A few weeks back I was so confused as to why previously posted pictures (a couple of weeks old by then) were being liked and I assumed I was being stalked - silly assumption, sorry friends, lol. Little did I know that Instagram switched it up on us as there's been quiet tweaking of the internal algorithm for the app (just when I thought my hashtag game was all figured out and on point).
The tweaks, instead of bringing chronological order back as we've begged for so long, have made it even somewhat more difficult for friends to see your posts. Whether you are a business, influencer, blogger or just a regular Instagram user, you probably would have noticed that follower engagement with your content has gone down and it's not because your followers don’t care anymore; they are just not seeing the content as soon as it is posted.
Instagram basically wants you to make use of the story feature which has been made the core, just like with Facebook and News Feed. This, to me, makes no sense as it defeats the purpose of the Instagram app which is to see pictures and videos instantly. I mean the name of the platform is "Instagram"🤦🏽♀️(Although I do understand the attempt is aimed at making the platform more authentic and weeding out bots)
I did a poll recently to find out how many people know how to get around the new algorithm. Turns out not so many (so Ivie to the rescue ). Below are a few tips to get your posts seen and back in the limelight:
One “hack” is to take advantage of Instagram story by making good use of it and enabling followers to engage with you more by asking questions or taking polls (if you have over 10k followers use the swipe up feature). The new algorithm rewards posts with high engagement - number of likes, comments, views, shares, posts, DM’s or any other type of interactions. High engagement essentially signals the algorithm that this is quality content people want to see.
Reply to all comments on the post. Treat all the comments like a conversation - it allows you really interact with your followers and has the added benefit of increasing the post's visibility.
Improve the quality of your video and pictures - Instagram is visual. If your feed is beautiful, people are more likely to engage more. A visual planner like the preview app can be used to see what your feed looks like before posting. You can even use a certain color for your post (I chose pink for mine). This gives your feed a cohesive look.
@kehindesmith's page is very cool, I love the gorgeous black and white theme, it is visually appealing.
Figure out when your desired audience is most active and post your content at that time. This will help you "hack" the algorithm to increase your reach. Timing is very important - if your post gets a lot of comments and likes immediately it is posted, it increases the chance of your post getting to more followers.
Caption! Caption! Caption! The algorithm considers the time spent on your post so ensure you have an engaging caption that will stop people from just scrolling past. Be creative, tell a story!
Improve your hashtag game. Try not to use popular hashtags as you can be shadowbanned. Shadow ban is when your hashtag cannot be discovered in the search feed. This means that your images won’t show up in the hashtag feed of anyone who doesn’t follow you and this ultimately reduces the reach of your account. Instagram is constantly striving for authenticity. Click here to see the list of banned hashtags that can get you blacklisted
How do you feel about the new Instagram update and algorithm? Please comment below.