April 7, 2016

Damn Instagram, Back at it Again with the Updates

It seems that Instagram’s looming update, which includes the utilization of an algorithm that will change the way that you see posts, has even the most influential ‘grammers in a state of panic. This algorithm-based feed will operate similarly to Facebook’s (a.k.a. Instagram’s parent company), displaying content that you’re likely to enjoy based on your engagement behavior, instead of in chronological order.

According to Marketing Land, Instagram will allow users to weigh in on the changes through in-app surveys, interviews and bug reports; Facebook used similar tactics in December 2015 before rolling out their latest newsfeed algorithm (you can refresh your memory here). Many of us, especially brands and influencers who depend on getting massive waves of likes, comments and followers, fear that this change will ultimately prevent our content from being seen. Sure, we can all beg our fans to turn on our post notifications, but maybe that’s not all there is to it…here are three reasons why I think businesses should cut out the begging and embrace Instagram’s new algorithm:

  1. Content will improve. For quite a while now, many Instagram users have been able to build up their following and engagement through unfavorable tactics such as buying followers, severely exploiting the power of hashtags and borrowing the majority, or all, of their visuals from other popular accounts. Instagram’s imminent updates will most likely demand more innovation, creativity, and consistency, as well as a much stronger effort to engage and connect with your followers. This may sound like a lot of work, but don’t your consumers deserve content that is catered towards them? It might even be the key to better understanding your businesses ROI from Instagram…
  2. Change is good. When was the last time that one of your favorite social media networks rolled out a major update and you didn’t freak out (even just a little)? Updates like this one will always feel nerve wracking at first because they will take time to understand, inevitable trial-and-error attempts and ultimately a new strategy. However, when a network isn’t making noteworthy updates, you’ve got to wonder how using it will benefit you long-term. Progress is good, and if your business is serious about your digital marketing game, you’re sure to overcome.
  3. We can help you get through it. Having social media specialists on your team will make transitions like this one so much easier – it’s our job to follow the trends and changes, which allows us to be proactive rather than reactive. This isn’t our first algorithm rodeo, after all. While no one can be sure of how the update will impact their brand, we will be able to closely watch the effects on all of our accounts, giving us a unique and broad perspective on what needs to happen next.

How do you feel about Instagram’s soon-to-be algorithm-based feed? Let’s hear it!