The Truth Behind Facebook’s Algorithm And What It Means To You As An Advertiser

Have you ever wondered how Facebook’s news feed works?

I don’t mean on a technical level – I mean …

How can two people that have the exact same mutual friends have completely different stories on their news feeds?

Well, it’s due to Facebook’s algorithm.

Last month, Time.com ran an article that explained how Facebook’s news feed has developed since being introduced in 2006 and it’s absolutely mind-boggling.

In this week’s blog post, I want to share exactly how Facebook currently decides what you see and what this means for advertisers.

(Including some clever little tricks that you can use to boost your organic posts).

Now, I’ll start at the beginning – I don’t know if you remember, but when Facebook first announced that they were going to launch the News Feed, there was outrage.

Seriously, everybody went mental!

As time’s ticked on, the News Feed has become the core of Facebook – it has people glued for hours per day and for the first time ever, it now has over one billion people checking Facebook at least once per day.

So, how does Facebook decide what to show you and what not to show you?

Well the algorithm studies what you most commonly like, what you most commonly share and what topics you give the most interest to – it can then calculate what will keep you most hooked and engaged.

Aside from that, Facebook identifies your relationships with friends based on how often you like their posts, if you write on their timeline, if you flick through their pictures, if you talk to them on Messenger etc.

It also looks at your actions; if you watch a lot of videos, it will present you with more videos. If you read long posts, it will give you more long posts.

It’s highly detailed.

Facebook say that they give each user access to around 1,500 posts per day (if you kept scrolling and kept scrolling, there would be 1,500 in total) – however, the average user only looks at 300.

This means that Facebook has to ensure that the 300 are more interesting than the rest.

But there are some factors that decide what you see that are super-ninja – check this out …

If you’re on a slow mobile connection, Facebook will show you less videos. If you write “congratulations” in a comment, it’s usually a big life event so Facebook will boost it (tip for boosting organic posts). If you ‘like’ an article after reading it, Facebook will see it as a positive signal and boost it.

There are lots of little deciding factors that Facebook use when deciding what specifically to show you.

Now this has been classed as controversial, Facebook basically decide what you see.

Could they change your mood? Could they change your political views? Could they filter what news stories they want you to see?

Anyway, enough about that …

What does all this mean for us as advertisers?

Facebook know that they have a balancing act between keeping the newsfeed highly personalised and keeping their users engaged so that they’ll always be scrolling that little bit further.

As long as the users keep scrolling, us advertisers can keep appearing based on their interests/behaviours.

If we stick to the “pattern interrupt” basics of an image that stops them in their tracks and a headline that hooks their attention – then we’ll always get traffic to our sites.

However …

Facebook say the have around 2 million advertisers at the moment, that figure is going to increase within time which means that the price of clicks is going to go up!

As the news feed becomes more and more personalised for the user, the adverts that will get the most exposure will be the ones that have a highly niched audience and are willing to pay the most.

My advice to you …

Pixel your audience, build a list of red hot warm people, niche down and make the most of now, as we have it better than we realise!

Speak soon,
Emma x

P.S – Here’s a link to the original article.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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