It’s Time To Rethink The Grid
Few trends, apps, inventions, ideas have made such a splash in society than Instagram has. We thought Facebook was our bread and butter and then they took that idea, capitalised on the fact that everyone to some degree loves themselves and loves a filter and created the continuous finger scrolling platform Instagram. In 2021 there are 1.074 billion instagram users worldwide who spend on average 53 minutes a day on the platform. The app has offered people a place to connect, share and inspire one another but what it is probably most famous for doing is creating the rise of the ‘influencer’ who without the platform would struggle to, as the name suggests, influence. Allowing users to capitalise on their beauty, clothes, lifestyle for many Instagram is a source of revenue and with the snap of a pic dollar dollar bills are flowing.
So imagine this….you colour coordinated your outfits, shot the content, planned the feed and posted precisely…but no one saw it. Adam Mosseri, head of Instagram broke headlines last month when he foretold the future of the platform. In a video posted to his own social accounts Mosseri expressed that “we (Instagram) are no longer a photo sharing app” and the company was moving in a different direction following the success of their competitors YouTube and yes you already guessed it Tik Tok. If Kim Kardashian’s butt broke the internet well this was not far behind with influencers quickly taking to their stories to share the news and their outrage.
It is no secret that since its launch in 2017 Tik Tok has quickly become the platform to watch, with competitors even adapting their own formats to keep up, as we have seen with the likes of Facebook ‘stories’, You Tube ‘shorts’ and Instagram themselves even launching ‘reels’. With more and more people turning to Instagram as a source of entertainment the pressure to deliver is real. So what does this mean for creatives and influencers alike who have grown their audience from photos alone? Sara Tasker, Instagram and creative business coach feels this move could be difficult for those who are self conscious in front of the camera, commenting “The idea that they have to dance for their audience – literally – just to make sales or have their art seen is a kick in the teeth to those who have been sharing and connecting on these platforms for years,”.
Unfortunately whether you agree or not, the message is clear – Instagram no longer wants to be seen as a photo sharing app. How Instagram plans to make this transition though is still unclear, but in an environment that leans towards the sentiment pivot or perish perhaps it’s time to dust off those dancing shoes and learn some Tik Tok dancers.