On a Monday morning, we opened our Instagram app to see content we hadn’t seen before…accounts asking for their followers to turn on notifications of their posts.

It is what we are calling the Great Instagram Freak-Out of 2016.

Just a few days prior, Instagram announced changes in their algorithm. The way we see our news feeds will change. Instagram will now be optimizing posts in your feed to show the ones you’re more likely to be interested in first….just like Facebook and Twitter.

What caused the change? According to Instagram, most users only see 30% of their news feed. Why does that matter? If you’re Instagram, you want users to stick around, you want the duration they use the app to be longer and more frequent. If you’re not seeing posts that you’d be most interested in, you see the noise, the junk, and you’ll be less likely to use the app frequently.

And…perhaps…there is a monetary value in it for Instagram as most users have participated in the “Great Freak-Out” and are already placing their ads. But we won’t get into that right now.

Will it really change that much though? The change isn’t happening overnight. It’s a slow rollout with testing on Instagram’s side. Besides, the chronological order of posts isn’t going away entirely…they’ll still be there, just scroll down.

We will admit it, because we are human, this change brought a look of concern to our faces as well. Changes in the social media world have been known to cause freak-outs. Remember when Facebook changed? Yikes.

Instagram Algorithm

This is the thing: the playground is going to continue to change. You always have to be smart and diligent on how you play the game. Use social media for the purpose of what it’s meant to be:

Be Social: Engage with your followers and potential followers. As much as you want others to like and comment on your posts, do the same with others.

Create Killer Relatable Content: Create a strategy, create a purpose and deliver content that your audience is interested in that fits your brand.

Improve Performance: Don’t ignore your analytics. Dive into the numbers. Post when your audience is most active, post often and do your research: use those hashtags!

Change isn’t easy for everyone, we get it. Take a moment, deep breaths. Now, go strategize ways to make sure your posts are always at the top…or let’s chat how we can help, whichever. : D

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