Are you struggling to generate new followers on Instagram? Have you seen a decrease in your post’s reach and profile visits?
Don’t worry you’re not alone. Instagram Organic Reach has been on a decline since the beginning of 2019. This has caused the entire Instagram population some dire stress.
Social media algorithms change constantly. Platforms are always trying to improve the user experience to keep audience members happy and attract new users.
When Instagram first launched, the feed algorithm displayed posts in chronological order, but that was changed. The new algorithm places content that Instagram believes users want to see at the top, and it has impacted organic reach tremendously.
Keep reading to learn more about Instagram organic reach and how brands can keep up with the decline in 2020.
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Trends in Organic Reach on Instagram
The change in Instagram’s algorithm was implemented to ensure that users actually see their friends’ posts instead of fake or spam posts.
For businesses and influencers, this change has resulted in a significant decrease in organic reach. Even the CEO and co-founder of Instagram acknowledged the limited reach potential with this new algorithm.
It is also important to note that Facebook’s organic reach is declining, and Instagram is sure to follow. Organic reach on Facebook declined from 16% in 2012 to less than 2.5% in 2015.
Facebook being the parent company of Instagram, leads to the belief that Facebook’s Algorithm changes are likely to be seen on the other. As Facebook organic reach continues to decline, Instagram organic reach is not far behind.
Why is Organic Reach Declining?
The mystery behind the decline of organic reach is actually not mysterious at all.
The owners of social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram do not want you to have a significant organic reach. Instead, they would prefer that you pay for reach, so they can make money on ads.
Brands that can build their own organic reach do not need to pay for ads, and they are not useful to social media platforms.
While the change in the Instagram algorithm was sold as a benefit for users, it is actually a negative for businesses. There may be truth to the claim that the new algorithm benefits users by showing better content, but it also limits organic reach for brands.
If you cannot reach your target audience on your own, you will have to pay a considerable amount for ads. Businesses that are not willing to pay money to advertise and promote their content will have a much harder time producing organic engagement.
Should You Still Use Instagram for Marketing?
The death of Instagram organic reach does not mean that all marketing efforts on Instagram should come to an end.
Despite the lack of free content promotion on Instagram, the platform is still useful for advertising your brand. There are more than 1 billion active users on Instagram each month, and the platform is the second most engaged network. This means that people are on Instagram and regularly engaging with the social media platform.
Instagram is also a great way to reach a captive, younger audience. More than 70% of Instagram users are under 35 years old. If your target audience fits within this demographic, Instagram is a surefire way to put content in front of those people.
Also, the average user spends about 53 minutes per day on Instagram, so you have a good chunk of time to reach your audience.
How Can You Utilize Instagram Without Organic Reach?
If you are wondering what to do next, you can still use Instagram to reach your audience without relying on organic reach.
Building a social media feed that is true to your brand will attract the attention of your current customers, and you can use the channel to share updates and product launches organically.
You can also utilize paid ads to increase your reach and put your content in front of your target audience.
Utilize paid ads
With organic reach on the decline, the best way to get to your audience is through paid ads.
Set your goals for using Instagram ads and design campaigns that match those goals. Through the metrics provided by Instagram, you can adjust your campaigns and improve them over time to increase ROI.
Play the game
You are not going to beat Instagram’s algorithm, and it is best not to waste your time trying. Instead, use the algorithm to your advantage.
Instagram is trying to put relevant and recent content in its users’ feeds. Connecting with your audience, adding your current clients on social media, and posting content that is relevant will help you appear in their feed.
Produce quality content
Instagram rewards content that is quality. Your audience will skip over low-quality content that does not relate to them.
Posting content is not enough to engage your audience. To get Instagram to show your posts, you have to post engaging content that is on-brand.
Post more content
With 70% of posts going unseen, quantity is also important. The chances of your content being seen are low, but you can increase your odds by posting more regularly.
The more often you post, the more likely it is that your posts will be seen. While some brands post multiple times a day, that is not the best strategy for every business.
You can slowly increase your posting schedule until you find what works to increase your engagement levels.
Optimize your post times
The time and day you post on Instagram are also very important. Posting high-quality content on a frequent basis is not enough. If you optimize the time you post, you will increase your odds of being seen.
Use the metrics provided by Instagram as well as your own social media marketing tools to determine when your posts get the highest level of engagement.
The Verdict: Organic is Dead, Paid is King
Organic reach on Instagram may be dead, but marketing on Instagram is far from over.
Smart brands will start to shift their strategy to include more paid advertising and veer away from a dependence on organic reach.
As Instagram continues to adjust its algorithm, brands should produce high-quality content on a frequent basis to improve the odds of having their content seen.
It is clear that Instagram organic reach is a thing of the past. However, Instagram is still a viable platform for brands trying to reach their target audience.