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Tips and Strategies to increase the exposure of your Instagram Account in 2020

Do you feel as if no one is seeing your posts on Instagram anymore, that the number of likes and comments has dropped, and that the growth rate of your account is muuuuch slower than it used to be? Darling, you are not alone.

The new changes that have occured this year in Instagram’s algorithm have lead to a drastic decrease in organic exposure {meaning, non-payed exposure}. The situation today is that all of the followers you’ve worked so hard on at obtaining, are in fact held hostage by Instagram. Sucks, I know…

Instagram justify this new change by claiming that the transformation creates a better user experience. But let’s be real… Do you feel like Facebook has changed for the better in recent years? Or did your feed fill with more sponsored posts, while less posts appear from pages you have chosen to like or friends that you follow?

This is exactly what is beginning to happen on Instagram.

Ever since Facebook bought Instagram, it has slowly but surely begun to introduce to Instagram the same changes as the ones in the Facebook algorithm. These changes are what ultimately make Facebook a particularly profitable business, so it is no surprise they would choose to continue with the same trend on Instagram as well.

I have already mentioned the impact of the changes in Facebook’s algorithm on businesses in this post on the importance of a newsletter for a blog and business, and I feel it is important to stress once again that the situation is going to be the same for those relying on Instagram as their business platform. The bottom line is, for now, Instagram is still a good a tool to use for marketing and strengthening your brand, but it is by no means a suitable substitute for a blog and a newsletter.

Instead of carrying on frowning at the changes in the algorithm, let’s see what we can do about it. Because, let’s face it, it ain’t going anywhere {and taking from past experience with Facebook, it will only get worse}.

You know what they say – “If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em”, and so it’s about time you learn to improve the way you use the app in order to gain the most organic exposure you can possibly reach, before you start investing money.

When you’re done reading this post you will understand precisely how the new Instagram algorithm works {for now at least} and what you need to do to get your account going again.

Ready to begin?

instagram tips, hacks and strategies in 2018

Instagram’s new algorithm determines the amount of organic exposure given to accounts and posts based on a number of different criteria.

  1. Engagement – how many people respond to your content.
  2. Relevance – how closely your content matches what your target audience is searching for.
  3. Duration – how much time people spend viewing your content.
  4. Timing – how often your posts appear on the feed.
  5. Profile search – who searches your account.
  6. Sharing and saving – how many people save your content and share it with friends.

All of these criteria have a great influence on the feed, but before I expand on each one of them, I would like to relate to a feature which in the past year and a half is found to be no less important than the feed, if not more…




One cannot discuss Instagram without mentioning Stories. The feed has become a much less fun place to wander around… The algorithm confuses the chronological order, and the sponsored ads are flooding our feed. Like I said – Instagram’s feed has become a lot more “facebook-y”… For this reason exactly stories are getting a lot more action than the feed.  

The number of viewers on Instagram’s Stories rose above the amount of viewers on its main competitor, Snapchat, only one year after its launch. Many Instagramers use stories to market their products, provide their audience with a backstage peak, and to add links to their website.

The new algorithm takes into account all of the interactions you get on stories, like private messages received following a story, or when someone sends your story to a fellow user. The formula is simple – the more a user interacts with your stories, the greater the chance your posts will appear on their feed.

A good way to overcome the exposure-reducing changes in the algorithm is to take advantage of the engagement opportunities in Stories. For example, using the Polls function generates a lot of participation, or the “swipe up” option {if you have over 10k followers}.

Bottom line: Using Stories is extremely essential for increasing exposure and engagement on your Instagram account. And so, alongside understanding the effect of the new algorithm on your feed and the ways to overcome the lessening in organic exposure, it is really worthwhile to use stories as much as possible.

טיפים לשימוש באינסטגרם סטוריז בשת 2018


Back to our criteria – Let’s try and understand how each one of them affects the algorithm, and what can be done to advance your Instagram account.




Instagram’s new algorithm cares not only about how much engagement your posts are getting in numbers, but also how fast it is created around them. When a post receives many likes, comments and shares within a short period of time from the moment it was published, the algorithm identifies that it is of quality content and as a result it exposes the post in a higher organic form.

But it is not only about quantity and speed, the algorithm considers the quality of the accounts interacting with your content. Engagement that stems from real, active accounts, with a large amount of real followers that match the niche of your own account will be identified as qualitative and will bring higher organic exposure. The quality issue is relevant as well when it comes to comments –  nonchalant comments such as ones including only an emoji, short comments of less than four words, and repetitive comments, will be considered as lower quality in the eyes of the algorithm.

It is important, here, to emphasize the huge disadvantage to buying fake followers and fake comments, because fake followers are inactive, and purchased comments are superficial. The lower the engagement percentage in your account {engagement percentage = amount of comments and likes offered to a post divided by the amount of account followers}, it allows for the algorithm to identify that the account is less interesting to your “followers”, and thus it will receive less exposure.

In short, DO NOT buy followers or comments. Not only does it look bad, it will bury your account under the the new algorithm.


Tips for increasing engagement:

> Create quality and relevant content – sounds obvious, but there are still many businesses that neglect the importance of content.

> Add a call for a action in your post’s headline {ask followers to like, share and comment}.

> Reply to people’s comments on your posts – especially within the first hour after publishing.

> Publish frequently and at peak times.

> Use hashtags wisely in a way that will expose you to a new, relevant audience. Using specific and relevant hashtags is more important this year than ever, since Instagram’s recent launch of an option to follow hashtags. Meaning, your posts can automatically appear on people’s feeds whether or not they specifically follow your account, and this can expose you to new, relevant followers.




Like I said, the instagram feed is no longer chronological. The order of images and videos that will appear on your feed is based on the likelihood that you will be interested in the published content, on your relationship with the publisher’s account, and on the publishing time. The more interest you will show in certain people and content, the more they will appear on your feed.

What does that say about you as a blogger or business owner?

The more engaged your followers are with your content, the more you will appear on their feed. The problem is, that most of your followers don’t even see what you publish. So how do you get them to be exposed to your content? I know this may not be the answer you were hoping for, because it’s very time consuming, but it works: you should be the one creating interaction!

In order for you to be of relevance to your audience, they need to see you. Treat them with likes, comments, and yes, follow them too if you really appreciate their content. All this will increase your relevance. {Assuming they really are interested in your published content}.

Here’s how it works – let’s say you have a follower who doesn’t see your posts at all… Suddenly she receives a notification that you liked and commented on her posts, she is now interested in checking out who you are. She goes into your feed and is reminded she once chose to follow your account because she liked what you posted, and she now also leaves you likes and comments. Then the magic happens – according to the new algorithm it is most likely that your next post or story will appear on her feed.

Do that enough times with your followers and you will slowly but surely see more and more people become exposed to your content. I know what you’re thinking – this is not the “coolest” move out there, but, if you’re not a huge deal on Instagram, you better get rid of that attitude. 😉


Tips to increase relevance percentage:

> Follow accounts relating to your niche that you like.

> Don’t be stingy with likes and comments if you like what you see.

> Publish content that is relevant to your target audience.

> Spend as much time as you possibly can creating real relationships with your followers. It is way better to have 1000 followers who are engaged and involved, and don’t want to miss a post, than having 100k who don’t really care  about what you publish.



The amount of time we spend on a post has a great deal of importance in the ranking of the post within the new algorithm. Similar to Google's algorithm, it works in a way which ranks blog posts or a website within its search engine. The time people devote to content is an indicator of the audience’s interest in the content and the value it provides. Such is the case on Instagram –  if someone spends 20 seconds versus 2 seconds on an Instagram post, it signals to the algorithm that this post should be given more exposure than others.

This is also why videos are very successful today on Instagram – it takes longer to watch a video than to look at a picture, so intriguing video content can be significantly more engaging than an image.


Tips to increase the time people spend viewing your content:

> Invest in longer and more interesting headlines for your content.

> Share more high-quality videos, and try to generate curiosity during the first 5 seconds of the video.




One of the factors determining whether or not your followers will see your posts is the time of  its publication. As I already mentioned in the section on engagement, the more interaction your posts receive nearer to the time they were uploaded, the more the new algorithm will expose them to your followers. Therefore, it is very important that you publish your posts at the time your followers are most active on Instagram.


Tips for timely publishing:

> Create a posting schedule once you’ve understood what the best times are for your content to be published. Perseverance and timing will help heighten your account’s exposure and engagement.

> Switch over to a business profile – Once you convert your profile to a business account, Instagram will provide you with the data for when your followers are most active.




Profile searching is another criterion that affects the approach of the new algorithm to Instagram accounts. If the algorithm detects that your target audience is searching for your account on the explorer page, it will provide another indication that your content interests the people relevant to you. The more your audience searches for you, the more your posts and stories will appear in their feed. This connects directly with the quality of the content you publish and your account’s focus. If your content adds value to your target audience, for example if you provide travel content, your followers will search and view your account in order to discover new and interesting destinations and attractions worth visiting.


Tips to increase profile searching:

> Create content that is of quality and relevance.

> Direct your account’s focus at a specific niche or target audience {Just as I recommended when starting a blog in this course}



The number of times people save your content or share it with friends is as well another important criterion when it comes to the new algorithm. It is likely that this criterion is of higher significance than engagement, a like, or even a comment. If somebody saves your post or spends time sharing it with someone else, it signals the algorithm that this content is high-quality and the algorithm will therefore expose it to more followers.


Tips to generating shares and saves:

> Add a call for action in your post’s headline – “Share this post with so and so / Save this post”

> Create content that people would like to share and save – tips, quotes, special places etc.


In this post I presented you with various tactics to help you deal with Instagram's new algorithm and increase the visibility and engagement of your Instagram account. The bottom line is that most importantly you must create quality content that provides value to its target audience, and invest in authentic interaction with followers.

It seems as if organic exposure on Instagram will eventually become identical to that of Facebook, which is close to nothing, and in the future we will have no choice but to invest lots of money in order to expose our content to our followers. Take advantage of the fact that this is not yet the case, and to get the most out of the Instagram account you’ve so well nurtured  – create real relationships with your followers and offer valuable incentives to subscribe to your blog’s/ brand’s newsletter.


Good luck! 🙂



Know about more useful tactics to increase exposure and engagement on Instagram? Leave me a comment below 🙂

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instagram tips, hacks and strategies in 2019

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8 Responses

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