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Episode · 1 year ago

The Science of the Instagram Algorithm with Jenn Herman

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

The Science of the Instagram Algorithm- with Jenn Hermann!

Confused by the Instagram algorithm? Well, be confused no more!!

Scott Ayres & special guest Jenn Hermann are going to talk all about different aspects of the Instagram algorithm recently revealed!

Welcome to the social media lab live podcast, powered by a Gora pulse. I am Scott Ares, the content scientists at the Social Media Lab, where we bust a myths, the rumors and the stories of social media marketing with science. In today's podcasts we're going to talk to my great friend Gin Herman. If you don't know who gin is, you have not been paying attention in the world of social media marketing. She has a blog called GIN's trends and she is the Queen of Instagram Marketing and and this interview we dive deep into the instagram algorithm and what instagram has told US works in the instagram algorithm and what doesn't work in the INSTAGRAM Algorithm. I really love this interview with Gin and I think you're going to grab a lot from it. I'm going to recommend that you play this at regular speed, fast forward, rewind, pause, take notes. It's going to be good to a lot of stuff that we covered. Don't forget. You can run over to social media lab dot live. That's social media lab dot live, social media lab dot live if you want to check out all the interviews that I've been doing with my friends as in the social media marketing space. Now one of my interview with my friend Jin Herman from Jim's trends. Yeah, I feel like I feel like Jin, you don't really need a lot of introduction. I think if anybody's watching this and doesn't know you, know who you are. I mean they're not really paying attention to our space very well. But but, but Jin, you know she's one of the forefront leaders when it comes to instagram marketing. She's wrote a, you know, instagram for marketing for dummies book, which I want to talk about here in just a second. And then Jen and I actually got to share a stage and Portland, Maine last year. The age is a change, which that place was beautiful, by the way. mean the scene Rys be but even that the theater, we got to speak and I love that stage. I thought that was so cool. And so, yeah, so, Jim's great to have you here on the show. Y'All like bomb, reaction, bomb, love bomb for GIN and Jen. Know what I want to I'm curious to kind of we'll talk about the for dummy stayers things. You and I've both done a for dummies. Yeah, you've done more than one. Your Glutton for punishing. I really answer. Tell us, kind of like if someone doesn't know who you are, like your sixty second elevator pitch, of how you kind of became, you know, the leader in instagram marketing. Yeah, so my blog started in January of two thousand and three, so it's been about seven years, whatever that's been now. But I started out just writing about social media trends in general and at the time fell in love with this little APP called instagram and figured how use as for marketing. So I started trying to research and no one was really blogging or creating content consistently at the time about instagram strategies. It was all just like like more things, and this is before videos and before, you know, stories and the things we have today. So I just started blogging about it and in the process started showing up, is number one in Google searches because I was the only person blogging about all these different topics and in the process I've had the great pleasure of meeting a ton of amazing people. I've met, you know, people around the world that are happy to help me test things that I've worked obviously with you guys with the social media lab to test things and we're always out there trying to debunk these myths and figure out when new features roll out, what do they look like? And I'll have people reach out to me who got something in a Beta test or got it released and, you know, Australia or wherever, and they'll send me screenshots so we can play with things and stay on top of what's new and fresh and what's happening with the all of things on the instagram. That's a lot. Yeah, it's a lot to keep up with, you know, and it's, I think, what's what's great about using you. A lot of people don't know you're you know, your real job, if you call it that, is doing a lot of marketing. So you're not just you know you and I think some people that may they look at our own personal account, sometimes go or do they know they don't do anything, but a lot of those do a lot of stuff behind the scenes. I know it seems that we maybe can't talk about publicly, and so I think that comes into play quite a bit. So talk about I'm curious. How did you fall into the for dummies thing and what's that process for you've been like yeah, so the first book we did was Instagram for business. For Dummies, and that one came out a couple years ago. And my coauthor, Eric Buto, has written a number of dummies books, so he does a lot of things in the text space, you know, windows and Roid, all these sorts of things, and they had reached out to him and said, Hey, we really, you know, need an instagram book. Would you be able to do it? And he's like, well, I'm not really an instagram person, but I know somebody, and that was our other coauthor, Corey, Corey Walker, and she is she runs her own agency and she does a lot of instagram management and she knows Zerak really well. And she was like, well, absolutely, I'm on board,...

...but we can't do it without Jenn Herman. So then they reached out to me. So the three of US coauthored the first book which, like you said, is definitely an interesting process. It's very regimented, it's very structured because they have a brand to a pold and they have to have everything fit into a certain template and criteria and plan and I when that first book was done, I always compared it, honestly, to having a kid, where it's like the whole process, you just hate the whole thing and then once the book comes out you kind of forget about how horrible it was and you're like I had this shiny new book and it's amazing and I'm a published author. Right. So when they came and asked us, they asked me again. They said, well, we want to do instagram for dummy. It's not for business, but just instagram or dummies. Yeah, and I was like no, no, not going to do it, and they're like please, and I was like okay. So so we did another one and that one came out and now work currently working on version two. Point out of the instagram for business original books. So the two books are out there. They're available obviously anywhere. You know, Barnes and noble, I Amazon, all those different places. The newer one, the instagram for dummies, has about half the book dedicated just instagram stories, because when we wrote the first book two years ago, stories weren't really a thing. They were very new. So now in the Redo version of that one we're going to have a lot more on stories in that one. Yeah, the process is so intrigue and editor, my editor and I for from while he books who does for Dummies? Like we didn't get along a lot, and that towards the end, because you know, you're, I'm used to writing and in you are to and a lot of his, you know you're right, with a kind of a your personal a personality at it and a little bit of emotion in and this is like just you're writing a manual. So think about like if you got a seven nine voltswag and you go get the manual how to replace the carburetor you've got. That's basically what for dummies books and that's why I remember laughing so hard one of the you know, one of the set of instructions or whatever that was in the first book we wrote and I mentioned a button and they were came back with the adding there, like we need to know what this button looks like, to like and define all aspects of this button. I'm like it's a button, yeah, but I had to write like two paragraphs about button. I mean yeah, and in the screenshot's got to be a certain way and a certain size. And then the bad thing about writing about social media in these four dummy stuff is like as soon as you write it, it's out of the dated, you know, like we're doing facebook. And that was in the middle of like I did facebook on one for Dummies and shout out the Andrew of all who got me that hookup. And like we, I think this graph search member, the whole graph search the team that came out in the middle of that, and so we had to stop and write this whole diction. And then apps were different, so we had to bring on somebody else to do the apps because me and the other guy were like no, we don't know about that, we're not doing that. And that's the thing. Like I thought, yeah, it's and I mean we obviously had the same issue even with instagram. You know, they change the layouts now, our screenshots are outdated and and all that. So it is hard. But the good thing about most of those books is the there is tons of evergreen content in the right so even though screenshots are different, even though some features have maybe moved or whatever, the general strategies and context and everything like and that's like we're redoing that, you know, version two of the business one. Really everything in there, aside from the small technical things, is really still the same two years later, whether it's running contest, whether it's, you know, advertising. There's some new once as that of change, but all the you know, Evergreen kind of strategy is is also relevant. So at least if someone does pick up those books, they're still going to get something tangible. But it is funny when, you know, sometimes people will quote something. I'm like, oh, two thousand and seventeen called, they want their strategy back. Oh, that happens to me like every day, like you know, because I know I worked in a lot for post planner, you know, five years ago, five, you know, I started five, six years ago with them. was there about three years. I still get mentioned on blog posts. People are reatweet you know, tweeting Fer this, and I'm like that is not a good strategy anymore. I wrote that in two thousand and fourteen. Please quit tweeting this. You know, right, we'll do anyway. I mean, I'm glad they're still reading my stuff, but I'm like that's really old. I don't recommend that anymore. And that's the downside, not putting dates, I think sometimes. Yeah, agreed, people don't know that it's as old as it is. Yes, but yes, the for dummy saying is a fun process. The best part for me was walking like Barnes and noble and sign all the books right, every barns, a noble or airports. And you know, our little local library bought two of them and had me sign them and that's awesome in a little, tiny, little town. So they're like and I published Arthur in our town. Who Know? Right. Yeah, I wanted to every kind of set that up. You know, if someone's watching, like I mean you know all about instagram. Even see even your we're both speaking virtually for social media, San Diego, mine, I think mine is nextually airing like right now, or maybe the hour.

I think you're our yeah, yeah, because I'm always off in the time zone. But and I'm talking all about instagram and mine as well. You're talking about the INSTAGRAM aliger. The probably a lot more detailing we're going to get in today, perhaps, but so we're algorithms, something I think we're always trying to figure out. and An instagram did this weird thing where on their Creator's account, so not even the main instagram account, they posted stories answering some frequently asked questions about the instagram algorithm. Why they finally, I don't know why they did it. There you know, I happened just I happen to ponic because I saw someone else writing about it. I'll wait. Hang on, I got to take a look at this and you have to. It's in their highlights section still, so you can still find it, but it's such a goofy way for them to do is. So what I wanted us to do is just kind of talk about them. You know, I'm pop them up, hopefully if I can, if I do this right, we'll have them up here on screen because they are kind of skinny and tall. We'll talk about each one of them and then kind of get some of your insight gin on kind of what you think, yeah, and kind of what maybe some application is for this as businesses. And if you are watching and you want to read that, are you know, see this later. I'll put in the comments of the full article with everything listed out, and I you know, I tried my best to mechical infographic at the very bottom of that post to which was kind of fun. Yeah, we talked about things we spend too much time on. Making an infographic was way too time consuming for me when it was all said Jen I, we're talking before. Like you know, editing video is probably not you know, we're not the best video editors and sometimes we'll spend like three hours to get one little thing right. This infographic was that for me. So the first thing, the first question we want to talk about that instagram set about the algorithm. Is this one here, and if I do this right, like I said, there it's see it. Actually, that's fit in there. Take this off the screen. There we go that way. It's not scrolling there. But that they asked. You know, they won't answer the question. How often do you change the algorithm? I think a lot of people are always curious about that. And their answer and we'll see if this works. Oh, it does this weird things, so let's take that one off. You can't really see that. Well, here, wait, kind of see that. Yeah, gotta play around with be live here. So we'll do it like that. What they said. Here. there. Here's their answers, because this powered by machine learning. INSTAGRAMS feederanking is constantly adapting, an improving based on new data. So, Jen, what does that kind of mean for for, you know, any of these people who are watching that have a business with this instagram algorithm constantly change? What does that mean for us? And this is like, and I love that they finally actually in some way as vague as this was the question, because it's probably I mean, there's probably three questions that I get every single day and one of them is did the instagram algorithm change, which is why I filmed a youtube video and I was like no change, because in reality, know the instagram algorithm doesn't change per se, meaning they're using similar criteria all the time to rank contact. But what they're saying in this way is it is a smart algorithm, meaning it learns from you. So instagram really is an individual competition in terms of reaching exposure. So we're on facebook. If you post something, facebook selectively shows it to certain people and the more that that content gets engagement, the more people facebook shows it to. Instagram does not do that. INSTAGRAM doesn't actually hide any content. Everything is there if you scroll far enough back in the first place. But the moment you post something on Instagram, they're choosing where to put it in the feed of each and every person that you follow, and the longer it takes for each of those people to log in, the more people are creating content, the more it's resorting that content, but it's resorting based on each and every one of those individual people, based on their likelihood that they're going to interact with your content. Meaning, if you all of a sudden start liking a ton of stuff related to puppies and I don't post something with puppies, my contents not going to rank at high because I don't have a puppy and you're showing an interest in puppies. If all of a sudden you're showing an interest in, you know, in certain industries, like maybe you are really focusing on, you know, the music industry or photography in terms of the content you're looking for, well, if I'm not in the music or photography industries, I'm not less likely to show up as high. Likewise, if you it and by being a smart Algorithm, if you see my content and you interact with my content, I will rank higher in your feet. If you see my content and scroll past it with no acknowledgement or interaction, that's a negative ranking. They'll do that again and if you ignore me again, instagram goes Oh, okay, you're not liking Gen's content, we're going to start ranking her content lower in your feed. So, as a business, it's hot. You can't plan for this. You can't be like, Oh, well, you know Joe Smith...

...over here, is it liking my content, and let me, you know, fix that. You have to make sure that you're creating content that resonates with your audience and is high quality, converting tight content for you in order to keep people seeing your content. It's not the like a oneshot deal kind of thing. Yeah, and I think that's all gold on. Y'All should be like like bombing and reacting like crazy. Right now. We're inside be live. We can always see that to go over the line, see those. But yeah, I mean I think that's I think what people forget and they get so confused about the algorithm is it's not. You know, I always sell everybuddy what bobby does. If Bobby Interacts with my account and Susie doesn't, Bobby's interaction doesn't help susie see more in bobby see more, and so that's it's so different for Instagram, and we know as well. We won't get into this here, but you know the instagram feed versus instagram stories is a different algorithm. Yeah, but it's so individuals, based on me, and so whatever I'm engaging with is going to show more. So you want to make sure you get the as many people you're following. You to engage and find out what that is. But stop worrying about you know, yeah, changes because your users, your users activity changes and your users change. Right, as you get more followers, they have different interests. If you have a hundred followers, chances are there your die hearts, right, they're the ones that have been following you since you started your business. There's some friends in there, some family. When you get to a thousand followers, there's more casual followers, there's less of the diehard followers. They have more broad interest. Maybe they're geographically spaced out in ways that they, you know, have different interest than the hundred that were following you locally. so as your audience grows, their interests in your content and they're interesting. What they do on instagram changes as well. So you it's not that the the algorithm is changing, it's that you're growing and you have to evolve accordingly. Yeah, I think that. I think that's where you have to embrace your business. You just got to know that it is going to change, but you've got to see what the trends are. You've gotta I got talk with Eddie Garrison a couple weeks ago. Your analytics will show you what your audience wants and what content you should be putting out. And if you're seeing the draw change something, you did something. Maybe change the time, change what the format, chained something, but it's you can. It's based on individual but you do have a control of that in some regards. And now, like they're just covid stuff, people are looking at different things, interact with different things, with black lives matter going on, there's people looking and engage. So I'm so as a business, I can tell things have changed a little bit. Yeah, because people are engaged with more stuff, and that's okay. That's going to happen, but don't take it like personal as a business. Doesn't mean they don't like you anymore. It just means that they're engage with other things for a little while or for a time being, and maybe they'll come back over to you. And the next one is is related to the ranking of favoring videos over photos, and they scroll over and find that one. There we go. They asked, they pose a question. You know, does feederanking favor videos over photos? Because we're always trying to figure out, you know, is videos better, especially every year has been the year of video for like the last five years. I'm serious, like every see your video. There's another art, but it's everyone's to know. The difficult there's been that rumor. This is one of those rumors that that gets popped up and gets put out there a lot. And so their answer to this one is, and this is a long answer, but basically we don't. We don't favor photos over videos. Again, your feet is customized for you. So it really you the user. So depends on how you use instagram. If you consistently watch a lot of videos, that will be reflected in your feet. And exactly. We just talked about the algorithm a second ago, like whatever bobby's engaged on is what bobby's going to see. Yeah, and so, Jen, how do we as a business know that we we should be doing? I would hope maybe a mix of both, but how do you use a business kind of handle this sort of mindset? And again, I'm so glad they add like because this is one of the things. Like I've been shouting this from the mountain tops for, you know, at least a year and people still question you and I'm like here, look, they finally said they don't preference one over it because again, facebook has preference. It's right, but in instagram world there's not as much of those preferences. So again, if your audience is conditioned to watch videos, then and they want videos, you're going to want to give them more videos, because if you post a photo, it's probably not going to perform as well for you because you there you, they want videos from you. Like like, let's take someone like Zach King, who is a video creator. If he posted a photo, he's probably not going to get the same level engagement. It's someone who's looking for one of his amazing videos. I, on the other hand, don't create videos. I think I have like five videos on my entire history of my instagram count. So if I post when people are like gents on a video, what's happening over here, and they're confused because they know I don't created was the video of your shoes or something? Yeah, right, right, but there's all going stories anyways. But it is like it is one of those things where you have to know your audience and you have to know how you have trained your audience. So I have trained my audience to read, I have trained my audience to look at photos. That's what people will know and we're like expect when they come to...

...my content. So when I do something different, it's going to throw them for a loop. That doesn't mean that video won't work for me, but I can't do one video this week and be like Oh, now, didn't work and only got twenty three likes. It's not for me. Now you'd have to test this over a period of time and start to condition your audience that you're creating videos. So you'd want to test for at least four to six weeks, meaning if you post three times a week, do one video a week for a month and look and see after that month how the videos are performing compared to your photos, to what you know. Scottie, you're just saying you have to go into your insects. You have to look and see how are the metrics? Are The views up higher? Are The likes up higher? Are you getting clicks through to your website or to your profile? What do those metrics look like, because that's what's going to tell you it works. It's not the other whether or not you know your views or your likes. There you really have to compare it to your other content and the ultimate end goal that you're trying to get out of instagram to decide if it works for you or not. But, yeah, they don't preference, so the algorithm doesn't care. Your audience is going to tell you, based on reactions, what they want from you. Yeah, and I think it also depends on, you know, your level of audience to like if I this is side, all of a sudden the day I'm watching a bunch of videos on Instagram, is going to change my feed immediately because they're right and we guns going to show me a ton of videos. And so it sometimes that just it is happens that we in change. I think it's one of a good mix of stuff is so crucial and so important to kind of just play around, like you said. I'll love the you said for to six weeks, because most people are like a posted once and it is no nience. You gotta do it, you gotta do it, and that for to six week test. That's based on you posting consistently every week. You don't get to like post once a month and say well, I tested for a month, because that doesn't count either. I've got a friend who as a pizza restaurant it's constantly that. It's like, Oh, did it died? Oppose? Oh, yeah, because you posted three times a Monday and didn't post again for two weeks. Yeah, exactly. I'M gonna do. We got to be considering, CONSIDERC he's always going to be the key. But yeah, I think put in a mix and see what your audience it wants to react to, and that's your the insights are going to tell you what they favorite is. You. INSTAGRAM is said here. They do not favor videos over photos or vice versa. They just favor the content your audience wants to engage with. In Janas says her mind was blown. I love those comments. Thanks to Josian. Oh and in regoor's got a really long question. We're going to see pops up on screen? No, it didn't. See does. Does INSA have the level of AI knowledge of video like Youtube does, or doesn't need any user metadata to describe the video? If I produce a video of soldering, soltering electronics, is instagram know that is what I'm doing? I don't. Does it? I don't know. So there's AI at play for sure. Is it the same level as youtube? I'M gonna go with no, but it's something they are working on a lot. We're seeing more and more AI at play. And you know ai is there because, like, I always use an example of like a screenshot of my explore page and it's full of the Royal Family and like Megan Markle and Harry and I think because, like I'm obsessed with the royal family, but it's like they may not be tagged with that like somehow, like the AI knows, like it's recognizing the people in that image or that video and it's showing it to me because it knows. At the moment it puts that in my explore page, I'm going to start tapping through and looking at that content. So yes, there is one hundred percent ai at work. Is it as strong as youtube? I'm going to go with no. But we don't really know that something. Only the you know inner bowels of instagrams, you know secret space, probably actually know what's going on. But in terms of what's are doing, yes, they are scanning it, whether it's a photo or a video. They're looking for certain triggers to recognize the type of content. But it will help you to use things like all text not a guarantee. That's still something that's in development. But if you add all text to your content on Instagram, that will help with some of that ranking. And make sure you're using your hashtags so you show up in the searches that people are looking for, because we all know search on instagram really kind of sucks and the only place you're going to show up is an Hashtagg or a location. So make sure you're adding relevant hashtags to those videos and photos that when you're creating them. But you can also trust that, yes, there is ai at work. Yeah, I think too, because instagram videos are so short that I think they be a little bit harder to pick up on some things, where Youtube, and you know you typically videos are much longer. But there's a pretty interesting question. It's always he's always interesting to hear the questions of guys like that who are youtube. Mind it, because I'm not right like, Oh, I didn't think about that. So I know I've got a lot of envies coming up with with YouTube guys. I'm like, I just wanted to like just suck in everything they say because it's such a put the platform I go to learn how to fix my car part right. I don't go to it and watch videos like most people do. Right, little different when it comes to that. So that was the first we we got...

...to move a little quicker, probably so we don't take Jim's and tired. Day. We're talking with Jen Herman about some secrets of the instagram algorithm that instagram actually revealed to us. And the next one is is dealing with a type of account that you have, and they posted this into their stories here. You know, does the type of account you have impact ranking? We're talking about a personal account, business account or creator account, believe us, the three accounts that you have these days. So if people always kind of wondered that, and I ran some test before on switching from personal to business and initially had a bad experience, like my reach dropped and but, you know, I needed the business out then, if I then I switched back and it got worse and I'm back again. But here's the answer that that instagram gave is that, you know, no, we do not favor post from businesses or verified accounts. They actually went on the verified business in your business account. If you interact with that account more, of course, it's more like it appear at the top of your feed. So kind of I think we've kind of covered this arreat a couple if you notice, he's first three are really based on you know how all about the interaction your feet is always going to be about it. So doesn't matter if if gins using a personal account and it's verified or not, if you interact with her stuff, you're going to see your stuff. Yeah, it's got a creator account, which I think you do now, or comes back and forth. Actually. Okay, so it doesn't matter if you know she's a business account versus personal. If you've interact with her content, you're going to see it. That maybe explain to us as a business. Which account do you recommend? That may because I think we all under standard this part, but which one would you recommend? Yeah, is are people have in general. So a personal account is meant to be a personal account. So it's for if you're going to post photos of your family, friends, your family vacation, that sort of thing. Right, that's your personal account. If you are doing anything business related, if you're a realtorn, you're using it to promote what you do in realty, if you're a photographer, if you are a coach, if you sell a product, whatever it is, if you're doing business, you want to be a business profile. To the point that instagram just said there is no punishment or penalty for being a business account. Again, I always bring this back to facebook because everyone thinks facebook. So facebook punishes business pages. We all know that organic reach is hard to get. We all know that they punish business pages. They don't do that on instagram. Now to Scott's point going back and forth. If you go back and forth, sometimes instagram will flag your content because they're like Whoa, why are you changing and they will put a temporary hold on your account. But usually within a few weeks everything reverts back to normal if you'd stop changing back and forth. Now, that being said, nowadays with Creator Studios, business or Creator profiles, business profiles, personal profiles, I've noticed less impact when changing back and forth. And believe me, I did it seven times in one day. So if someone was going to get flagged, it was gonna be me. And because those writing a blog post and I had to keep going back from business the Creator to see what the difference is. We're always their own guinea pigs. Yeah, we really are, and I'm like might reach sex for the next month by he'll lie but it really didn't have a significant impact on me doing that. So I think they've gotten more lenient, even with that kind of hold on people's reach when they switch accounts. So business profiles are ultimately going to be your ideal place to hang out. They came out with creator profiles, meaning these were supposed to be for influencers, people who are creating content to partner with brands, and a brand would be the business account. So I'm the business and I want to work with you know, Sally over here and I want her to talk about how amazing, you know, her webinar experience was with Gen's trends. She's a creator, she's creating content talking about me as a brand. That was the idea, but basically it's become useless because every feature they gave to create a profiles they then went and gave to business profiles. They gave pretty much all the business profile information and features to creator profiles, but Creator profiled aren't in the API, which means if you use a tool like a Gorepulse to schedule, you can't schedule to a creator profile. You can schedule to a business profile because that's supported in the API, but creator profiles are not so as long as you're just creating content and you just want that functionality, then go for it. But there really isn't any significant difference right now between the two options. So I say go business. You get the insights, you get all the action buttons, you get, you know, all all the ability to be able to connect with your audience through like the direct message folders in the quick replies and all these fun things that they've built for businesses to allow you to be better able to connect and build your audience. Yeah, for me is the creators. I guess if you are like that you mentioned, is that King. You know, he's a creator. He might want to do that because it may maybe there's will be some features that help him collaborate or get paid differently for...

...his content. Later on the road that may come into play, like IG TV getting paid or something. But I think for any business, you know, just go business. That's all you got to do. And the insights, they're not the sites aren't bad. The little hard sometimes in your phone. That's why I glad I can go over the reports and the Gore pulse and exactly and we even have reports for stories. If y'all didn't know that, which is kind of so. Yeah, so it didn't matter what kind of account you have. Is based. So we're saying it all again. It's all about how people engage with you, and we do recommend a business account over all of them. All Right, this next myth is the one that I hate and and Jin got me to test this. Like what's coming? Yeah, Maka will over. This mode here is all about instagram pose. You know, there's and we don't have this s been a lot of time on this one, but instagram pose, if you don't know what they are like, it says here it's a groups of people who agree to like and comment on each other's post in helping you the kind of helping appear higher in the feed. But there are people who are still doing these parts crazy and they're it's useless. I'm I've already busted this myth before, but I'm glad that to see that link to that article. I just be like moving on. I think a link to it in the main article. If you can see what instagram saying is it's all about authenticity and transparency and they brought a really, really long thing in which there I think they're really trying to say knock it off, because if you're trying to gain, the system is that you're going to get short term benefit, but it's not a set in your recipe for success long term at the end of you the read that here to this one was interesting to we're talking a machine, I aim minute ago. In addition, instagrams feed rankings powered by machine learning, which is constant adapting the new patterns in the data so it can recognize in authentic activity and make appropriate adjustment. So instagram knows when you're getting this fake engagement serious, and so if you're all of a sudden you're blowing up and you're getting a hundred likes and you weren't getting like to the day before, they know and especially when they know these same accounts are engaging with a lot of other random content and not even when I tested pods, which was horrible, I talked about like this, like fight club. You know, you don't talk about as, you don't talk about Fight Club, you don't talk about Instagram podsitory animal, but a lot of a lot of people are in them and there's probably people who are watching who are in these things on instagram or linked in or whatever else. Don't do any of them because you're just you're full in yourself. But the engagement on it is so in authentic because your engagement with random content. I was engaging with like jewelry stores from Russia and Bikini models from Germany and marketing stuff and then shoes and like instagrams for going wood, and I did it with your girl pulse account, which is even funnier. So I think instagram probably is going. Okay, what content do we show these this guy now, because he's engaged with too much weird stuff and that is a red flag, I think, in Abad. So anything you would add about instagram pods? Yeah, so it's again, if you're an a pod of likeminded people, it can be a good place to hang out. Meaning if you are hanging out with five other people in a pod who all do social media marketing in your social media agency, great, you have similar interests, you probably can support each other and you can give some positive feedback and actually have real conversations, you know, virtual high five to you. That's more like a group of friends than it is a pod. A pod is where you get those, you know, twenty, fifty, a hundred people in a pod and you're expected to interact with all of their content all the time. Need know, somebody posts, you have to interact with it, and I am I do not have that much time in my life to be chasing out other people's content to like it, with the risk of being kicked out of a pod, and hopes that they're going to like my content. And but again, it's not a popularity contest. We talked about this twenty minutes ago. So all of them liking my content does nothing to help my content rank for other people. And then, additionally, when you leave the Pod, it is a huge negative impact on your account because your account is used to getting those fifty additional likes on every single post. Now you leave the pod and those fifty people aren't engaging with your content and the algorithm goes Whoa, people aren't liking your content. All of a sudden your content looks like it's not high performing, which means it's going to hurt you in search. It's going to hurt you on explore opportunities which you've now detrimentally had. You know this impact on your account. You still have to like now spend months regaining any traction you had to get your reach back up into search and explore and those sorts of things. So I highly discourage them. If you want to hang out with like minded people and be friends, go for it, but don't do a pod in a traditional set. It will hurt me when the right yeah, well, your thought was more like a networking...

...group, which is, yeah, cool. So, like if we're other social media, let's say we're all other speakers and social media, right, we all do tend to engage with each other if we mess, if we message to say hey, you know, would you mind, you know, sharing this? Yeah, cool, we're like minded and I didn't affect our content with these. These are things, these pods. Like I had to use a telegram APP, which is like this weird little APP, and they don't want to do it on instagram or they don't do on facebook because he knows, you don't be trackable. Yeah, but it was like most of it was foreign, most of them at all of it, and the rule les were ridiculous, like you've gotta like, you got to like the last ten and comment and save them before you post yours. And no picture in here. And Yeah, it was a mess. Just don't that's the difference between like a Pod, if you in true sense, and this networking with your like might our bus, like if I'm in a small town, you know, I might go, okay, Hey, let's all help each other out in the on our town to get engagement on our post, you know, and that's that's cool and that's totally fine. That's different than these spamy, you know, like farms, is really what they are. Yeah, so stay away from instagram pods. And I don't want to ever do that test you want something fucking you, like no, like literally, like I spent forty hours just trying to get in the pods and like totally sat. It was at a time or our content. Man, really, this is killing me. I can't even get any stupid I'm getting kicked out of them. I'm getting cussed that, you know, I'm getting messages all day long and all night long and like I feel like I need a burner phone just to just to do because deals going on over here on this buzzing all day and like, oh my gosh. Yeah, so, anyway, don't do them. All right, so we're down to we got two more leaft for where were Jen Harmon here talking about some myths that the instagram has busted regarding the instagram algorithm. And the next one is, and I'm I'll pull the thing up on the screen, is they did this one weird on their story. So we just just one slide. But their question was they want to answers. I've heard instagram doesn't count something as a comment unless it's more than one, two or three words. That you heard this one before? Yes, I've never heard the like what well this all turned it. This was kind of related to the pod movement, right, because they were like people were trying to spam the you know, the algorithm be like oh well, leave a comment. So they were just coming on and being like great, great, great, and so people were leaving these like or love it and leaving these like very generic comments on everyone's post and they were typically super short, right to something like love it awesome. So they were these, you know, one to three word phrases. And then allegedly, instagram was no longer counting comments that only had, you know, one to three words because they were deemed spam. And I was like no, but again, that's one of those whole like you know, and I mentioned we start like someone says that someone says it and someone says, Oh, I heard it, or like you to same one, like we've busted you miss about post a third party tools. Well, you know, I heard somebody say it hurt their one post because the bad pose or a bad day, and so, yeah, it's one of those sayings. So here's what here's what instagram had to say about it. And they did this and oops or there goes. Basically they just said false, like just fall ittally clarified much there, just fault, like they did it like a true or false kind of even validating this with theirs. I love that they're like no, we're not even going to talk with this further. A comment is a comment. Now, you know, you it's nice when people add more to but if someone takes the time the comment, to me my understanding, instagram diagram, a common is like the highest thing you can get on any sprinking yeah, because it's like it takes more time than just tapp in the like. Yeah, and so if someone comments on Instagram, because I can only do two things, I can well, I guess I could save it. When you can bookmark, you can share the story, you can share two DM's, like there's other things you've shared, probably higher, probably perhaps in comments, because it is get in front of more another audience, but it's better than the like. So why would they punish one word? I don't understand like this. You want to avoid is doing spam like activity, meaning if you write awesome on twenty eight posts in a row, instagram is going to look at you and be like, you look like a spammer because you wrote the same thing on all of these posts in a row. It's going to hurt you as the person who wrote the Word Awesome on twenty eight consecutive post, but the people who received the comments aren't going to be flagged, or unless you are constantly doing it back and forth them when you then you could both be flagged. But Yet one word, twenty words, two hundred words, whatever, go nuts. People have fun, but I think to as a business where what I get from this is you want to encourage some comments. Yeah, and even it's just a yes or a no, it's supposed based on what they're saying. There's no there's no harm in they're still going to count that in the algorithm. And how that Alghm again works for that person, not for your account. necessarily. And so, yeah, encourage people to come and...

...give them a reason to comment. Even if it's just one word, it should be a Cann Janet said something funny here. I'm making an effort with this comment. She did more than one. They're that she made more than one word. And Depp says a comment of a comment and then awesome. Yeah, I mean says have fun. Yeah, it's so. I mean those are all comments. In the Algorith facebook sees those are like hey, cool, se y'all see our next post when it comes out, because you've all been commenting. So we appreciate all that. Yeah, I mean, know, more than one word typically, but if you have to do just one, somebody says one, it's not hurting you. quit spreading that rumor. Yeah, it's definitely not. So. The last myth we want to talk about the instagram algorithm here with Jen Herman, and this is another one where they answered it and just a sticker I got. I've heard of the allegorithm ranks post higher they get a lot of likes or comments in the first thirty minutes. Now I'm back to replay what we said twenty minutes ago and just be like replay, yeah, and that. But people say this one alive. I've heard this one or a lot like like you can get out everbody did it fast. Is just happened. So and maybe on facebook. That's that's crucial, because facebook used to have that time element. Yet relevancy after the think a lot of people, and when I'm bad about it, because I'm mainly a facebook guy, is we want to apply facebook's algorithm over to Instagram, and we because facebook owns and after all, but it's not the same. I think facebook's algorms leaning a little more towards instagrams lately. Yeah, like anyway. But so here. That's the question at that was pose and again they answered it real quickly. False. Just when I'm going to talk about so kind of, kind of what does this mean for you as a business, JANA, if it doesn't matter when the comments come in? So, yeah, the the thing is, when you're creating the content for Instagram, you want to create the content for your audience, you know, and even people you know. They're like, well, what time of the day should I post? When should I be posting? And I'm like it honestly doesn't matter, because if you post it six o'clock am and I log in at seven o'clock am, or if I log in tomorrow at two PM, if you are high quality content that I'm likely to interact with, it doesn't matter what time of day you posted, I'm going to see your content. If I don't interrupt with your content and consistently ignore it, it doesn't matter when you post it, I'm not going to see it. So the timing doesn't really matter. The way the algorithm is set up and as a result, there is no emphasis on how quickly people interact with your content. What instagram wants to see is consistent interaction over time, meaning we don't want that horrible j curve where, like, you post something and you get a ton of engagement and then, like, it just drops off and you get nothing. They want to see consistency, meaning whenever someone is logging in and seeing your content, regardless of seconds, hours or days after words, if they're constantly seeing engagement on that post, it means that it's high quality content that's continuing to drive interactions. That's what instagram ranks positively. But again, it's all going to be really based on that individual usage. So you want to create your content in a way that is most likely to generate engagement with your audience, which means looking at your insights. It means knowing what types of content get more likes, what type of content gets more comments, what type of content gets more profiled visits, website clicks and your instagram insights tell you all of that information because, like, if I'm promoting a blog poster youtube video, I'm using totally different calls to action and different content than if I'm just trying to get likes on a photo. They're two completely different metrics and I actually have slightly different content strategies because I've learned. One may not get as many likes, but it drives a heck of a lot more link clicks and traffic, which is what I want from that post. So I don't care if that one only got a hundred likes versus five hundred, because it drove two hundred website clicks versus the five hundred one that generated three. So you have to be able to look at those insights and measure accordingly for what you want your audience to do. And I also tell people pay more attention to your reach and your impressions. Then you look at your like count, meaning if your post on average get a reach of two thousand, if that post all of a sudden got a reach of three thousand thirty five hundred, it reached almost twice as many people. Why? What was it about that post it allowed to show up in that many more places? Was it searched to just show up in more people's feeds? If, all of a sudden post Gott you know, five hundred reach versus your normal two thousand, what did you do wrong? You know, look at that. Not necessarily the light counts, because light counts fluctuate for so many different reasons. Reach tells you how many people actually saw in their feed and if your reach stays up high, that means your audience is seeing it. They're interacting with it in a secret way, which means they stopped and paused and looked at...

...that photo. MEANS THEY CLICK DOT DOT dot. More it means they scrolled through the carousel. They did actions that the algorithm is ranking but that you don't have a metric for. We don't know when someone says I've scrolled through a care so we have no metric on that, but the algorithm knows. So again, high reach means people are seeing it, interacting with it, versus a light count that could be so arbitrary for a million different reasons. I think it's so smart. You I need to like bomb that like crazy. and well, so I like you know. I mean maybe you know made a play on words, resightful intact. I like those pretty funny. But yeah, I think that's true. I mean. So with the the question of like when the timing, the timing could be important, as you said, if the reach is really bad and maybe you need to change up your time. But it should not impact that engagement because again, as we've talked about, the very first myth that we talked about, based on how I'm often as I them change the algorithm. The feed is based on what I interact with as a user, not when you know, the pages I follow, the people I follow posts, is based on what I'm interacting with. So if I like, I know I know on instagram stories, for example, because I'm more on stories lately, I get about ten in and the feed now I'm pretty much done right stories, but I think a lot of people probably that way right now. But I know, like when I open up Instagram, the first person I'm going to see, because he posts a lot of them. I'm going to see Brian Fans Oh first, HM, like every time, and then I'm going to see Damien, and then I'm going to see Bella, and then I'm going to kind of go through there to get there. I see there's and I look at their stories right because you interacts Ram's algorithm smart enough to know how. It doesn't matter that that was posted twelve hours ago. I'm going to make sure you Scott through the first because he's even sending comments to some of these. Yep, you know, and stories and grant. We're not talking with Instagram, Algorim you on stories today, but the feed is the same way. If you're engaging with it, interested going to make sure you see it, because they want you to come back, they want you to have a good experience, and so quit worrying about all these little things. I was thinking like, stop worrying about what everyone else is staying and just take all that time that you spent reading all these stupid myths and bad advice and just create a better content. Go and figure out what your audience wants and give them what they want. You know, one of the ways I usually end a lot of my presentations as I say, go look at your content, not as your brand, but as a human being, and would you actually like and interact with your own content? And if you're being honest, chances are you would say no, because your content probably sucks. Like and I need to be like, you know, Brash and and not pull the punches. But a lot of times we're looking for excuses to validate why our content isn't performing well, when we are our own biggest enemy. We're creating content to market, we're creating content to push a product or pushes sale or push a service, and we're not giving our audience what they actually want. We're not giving them anything of value. And if all we're doing is talking about ourselves and pushing our products, people stop listening to us and we rank lower and lower and lower. Give people what they want. Give people positive content, gives them education, entertainment, something that they actually, you know, can find value in, and all of a sudden you start to see your engagement go back up, you start to see those relationships fostered. So you have to focus on what the audience wants more so than what you want. If you want to be successful. It's in Gin. We're obviously your instagram. Where should we be sending people to follow you and find out more aboute? Yeah, so instagram is j nns underscore trends, Gen's underscore trends. And if you want to hang out with me in the facebook group, go to facebook and search Jen's trends and social media. You'll see the facebook page and the group. The group is where we share all breaking news related to Instagram, where we talk about it, where we test things before I even talk about it anywhere publicly. Everything goes down in the facebook group, so we can test stuff there. So by all means, come hang out with me in the facebook group. Connect email, send me email. JENNETJENSCOM. Obviously my website, gens Freendscom. Just you know Jen's trends. Pretty much anywhere world will get you to something related to me. And I will say that the group I'm in, that group you're talking about, it's good. I mean it's I love my group. People are asking really good questions and they're very active, and so if you're not a part of that group, you should, because you're you know, people are asking those questions that are just real stuff everybody wants to know about. Yeah, and it's a good safe space. Everyone's very supportive. You know, if I don't have the answer, if I don't chime in, other people do chime in with the answers and it's just a really good place to kind of you know, not just instagram related but all social media related questions, to just come and have a group of people that have the same passions and questions that you do and can help answer those things. Well, Jean, I appreciate you you being on here with this day. Of course. Thanks everybody. Thanks for good for listening to the social media lab live podcast by a Gorea pulls. Be sure to go over...

...to social media lab dot live to watch and read more about our experiments related to social media marking. You might find yourself a free goodie over there, including a free thirty day trial to a Gora a pole. Social Media Lab DOT LIVE.

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