Why You Should Fall Back in Love with Instagram (A Virtual Assistant's Perspective)

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Instagram has always been a really fun platform for both bloggers and non-bloggers alike. We all love seeing beautiful photos with fun or inspiring captions. We like keeping up with our friends and with the newest from our favorite influencers. And for years now, bloggers and influencers have enjoyed perfecting their feeds and inspiring others to the best of their ability. They've worked hard to understand the best tactics for using the platform, and have done their best to keep up with policy changes and stay up-to-date with the way in which everything works.

As a blogger and a virtual assistant (VA), I fall into this category too. It is my job to improve daily, learn the do's and don'ts, and work on my photography- and if I don't do a good job, my blog credibility and my paycheck will suffer.

But if we are honest, we know that social media platforms can make changes any time they want to. That's why so many business gurus make such a fuss over focusing on our email list and blog content more than we do our social media, because we all know that we have zero control over what changes are made to any given social media platform.

Instagram has been living proof of this lately. They changed the algorithm, everyone adjusted, and then they changed it again. They always say they are "improving user experience", but to the influencers who have already poured blood, sweat, and tears into their accounts, it just feels like a slap in the face.

It's frustrating, to say the least, and many influencers are beyond irritated- some even saying they are done with the platform.

It seems that Instagram would value their users more than that, ya know? I mean, influencers, entertainers, and bloggers are the ones that really make Instagram popular. We are the ones who bring people in for Instagram, and yet they keep making it harder and harder to get noticed.

However, most of us started using IG to build community, grow awareness of our brand, and to look at beautiful pictures. And while yes, it is tougher to get seen now, it's still a great way to foster community and enjoy beauty. And that's what I think we should focus on for a while.


A virtual assistant's perspective on why you should fall back in love with Instagram

Enjoy Beauty

Beauty is everywhere if we take the time to look around. But the cool thing about IG is that I can hop on for a few minutes and see parts of the world that I've never been to before, or find bright, fun pictures that make my heart happy after a single glance.

We are such visual people that, I think, the platform naturally resonates with most of us.

At the end of the day, the algorithms tweaks and shadowbans do not change how this beauty affects us. It's there for us to enjoy and that's exactly what we should do.

Brand Awareness

So, I get that this becomes harder when IG changes things up on us, but one of the reasons a lot of us use the platform is to create awareness around our brand. This is an extremely important aspect of being an entrepreneur.

But despite the fact that it is harder to get seen right now, Instagram is still there for this purpose. We may have to adjust our strategy, and our growth may be slower, but in the end, we are still perfectly capable of growing our brand.

We have got to stop freaking out when something like this changes. Part of growing a brand is being consistent, unmovable, and simply ourselves. We can do that whether IG changes things up or not. We can do that whether our growth is slow or fast. We can do that whether we get seen as easily or not.

Don't get me wrong- when your numbers on IG affect your paycheck, things matter more. I know that. And as a virtual assistant, obviously my job depends on making sure that I am helping other's grow their social media numbers. But I also know that consistency, authenticity, and true engagement is what really counts. When we already have followers who know and love us, they count on us to keep on keeping on. They look to us for a beautiful feed, a pick-me-up, or some inspiration after a bad day. If we quit a platform, give up, or get sloppy with it, they will notice.

Don't get sloppy with your current followers just because a social media platform has got you down. Keep giving to the one's who have been faithful and more will come.

Community

And that brings me to the absolute most important reason we should fall in love with Instagram again: the community.
Being a part of Instagram and creating a community around a brand is the best feature in my eyes. No matter how many ways IG makes it harder to get seen and grow in numbers, it is still a great place to foster relationships, build connections, and lift each other up.

When we focus on the community we already have, and when we keep giving back to them, they will notice. When we engage with the people who are already on our radar, we are building relationships and making a difference. More than likely, in turn, we will continue to grow because our followers will tell others about us. However, even if that never happens, having a solid community is a blessing in itself. Focusing on fostering that instead of looking at our growth is sure to help us love Instagram again.




So as a blogger and a virtual assistant, here's my advice: Stop staring at the numbers for a while. Stop stressing quite so much. I really do get the income stresses, and I completely understand the frustration. But if we could all just calm down, get back to community, authenticity, and the enjoyment of beauty, I think IG could be a great place again.












Despite the shadowban and algorithm changes, there are still plenty of reason to fall in love with Instagram again!

27 comments

  1. I'm new to the blogging scene so this was a super helpful guide for me! I love that I can pay more attention to instagram since it's one of my favorite platforms.

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  2. Great tips. As always you put a positive spin on something that is bringing frustration to people. Thanks Kristin!

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  3. Totally with you on the community aspect! I don't know a lot of twin moms in real life, so it's actually where I connected with some good friends!

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  4. I was so new to Instagram that I wasn't even upset with the changes because I didn't know what to compare it to. I'm still loving and enjoying all the pretty photos!

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  5. I am frequently overwhelmed with social media. Thanks for this reminder that instagram is worth keeping up with :)

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  6. I have been a huge fan of Instagram for several years now, but like many, have been frustrated with the recent changes, too. Regardless, you're absolutely right that Instagram remains a fantastic platform to participate in a great community, build brand awareness, and enjoy beauty. Most social media platforms fuel drama, whereas Instagram really never has for me, making it an enjoyable experience, even when I'm working.

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  7. I've always been an Instagram fan as I'm such a visual person. Until I started my blog I didn't realise how much of a community it is and how much fun it can be to get involved! Thanks for the extra tips for navigating around it :)

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  8. I agree! I had a personal account on Instagram and was hacked, so I was off for a long time. I recently began an account for my blog (and IG has new security measures!) and I totally fell back in love. You are right, the beauty in the images and the community you can build make this platform totally worth it.

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  9. I've always loved Instagram - it's a happy, pretty place in my day!

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  10. I am beyond wow'd by the incredible community on the Instagram platform. Thanks for this article!

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  11. I absolutely love the Instagram community. If I could only have one social media platform, it would be IG. It's full of so much inspiration and happiness!

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  12. I really appreciate your last point about seeking community! I was a hobby blogger for years before launching my current site, Live Well Play Together. I am actively seeking to grow community with LWPT rather than simply blogging away and I enjoy it so much. I've actually started to post on Insta less because I feel less pressure to post daily/keep up since my focus is more on community.

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  13. The algorithm changes are frustrating, but you're right, we should just all take a deep breath.

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  14. I've been using instagram for a couple of years now, for the most part as 'a person' so I didn't mind the changes. Now I'm actually trying to grow and it's not working. To be honest, I have no idea if its because of me or the algorithm, but i prefer to blame the latter 😂. I try not to get too upset about it, because you're right. At the end of the day it's a platform where we can all share our pictures and build a community!

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  15. I love this, Kristin - and it's so true. At the end of the day, focusing on the beauty there, the community, and what we CAN control is all we can do, and it's worth it to focus on that with a happy, positive mindset!!

    Coming Up Roses

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  16. Thank you for this post! I definitely have a love/loathe relationship with Instagram, but I'm learning to just enjoy posting rather than obsessing over analytics and algorithim changes. It's frustrating, but I think the more I get back to enjoying Instagram for what it is and sharing my photos with the world, the more relaxed I'll be through all of the social media sites and their algorithm changes.

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  17. I've always liked the concept of instagram (having a visual sharing platform) so I try to remind myself to think of it that way rather as just a business!

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  18. This is so important! I am definitely frustrated with Instagram right now because I feel like the lack of engagement is causing me to not get as many campaigns because brands want results..but I'm trying to focus more on other things so that I don't go crazy haha.

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  19. Great reminders! I love finding new people on IG so I'm definitely not giving up on it anytime soon!

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  20. YESSSS!! I couldn't agree more! I am just focusing on posting when I want, engaging when I want, and taking better photos and it makes me a lot happier!

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  21. I LOVE this! I know so many bloggers who are upset about Instagram, but yes you can still build community and share beauty on this platform! It's important to still utilize the platform as a way to help build your brand and work on forming community with other bloggers.

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  22. Completely Agree Kristin, so good to read this and remember the why we started doing this in the first place. I admit I have myself gotten discourage with the numbers at one point but trying to let that go and like you said focus on staying true to me. Continue to be authentic, continue my genuine engagement and be present when I can and my followers will continue to be there

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  23. i havent particularly got into the instagram phase but this really spread some light for me thanks

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  24. This was a great reminder! I've been very irritated with Instagram lately, but I need to remember the original reason I joined it: to share content. Not to get seen, not to promote, but simply to share. Thanks for this post!

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  25. I so agree! I've kinda taken a step back from really trying to grow my IG. I post a few pictures a day,and just like seeing what everyone else is up to.

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  26. I completely agree with you. We have to remember the purpose that instagram serves for our businesses and not focus so heavily on the numbers. Very uplifting piece!

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  27. Goodness yes! It is so hard right now (especially when your income does rely on it) but your words of wisdom ring true!!

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