Ways to Utilize Upcoming Instagram Changes
Instagram recently announced changes in various algorithms on the platform. Adam Mosseri, the head of Instagram, announced that the platform is slowly shifting towards content creators, videos, messaging, and shopping. This is quite different from what Instagram initially identified with, which is sharing photos. While the announcement didn’t go down well with many photographers, businesses have no choice but to adapt to these changes. That is if they want to keep using the platform.
Previous algorithm changes have rocked various brand strategies, leaving some scrambling to regain organic reach as they rethink their Instagram strategy. That said, recent changes don’t have to affect your performance. Instead, you should create a content strategy that suits Instagram’s algorithm. Below are some strategies to outsmart the Instagram algorithm.
1. Improve your photo quality
Creating quality content goes hand in hand with ranking higher and appearing in your follower’s feeds. While this might seem a no-brainer, most businesses don’t understand what “quality content” means precisely. Regardless, you can’t deny the fact that often the most shared and liked content on social media is visually striking.
Instagram users will automatically like and share good quality photos. Often due to their bold colors or stunning landscapes. That said, you shouldn’t worry about algorithm changes if you already know how to create eye-catching content. If you don’t, you should consider uploading professional visuals occasionally. Even if your business niche is visually boring, professional-quality photos can make a huge difference to engagement.
2. Shift your focus to video content
While Instagram hasn’t officially declared that video is better than photos, the platform doesn’t treat these two visuals the same. Continue focusing on the concept of producing eye-catching content. However, given that videos autoplay on Instagram’s feed, there is no other better way of grabbing your followers’ attention as they scroll through their feeds.
That aside, going by Facebook’s algorithm logic, you should find ways of ensuring that your followers spend more time engaging with your content. Both short and long-form videos will have your followers pausing to watch. Grab their attention within the first 5 seconds to ensure they stay to finish watching.
Instagram has also introduced new video features, such as IGTV and reels over the past few years. Content in these feature areas also appears on traditional feeds and have their own explore pages. This shows how Instagram wants users to find and watch video content. So, make use of several video content ideas to entertain and market to your audience. Teaser videos, such as short reels and behind-the-scenes videos, are great to capture your followers’ attention.
3. Post during peak hours
Posting during peak hours is probably the most straightforward tip that works on Instagram, regardless of algorithm changes. Obviously, you should begin by identifying Instagram’s peak days and hours to take advantage of this tip. Note that sharing posts during peak hours doesn’t necessarily translate to high activity and engagement. This is due to Instagram’s non-chronological nature of the feed. However, this may also be changing soon.
Posting during such times synchronizes with people’s time on the platform. Thus, enabling you to meet some ranking factors, such as usage frequency and timelines. Remember that every business has a different audience and different peak times. Check your specific account analytics to see when your audience is currently online. Once you understand your audience’s peak time, you can schedule posts to upload at the right time.
3. Go live regularly
Like stories, going live doesn’t have much effect on Instagram’s algorithm. However, it notifies your followers by placing your live video first on your followers’ stories. The best thing about live videos is that it appeals to followers who prefer spontaneous elements rather than produced or staged content. It also reduces the pressure of posting polished, professional content.
4. The Bottom Line
Brands should publish consistent stories, and posts with compelling captions, use hashtags and run contests or giveaways to outsmart Instagram’s new algorithm changes. Typically, you should focus on various ways of engaging your audience. Review your content to see which types of posts resonate best with your audience. You should also readily take advantage of Instagram’s new features as they release them.