Most Social Media Networks have their own algorithms that determine just how many people will see your content for free, but generally they all apply a similar model to their content distribution workflow.
The complexity across each of the platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIN, Pinterest, and Instagram is diverse, and they have all developed their own ways of ensuring the best user experience for their users. However, it’s been found that most of the platforms have adopted a pretty traditional algorithm to determine just how far your content will go, and how many people it will reach organically.
Generally, there are a few steps that apply to all of the platforms.
- You post the content.
- The algorithm determines the type of content (image, video, link, long form content, etc…) and then categorizes it.
- The algorithm then places the content in front of a small segment of your followers who have engaged with similar content in the past.
- The algorithm then determines if it should either let the content fade away, or if it should show it to another segment of your followers (if there is a lot of engagement).
- Steps 3 and 4 continue for several hours (sometimes days).
I’ve mapped it out visually here:
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