2 or even 3 days prior.
Once you know the breakdown of the algorithm, there are ways to ensure your posts are optimal. To rank high, your post must be recent, with high engagement, and the involved users must be heavily involved with one another via social media.
Here are some quick things you can do to ensure your post is seen and reaches its maximum potential:
- Add bright, high quality and visually appealing images to bring immediate attention and focus. If you think the quality of type of image doesn’t make a big difference, you’re sadly mistaken.
- Promote engagement—but don’t use “LIKE or SHARE.” That type of self-promotion actually lessens traffic. Nonchalantly promote posts by using phrases such as “Encourage a friend with this today!” to encourage engagement without necessarily being overbearing.
- Strategically reply to comments. You don’t have to respond to every comment immediately—in fact, you shouldn’t. Instead space out your replies to friends and consumers to give your post longevity. Just as a post is starting to lose traffic and attention, reply to a comment someone posted. That will immediately put your post at the top of people’s newsfeeds, again due to timeliness. It’s a simple tactic but makes a huge difference.
- Lastly, master the FREQUENCY of your posts. The last thing you want is to lose the interest of your stakeholders because of excessive posting. While different audiences have different levels of tolerance, you never want to over-post. Knowing that, testing and monitoring your audience’s tolerance is crucial.
Even though this algorithm works together as one, you can clearly see three distinct working parts that all play a very crucial role in your post quality and results. It’s important to understand this as you create an online image for yourself and your company. By utilizing these tips you can more effectively post and engage with your audience.
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