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FACT or FICTION - Latest Instagram Algorithm Explained!

Emma Turner

Instagram is an ever growing community with over 100 million more active monthly users than Facebook. Instagram has recently released an algorithm change affecting how high your posts show on your audiences feeds.

There has not been a defined list of what the algorithm goes off but there has been a lot of speculation of what it is and what it isn’t.. We are here to help sort Fact from Fiction.

  1. The more engagement - the higher the exposure! FACT! Everything counts as engagement - likes, comments, story views and even how long followers look at your posts for.

  2. Comments don’t count as engagement unless they are more than 4 words long! FACT! A comment is a comment BUT Instagram has now clicked on to comment pods. Wait what are comment pods? These are groups of people that comment on your photo when you notify them that you have posted. To prevent this comments such as ‘nice picture’ or likewise will now, not be counted as engagement!

  3. To get engagement you need to give engagement! FACT! If you are getting engagement you need to give it back. Exactly like the saying ‘you get what you give’. People will not keep engaging if you are not giving them anything in return though comments and likes.

  4. Hashtags! It’s all about the hashtags! FACT! The latest feature on Instagram is the ability to follow hashtags) and we all know that Instagram loves when people take advantage of their features. Hashtagging has become ever important. BUT rather than overloading your comment section with the maximum 30 hashtags, you are better to select 10 content specific and specific tags to help engage with the people who are interested in the content you are posting.

  5. The more followers you have the better (even if they are paid)! This is FICTION! Instagram is now more than ever focusing on creating authentic interaction and making sure that engagement is only counted when it is an authentic user.

  6. When you post it gets shown to only 10% of your following. This is a FACT. Also introduced within the new algorithm.. .If your post does well within the first hour it will get released to the other 90%. This is why sometimes your post does really well and other times it doesn’t get nearly as much engagement as usual.

  7. Creating relationships with other Instagram pages is key! Having relationships with other pages means that you will be creating authentic engagement. Engagement is at the forefront of the updated algorithm. It is key to getting your content shown to your followers because if you aren’t getting engagement Instagram won’t show your posts because they don’t see them as being relevant.

  8. If you don’t want to post everyday, take advantage of other Instagram features! If you don’t have the right content for daily posts you should make sure you use other features available such as Stories. These will often get more engagement than your posts and this can count towards authentic engagement. Also features like the polls allows people to interact with you and boosts your organic engagement.

  9. Get people talking - Use questions as captions! Give people the chance to answer and react with/too you! Give them the opportunity to engage with you by answering the question in the comments.

It has been clearly proven that engagement is key to beating the algorithm. Creating that organic and authentic engagement is the best way to boost your posts in terms of visibility.

The most important point to note is that Instagram likes it when brands and people take advantage of their new features, for example… Their latest, allowing you to follow hashtags that you may be interested in. As a company or individual wanting to increase your visibility and engagement you should delve into these and use them because instagram will reward you for using these features (give you hints on how to increase engagements - You should always take note of the pop-ups).

Although these are all well tested and proven they still aren’t 100% confirmed by social media giant Instagram and they probably never will. As soon as social influencers click on to the tricks and how to beat the algorithm Instagram catches on, changes the focus and puts the emphasis on the algorithm so no one can master it!