Any creative will tell you that it’s becoming increasingly difficult to reach your audience on Instagram. Once Instagram changed feeds from chronological order to showing posts based off an algorithm, the Instagram creative community began to feel the hit. Recently Instagram has been making more changes to their algorithm and it may be its most detrimental to creatives yet.
We've probably all noticed Instagram prioritizes posts with high engagement to appear at the top of your feed. Instagram's algorithm also shows posts it thinks a user would like and puts the rest toward the bottom of your feed. This isn’t new information for most users, but when this change happened it began to make it hard for creatives with smaller followings to share new content with the people they were trying to show.
If a post doesn’t receive a significant amount of engagement within the first couple of hours then Instagram’s algorithm pushes the content lower on followers feeds making it harder for your audience to find. Since Instagram only shows your posts to a small fraction of your followers to begin with, driving early engagement on your post can be difficult. Especially if you’re an account that’s just starting out.
Here’s where it gets really tough to be a creative.
Instagram created the business profile, which initially seemed like a great tool for users. However, if you are a creative that conducts business on Instagram and you don’t switch to a business account, Instagram will limit your reach even further. Switching to a business account sounded like a great idea for creatives at first - When you make your account a business account and you’re be able to track your post analytics, advertise, and add direct contact buttons to your profile. While these are definitely great features for someone who is trying to grow their following or business, there’s also downside to making your account a business account.
Instagram was primarily designed to be a social network, users want to see what their friends and family are doing when they log into Instagram. They don’t want to see their feed full of businesses. To stop that from happening, Instagram limits the reach of business accounts so business account’s posts are shown to even LESS people. If you want your post to be seen by more of your followers you’re then left with the only option: to pay to promote your posts. A perfect way for Instagram to make money by exploiting the creative community.
You want your hard earned followers to see your work?
We’ll show it to them, but you’ll have to pay for it.
More and more creatives are trying to find the next big app for content creators. Several out at this moment show some promise, but none of these content sharing apps have the number of users that Instagram has. The creative community actively expresses that change is wanted, but Instagram has yet to acknowledge the backlash.
It’s only getting harder for creatives to reach their followers, how has the new algorithm affected you? Let me know your thoughts in the replies!