How I Stopped Worrying and Learned to Love the Algo

As Facebook marketers we constantly need to be aware of algorithm changes Facebook makes, and how they affect ours and our clients’ businesses.  However, by keeping one basic concept in mind we can be largely immune to the mighty, ever changing algorithm.  For such a simple concept it’s a deceptively difficult one to execute - 

It is to build a great brand that your customers will love.

Too often businesses focus on tactics to “beat” or “game” Facebook’s algorithm.  I come originally from the world of SEO, and I used to see the same thing happen with Google’s algorithm,  Google favors links?  Let’s get some links!  Google favors time on site?  Let’s make super long content!  

What tends to get missed is the why behind what Google and Facebook are doing. 

Google and Facebook are pretty smart, and they understand that happy users means more users, and more users means more money for them.  And how do you make your users happy?  By giving them great experiences that satisfy their needs and wants.

Hmm - there may be a lesson here.

If you give your customers a great experience and satisfy their needs and wants you will go a long way towards having a successful business.    That is a much more effective strategy than trying to change what you do or how you market to please Google or Facebook.

Why?  Because in addition to having happy and loyal customers, that is exactly what Google and Facebook want you to do!  

happy customer.jpeg

Let’s go back to looking at the “why” of what Google and Facebook are doing.  Why did Google prioritize sites that got links?  Because it was the best proxy they had to tell them a site was providing a good user experience for people.  Presumably if a bunch of people linked to a site they were advocating for it’s quality.

Facebook’s recent change was to prioritize businesses that have reviews on their sites.  Why do you think they did that?  Because if a business has reviews on their site that generally means it has satisfied customers.

If you stop trying to react to each individual change that Facebook makes, and instead focus on why they are making that change and how your business fits in to that end goal, you will have significantly more success with both your present and future marketing efforts.  

What does this mean in practice?  Here’s an example:

If you are scrambling to get reviews on your site because you heard there was an algorithm change and you are trying to please Facebook, that is a red flag that you are thinking more about the algorithm than the quality of your business.

If you are trying to get user reviews on your site because you know you have a great product and it’s good for your brand for customers to share how much they like it you are headed in the right direction, and probably won’t have to worry too much about every algorithm change to come.

Building a great brand that fulfills people’s needs is what Facebook wants you to do on a strategic level - and what every good business should be striving for anyway.   Do that and you will reap much greater rewards than the short term reactionary changes to the mood swings of the algorithm can ever provide.  

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