The algorithm rebellion
By now, most Instagram users are aware of the change to the way we view content. Perhaps less publicised, is the social rebellion that has taken place in the wake of this strategic revision.
Content creators and posters are furious at the new method and have begun leveraging their social connections in the hopes of outsmarting the algorithm.
So what’s actually different with Instagram?
Rather than displaying chronologically on a timeline, posts are only displayed if the algorithm considers them particularly important to the user. According to professional Instagrammers, this move has brought about an array of undesirable repercussions including a massive reduction in engagement and new follower acquisition. However, publishers are not alone in their outrage; following the change, Instagram users have reported a substantial drop in new feed content and believe they are seeing less of the things they enjoy on the platform.
Let the rebellion begin
Instagrammers have failed to take this move with a grain of salt, rallying together in quest of beating the system through formation of “Instapods”. And they’re saying it works. Like the term ‘pod’ suggests, Instapods are networks of popular posters, bloggers and businesses whose content relates to each other. The primary purpose of these networks is to achieve greater reach and engagement through liking, commenting and sharing posts of others. Members effectively imitate desired engagement in the hopes that this is able to boost the post enough to display to other users. If a post is able to attract immediate high engagement, the algorithm deals with it more favorably as it is seen as popular content and is therefore more likely to be displayed to a greater audience.
Timing is critical
It seems logical, so why aren’t we all doing it? Before you start considering it yourself, definitely make sure you’re up for the task. Any new member must be invited to join and are required to follow strict rules relating to the frequency in which they react to posts, the speed in which they must respond, and the length and quality of their responses. When considering the varying times and days people post to social media, this can ultimately become a full time job!
Aside from being highly demanding, there are also questions surrounding the authenticity of this method and whether it can potentially nullify engagement data. By creating what is essentially fake engagement, any analytical data collected becomes tainted with inaccurate figures. More than this, some people are actually questioning whether Instapods are even effective in outsmarting the algorithm, despite positive reviews from pod members.