Instagram announced that it will be changing its news feed algorithm so that consumers will receive content in order of personal relevance, rather than in the order that it was posted by those the consumer follows. You, as someone who uses Instagram, will be receiving content that Instagram thinks you will like and engage with the most. Although we don’t know how the app is going to accomplish this technologically, we do understand that changes like this exemplify the importance of businesses, brands, and people focusing on sharing content that’s relevant to their target audience.
A change like this really shouldn’t come as a surprise to anybody, as Facebook started the trend years ago by curating content and only showing the most relevant content to its users—weeding out the people and subjects that the consumer hadn’t been interested in in the past. Twitter has also adopted a similar strategy recently by deciphering which tweets it believes will be the most relevant to the consumer. All of this content curation comes at a time when we, as consumers, are more saturated with content than ever before, and it’s only going to get worse.
As more people create content, more brands have the opportunity to impact their audience members, and more saturation occurs. This forces platforms to curate that content so that users aren’t inundated with too much information, get annoyed, and end up leaving the platform altogether. How can a business, brand, or person use this information to try to create better content: content that isn’t getting pushed to the side and makes it to the eyes of the consumer? The best and easiest way is simply to ask your audience.
Social media provides the perfect platform to reach out to an audience. If you want to find out what content your audience will engage with and enjoy the most, there are many ways to start the conversation. A simple tweet asking this question might bring about audience response. If your social media has been slow going thus far, you might have to encourage your audience to participate in a contest. Ask your audience to participate in exchange for a free gift, or run an online survey and select a lucky participant as the winner. There are endless ways to engage your audience, but flat out asking them is the best way to learn specifically what content they will enjoy the most.
Once you find out what your audience wants to hear and see from you and you begin to implement this campaign strategy, you can simply watch the insights, analytics, and data to find out what types of content they are engaging in most and then post more of it. Content marketing isn’t that hard, but engagement marketing is. It takes a deep look inside your consumer to find out what he/she really needs and wants. It takes a lot of time and effort to be able to come up with this content while engaging with consumers all at the same time, but it’s worth it. Companies that invest their resources in building a rock star engagement strategy will win over the next 5 years, 10 years, and beyond, as long as they keep investing and adapting.