If you’ve spent time on social media over the last couple of years, you’ll have experienced first-hand the countless transformations that have occurred across all platforms: the dreaded Instagram algorithm becoming evermore impossible to penetrate; Twitter shifting from their iconic “fave” star to the universal “like” heart; Facebook diving deeper into monetised posts, so much so that Facebook Business Pages have taken a backseat in the social media strategy, where once they would be the designated driver.
It’s been a big few years to say the least. The most recent of these changes to occur happened around June 2019, when Instagram rolled out the removal of visible “likes” on individual posts. Instagram reasoned this would sever ties of self worth users were attaching to the number of “likes” they received on their posts.
And while it was a fantastic step for Instagram in taking responsibility of their contribution to users’ mental health, the removal of visible likes also removed the incentive to “like” in the first place, and accounts across the platform saw their engagement drop drastically as a result.
What has been clear in the months following this drop is that now, more than ever, brands needs to perform incredibly competitively to be seen by their audience.
In a video titled INSTAGRAM ENGAGEMENT DROP 2019 – The Harsh Truth, YouTube user heyDominik addresses the regularly declining engagement his followers had been complaining of before the removal of ‘likes’ had even been implemented. In the video, he goes on to analyse posts that his audience sent through to him, to discern what patterns may have caused a drop in engagement. That’s when he mentions “your [poor performing] content was a little bit worse or different… than when your posts performed well”.
The most crucial piece of advice he gives actually comes at the very start of the video, around the 1:10 mark, where he says, “the most important thing is, it’s not always the algorithm that sucks. And don’t get me wrong, my friends, I’m sure your content is top notch all the time. But if you notice some sort of engagement drop… the first thing that you should actually ask yourself is, you know, “does my content suck?”. And you’ve got to be really, really honest with yourself on this one.”
And he’s totally right.
Sometimes as a business owner, it’s difficult to take a step back and truly recognise whether what you’re putting down is the kind of thing people are wanting to pick up.
So when you engage a professional to work on your social media marketing for you, you’re not just getting someone to do the grunt work of creating and scheduling posts; you’re also hiring someone with enough precedented experience and emotional detachment from your brand to create content that is truly working in favour of your audience and the algorithm.