One month without Instagram: some thoughts

It’s been a month since I deleted my Instagram account and I’ve had some reflection about doing this.

Over the Easter weekend  a new controversy emerged regarding Instagram, Instagress and fake followers/likes. This really riled me because this was one of the things I hated about Instagram – the random comments, the 20 new followers overnight (yay!) and then losing 30 the following week (boo!). A majority of this was through a program that followed/unfollowed accounts on a user’s behalf so said user could gain hundreds of followers in a matter of days.

Not naming and shaming anyone, but I knew of an account that used said service. When I started following them, they had 30 photos with 300+ followers.

Within the space of a month, they had over 3,000 followers, over 4,000 following and 32 photos in their feed. It wasn’t hard to figure out what happened there.

Indeed, a quick look at their account in Social Blade shows the telltale signs of bot activity, with this user following 250 accounts one night, 180 the next night, the cycle continues… then a few days later, unfollowing the same number, which would happen over a number of days. I don’t know about you, but I would get a serious case of RSI if I was doing that manually.

Now this account has over 6,000 followers, 1,200 following and around 300 photos.

Over that same period of time I had five times the number of photos compared to this account and without any bot helping me gained 1,000 followers. I was pretty proud of that number but when I looked at my numbers compared to this other user I was pretty damn pissed off. Why should I spend hours worrying about my Instagram photos so I could get a couple of followers when I could pay somebody, something to do the hard work for me and get hundreds more?

With a bit of clarity (and less hormonal rage) I am now saying to that account user – good for you. If your aim is to be an Instagram influencer, then you do what you gotta do.

As for me, I’m still up in the air about returning to Instagram. I totally get that it is THE social media platform to use if I want to drive more traffic to my little blog here. BUT I don’t want to resort to the tricks that enable me to get followers the easy way. AND I don’t want to be obsessed with numbers like I was before.

And I rather like not staring at my phone and my Instagram feed for long periods of time. It’s nice to actually look up every now and again.

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2 Comments

  • It’s hard not to compare on instagram when you see people with similar content suddenly shooting up in numbers and you wonder if you’re doing something wrong? Comparing ourselves to others is harder to avoid on a platform with numbers everywhere. Even comparing photos we took to see the numbers are different can lead you to madness (or time obsessively on instagram) if you let it.

    I did a technology detox a while back that helped me quit my constant instagram scrolling and I’m thinking I might need to do it again. Trying to go back to setting myself time to look at instagram each day and not doing it outside those times.

    In terms of social media, I’ve heard that pinterest and facebook are big traffic drivers, but never Instagram, so you aren’t missing out on a lot if you don’t have it 🙂

    • Mica I really think focusing on the numbers is just plain wrong, there are loads of users who have a higher engagement with their followers but may not necessarily have the most followers. This is so much more important than the numbers themselves. The qualitative measurement is much more of a better ROI than a quantitative one (but could that just be me? :))

      A digital detox is a great idea. I’ve already kind of started doing it by turning off a lot of notifications on my phone (and now I’m wondering why my phone is so quiet lol). The approach of allocating time to check out social media (rather than randomly scrolling) is a great idea.

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