I have said it before and I will say it again – Instagram is going through a major crisis. Fake followers, fake likes, fake comments and yes, fake advertising. There are estimated to exist more than 95 million bots posting as real people and the “follow-unfollow” game has gone too far. Why? Because sadly, it actually works.
But Instagram was not created to compete with bots about who one can attract more followers. Every day I see more and more people just giving up on Instagram and building themselves a profile on other competitive social networks. If this does not stop, I honestly believe that in the next couple of years Instagram’s glory days are going to be over.
Today I would like to share with you a few acknowledgements about Instagram that everybody should think about before we bring this social network to an end.
1. No Like, No Follow
If you follow someone without engaging with their content, you are actually hurting their growth algorithm and not doing them a favour. The lack of your likes and comments on user X’s posts Instagram interprets as: “Show less user X’s posts to other people.” Even though you just followed this person, chances are that you will never even see any of their new posts in your home feed. So next time you follow someone, leave behind some likes and comments too!
2. Not Everyone Who Follows You Is a Bot
I am sure the following scenario has happened to you too; you open your Instagram app and you see that a person who has a lot of followers and who does not follow as much of them back has followed you. Is this someone just playing the “follow-unfollow” game or do they truly like your posts and came here to stay? Do not exclude the second option right away! If you have troubles recognising people who do the “follow-unfollow” or bot accounts, please check out one of my other blogs titled Can You Spot a Cheater? to learn more.
3. Not Every Bot Is Going to Unfollow You
Truth is, even some bot followers are here to stay. Bots are run by computer programs with many possible options. Some people set their bots only to unfollow people who do not follow them back, some unfollow only their ghosts followers, others unfollow everybody. As you can see, in 2 scenarios out of 3 a bot is not going to unfollow you if only you engage (like and/or comment) some of their recent posts.
4. Not Everyone with lots of Followers Is a Cheater
Keep in mind that people can become famous literally overnight and that does not have to be worldwide. Having a lot of followers can be a result of many different situations and it does not always reflect if the user is buying fake followers or not.
5. Following a lot of People Does Not Make You Look Bad
The “follow-unfollow” game exists because of 2 reasons. First, because Instagram does not tell you if a profile is following you back or not and you can only check that out on illegal third-party apps. Second, there is a follow limit of 7.500 profiles.
Twitter, for example, has a great solution for both of the problems. If you scroll through the list of who you follow, you can simply see who follows you back and who does not. Furthermore, you cannot reach the follow limit (except in one special situation). If you are interested to know more, check out their official page.
Following a lot of people on Instagram does not make you look bad or “unpopular”. It only interferes with your engagement ratio but I will talk more about it on another occasion.
Please let me hear what you think about all of this in the comment section below.
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