Blogging Life

On the Trials and Tribulations of Instagram

April 7, 2017
Ghenet Actually || Let's Chat About Instagram

I love Instagram. It’s probably my favorite social media platform. I love sharing images and I feel like I’ve found my flow with posting, and I’m so pleased with my theme! I feel like I’ve finally got it down… or at least I did. It’s turning into a bit of a love/hate relationship at the moment and I know I can’t be the only one! So let’s break it down…

This “Follow/Unfollow” Malarky

I will admit that this is something I’ve only noticed in the last few weeks. Up until that point, my number on instagram would steadily grow by about one or two a day, and that was it. Then, I posted an instagram sharing the image from my post about blackness, and overnight, I lost about 20 followers. For the next 3 weeks, I found my number fluctuating between 702 and 711. I’d gain 3 followers and lose 7. Then gain 5, and lose 3. This vicious never ending cycle, when you’re small and trying to grow, feels a little bit like a death sentence. I found myself thinking I’d offended people with my post, but now I realize that it’s just this whole “follow/unfollow” thing. I don’t really understand it though.  Why follow someone just to unfollow them? Surely that does you no favors.  I know I personally have only unfollow people if I no longer relate to their content not because they haven’t followed me back.  It seems really silly but mostly it’s a bit annoying.  I’m so close to reaching a target on Instagram but every time I check it’s back down again.  It makes growth really difficult,  especially for smaller bloggers.

Spam Bots

I know I’m not the only one who has come across this.  In fact,  I’ve talked about it on many a Twitter chat. You post an Instagram with a heartfelt caption,  or something that might actually require a response and all you get back is hearts or some other emoji.  I know I’m not great at commenting but when I do,  I try to keep it genuine.  Some posts are totally worth heart eyes emojis and smiley faces but my main issue with spam bots and that sort of thing is when it’s inappropriate to the post.  I ‘grammed a photo and in the caption spoke about how I was feeling low  and the comments I got just felt very inappropriate.  It is SO important to read the caption before you comment! My other favorite is when someone comments that they love my feed but they don’t actually follow me… Or tell me to check their feed out instead of responding to mine.  And don’t even get me started on those “I can help you get more followers” comments as well.  Still,  it makes the genuine ones stick out more and those are SO appreciated!

The Algorithm

Can I just say,  for the most part, I don’t mind the new algorithm.  When it first came out I heard so many people complaining about it that I put off updating as long as I could.  But when my phone had a system update a few months later it updated all my apps as well and low and behold I became a victim of the new algorithm. Except I didn’t. I was actually somehow getting more engagement,  not less,  and hey,  that worked out pretty great for me.  But these days,  I notice that I’m missing so much more than I used to.  I follow over 1000 people on Instagram and yet it seems I’m only seeing the same few over and over.  And when I click on profiles I see loads of snaps I missed the first time round. Not ideal.  I can only imagine others must be having the same issue and your feed doesn’t seem as fresh and fun.  I feel like I’m late to the party and late to posts!

For the Love of Hashtags

There is one new thing I want to share some love for.  People have been doing it for an age but it wasn’t until a long conversation at Kristabel’s #YouCanSitWithUs event in February that I even considered giving it a go. That’s right…  Hashtags! Seriously,  where have they been all my life? I noticed that my likes on posts have doubled and even tripled since I started using Hashtags.  It’s a really clever way to draw more traffic!  I’ve even got a list saved so I can have them at the ready,  and I’m always looking for more!

For the most part,  aside from the things I’ve been talking about,  I still really love instagram.  It’s the perfect platform for someone like me who loves taking photos and tying those into what I’m talking about on my blog.  I’m a very visual person  so taking pictures and sharing them is one of my favorite ways to connect with people.  I don’t have a solution to these issues I’ve got with Instagram at the moment either so I’ll carry on using it for now.

What about you? What are you loving or hating about Instagram at the moment?

  • Reply
    Hannah Cornish
    April 10, 2017 at 10:59 am

    THIS. THIS. THIS! I used to absolutely love Instagram but now it's just becoming the bain of my life. It's becoming increasingly harder to grow a following and the algorithm is certainly playing havoc with how our posts are being seen. That being said, I don't think I'll ever give up on the platform. And I'll be giving your account a follow after this – I'm loving all the Spring-y photos! 🙂


  • Reply
    VV Nightingale
    April 10, 2017 at 6:12 pm

    I actually just wrote a post about Instagram (specifically on shadow banning) and I'm so annoyed at what they've done about hashtags! The latest thing that's really annoying though is that companies who want to sell likes are going and sending fake follower bot things to like a photo several hundred times then going to that instagrammer and asking if they want their services personally. It's really bizarre. Still do love Instagram, but definitely get very annoyed at it too! x

  • Reply
    Ghenet Pinderhughes Randall
    April 15, 2017 at 2:19 pm

    Instagram is my favorite platform, and the annoyances aren't enough to stop me from using it completely, to be honest! I feel you on this one! I'm never giving up!

  • Reply
    Ghenet Pinderhughes Randall
    April 15, 2017 at 2:22 pm

    Firstly, your photos on your blog are so pretty! And I had no idea that Shadow Banning was even a thing! Which is weird because I get a lot of engagement from hashtags, even from people who don't follow me. It's so confusing! It's still my fave platform though… I love it!

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