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How will the new instagram algorithm affect me

On March 15th 2016, Instagram announced on it’s blog changes to its news feed algorithm. No longer will we see posts/images in reverse-chronological order, but instead implement a Facebook-esque style feed. This new algorithm will populate your feed with photos and videos in order of what the site believes you’ll engage with the most based on user’s interests and relationships, instead of showing posts in chronological order.

Don’t forget Facebook did purchase Instagram back in 2012 for 1 billion dollars, surely Mr Z wants some return on that investment. Therefore, it wasn’t too surprising that Instagram news feed algorithm would change. After all Facebook’s secretive news feed algorithm does know how to keep us spending more time on the social platform.

As of yet Instagram has not clearly explained how the algorithm will work on the social platform. So the impacts identified below are assumptions on how will the new Instagram algorithm affect me, you and our Instagram business accounts.

Smaller Accounts Impacted

If the new algorithm is similar to Facebook’s news feed algorithm then only the “popular” accounts will be seen, giving small businesses less of an opportunity to be seen. I follow a few big name kids brands and also smaller designer brands on Instagram. If I’m only going to see the big brands first on my feed, how will I know more or discover those new and upcoming designers? People’s spending habits are influenced by what they see, and if they see more of Cotton On Kids on their feed versus say The Childhood Store, a smaller independent boutique kids clothing store, where do you think they will go spend their money?

Pay to be Seen

Which leads me to my second point, paying for views. A few months ago Instagram introduced sponsored posts which allow businesses/brands posts to be seen by users who may not already follow their account. With the new algorithm impacting organic reach, businesses may feel pushed to spend money on Instagram advertising for their content to be seen. Again putting pressure on smaller business who may not have big pockets to spend on advertising.

Target Market Related Content

If we’re seeing more paid posts on Instagram from accounts we don’t follow, are we just going to get inundated with stuff we don’t actually want to see, but do because we fit the target market, and we have found something similar engaging. So I liked Cotton On Kid’s recent post, am I now only going to see similar content from brands who’ve paid to reach me?

New Game

With the changes to the algorithm comes the need to understand the new tricks of the game. Businesses will need to re-strategise how to gain followers, plan how to target their audiences and ensure their posts are engaging enough to show up on their followers timeline.

This announcement has a lot of users upset, there’s even a Change.Org petition online you can sign here, which is collecting names of people who want to keep Instagram as is.  There’s even a hashtag trending online at the moment #KeepInstagramChronological with people expressing their views on social media.

What are your thoughts on the upcoming Instagram news feed changes? Do you welcome it or are you against it?

By | 2016-03-22T07:50:32+10:00 March 18th, 2016|Business, Social Media|

12 Comments

  1. I was reading about these changes the other day and thought how exhausting being online can b, and this is what I do for other people. It all comes back to money or finding a new niche to keep followers engaged. Thanks for update

    • Camielle 23/03/2016 at 9:22 PM - Reply

      Agree with you Natalie, it all comes down to money. I guess it’s the next evolution to how we consume the internet. I read an article the other day about how there’s no such thing as relying on 100% organic reach anymore. Well if companies are restricting this and building tools that allows reach, but at a price, then I guess that statement is true.

  2. Min@WriteoftheMiddle 22/03/2016 at 10:47 AM - Reply

    Oh *GROAN* … Instagram too … why oh why?? FB has been such hard work to get any interaction because posts don’t get seen. It can be really disheartening. Instagram has always been my favourite because what you post DOES get seen. I am not happy about the coming changes to Instagram 🙁

    • Camielle 23/03/2016 at 9:23 PM - Reply

      Instagram has been one of my faves too Min. Technically we all have our own algorithm on how we use the tool. We follow accounts because we do want to see their content, just like we unfollow when we no longer want to.

  3. Janet aka Middle Aged Mama 22/03/2016 at 4:13 PM - Reply

    I’m not thrilled but as you mentioned, FB bought IG so it was only a matter of time really. Just have to deal with it I guess; I doubt petitions are going to change anything. At the end of the day IG is a business and advertising brings in the money …

    Visiting today from #teamIBOT x

    • Camielle 23/03/2016 at 9:24 PM - Reply

      I’m being hopefully Janet, maybe Instagram will come up with a compromise.

  4. Karin @ Calm to Conniption 22/03/2016 at 9:16 PM - Reply

    I’m so sad that Instagram is changing but I’m not surprised.

    • Camielle 23/03/2016 at 9:25 PM - Reply

      Agree Karin. Actually the more the news is sinking in the more accepting I’m becoming #7stagesofgrief

  5. Kirsty @ My Home Truths 22/03/2016 at 9:46 PM - Reply

    As with everything social media related, you just need to go with the flow, don’t you? Nothing ever stays the same which is endlessly exhausting but infinitely interesting. Well for me, anyway!

    • Camielle 23/03/2016 at 9:27 PM - Reply

      These platforms do have to evolve or else a sexier more interesting one will come along and take all their “customers”. I noticed Facebook Live is trying to compete with SnapChat’s instant video sharing service.

  6. EssentiallyJess 22/03/2016 at 10:03 PM - Reply

    It bugs me because I’m not a big user and I just want to use it to catch up with people! I’ll never pay because it doesn’t behoove me to do so, but I feel for those who will need to for their businesses. It’s just another expense.

    • Camielle 23/03/2016 at 9:34 PM - Reply

      I know what you mean Jess. I thought I’d never pay for Facebook ads but since running a few for my clients and witnessing the return it had on their business, I’d consider it now. Just got to time it for when I have something sexy to “promote” or “advertise”. Will be interesting to see how the Instagram changes pans out for businesses.

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