It’s hard enough to keep up with your many different social media accounts – not just your personal accounts, but your business as well.
As an SME often your social media account is run by yourself. It’s hard to keep track of posting on Facebook, and then posting on Instagram, maybe even running a Twitter or Pintrest (for all you designers out there).
It’s not just traditional marketers who are fumbling about with social media platforms – even millennials barely know what we’re talking about when it comes to social media algorithms!
Since we’re learning some new things today, we’ve put together some some tips and tricks to building up your social media presence!
How does it work?
Before we get into actionable items, we have to know how it works in the first place.
Instagram has changed its algorithm many times before. Generally, they test out new features with a small group of users before pushing it out to the rest of the world. The most dramatic change has been the switch from chronological feeds to a ‘dynamic’ feed that is sorted by relevancy to the user rather than the time that the post was posted.
What this means is that just because you posted your post at what you deemed a ‘Golden Period’, it won’t show up on your audience’s feed in the timeline and order that you posted.
Like Facebook, Instagram now prioritizes Family and Friends (aka Real Users) over Brands and Businesses. This is because they rank posts according how often the User interacts (Engages) with the post and the poster. If your audience isnt clicking on your posts, your next post will be downgraded in their feed as the algorithm assumes that your audience doesn’t care about you.
While the change in algorithm de-prioritizes brands, your tried and tested strategy of posting at a specific time will still work, to a certain extent. The algorithm will still prefer newer posts to older posts, but of course, this means that audiences in a different time zone is still less likely to see your posts.
How Do You Fix This?
Engagement with your audience is key.
Use action words to encourage them to click and interact with your posts. Ask questions, or encourage them to share your posts. Use interesting graphics and compelling captions!
Instagram takes into account how often your audience comments, likes, shares, and tags people in your posts. As long as you maintain a strong, connected, and active relationship with your online audience, your content will be more likely to be shown to them the next time they log in.
Additionally, Instagram tracks how long each of your sessions are (spending an hour on the app at a time vs 1 minute at a time). Using this information, Instagram will only show you the ‘Top Priority/Top Ranked’ posts on your feed if you only spend a minute at a time on the app.
What this means is that some of your users are simply not going to see your posts if they’re not the type to be on social media for too long at a time – so do your market research!
There are plenty of ways for brands to reach their audience on social media, but you have to be clever with it. Social media marketing can be a massive time sink if you’re not careful, and the returns in investment is not immediate. The key to social media marketing is constant engagement, and this can become tedious for smaller SMEs without someone on marketing full-time.
The only real way to understand and master social media marketing, especially for SMEs, is to use the platform yourself, personally. If you understand how you and your friends use the app, then you’ve already understood how to market to people of the same profile as you.
That said, if you’re interested to learn more about how social media marketing works & to gain some insights into the platforms, follow the H.E.R Entrepreneur Facebook page. We post weekly articles on a variety of business related topics, and it’s all completely free.
If there’s a particular topic that you’d like us to talk about, please feel free to leave a comment!