Social Media Algorithms

Oh man, it seems as though social media is in an uproar today!  All over Facebook and Instagram I’m seeing posts about social media algorithms, turning notifications on, turning notifications off, basically just general mayhem!  While I can not claim to be a social media expert (a lawyer recently explained what it actually requires to be called an expert and let me just say that all of you so-called experts…aren’t), I have done more than my share of research on the topic and am constantly learning new social media strategies…so I wanted to share a couple of thoughts…

  1. Just because you see someone post a dire warning on social media, DOES NOT mean that you should also post this warning.  Copying and pasting statuses or reposting pictures without fully understanding what they mean will often leave  you backpedaling later.  Instead, take a minute (or five!) to do a little research and get the whole story before you decide to go ahead and post it yourself.  It’s like your mother used to tell you, “If all of your friends jump off the cliff, will you?”
  2. Want to help your Facebook customers and friends make sure they see your posts on Facebook?  Encourage them to select “See First” for your page or profile…and this will allow them to better stalk connect with you.
    Understanding social media algorithms
  3. Should you ask your Instagram followers to turn on notifications?  No!  You don’t want to be the reason someone wants to throw their phone in the nearest body of water because it keeps dinging with notifications!  Because then they might unfollow you!
    Understanding social media algorithms
    4. Back in the day when Mark Z created Facebook it was designed to foster person-to-person connections.  Even though Facebook is now a publicly traded company, at it’s core it is still meant to connect people.  Same goes for Instagram.  And Twitter.  And any other social media platform.  Sure, businesses use these platforms to connect with their customers but, and I’ve said this before, social media is meant to be SOCIAL!  Interact, engage, and connect with people…don’t simply use these platforms as a place to throw your content in the hopes that someone will see it, your content will go viral and your blog/business/brand will explode over night.  Use these platforms as a place to build relationships.  Because, “It’s more difficult to unsubscribe from a relationship” – David Armano.  So before we all send ourselves into a frenzy figuring out exactly how these algorithm changes will impact us (because honestly, we don’t fully know!), instead take that time and focus on relationship building!
    What are your thoughts on the changes to the social media algorithms?  What will you do today to help build relationships on social media?

Build a relationship to beat the social media algorithms

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53 comments

  1. Julie, you’re right — Instagram in particular, was in quite an uproar today. I really wasn’t sure what my next move should be, but your reference to jumping off the cliff makes so much sense now. Thanks for clearing things up for me. I’ll be sure to pass this along.

  2. I posted a photo on IG about turning on notifications, but deleted it because I think ultimately it would turn more people away. After researching it, it’s not necessary at all.

  3. Hey Julie! Thanks for clarifying the whole Instagram and FB newsfeed changes. I kept seeing people post about the “turn on notifications here” on Instagram yesterday, and it made me think whether or not I really want to turn on notifications for half the people I follow. For some, it’s worth doing it just to keep an eye on their feed, but not for all.

    And yes, Social media is meant to be used as a SOCIAL tool. Some people hide behind their screens.

  4. To be honest, I often feel like I’m struggling to keep up with the Social Media changes. I agree with being social, and I love when we get a chance to interact. I think this is easiest on Twitter, but I do try on multiple platforms. I don’t really want to ask my followers to have to do anything to connect with me other than follow… who needs the extra hassle?

  5. I’ve seen all over Facebook about how Instagram is following suit with each other. The algorithms on these 2 sites alone will always change, we will have to learn to accept it as time goes on. I do agree with tip #2 and #4.

  6. That’s really helpful. There are so many things I hate about social media, but some good things, too. The quote about relationships is really what it’s all about.

    Also, I’m curious. What *does* it mean to be an expert? That’s something I’ve been wondering lately.

  7. Social media is the new “norm”. Like it or not it’s the way we connect with many of our friends. They do keep changing and evolving, we’ll see how this Instagram change goes. They are owned by Facebook so it was just a matter of time….

  8. I’m probably one of the few that didn’t add a subscribe to notifications image on my Instagram as well. I didn’t feel like it was necessary, plus I’ll have to admit that I found it a bit off-putting when I saw it on others.

  9. Oh my goodness, the incessant posting of the “turn on notifications” on Instagram has practically kept me off that platform for a few days. It’s so annoying to me! I didn’t know about the “See First” option on Facebook — I like that! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  10. I pretty much ignore all things algorithm because it drives me batty! I don’t know if I will ever figure it out. I keep trying to build relationships with my readers, and do the best I can. I’m sure there are better ways, but I don’t know them, and they change so often I don’t know if I will ever be able to learn them fast enough 🙂

  11. I completely agree with the instagram thing! Everyone is asking you to turn on notifications and I am sorry I don’t want notifications when anybody posts!

  12. This was very informative. I never really thought of the annoying notification thing… I did just recently turn one off for that reason. Hopefully, changes won’t affect a lot of us… if they are going to do it.

  13. I encouraged my followers to follow me on Instagram, but you’re right, once I did that for a few people, the notifications are driving me crazy! As a new blogger I”m guilty of copying statuses without seeing them through to see how they work. Thanks for shedding a little light.

  14. I agree. lol I don’t want to be annoying and pushing people to un follow because they can’t stand what I’m posting. I want genuine followers… we shall see what happens with it all. Great post
    Danielle | AccordingtoD.com

  15. This is great information. I’ve taken a step back from the recent social media mayhem just to see how it all plays out. Then, when things have settled I will find out what I need to know. Otherwise it just frustrates me trying to figure out what is true, what is rumors and how it affects me.

  16. This is such an insightful post. I have two FB accounts, one for writing and one for personal use. I have about 2k friends on my writing one and I don’t think I’d be able to catch up with everyone in that sense. so I don’t mind not seeing everyone’s post and I can follow the ones I need to. However, in my private one I only have about 175, what I would call “real friends” and I often miss out on things because of these algorithms. I live away from my childhood friends and family and FB is how I keep in contact.

  17. I agree social media is based on connection. It can be hard to having tone and facial expressions to go with the text. But, I try to personally thank, or reach out some personal way with my friends and family on FB.

  18. As frustrating and annoying as these algorithms are, you are absolutely right. You should not be asking for followers to turn on their notifications…and secondly, using the exact same IG photo as 5,000+ other people to do so. Personally, I have all my notifications turned off because I get far too distracted being sucked into social media land when a notification pops up on my phone.

  19. Just a handful of people clicking see first on your page has a huge impact on views from what I can tell since creating a post encouraging people to do this. I just hope when I start reposting some old posts they don’t get sick of seeing the same thing again, but I have been growing fast and want my new people to see my old posts.

  20. Although I understand the reasoning for the uproar, I’m not sure how much it makes a difference. I have 1500 FB friends, and follow over 3K people on Instagram. I will never be able to see all of those posts. I would like Instagram to allow you to create lists though. That would be wonderful.

  21. Ahhh finally someone said something! Thanks for your wonderful post Julie! I have been getting a lot of panicky messages on my FB wall asking me to turn on notification, etc. I haven’t joined in because I am fine with the algorithm change. I do not necessarily agree that I like the change, but I am fine with it. Because I would rather use my energy into working on what kind of posts I should put out there that will be helpful, and thus garner the ‘likes’.

    1. If people invested half of the energy they spend on complaining about the algorithm changes on building an email list, they’d be much better off!!!

  22. This is exactly what I needed to hear today! I’m new to blogging and was all, “Ahhhhh do I need to post on my Instagram telling people to turn on notifications.” I know i”m not going to for my own instagram bc i find it annoying and i didn’t want to feel like i needed to ask people to do something i wasn’t even doing.

  23. I completely agree… panic is everywhere. Ultimately it boils down to good content. If you write good compelling content, (or in my case, innovative recipes) people will find you no matter what the algorithms are. I just sent your post to 4 of my blogger friends telling them to read it and relax! thanks

  24. I do not get tore up about social media I follow what I love and hope I put out what people love and let it go from there.

  25. yes this is so true. The other day when I got on IG and everyone was jumping on the ‘turn on your notifications’ train – I thought I was going to lose it!!! It was so annoying – people just need to interact – end of story.

    1. You’re most definitely not the only person who posted a picture like that on IG…a lot of people did…hopefully some people took them down 🙂

  26. I have been flooded with those instagram notification and honestly in my opinion if I want to I would. I have been doing that already before that change even rolled out. Forcing me to do it is just another thing. Love your post btw. xo

  27. When I saw people posting those “turn on post notifications” posts, I never really thought to do it – since I wouldn’t turn them on myself. I agree that the building a relationship is really important!

    1. Building a relationship is soooo important when it comes to social media…and way too often, it is overlooked

  28. You are so right and I’m guilty of this. I saw the postings and you only think it’s the right thing to do only because you meet so many new people, that you don’t want to miss out. I have no idea about notifications on. Thanks for sharing.

  29. Oh my, the Instagram things was so crazy! I couldn’t believe how many posts were just saying turn on notifications! I’m all about people stepping away from their phone; you won’t see me telling people to turn on push notifications. lol.

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