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How Social Media Censorship Can Impact Your Business

Posted By Big Bullshit Biden     April 27, 2021    

Over the last 10 years, using social media sites has gone from a casual hobby to a defining activity of our daily routines.

We regularly take breaks from our day to catch up on Facebook posts, check out new Instagram updates from the people we follow, and read and respond to the latest Tweets that we may have missed.

The same is true for businesses. Marketers and business owners have to keep up with changing social media rules and dynamic audience expectations, and consistently share content that helps their brand stand out.

Since the major social networking sites have billions of people between them, such a huge number of people – and their social media use – can only be managed through algorithms.

Below, we discuss what it means for your business:

Algorithms on Social Media

Social networking sites and many other kinds of websites rely on algorithms to help them sift through their massive userbase. They use big data to create a more personalized experience for people using services via a browser or through apps.

Netflix and YouTube, for example, use these techniques to recommend content as ‘suggested videos’ or ‘what to watch next’ to users.

The use of algorithms on social media was popularized by Facebook, curating people’s feeds so that the most important or relevant posts would be highlighted. Of course, it’s Facebook itself that decides the relevance or importance of a post for a person, through the use of algorithms.

Algorithms and Censorship

The concepts of ‘going viral’ or posting ‘relatable content’ didn’t exist when the most popular social media platforms first started. The primary goal of Facebook was to stay connected with family, friends, and old classmates, likewise for Instagram and Twitter.

However, the latter two also encouraged meeting new people and forming new connections by engaging with their content. Twitter, specifically, introduced hashtags, which people could use to find others talking about the same topics as themselves.

Algorithms, first used by Facebook, were also adopted by Instagram (after being purchased by Facebook), and similarly by YouTube and Twitter.

Facebook has quite literally written the rules that business owners and marketers must follow. Which is why it’s become extremely difficult to secure a higher spot or a more attention-grabbing position on a customer’s newsfeed without paying for advertising.

Censorship also exists in the form of ‘shadowbans’. An account is considered shadowbanned when the reach of its content is severely restricted by social media platforms, without banning or deleting the account itself.

Censorship and Business

For business owners, the following are some of the consequences that arise from censorship on social media:

  • Particularly on Facebook, posts that promote another website – directly or indirectly – are deprioritized on users’ feeds. This ensures that minimal attention is given to them.
  • For example, if you post about a third-party website that stocks your products, and your competitor uses Facebook Business Store to sell theirs, their products are likely to be displayed more prominently on newsfeeds than yours.
  • This is how Facebook’s algorithms get its users to spend more time on it, rather than going to another website.
  • You should also note that algorithms aren’t a perfect system. Since they’re designed to closely target specific demographics, they do so at the risk of excluding potential customers who might want to buy your products or benefit from your services.
  • Ultimately, it’s a question of how much you’re willing to spend on advertising to reach your current and potential customers alike.

At Nitrotext, we know what it takes for online marketing companies to succeed, and our online advertising platforms are great Facebook alternative. Contact us today to get started!

How Social Media Censorship Can Impact Your Business

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