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INSTASHAM

21 August 2017

Instagram, the platform I love to hate. It would be without a doubt my most favourite social media platform, if I wasn't a blogger. But I am, and from day one bloggers are drilled with growth, growth, growth. It's not a numbers game, but if you don't have X amount of followers we wont work with you, after all who wants to work with a micro-influencer that doesn't really have any influence. It's become more apparent now that if you're hosting big numbers on Instagram, you can be bringing in the big bucks too and from the outside it looks like a quick and easy way to riches, you just post a picture to your masses, reap in the interaction and therefore the cash - right? Wrong. But it doesn't stop people aiming for that, so with more people than ever playing the unfollow game, is Instagram even fun anymore?

I've given up on aiming for growth on Instagram. If I'm honest, any growth I've gained across social media platforms has been thus far organic, of course I've had a few giveaways on my blog here and there which helps along the way, but generally I like to think people follow because they want to. Instagram seems to be a whole other realm in comparison to other social media platforms, people follow yes, but there are usually strings attached, you have to follow back and if you don't they're gone, sometimes even if you do they're gone anyway. It's a never ending game of lose, lose, lose. I have all the right apps so I can see the culprits and quite often it's bloggers that I know well because they've followed me for the fourth time this month and I don't even blame them anymore. Everyone else appears to be doing it and if you can't beat 'em, join them. Then there are the pods, groups and threads - I'm sure at one point or another most bloggers have been a part of one. You have set time frames to like every ones pictures, giving them the extra interaction then boosts them up the algorithm and hopefully into the top nine pictures of the hashtags they've chosen to use on said pictures. A great theory, at first, but glaringly obvious when you don't participate every single day. My pictures vary from 50-60 likes, to near 200, it's not difficult to see which pictures have been used. Does it matter in the view of a brand? I don't know, it's giving the achieved effect, getting as many eyes as possible on your image but how many of those likes have even taken a second to read or see what you have to say, I'm sure as hell guilty of clicking the little heart without a second thought - then moving on, there's a time frame to keep to remember.

Instagram is hard work, and for someone that works 32 hours a week I can't be losing hours of my day in app liking pictures in the hope it will give me one more follower on the numbers chart. I find it a hard pill to swallow, from a community that boasts 'it's not a numbers game' to see the same members using those tactics, am I being obtuse in thinking that's a great big contradiction? I say tactics, because I do think that's what it boils down to because Instagram seems to be one huge game, one that's more complex than an in depth monopoly game. Hidden rules, blogger etiquette and just when you think you've got the hang of everything, the algorithm changes and you lose all of your hard work. I think I'm probably just a little lazy, I don't want to waste hours lost in hashtags in return for a fickle follower. As I said, I work and therefore I can't be active twenty four hours a day, I sometimes even go days without posting because life gets bloody busy and I'm ok with that now. I've remembered Instagram for exactly why I loved it in the first place - somewhere to share pictures and my ramblings to anyone who will listen.

6 comments:

  1. A really great post. I too have given up, I just do not know how people amassed 100's of followers. i too work, have a toddler and everything in between! For us Mumma's it is hard to sit down and focus all our time and energy on Instagram.

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  2. I still use Instagram, but I don't put nearly as much effort into it...it's just not worth it. And don't even get me started on the fact it's not instant anymore...A post someone posted 10 days ago once came up at the top of my news feed. How is that instant!?

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  3. Iam so sick of the follow and unfollow game - if I look at the following number last year and this year I have hardly gone up. Just enjoy Instagram for sharing photos rather than increase your following otherwise you go a little crazy. Like you I work 40 hours a wk...I don't have time for this shit!
    http://www.onesliceoflemon.com

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  4. I have joined some facebook groups for likes and comments. It is hard work and all so fake :(

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  5. The follow and unfollow game really annoys me. It's like so many people focus on gaining followers and not engagement. I use to love IG but recently it's not as fun!!!!

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  6. You are so right. I Have been blogging on Instagram for 4yrs now and my page is not growing, even with over 40k followers I hardly get comment and I've never made it on popular page. I'M a mother of two I do not have the time to post hundred pictures a week like other bloggers do. Most of the bloggers I follow cant even bother to click on follower back button.

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