Instagram just changed their algorithm.
And everybody is freaking out. The people calmly freaking out are the ones gently coaxing you to turn on their post notifications. The ones seriously freaking out are the ones creating aggressive posts about the change.
People are worried that their content won't be seen and that will be bad for business.
I'm going to say something you're probably not going to like.
Instagram doesn't matter.
When I first started my personal brand, I used to post 2-3 times a day on Instagram. All I could think about was hitting 100,000 followers and one day being verified. I put a lot of time and energy into creating my account and trying to get people to follow it.
What I learned from this was a valuable lesson and the reason that I am telling you that Instagram doesn't matter.
The return of interest on Instagram is extremely low.
What was the last product you bought because an Instagram influencer told you to buy it?
I personally, have never purchased a product because of Instagram. I rarely swipe up on links in stories. I hardly ever leave the app once I'm in it.
As an audience, we stick to the app we are on. If we're scrolling through Instagram while bored at work, we don't want to click on a website, have to put in our email address, get a 10% discount code and then buy a product from a company we've never heard of.
The same goes for links. Of course it can be important to promote projects, but chances are Instagram isn't going to bring that much back to it.
Instagram doesn't matter because it has a minuscule return on interest.
Now, let me clarify, I have an Instagram and am active on it. I try to post a daily story and attempt 1-2 posts per week. I could certainly up my Instagram game but I'm realizing I don't need to.
Where do the people that value my content find me?
Let's start by asking you.
Chances are you found me on Quora or Medium.
Had you clicked on to my Instagram profile after discovering my account, and had you seen a post about the incredible laptop cover "I loved"-would you have clicked the link and bought it?
Probably not. The return of interest on Instagram is low because it takes time to build a relationship. Unless you have been following me for a year, chances are you still don't fully trust my opinion and/or don't care to spend money on what I suggest.
This means the relationship hasn't been established yet.
If you want to find success as a content creator, you have to find the medium where you can connect with your followers. Sure Instagram is aesthetically pleasing, but is it really going to be the most productive use of your time?
Instead of focusing on Instagram, focus on building that relationship.
The Instagram followers will come later and then you can brag about your pretty little blue check mark.
Have you heard of Elite Daily?
It's actually the first place I was ever published as a writer.
It was created by Gerard Adams, who sold the company to Daily Mail in 2015 for $50 million.
Adams now has a Youtube channel called Leaders Create Leaders.
He interviews massively impactful and successful entrepreneurs and gets them to tell you their story, secrets and keys to success.
I cannot say enough for the value that comes from listening to other's success stories.
This episode featuring Chris Stoikos, the founder of Dollar Beard Club, is especially interesting. Chris talks about the viral content formula, P.R.O.H.V.E.N., that he used to take his company from $0 to $24 millions in two years.
Remember not to focus on creating content that reinvents the wheel, but that upgrades the current model.
(Aka learn from others and figure out how to do what they are doing better)