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I hear more and more grousing about Facebook’s algorithm these days—people complaining that Facebook won’t show their posts to their followers. Ok, here’s my two cents: yes it does, if you bother to visit their pages!

It’s amazing to me that most people just don’t want to do the relationship building work that social requires. They want it handed to them on a silver platter. If you create and post great content on your own feed, visit the feeds of your followers and make comments and share their stuff, then they will come to you. It’s just not that complicated.

Yes, you need an ad budget to help things along, but for heaven’s sake—stop with the campaign mentality! People want to be treated like people, not targets. They want to have conversation with other individuals. They want to be recognized and appreciated for what they share on a human-to-human basis, not delivered Ads in a retargeting campaign that may or may not have anything to do with what they want right now.

Facebook’s algorithm rewards authentic interaction, so if you want more action on your page, create a strategy of actually “talking” to people. Seek out the personal profiles of your followers and read their feeds. Find out who they are and what they’re interested in and comment on their posts. Scale this by having your employees do the same.

There really is no way to automate this process, nor should you even try. Can you imagine what would happen if you sent a robot to a live networking event and it spit out your business cards and made random announcements about your blog or business offerings? Talk about a disconnect! Yet that’s exactly what many businesses expect to do on social channels. If it doesn’t work in face-to-face social settings, why would you expect it to work in digital ones?

The reason Facebook was created in the first place was to connect people. That’s always been its mission. However, you can’t have a user base of over a billion people without streamlining the newsfeed to some degree. Facebook’s algorithm works in your favor when YOU do the work of getting to know people as individuals and conversing with them. It’s that simple. And once you get to know folks on a personal level, you’ll be better at two things: 1) showing them your human side, and 2) providing content that addresses their concerns and makes their lives easier. Both of these will be rewarded with the increased interaction that Facebook favors, so your content will be seen by more of your friends (and their friends).

Understand that when everything you posted hit the news feed of friends and followers, most of it was ignored just like Ads anyway, so for the most part you got a host of worthless impressions, not real viewing. Now if someone sees your posts there’s a reason, and the results will benefit you accordingly.

So stop complaining and use the medium the way it was intended—to build relationships! There’s just no substitute for doing the work of personal interaction.

Image: Peyri

Originally posted at Inside CXM on February 9th, 2015

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