What’s Going On With Instagram? An Expert’s Analysis of the Changes (and Changes to Those Changes.)

Instagram is going through a major phase of changes. Over the last couple of months, they have tested a trial-and-error method where they showcase different updates to different people in an attempt to figure out which works best. You may have experienced unusual dips and rises in your engagement and reach numbers, and they are likely the result of these changes. As marketing professionals, it’s crucial to be able to adapt to platforms that are constantly evolving. For an agency such as ours, it’s not only important for our own social media analytics, but it’s even more important to maintain solid numbers for our clients.

As these updates roll out, the public reaction is mixed. Some love that the platform is becoming more video-focused, while others want Instagram to stay in its lane. This issue has even found its way into Hollywood as celebrities such as the Kardashians have publicly criticized the changes to their audiences. Last week, head of Instagram, Adam Mosseri addressed these problems and discussed the main changes that have been introduced to the app and has shared their intention to potentially roll back on these changes amidst backlash.


Full-screen experience

Phone and app developers have been focusing on building a full-screen experience over the last couple of years, and Instagram wanted to get in on it. The supposed intention was for their users to be able to see content across the whole screen, and enjoy photos and videos where they can see the details more clearly. The main goal of this app is to share experiences with friends, and while having a full-screen experience, the belief was that users would be able to be immersed in the app and have fun with others.


An Increased Focus on Video

Instagram fell victim to becoming another app that wanted to borrow from the immense success of TikTok. Mosseri recently confirmed that, even though they are moving forward with the video-focused approach, they would shift focuses to attempt to equally show photo content. After all, Instagram started as a photo-sharing app, and they want to keep that essential part of it, while offering creators another opportunity to share their content.

Videos originally rolled out with stories, IGTV, lives, and, most recently, reels. According to Mosseri’s message, they plan to display all those previous video formats as a reel to keep everything more organized.


Discovering New Content or Getting Spammed with Irrelevant Stuff?

The main feature that Instagram focused on with their newest shifts was attempting to help others discover new connections through recommendations. From what we’ve seen, this was the change that was met with the most public backlash. It makes sense because the average user wants to scroll their feed and see content from their friends, family, celebrities, or influencers. As they work to continue to optimize the algorithm, Mosseri claimed that they plan to decrease the amount of recommendations that are posted to the feed. Their goal is likely to mimic the overwhelmingly beloved algorithm of TikTok that works to show content to their users that they have been proven to enjoy.

Just like anything else, Instagram’s changes were not perfect on the first attempt. As a business that only survives if people continue to be active on it, their focus needs to be on improving the overall user experience. After all, everything needs to evolve, and constant change is important to be up to date and avoid going the route of Myspace or Friendster. At Dr. Rissy’s, we are focused on always keeping up with these updates and changes to offer quality work to our clients. What do you think about Instagram’s latest updates?