For the past two days, Instagram has been flooded with opportunists asking their followers to turn on push notifications for their account. This is due to Instagram’s newest algorithm update. This update will dictate the order in which content is displayed, instead of it being in chronological order. If you’re a headline reader, then you have seen conversations about how this new update is going to be “taking away content” like Facebook’s news feed or how Instagram is going to “ruin itself.” Or, one I read recently, “this is going to destroy my small business.” Let’s set the record straight.
The notion that Instagram is pulling content out of your feed is untrue. What’s happening is that Instagram is showing you more of what you want, based on your actions, at the top of your feed.
Of course, that means the content at the top won’t be in chronological order, but then when you scroll down after 2, 4, or 6 pieces of content, everything goes back to normal. Again… nothing is disappearing. They’re not taking anything away. What’s actually happening is Instagram is making it better.
To wrap your head around this, you have to understand why Facebook was able to win or why there’s a priority tab in Gmail or why Twitter is currently on struggle street. There’s a reason why you don’t go through all 400 pieces of mail in your mailbox. It’s a waste of time and energy and there’s no good way to focus on what you should be looking at.
If there’s too much noise, people stop paying attention.
When there’s too much noise, you don’t get to see what you really want to see. I want to be able to see posts from clients, friends, and those who inspire me — those things bring me value. What I don’t want to see is “Bodybuilder Bob” promoting his supplements.
We live, work, and play in a space where everything, especially marketing, all hinges on the supply and demand of attention. For example, right now I am pumped about Snapchat’s Geofilters which we recently implemented into KoruWorks social initiative. Yet six to nine months from now everybody will be using them and everybody will be used to seeing them. At which point they will start the process of being less valuable. You are experiencing a cleansing of Instagram and it’s very necessary.
Instagram is making a tremendous move in terms of a business, and even more importantly, it’s a move for the end user. It’s better for you. The people who are upset are the people who don’t bring value to their community. When they post something, and only 4 people actually care about it, their content won’t show up in your feed. This Instagram algorithm is going to be an amazing thing for those who put out content over the last few years that their community actually enjoyed.
- Algorithms like this, showing you what you care about most, is what Facebook and Instagram have done better than anybody else this generation and I give Instagram a massive thumbs up for what they’re doing. Not because it’s better for ad dollars, but because it’s better for the end user and anything that is better for the end user is the winning formula.
- You all need to understand the difference between being a headline reader and practitioner. Every time a big update for any platform comes out, everybody gets emotional. Lots of you said you were deleting your Facebook accounts when they implemented their algorithms. And guess what, your FB account is still active. I’ve been pissed off about how everybody’s crying and moaning because of all these headlines talking about how “Instagram’s decision to include an algorithm to their feed is going to ruin them.” It’s not. So instead of freaking out when you read headlines like this, form your own opinion. Think about it for yourself. Do the homework. Be a practitioner.
This is the exact moment to go “all in” on Instagram (but don’t forget about Snapchat). Instead of complaining about the situation, adjust the to the reality of the updates and use it as an opportunity to be a first-mover and get ahead of the game.