As a Facebook owned company it’s no surprise that Instagram now adopts an algorithmic timeline as opposed to a chronological one. But what does Instagram’s new algorithm mean for you brand? Many marketers are freaking out, and as a result my feed is flooded with “Turn On Notifications” posts. Whether the change is good or bad seems to be a matter of opinion, but in this post I’ll detail what you can do to stay ahead of Instagram’s new algorithm change.
A NEW NEWSFEED
Instagram was the one network left that didn’t base the content users saw on what they (or their networks) were interacting with. Instead, users would see posts as they were posted in the ever loved chronological order newsfeed. Instagram reports that users currently see about 30% of posts in their feed – leaving 70% of posts unseen. The new algorithm will take into consideration how engaging the post is, as well as information about photos the user has liked, accounts they follow, and anything going on in their network.
Broken down to simplest terms, the more engaging your post – the more people will see it in their feeds – yup, just like Facebook.
While many users are up in arms over the switch, my first thought was – what does that mean for the brand accounts I manage? So curious me did a little digging, and there’s not much to worry about (if your brand has the right strategies in play).
HOW TO BEAT THE INSTAGRAM ALGORITHM
I guess there’s no “beating” the new Instagram algorithm per se, but rather make the algorithm work in your favor. If your brand’s strategy was to bombard your feed with continuous photos – your days are numbered. This new age of algorithmic social media digestion requires lots more research, creativity, strategy and analytics. Here are a few ways to adjust your strategy and boost your Instagram reach:
Quality over quantity:
Until now, many accounts have grown by posting a lot of content in one day. The truth of the matter is, no matter what quality content will always out-perform irrelevant content. Keep users happy by posting content that is visually appealing, and adds value to their life…or newsfeed. Get creative, use videos, and put time and effort into creating content your followers will love.
Get to know your audience:
In order to create content that converts one must really get to the audience, their wants, needs and triggers – all while keeping it relevant to your brand, product, or service.
Dive into analytics:
Analytics are my favorite. Why? Because you’ll learn so much about the people you are trying to reach. Analytics will let you know what time your audience is online, when they’re most likely to interact with you and even what kind of photos or videos work best. Use tools like Squarelovin, Websta.me or Ink361 to get started.
Captions matter too:
Images will capture the attention of your intended Instagrammer but the captions can drive even more engagement. Try leaving followers with a call to action like “double tap if…” or “tag your friends” to drum up engagement on appropriate posts.
Remember to do your research and find hashtags that are relevant to your content and audience. (Learn to how to find and use the best hashtags for your brand in this post)
Try influencer campaigns
Maybe it’s time to use the power of influencers and word of mouth to get your brand in front of new eyes and gain relevant followers. Create content around influencers in your industry, guest post, just get your network involved in getting the word out there.
Pay to play
Every once in a while you have to pay to play – be smart about your social ads, but know that a little bit of budget can help reach your goals.
See? The new Instagram algorithm isn’t as scary as it sounds. With a well thought out strategy based on great content and audience insights, your Instagram account will continue to flourish and reach the right people.
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