Do you use social media in your real estate marketing to market listings, brand your business, and grow your network? Understanding social media algorithms on each platform can seem daunting. Not only does each platform prioritize different types of interactions, their algorithms prioritize different types of content.

If you’re creating a content or social media marketing strategy, be sure to identify your goals for each channel, and optimize content for each platform to best serve them. Understanding how each platform prioritizes content is crucial to an effective strategy. Work smarter, not harder.

To help you understand what each social media platform aims to do and get a handle on their respective algorithms, we give you the real estate social media algorithm guide.

Facebook

Algorithm prioritizes: Meaningful, active interactions.
Why: They want the time people spend on Facebook to be quality time, so they are prioritizing posts from friends and family, and content that sparks conversations.

“Here together,” is Facebook’s latest mantra. The platform has officially set out to foster and prioritize meaningful interactions specifically among friends and family, rather than business pages. This means less public content will show up in user’s news feeds. This also means that, if Facebook is your primary channel for social media marketing, you’ve likely noticed a difference in your organic reach and engagements.

As scary as the Facebook algorithm change sounds for the businesses that use it as a platform to network, promote their business and listings, the changes are inherently simple. Before posting, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Will this post educate, inform, inspire, or entertain people?
  • Will this post start a conversation?
  • Will this post be shared by others?

If your answer to the first question wasn’t a resounding, “YES,” reconsider posting it. All algorithms aside, if your content isn’t serving any of the above purposes, you might want to rethink your marketing strategy entirely. 

Bottom line: 80 percent of content you share share on Facebook should educate, inspire, or entertain people; the other 20 percent can market your business.

You can still use Facebook as a means to market your business, but if it’s reach you want, you might have to pay to play by boosting posts or running ads.

Instagram

Algorithm prioritizes: Timely, engaging posts from relevant users.
Why: Instagram wants to show its users the best, relevant content to the most people.

Although owned by Facebook, Instagram’s algorithm prioritizes content differently than that of its parent company. Where the Facebook algorithm aims to foster meaningful interactions, Instagram‘s mission is to put relevant, engaging content in front of people in a timely fashion. You may remember a few years ago when Instagram introduced its algorithm, changing users’ feeds from a chronological experience to what it deemed relevant and engaging.

Factors that influence Instagram’s algorithm:

  • Engagement – likes, comments, shares, video views, AND how quickly users engage with a post
  • Time spent consuming – this applies to photos, as well as videos. If a user clicks the caption to read more, Instagram views this as increased consumption.
  • Frequent Consumption – regular saves, likes, comments, and shares from users will prioritize your content in their feed.
  • Timeliness – read, recency.
  • Relevancy – content genres exist! Have you ever followed multiple accounts with similar content? We’re talking memes, animals (#catsofinstagram), sports highlights, or inspo (interior decorating, fashion, inspirational quotes, etc.).

Always know your target audience so you can optimize your content, taking the above factors into consideration.

LinkedIn

Algorithm prioritizes: Engagement and connection strength.
Why: To show users news, timely and popular content valuable to other professionals, and job posts. LinkedIn is clear about one thing: being a professional platform.

Before investing too much time trying to grow a consumer-facing business on a platform designed for professionals, consider whether LinkedIn is right for you.

LinkedIn’s algorithm is unique in that content can potentially go through four rounds of content review.

Assuming a piece of content or post makes it through LinkedIn’s initial SPAM filter, it will publish to the feed temporarily to measure quality and engagement.  If your content signals that it’s both quality and engaging, it will continue on to the next stage of LinkedIn’s AI-powered algorithm. However, if your post is flagged or hidden from any user’s timeline, LinkedIn will consider that negative feedback and the half-life of your post could stop there.

The third stage in LinkedIn’s algorithm checks for virality, assessing the quality of the poster and their network. This is to ensure both the poster and their network are not suspicious. In addition to vetting the credibility of the poster, the algorithm will also determine relevance and usefulness of the post to others.

The fourth and final stage a post will pass through on LinkedIn before getting a full-fledged green light is… wait for it… a human filter. In this stage, LinkedIn uses real people to review content and determine whether a post is valuable to others.  

 

Factors that influence LinkedIn’s algorithm:

    • Engagement – likes, comments, shares, and how quickly users engage with a post.
    • Connection Strength – if users frequently engage with your posts, they’re more likely to see them.
    • Hashtags – LinkedIn is now promoting the use of hashtags so if you tag your post properly, and your page isn’t private, your post can be found publicly for anyone interested in those topics!
    • Professional – avoid political, religious, or overly personal commentary.

 

Twitter

Algorithm prioritizes: Tweets ranked by time and relevance to a user, using a scoring system.
Why: Twitter wants to show its users the most relevant and time-sensitive content.

Twitter’s algorithm takes three main factors into consideration when determine what a user sees on their timeline:

  • The Tweet – consumption, engagement, type of media (image, gif, video), and recency.
  • The Tweetor – strength of connection the user has with the author, past interactions, when the connection was made.
  • The User – types of Tweets they’re likely to engage with, how often they use Twitter


Twitter’s primary goal is to serve Tweets to users who are likely to enjoy its content, engage with it, and strengthen engaging relationships.

In spring of 2018, Twitter announced a new approach to serving healthy conversations and reduce abuse, harassment, and “trolling” behaviors by identifying users who are likely to ‘distort and detract’ from public conversation. What does this mean for you? Here are a few ways to solidify your profile so your account and Tweets are prioritized:

  • Confirm your account email address
  • Don’t sign up for multiple accounts simultaneously
  • Contribute to healthy conversations on Twitter, be a part of the community

Pinterest

Algorithm prioritizes: Previous user interactions, relevance, quality, and interests.
Why: Pinterest is a search engine that uses keywords, and its algorithm helps users find what they’ve shown interest in and care about.

Though it’s considered a social media platform like those mentioned above, Pinterest is also a search engine. It uses keywords to serve up relevant visuals for its users. Pinterest is used to plan and research ideas (think DIY remodel ideas, housewarming parties, interior decorating). Pair that with the fact that 40 percent of Pinterest users have a household income of over $100,000 and you can start to see why Pinterest is often underrated.

Okay, back to Pinterest’s algorithm. When you create a Pin, it’s shared with your followers first. If it performs well, your Pin will be distributed to people outside of your network who might be interested in it.

You might be noticing a trend among social platforms that prioritizes content algorithms find engaging, recent, and relevant but where PInterest differs from the others is SEO. In addition to an algorithm that ranks Pins based on the above, Pinterest’s algorithm uses keywords.

Follow these  best practices optimize your Pins:

  • Use keyword-rich descriptions – put your consumer hat on and think about what your target audience might be searching for. “DIY home improvement ideas” might signal a homeowner looking to increase the value of their home before selling.
  • Don’t delete underperforming Pins – they might gain traction later on.
  • Stay within Pinterest’s preferred image ratio – 2:3 (width:height) and no taller than 900 pixels for optimal distribution and to take up more space in a user’s feed.

Want to learn more? Check out our complete guides to Facebook, Facebook Lead Ads, and more in our Real Estate Guides portal!