As many of you have seen and made clear on your feeds across various social networks this week, Instagram is changing its algorithm and from the looks of it, possibly for the worse. Chronological feed to curated feed is the proposed plan for the Instagram team in hopes "to show the moments we believe you will care about the most." How exactly will they know what I want? Facebook seems to do pretty well in retaining users so they must be doing something right for the majority. Now what does that mean for us photographers and professionals? Who knows but change will come so adapt and get over it!
Do you really think a Change.org petition will make a difference with 150,000 signatures? Not a chance in hell with over 400 million active users on Instagram. Those are most likely professionals fearing their business pages will take a huge hit like they did when Facebook made the changes years ago. Then a small percentage of those signatures are probably just those getting in on the action to throw in their blind opinion, because it's popular to do. Either way people are pissed and I get it. I'm not a fan of the curated feed myself, and I absolutely love the way I can manipulate my posts to times of days and areas of the country and world. In the end, I will see the changes and make it work to my advantage in time.
For you professional creatives out there that use various tools like social media to manage, market, and push yourselves above the pack, this is simply a swift kick in the ass. We are not in control of many of these factors that play into our industry. This should simply be your motivation to quit complaining and move forward. Do what you can with what you have and be the best at it.
As Instagram has made clear in the past with big changes they do them in a timely manor. Ads, were one of the slowest rollouts of a new change I have ever seen in any business and one I still find appealing overall. Change doesn't mean it will happen instantly and be 100% shit, at least in their case they have the knowledge that their users come first and they respect that when making announcements like this, they do it with great regard for the overall majority. Sorry to be the one to tell you, but the majority are not people looking to grow a business like photography from social media and interaction. Most users are people you went to high school with or people documenting life a few snaps at a time throughout the week.
Instead of bringing so much negativity to change as it happens around us on social media lets figure out ways we can take this to our advantage, and continue to grow out reach and creative process well beyond a stupid algorithm we have no control over. I will link to this again but to grow a following on Instagram it's fairly simple and they even post this on their own website. The suggested user list is a list of Instagrammers IG feels exemplifies the perfect community member. Curated with some of the most creative minds in the least likely places. Though the list can gain you tens of thousands of followers in a very short amount of time, it's the rules that help to get on the list that truly matter and will help you push forward on the platform.
Check out the list below and tell me how many you are doing right now.
Bring a unique perspective to Instagram by sharing inspiring, original photos and videos
Are actively engaged in and help cultivate the larger Instagram community