Facebook Tips & Tricks – Understanding the Facebook Timeline

Dec 12, 2013
Jason Baumann

facebook edgerank

Today’s Facebook Tip is to understand Facebook’s EdgeRank. What is EdgeRank? EdgeRank is Facebook’s algorithm (or system) for determining how someone sees articles in their NewsFeed. You may think that they are all sequential, but that is definitely not true.

The equation pseudo-equation is in the graphic above. It involves three variables. U which stands for Affinity, W which stands for Weight, and D which stands for time decay. These three factors are described in detail below.

Affinity. Affinity is the poster’s relationship to the viewer. Basically the more often a user interacts with a page, the more often that user will see updates from that page. So, if a user likes a lot of content from Coca-Cola, the more often that user will see Coca-Cola updates in their Newsfeed. But Affinity is one-way. If a page repetitively engages a poster, that won’t count. Advice to Marketers: give your followers plenty of opportunities to engage your content. Use polls, encourage likes and shares, etc. Remember, content is king!

Weight. For every piece of content that is posted online, Facebook assigns a weight. Although not confirmed, it appears that the rank of weights from highest to lowest is photos/videos, links, then status updates. But comments and likes also carry a weight. A comment is worth a lot more than a like – mostly because it takes a lot more time and energy for a user to write a comment than just click on like. Advice to Marketers: Post plenty of photos and videos. If you want to post a status update, include a link or photo with it. It will increase the exposure. Also, write your posts to encourage commenting.

Time Decay. Finally this last factor is Facebook’s attempt to make sure that the Top News is the most current and top news around. It is a freshness factor that makes sure that very popular, day-old items don’t always trump new news. Advice to Marketers: Make sure that you are always producing enough, fresh content. If you don’t post often enough, your message will be lost.

EdgeRank is not the be-all, end-all of Facebook marketing, but it is significant enough that you need to remember the 3 factors when creating posts. If I can offer one piece of advice regarding EdgeRank, remember that it is all about the comments and likes. If you keep that in mind, you will do well.


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