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How to make the Instagram changes work for you and your business

Two small tiles on a beige background. Each tile showing the Instagram logo.

If you keep hearing screams of frustration, it’s probably the sound of people looking at Instagram. The platform has introduced changes – and it’s making a lot of people angry.

A petition to “make Instagram Instagram again” has gained thousands of signatures. Many users are planning to boycott the app on 1 August. Instagram has already begun to roll back some changes based on the backlash.

A shift to video

The changes to the app have shifted the balance from still photos in favour of videos. A businesswoman I follow summed it up this week when she posted, “I just scrolled through my feed and every single post was a video. Where have all the images gone?!”

Instagram devotees are angry that video is being given more weight than images. They argue that Instagram should stop trying to emulate Tik Tok and allow users to choose which format they post and view. But according to Instagram, video posts receive the most engagement.

Head of Instagram Adam Mosseri says that while the platform will continue to support photos, “I do believe that more and more of Instagram is going to become video. If you look at what people like and consume and view on Instagram, that’s also shifting more and more to video over time, even when we stop changing anything.”

All videos on Instagram will now be Reels. There are new templates and special effects for users to play around with.

Where is the content from my friends?

Changes to the algorithm seem to have reduced the number of posts from friends that you can see in your feed. Instead of seeing content in chronological order, you now see posts in the order of weight given by the algorithm.

“I’d love for there to be more friend content in feed, but all the growth in photos and videos from friends has been in stories and in DMs,” said Mosseri.

“We will continue to show photos and videos from friends towards the top of Feed whenever we can, but the best way to keep up with friends seems to be with the other parts of Instagram.”

Making the new Instagram work for your business

If Instagram is still an important tool for your business and your audiences, there are some things you can do to give your organic content the best chance of being seen.

Make video your priority

We know that video is the future of Instagram – and your content has a better chance of being seen right now if it’s footage. Make video the priority in your content plan from now on.

You don’t have to shoot anything with a professional camera or make the set-up too complicated. Footage captured on a mobile phone is perfect. Just make sure that captions are on so that the video is accessible to everyone.

Be a favourite with your followers

If you have a devoted fan or customer base who engage with your updates, they won’t want your posts to be pushed way down their feed. Ask your followers to add your account to their favourites to ensure your posts appear at the top of their feed.

Prompt your followers to show some love

Don’t be shy to ask your followers to like, share and comment on your posts. The algorithm wants to see engagement with your content. And after all your hard work, so do you!

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