News Feed Algorithm vs. Third Party Apps
Changes in search algorithms from Google or social media algorithms from Facebook have become a regular event. Earlier this week, Facebook announced an update to their News Feed algorithm that sent shock waves through the content and social media marketing community worldwide. Shock waves may be an exaggerated term, but with all the recent Facebook News Feed algorithm changes and the ongoing issues of declining organic reach on Facebook, it’s easy to understand why some social marketers and content creators were, at the very least, a little shocked.
What Facebook Said That Shocked Social Marketers
At this year’s f8 developers conference, Facebook introduced new ways for users to control exactly how the third part apps they use, post back to their friends on Facebook. Here’s what Facebook told us this week.
“We’ve found that stories people choose to explicitly share from third party apps are typically more interesting and get more engagement in News Feed than stories shared from third party apps without explicit action. We’ve also heard that people often feel surprised or confused by stories that are shared without taking an explicit action. In the coming months, we will continue to prioritize explicitly shared stories from apps in News Feed over implicitly shared stories.
This means people will see fewer implicit stories from third party apps in the future. However, people will continue to see interesting and relevant content from third party apps that their friends have explicitly chosen to share. You can read more about this update on our Developer Blog here.”
Confusion Over What Third Party Apps Are Affected
It seems some of the confusion came from social media managers who use third party scheduling and post management apps like Buffer and Hootsuite. A spokesperson from Facebook told Inside Facebook that this News Feed algorithm update does not affect these social media management apps. It does however seem to affect all Open Graph actions.
“The announcement has to do with the way Open Graph apps share implicit stories back to Facebook. For example, a music app sharing each song you listen to in the app back to Facebook once you’ve agreed to let it do so.
This doesn’t have anything to do with Page posts or changes to how those are displayed in News Feed.”
I guess this means that Facebook wants to give stories that users intended to share from an app, more weight in the News Feed algorithm. They just don’t want the stories that are automatically generated from the third party app.
Makes sense and sounds good to me. In my opinion, this doesn’t really affect any “real” social media marketing.
How about you? Do you thick this new change will affect your social marketing plans?