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How will social media algorithm updates impact brands?

May 9, 2018

What are social media networks?
Social networks are built to bring people closer together and increase interaction between them. One of the many ways social media platforms are booming is by connecting people by showcasing meaningful posts from their friends and family in their News Feed (the first window that pops up, when a person logs into their social media account). This helps people to keep up with the constant updates on what’s happening around them.
The usage of social media has been significantly optimised by experts from the field of marketing. One of the advantages of social media for businesses is that it allows you to interact with your consumers/customers. Social media simplifies the process of giving and receiving any kind of feedback. If your customers have any concerns related to your business offerings, they can let you know in time by personally connecting with you on social media platforms. Therefore, one needs to ensure that their digital marketing strategies are being implemented efficiently, and reaching out to wider audiences, helping their business to be known in the market.
Here is how it gets interesting…
Social networks have started to update/upgrade their algorithms to ensure that companies execute their social marketing strategies to have maximum coverage as well as goodwill among their customers. Platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and many more are consistently looking to increase their on-site (website) and on-app (mobile application) engagement, and it’s important for businesses, be it small or large, to know that such advancements help them grow more than they already are, as well as reach out to their audiences and help them effectively.

What were the problems faced by social networks?
All social networks have witnessed content overload and with the inception of fake news and fake social media accounts coming into play, social media platforms have had to make significant changes in how their users are consuming the content.
The problem doesn’t end here; social networks due to the overload of irrelevant content, social media companies saw that their on-site engagement has been dropping. The users were clicking on posts, updates and tweets that would direct them to an external website in order to consume content. This would lead to less on-site engagement which can influence the amount of their advertising revenue.

What are the advancements that took place in these social media algorithms?
To fight these issues, social media companies, like Facebook, decided to code their algorithms in a way that would negatively impact the visibility and appearances of the content that include external links. It would mean that the on-site and on-app content will be preferred within the algorithms which helps regulate what and which updates need to be presented to the users. Most social networks have been directing themselves towards an acceptance of such an algorithm since a while.
This in turn gives a tremendous opportunity for marketers to differentiate themselves when it comes to social media presence. The algorithms cannot eliminate the external content as it continues to be valuable to the users. So, the algorithms want creative marketers to adapt their social media content policies in such a way that helps them keep up with recent updates by incorporating a balanced mix of onand off-site content. This will therefore help maximise the return on investment (ROI) from social media to these businesses in the given financial year.

What is the impact of these advancements for brands and audiences?
With the ever-growing changes in algorithms in the social media domain, we expect to see organic content from people, and less paid content from brands and businesses. With this change, the influencers are, and have always been, people, first, and then content marketers. Every influencer, no matter how small or big or what niche they belong to, has their own statement of content, which resonates with their audiences and influences them. These influencers and their audiences will gather more attention when organic content is presented to them while the paid content from businesses and brands suffer.
The important thing to keep in mind is that these updates create educational, high qualityand valuable content that the audiences will find informative and relatable.

Brands and individuals that share low-quality content will have less engagement, comparatively, which will decrease the probability of their updates popping up on people’s feeds and search results. The marketing teams should focus on quality over quantity, any day, and incorporate high amount of creativity into their social media and content policies that will help them gain engagement.

Companies, either big or small, need to focus on creating quality content which provides value to their target audience. Companies and brands who are able to do this effectively, keeping up with emerging social media trends, have higher possibility of garnering audience engagement and goodwill along with consistent social media presence.