I think we can all agree that the latest Instagram algorithm causes anger and confusion wherever it strikes. And despite an outpour of complaints from it's users, Instagram seems pretty insistent on keeping it the way it is. At least for now.
How does the algorithm work?
Similar to the complicated Facebook newsfeed algorithm, the Instagram feed will rank your posts higher in your Followers' feeds based on the amount of likes and comments your post generates. Which means, in theory, if your follower count is low, your posts will not receive the visibility it deserves.
So, I've comprised a list of things that have helped me to combat this nonsensical algorithm. I'm not a social media expert, these are just tips I've tested along the way, and have proven successful for my own feeds.
Here it goes:
1) Post early in the morning
Most of us who run 'lifestyle' blogs make a point of posting a least once a day. With the old algorithm, it was extremely important to pick a 'popular' time of the day/week to post in order to optimise your followers and gain more engagement, i.e likes and comments. For example, around 6PM on Wednesdays was (and still is) a particularly great time to post because it's when the majority of us are settling down after the Monday-Tuesday rush.
This new algorithm, however, does not take the time of posting into account when ranking your post on your Followers' feeds, so you have to change tactics. If you post early in the morning, you have more chance of 'catching' people in their different time zones. Thus optimising every one of your followers and their personal timetables.
2) Promote your new post on your IG story a few hours later
For very similar reasons as Tip 1, if you promote your latest post in your story a few hours after you initially posted it, then you are generating brand new interest. As well as prompting your Followers from different timezones who may have missed it when you originally posted. I usually give it a four hour gap.
3) Track and interact with your hashtags
In every new post, you will have primary hashtags that will drive the most traffic to your post. For instance, if you post a photo of yourself in Costa Coffee, one of your primary hashtags will be #coffee. In order to use these hashtags to your advantage, you need to interact (like and comment) with other accounts who are using similar hashtags. This is commonly known as 'spamming', but I don't really like that word. Spamming implies you aren't remotely interested in the subject matter, which of course isn't the case (most of the time). Other users are more inclined to interact with you in return if you appear to be interested in the same subjects.
I would suggest doing this periodically throughout the day if possible (again, engaging with your different time zones).
4) Set up 'Support Groups'
This tip was originally highlighted to me by @thejoyceanbooknerd over on IG, and it's so damn good I have had to share it with all my friends (and now you).
On your IG messages, you can set up groups of up to 15 friends/followers who you regularly interact with online. When you post something new on your feed, you then send a reminder to the group. The premise being that you will all support one another by liking and commenting, thus increasing your visibility on your other followers' feeds. It's also a great way to meet new accounts.
That's it! Did you find these useful? Do you have your own tips? Comment below.