Repeat after me,
"It’s not the algorithm, it’s your content"
In the spirit of the recent 2019 VMA awards, I think we can all agree on one song that was robbed for being the single most played track of all 2019.
Song: The Algorithm Is Out To Get Me
Artist: Every Single Person On Social Media
Let’s skip to straight facts good people.
The algorithm is doing its job.
The algorithm is a back end formula designed to favour content that you as the user want to consume. The content you regularly engage with will take precedence in your feed and keep you happy and engaged on the platform. Your own activity is what keeps a brand, business, person of influence or Jane from down the road appearing at the top half of your feed.
If the algorithm didn’t exist, everything would appear in chronological order not filtering out the rubbish in a sea of content (sorry to be frank). We would miss those moments on social media that make us visit the platform to begin with. And if users are not engaging, if users get tired of content that they don’t enjoy, they leave. No more platform. Adios. Bye!
If you’re content isn’t performing, it is not the algorithm. It’s the quality of content you’re rolling out.
It isn’t easy, but once your content is at a level good enough to connect with your audience, you’ll have a clearer understanding of what it is your followers want to consume so you can ensure you're producing exactly that, kick ass content that ignites response. Until then, trial, error, repeat!
Once you’re at peace with the idea that you just need to up your game, here is our biggest piece of advice.
ADD VALUE & ADVERTISE IT
Gone are the days of posting a snap of your acai bowl and waking up to 200 new followers. It’s time to think bigger, think bolder, take risks. All this in conjunction with thinking about what you bring to the table that adds value.
Are you here to entertain?
Are you here to educate?
Are you here to offer a solution?
Whatever you’re here for, make sure that it’s reflected in the content you develop.
Now if you’re late to the party, just starting your Instagram and Facebook journey, building your engagement in this social media climate is grueling. You have officially been thrown into the proverbial deep in and possibly drowning in content from users who are ahead of you, taking ranks. There is no room for mediocracy.
Ensure you’re taking the extra steps. This means capitalsing on your strengths and using that to add value to your audience, whether it's humour, insight, style or inspiration.
Use stories to advertise what your audience can expect to learn, laugh at or be inspired by in your latest post. In short, use more content to push existing content. Give viewers, followers and your potential audience a reason to look at what you’re putting out in the digital land.
Whether you like it or not the algorithm is here and as more and more people join the platform, the more you’ll have to consider your content. Think quality, always.
It’s like tough love.
It mind seem hard and unforgiving, but in hindsight, it’s pushing us to do better, be better, think harder and not post for sake of posting. It's forcing us to be forward thinking creatives, it's making us use our voice. It's encouraging us to delve into posting stories, in turn waving goodbye to comfort zones.
The algorithm isn't the enemy. It's an opportunity.