WHY I’VE BEEN MIA
Some of you might have noticed that I have been kinda MIA on Instagram. I used to post everyday, religiously, because that’s what I was told I needed to do to be successful. Well, lately, I have lost of lot of my motivation to work on my instagram and to put together content to post on there. If you’re not a blogger or influencer then you probably don’t know how much time, effort, and money goes into running your business on social media. Not only that, but Instagram is such a mentally draining place. Before I go on, I want to talk about the Instagram algorithm.
Y’all have probably seen a lot of bloggers posting on their insta stories about how awful the instagram algorithm is, and you probably thought to yourself “who cares it’s just instagram”. I would have thought the same thing before, like “oh poor you, you can’t get any likes on your pictures…boo-hoo.” Right?
Instagram is making it almost impossible for smaller accounts to get noticed, and not only that, but they are making it even harder for our content to been seen by the people following us. If you don’t know what the algorithm is here is how I explain it: it’s basically the order in which instagram filters your feed. The tiny little (evil) instagram robots are filtering through all the pictures the people you follow post, and deciding what they want to show you.
Let me give you an example, say I posted a picture yesterday and you didn’t like it, Instagram just automatically thinks you’re not going to like anything else I post in the future, so they aren’t going to show you my stuff in your feed.
Here is a “real world” example of this. Say you turn in a project to your teacher or boss and they don’t like it. So, you go back and look at it and realize okay I could have done something different on that, and the next day you go in to bring in a new project but your teacher/boss gets an assistant that refuses to show them your work. No matter how hard you try to get them to see it, like paying-off the assistant (promoting your posts), sneaking it in with multiple other projects (loop giveaways) they still refuse to show it to them. Soon your boss/teacher thinks you’ve either dropped the class or quit work, so you fail the class or you lose your job. This is exactly how it feels on Instagram right now. No matter how hard I (and all the other bloggers) try my stuff is not getting seen.
If you are a numbers person look at it this way, Instagram puts your post out to 10% of your followers at first, if those 10% like your post they MIGHT show it to the other 90%. Can you imagine if your teacher/boss only saw 10% of your project and based your entire grade/salary off of just that? This is the world of Instagram.
Oh, and Instagram has also started to shadowban users. Which means anyone looking up a hashtag (like #ootd) will not see your post if you used it. There really is no reason why Instagram is doing this, how they decide who to shadowban, or for how long they will shadowban you.
Some of you still might be thinking “that sucks for you, work harder, or get a ‘real’ job”. Well, it does suck, and all of us are working as hard as possible to do better, but how are we supposed to do better? What would you do in the real world example I just gave? Would you just quit your job and get a new job in an entirely different field?
Instagram is not just a fun place to post pretty pictures on if you are using it for your business. Instagram is the place that business look to, to see if they want to work with you. They look at the number of likes you have and they look at the number of followers you have. So, when a company sees that I am getting 200 likes on a post they are not going to want to work with me if they see other girls getting 1,000 likes. Instagram is not only affecting my engagement but they are also affecting my income. By hiding my stuff I am missing out on potential sales.
One way bloggers make money is by people using their links to buy things. Now, we do not make a ton of money when you buy a sweater we talk about, but we do make a very small commission, and that starts to add up over time. Companies also look at these numbers to see if you have a good ROI (return on investment)
The dilemma that I am in right now is why should I work so hard and spend so much money to post things on my Instagram, when my audience doesn’t even see it. This is how I have felt for over a month and it has only gotten harder for me. By taking a break from my Instagram to work on my store, and to think about new content I lost dozens of followers and it made it even harder for my stuff to get shown. So why do I want to go thru the cycle of researching new things, buying them, styling them, scheduling time to take the pictures, making sure they are edited perfectly, checking to make sure they are still in stock, posting at the right time on the right day, to only get left feeling defeated. It is mentally and emotionally exhausting feeling like all the hard work you are doing is going un-noticed. Being self-employed means you don’t have a boss telling you that you’re doing a good or what you need to work on. And it is hard to not compare yourself to everyone else out there. I have definitely thought to myself hundreds of times things like “if I get this bag people will like my picture” , “if I lose 10 more pounds clothes will fit me better, and I’ll make more sales” or “if I have this many followers brands will notice me and people will like me”. It has just become exhausting and toxic. I find myself waking up at 3 and 4 in the morning stressed about not having a new outfit to post or not having any content to upload.
I know all of this sounds like first world problems, but this is honestly my dream to be a blogger and to own my own clothing store. It is hard to not judge yourself off of how many likes you get, because that is the number that the world gets to see, and it is what everyone is basing you off of. People are not seeing that I hit a record number of blog views on my last blog post, instead they are seeing that I only got around 200 likes on the announcement of my new store on Instagram.
Not only is it hard to deal with all this Instagram stuff, but it is hard to go out there and take a picture of yourself everyday. I used to never take pictures of myself becasue I have never felt comfortable in front of a camera. You do not know how many times I have gotten ready for a shoot and left the shoot crying becasue I felt ugly or fat. This is something I struggled with in the beginning of my blog, and what I still struggle with now. This is another reason why I have been struggling to post lately.
BUT. I am not going to give up. This is my dream and I want to make it work, and I am not ready to totally give up. So from now on I am going to dedicate all of my time and energy into my blog and into my store. If you haven’t heard/seen me on Instagram just look up my profile or head on over here. I have some really good ideas for blog posts coming up and I am always working on my store.
If you are a follower and you want to see my posts on Instagram this is what you can do: find my profile on instagram (@megonomics101), like/comment on some of my posts, and turn on my post notifications, and if you see my stuff pop-up in your feed like it if you really like it. I am not trying to beg y’all for likes. I just seriously do not think most people understand everything that really goes on in the blogging/social media world.
If you are a blogger in a similar situation do not give up either, you can seriously do this!!
Okay, I want to end this on a positive note by sharing one of my favorite motivational quotes
(found on pinterest)
I hope everyone has great rest of the week, let’s crush it.