It’s pretty simple, actually. What shows up in your Facebook news feed is simply a math formula: NFV = I x P x C x T x R.
That should answer the issue for all the businesses and organizations that have seen the Page reach drop precipitously since the social network launched its new algorithm.
But just in case it’s not clear, there are some people out there ready to explain it.
“The surplus of content and lack of space forces Facebook into the role of the ‘bad guy’ for filtering the feed in an attempt to show the most relevant posts (plus some ads),” writes Josh Constantine in TechCrunch. “And so far, Facebook has done a terrible job of communicating how and why it filters the News Feed.”
The article goes on to give a very technical account of exactly how Facebook decides what to show a user. Cleverly portrayed on a green chalkboard background, it makes one feel a bit dimwitted being shown this Einstein-style formula that just doesn’t add up.
The reason for the new algorithm, according to Constantine, is that Facebook is just too darn popular for its own good, and has to throttle down its own popularity.
“Every Page on Facebook wants everything they post shown to everyone. But people only read a limited amount of News Feed per day. There simply isn’t room for everything, and the competition for feed space is intensifying. The total number of Pages Liked by the typical Facebook user grew more than 50% last year — a new stat that came from a 45-minute interview with Facebook’s head of News Feed,” Constantine explains.
The article gives a painstakingly detailed explanation of why Facebook is doing what it’s doing (it’s about a thing called “Feed Health). We appreciate the insights, but the article loses our interest until the end.
As Constantine writes, “But making the News Feed healthier for the long-term may be a bitter pill to swallow, and Facebook hasn’t offered much sugar to help the medicine go down.”
As Facebook morphs more and more into an advertising channel, marketers may need to look elsewhere to truly engage their fans.