Recently, I was noticing the absence of many people that I wanted to engage with on social media. I used to see their posts, I thought, what happened? Algorithms happened. Without getting too technical into the explanation of algorithm’s let’s just say that if you happen to like something someone posts, and that post is popular enough, you will continue to see more of their posts. This will consequentially bury other, less popular posts from other people you may really want to connect with.
If you are like most people, you do not have the time or inclination to type in every person’s name that you want to see in order to go to their personal social media page and search through the recent things that they have shared. Most of us log in and scroll our “Home” pages to interact there. We check our notifications and respond to those. That’s it.
The Power of the Unfollow
But what about all the other people you want to engage with? Enter the very powerful Unfollow. I recently took some time to scroll through my Facebook and Instagram followers. I noticed many people with double profiles, so I unfollowed/unfriended the void ones. I noticed names with no pictures, I unfollowed and unfriended those. I noticed names of people I had no recollection of and whom I had never engaged with, so I unfollowed/unfriended them. An interesting thing happened the next time I logged in; the landscape of my home screen had changed. Names I hadn’t seen in a long time popped up with their newest posts. Suddenly my posts were being seen by them and they were engaging. I had a few private messages asking me where I had been and how I, all of a sudden, came back into their feed.
While many of us are aware now of the “independent fact checkers” that social media companies have, we often forget about the computer-generated mechanisms and software with which these social media companies conduct the business side of their platforms. They are, after all, just computer programs. While they may be spectacularly intelligent and show the great leaps and bounds we have come since MySpace, they have yet to be able to learn what our independent brains wish to engage with. Yes, sadly there is a limit to what social media platforms can do.
Refresh your circle
I do believe it is important for most businesses who utilize social media to take time every now and again to refresh your circle. Look at those following you do they all have pictures? If they don’t, unfollow them unless you 100% know that it is a human person you want to interact with. Do some have double profiles? Find out which one is active, and unfollow the other. Are you scrolling past names you do not recognize? Are there those with whom you have never interacted with? Unfollow those.
If those you are following have been engaging on your posts, do not unfollow them. If there has been interaction with them, you recognize their name, their brand, and/or their products/services then keep the connection. Unfollowing/Unfriending in this instance is specifically for those who you have not connected with, do not wish to connect with, have not engaged with, etc…
Doing this once a year can be really effective in keeping your posts fresh and seen with your own followers, as well as increase engagement with the connections you wish to cultivate. Give it a try and see how differently your “Home” page looks within 24 hours.
Let me know how this works for you by leaving a comment, sending me an email email@example.com or messaging me on social media.