Sometimes it's the little things that matter most.
That's what Instagram wants users to believe after their recent makeover of the social media platform. After years with the original camera lens, brown-cased, 'Insta' logo'd icon, Instagram finally changed it with a new color gradient and glyph-style icon. The UI colors were also tweaked to emphasize more white space; a more modern design palette for high-quality photos.
All of this is nice and visually appealing (to some of us) but in this case, it's the BIGGER things under the hood that should matter most to users, especially for brands and influencers.
This past March, Instagram announced that eventually users feeds would no longer display images chronologically, but rather move towards a Facebook algorithm model. It would be a change to where people would see images that Instagram thinks they would like most according to whom they follow and their usage tendencies. So who does this effect the most?
With the old model, brands and influencers relied on posts to reach their millions of followers immediately. Instead, with the new algorithm, these images will potentially miss a huge chunk of people that these posts aren't 'boosted' or 'paid' for (like on Facebook.) While the new design and algorithm change can be justified as a coincidence, Joseph Steinberg, CEO of SecureMySocial contacted Gil Eyal, CEO of influencer database and tracking firm, HYPR.
"Back in March, Instagram's CEO, Kevin Systrom, promised to take it slow and not make any unannounced changes. But the version released this week, along with an announcement about a new icon, diverted the attention from the real issue. As one of our team members, Connor Gallic, noticed shortly after installing the new version of the app, Instagram is testing out the feed on select users in the US".
Eyal went on to offer some advice to the new changes: "Look at your recent posts and see which have gotten the highest levels of engagement. These posts are the ones that are likely to perform best when measured by Instagram's new algorithm. You want to make sure you identify the characteristics of these successful posts, so that Instagram recognizes your content and decides to promote it".
As with any change, usually comes an upside. It's been stated that people miss on average 70 percent on their feeds because of the sheer amount of content (and clutter) being shared on the platform. Now, as the focus moves towards optimizing the order people see particular moments, it can create a cleaner, more targeted experience for users.
Although the changes to the current chronological order may reduce the amount of likes and engagement, brands and influencers will be forced to create and post higher quality content. We have no choice but to be out with the old, in with the new.
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