The Death of Instagram for Brands?
Now that everyone has chimed in on Instagram’s algorithm feed update, including one of the most sensational headlines of the bunch courtesy of Steve Feiner at TC, we thought we’d take a minute to share a more grounded perspective.
“Reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated” — Mark Twain (sort of)
The reality is simple:
- Yes, this move is clearly more about Advertisers than Users.
- But, most people actually don’t mind advertising if the ads are relevant and well executed.
- Frankly, there are massive costs in operating and policing a global community like Instagram and these are reasonable steps to balance the books and ensure a sustainable growth runway for all. Virtually anyone would do the same if they had the benefit of the view from the inside out and what’s required each day.
Who will win:
- Brands who create amazing advertising experiences. Creativity plays a huge role but it’s the tech implementation that will deliver repeatable results across a range of businesses. Mastering social media advertising requires mastering content supply chain and distribution. It requires regular scrutiny of publishing workflows, automation, personalization, and a blended content mix that includes rights-approved community creative delivered via Dynamic Product Ads.
- Brands who recognize that a digital marketer/developer hybrid, eager to write just the few lines of code needed to make systems sing in unison, is more valuable than any vendor relationship. What is almost universally misunderstood about social media advertising is that it’s a level playing field and the ad business doesn't discriminate: if you can code, you have equal access to the most sophisticated techniques available to anyone on the planet. What some SaaS marketing vendors license for $50,000-$100,000/year often fills a slight technical deficit that exists in most orgs that can, and should, be more effectively addressed by nurturing cross-functional teams.
- Brands who restructure their teams as quickly as the platforms they rely on change. Social media teams and advertising teams are still insulated from each other, these walls need to come down. In 2016, you need to realign teams more regularly to compete.
“A man who stops advertising to save money is like a man who stops a clock to save time.” — Henry Ford