Hey Labelers, we are chatting about everyone’s favorite topic, the algorithm! this is a topic that everyone loves to hear about. We’re here to give you ANOTHER rundown on the sometimes frustrating algorithm, and tips on how to conquer it!
First, let’s talk about why we think Instagram is getting rid of engagement bots
Instagram recently stopped all bots that increase your engagement.
Our prediction? Instagram is studying how these bots are increasing user engagement authentically so that they can offer that as a service and monetize it. For now, you’ll have to put in real-time to get your engagement numbers up.
Does the Algorithm favor videos over photos?
Unfortunately, the answer is not black and white. On one hand, there is no definitive statement from Instagram stating they prefer your vids to your pics. However, Instagram’s goal is to increase social connection by allowing users to offer valuable content to each other. To measure value, the algorithm looks at engagement. Videos are a great way to trigger the algorithm because they have longer duration times than still photos. When users spend more time engaging and viewing a video, the extra time spent sends signals to the algorithm that the content is valuable. So no, Instagram doesn’t favor videos over photos, but by virtue of how the algorithm equates the time spent to value, videos would tend to be favored over photos.
Do Comment Pods get you higher on the Instagram feed?
When Instagram ditched the chronological feed to highlight posts users value based on past behavior, comment pods were born. We all know this new system makes getting likes and comments more challenging. Comment pods are organized groups of Instagram users who band together to help increase engagement on each other’s content.
Sounds cool right? But do they actually work?
Short answer, yes and no! In theory, this is great! When you make a post, Instagram shows the post to 10% of your most engaged followers. If every single one of those people within that 10% engages with your post, it will go to the next 10%. This creates a ripple effect that in turn, gets your content pushed higher on the feed.
However, there are risks to this concept. Just because many people comment on your page doesn’t mean that it will show up higher in your feed. To increase your engagement, Instagram must deem your content meaningful. Comment pods do not always produce meaningful results because people are commenting on your posts out of obligation, not out of interest for what you offer. Comment pods can also be sketchy. A sudden spike in your engagement will flag Instagram’s system and could result in detrimental treatment to any organic content you post in the future.
Does Instagram favor longer comments?
No! Instagram favors meaningful engagement. If you’re commenting using more than three words and it’s meaningful, you’re more likely to have someone comment back to you. So, make those comments meaningful, Labelers!
How to use Saves to hack the algorithm
So, let’s wrap this up with one of our in-house hacks. Use the IG save feature to increase your engagement and trick Instagram’s algorithm into showing your content to the first 10%. Every time somebody follows you, go to their page, save their first image in a little folder that says “New Followers”.
Once you have built out your folder, commit to engaging with their content an hour a week. This signals the algorithm these people are interested in your content, in turn allowing your content to be viewed by more people.
Have more questions about the algorithm? Be sure to listen to The Label episode called What Instagram Said About The Algorithm And Why It Isn’t True for more details and industry updates.