Focusing on the One Thing That You Can Control

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Okay, time to get real with everyone.  You know I like to have some #realtalk with y’all.  If I hear the word “shadow banning” floating around my Facebook feed, or blogger groups, or another blog post about it I’m going to start telling people to get a life.  Are you as sick of it as I am?  I honestly feel like people are creating a hysteria over something that nobody really has any idea about but yet everyone is now the authority on it.  If you’ve been living under a rock or for the people who stop by this space with their morning coffee for a quick break from work.  A shadowban is what the new theory as to why everyone’s Instagram engagement has tanked.  If you want to know my honest opinion, it’s tanking because hello Instagram is bought by Facebook.  Remember the days you could share a story on your regular Facebook business page that you humbly created for your blog and it would go mini viral (at least 10-15k views) just because it was interesting and people clicked on it.  Those days are looooonnng gone.  The only way to get that kind of engagement now is to pony up those funds.  Instagram is following in those footsteps and we aren’t dumb, it all started when they introduced the “business accounts” availability for your Instagram page.  Ohhhhh….isn’t this so official!  Everyone was so quick to jump on it without fully realizing there is now an option to “promote” your post.  Aka start revving up that paypal account because Instagram wants your money now to be seen.

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Now someone with too much time on their hands came up with this newest click bait hysteria to get bloggers all jazzed up with the “shadowbanning” issue.  Apparently, your hashtags are following into the same algorithms that if your post isn’t creating a lot of movement with likes or comments in the first 15 minutes of going live, it deems it not important and your post will not show up under that latest hashtag.  There is also a lot of other theories that if you are very active, (or acting like a “bot” program) that you are being penalized as well.  Don’t use very popular hashtags because yours will get buried, take a few days off of Instagram to “lift the ban“, etc.  Everyone has lots of ideas to try to help drive that engagement back up.

 

Guys.  Can everyone just chill the hell out!  I know a lot of people rely on Instagram to grow their brand and land deals but seriously y’all have a life right?  Like a real breathing most likely job, family, health, friends, and fun things that you like to do.  Instagram is such make-believe.  It’s pretty, curated, and a great place to get inspiration but it’s not real life.  I’ve had a few things going on behind the scenes around here and have taken a few days off of the gram as I like to call it.  Guess what?  Every time I open my app, my follower count continues to rise, people come back to see your posts, and life goes on.  Enough with the telegram groups, or I heard someone write about a “mafia” group the other day.  All schemes of people trying to “outsmart” the system.  Trust me.  You’re not.  Those algorithms are insanely advanced and no bot system or 30o person comment pod is going to crack it.

 

Here’s what I can tell you.

 

The posts that do that best for me are my highest quality shots.  I already know if a post is going to be successful or tank.  Here are a few examples of my top performing pictures in the last two weeks.

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Start analyzing what is making people stop on your post and giving it that engagement.  Is it colorful?  Does it show your personality? Maybe you are smiling in it?  Do you have a new bag that people are lusting over?  For me, everything pink and girlie is majorly trending for the Spring.

 

 

Here is the last piece of advice.  Put the effort into what you can control.  What platform do you own?  Your blog.  So many people have been pooh-poohing blogging lately.  “It’s dead” “People want quick, mindless, and pretty“.  “Nobody takes the time to read“.  Well, you know what?  I make the most amount of money through my blog.  I have taken the time to grow this platform and develop true relationships on here.  Instagram is so superficial.  “Love that dress on you girl” “Yum, that looks so good“.  Half the time you are probably talking to someone’s virtual assistant anyways.  Blogging is a place to have real conversations and foster relationships. I have “met” so many amazing women without ever having been able to reach out and give most of you a hug.  However, I have life events that I share with my blogging friends that I haven’t even told to my in real life friends.  Isn’t that crazy??!?!  I also get the most amount of Rewardstyle clicks and sales through this platform, remember this post?

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So that moral of my story today is stop spending so much time and energy on such an uphill losing battle.  Create content you are proud of and put the time into writing good quality blog posts.  YOU HAVE CONTROL OVER THAT.  Not some 18-year-old silicon valley guy (I always think of that movie the Intern) who is tinkering away making algorithms that could one day take away an entire platform that you have put all your eggs into that basket.  I don’t believe Instagram is going anywhere but it’s certainly is not going to have the same reach it did a year ago and that is a fact.  Also,  I switched my account back to personal.  I miss the analytics but I do think it makes a little bit of a difference with the posts that are more popular.  The business account, I always felt like there was a cap on my engagement and I never gave them a dime to promote.  What are your thoughts on “shadowbanning” and Instagram right now?  Have you gone back to your roots with blogging during all this craziness with Instagram?   Tell me what you think!

 

14 Comments

  1. May 3, 2017 / 6:38 AM

    Amen to all of this girl!! Someone the other day said that something new and different and “the next big thing” is going to come around and we’ll all jump on that – because that’s how these things work, but our blog is ours which is what I love!! xo, Biana –BlovedBoston

  2. May 3, 2017 / 7:18 AM

    I know nothing about this, all I know is that your pics are gorgeous and I’m swooning over all your outfits haha!

  3. May 3, 2017 / 9:03 AM

    I literally don’t even know what to think about all of this, but I DO know that your pictures look absolutely fabulous!!! I’m about to upgrade my camera for Mothers Day (nice little excuse ;)) and wonder if you’re happy with yours or wish you made a different decision?!

  4. May 3, 2017 / 9:11 AM

    LOL the hysteria over Instagram is hilarious. I have far too many better things to do than freak out over why my engagement dropped for a day. And it makes me laugh because the majority of the people freaking out are the ones who bought followers and engagement to begin with so it’s not even like their traffic was real in the first place! All of your pictures are so bright and colorful and fun to look at and I think that’s why yours do so well. People actually want to see them unlike people who post the same thing over and over! <3, Pamela Sequins & Sea Breezes

  5. May 3, 2017 / 9:15 AM

    Preach, girl! I went on a Twitter rant about this same subject, lol. Of course, I admit that I was annoyed at first, but I quickly changed to the I don’t care attitude. Life is too short, and Instagram certainly isn’t the be all-end all of everything. Like you said, some people need to get a life. ;)

  6. May 3, 2017 / 9:39 AM

    People are freaking out about this — it’s ridiculous and quite funny to be honest. My numbers are low, so maybe that’s why I’m not really bothered by it, either way I totally agree with you. I actually wrote about this on my blog on Monday and said the same thing — we can’t control Instagram but we can control our blogs. Amen, sister!
    xo, Lily
    Beauty With Lily

  7. May 3, 2017 / 12:10 PM

    Thankfully, I haven’t seen all the hysteria and complaining other than the usual complaints since Instagram switched from chronological order to an algorithm. The algorithm drives me nuts because I hate seeing a post from yesterday mixed with a post from 2 minutes ago, plus you see the same people over and over again. The worst thing Instagram ever did was sell it’s soul to Facebook *sigh*. But love love love your point about us having real actual lives that are SO much more important. Your pictures are bright, colorful, and happy which is what draws people in not a ridiculous algorithm.
    Green Fashionista

  8. May 3, 2017 / 12:48 PM

    You know what annoys me about insta? I still follow my ex just because he still follows me and it only seems fair. Every time I open instagram it is a post by him! I don’t even search him! I hate the new algorithm, it puts posts out of order. But who cares! I do this to cook and make relationships like the one I have with you and others! My late uncle’s signature saying was control the controllables or the uncontrollables will control you. So dang true. Yes., I want that wayf dress!

  9. May 3, 2017 / 4:54 PM

    It is always something, right??? I am with you, I love my blog the most because that is where I engage and start conversations with everyone. Most people just like my picture on instagram and keep scrolling and think nothing of it again. Of course all these platforms are going to do what they can to make money because we are all using them for free. I am with you, people need to get a life!

  10. May 4, 2017 / 9:24 AM

    PREACH! seriously! I have a love-hate relationship with Instagram. A couple of months ago my blog views dipped significantly and I was racking my brains trying to figure out why. I was spending so much time on Intagram, liking and commenting. But I realized the effort didn’t pay off as much as I’d like. Even though I put little effort into it, Pinterest was bringing me just as much views as Instagram. I decided to shift priorities and focus on Pinterest and so far it’s paid off so much!

    I hear people who are in 8-10 Instragram “pods”. They spend their entire day liking and commenting other’s pictures. I feel like they would be better off spending that time creating content instead of trying to outsmart instagram.

    – Claudia
    http://www.justalittleblush.com/

  11. May 4, 2017 / 4:13 PM

    YES girl! The whole way Facebook and Instagram do things definitely makes me so mad, but isn’t the blog the core of it all anyway?

  12. May 4, 2017 / 7:03 PM

    AMEN! I can hardly blame them… I want to make money, too. Ha! And, like you, I have other things to worry about – like my job. And my life. Love this bit of realness.

  13. May 8, 2017 / 8:31 AM

    Not going to lie… I had no idea what Shadowbanning was, lol. I get frustrated with IG because of the follow/unfollow crowd. It just seems like a waste of time. But hey, whatever floats your boat. The algorithms are curious, but only because I don’t understand them (or what drives cash flow for IG)… so I’ll just post what I love. ;)

  14. May 10, 2017 / 9:06 PM

    first off, i kept seeing shadow banning or whatever around and had no idea what the heck people were talking about lol. so thanks for explaining. it’s not something i personally care about anyway, but i totally love your message. put effort into what you can control. can’t go wrong. why struggle with something that is in someone else’s control?! that’s no fun.

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