In case you missed it, Instagram recently announced a huge change that will soon affect what you see on your home feed.
On March 15, the company shared on their blog that they will shortly roll out a new algorithm that will determine a user’s newsfeed in a non-chronological manner. Meaning, gone are the days when you see the latest posted photos at the top of your feed.
Instagram says the order of photos will soon be based around three key things:
- The likelihood you’ll be interested in the content
- Your relationship with the person posting
- The timeliness of the post
What it means for influencers
For influencers who create sponsored content, this means that engagement is more important than ever before because Instagram will rank photos based on what’s receiving the most interaction.
This could mean there are now new opportunities for your post to be seen if the content becomes popular with your followers first. The change could also provide the opportunity to build a stronger community within your engaged followers, because the algorithm will ensure your most loyal followers will never miss a post from you.
Consequently, the algorithm feed could have the opposite effect and may cause a user’s content to drop to the bottom of a news feed. But Instagram ensures that posts will not suddenly disappear; they will simply be arranged in a different order.
What it means for brands
The upcoming change is good news for brands willing to pay for their posts to rank higher in a user’s newsfeed. It allows Instagram to monetize more posts and increase their ad dollars, while giving brands the opportunity to boost their posts. This is huge for the brands with large marketing budgets, but will likely hurt smaller brands not able to pay up.
The arrival of boosted posts will encourage brands to dish out more money into sponsored content with influencers, because there is now an opportunity of getting a post seen by more people than ever, rather than just being restricted to a brand’s following.
And if bigger brands begin to pay to boost their posts, smaller brands may need to turn to influencer marketing in order to compete and use the audience of influencers to be seen.
Users are already familiar with seeing photos based on what the app thinks we like on the Explore page, so the opportunity to bring the same concept to the home feed is huge for companies willing to pay up.
Depending on what you use Instagram for, your feelings on the announcement may vary. You may be more interested in seeing what your friends and people you know are posting rather than big popular accounts. But until the new algorithm rolls out all we can do is speculate on whether we approve or not.
But one thing’s for sure, the news will only push influencers, brands, and businesses to evolve their strategy on Instagram and post better content.
Beza is #paid’s Community Lead