Taylor asks, “Is there any fear that Instagram is going to set up their algorithm to marginalize business profiles that aren’t paying for advertising like they did with Facebook’s Pages. We still have our IG profile set up as a personal page for fear of this.”
In a word: yes. Facebook has made it abundantly clear on its earnings calls that it’s always seeking to improve monetization. COO Sheryl Sandberg always makes a note of how many businesses use Facebook properties and how many are participating in ads. Their roadmap to monetization is clear: companies need to pay to be seen. Watch the video for what one strategy could be.
Can’t see anything? Watch it on YouTube here.
Listen to the audio here:
- Got a question for You Ask, I’ll Answer? Submit it here!
- Subscribe to my weekly newsletter for more useful marketing tips.
- Find older episodes of You Ask, I Answer on my YouTube channel.
- Need help with your company’s data and analytics? Let me know!
- Join my free Slack group for marketers interested in analytics!
What follows is an AI-generated transcript. The transcript may contain errors and is not a substitute for watching the video.
In today’s episode, Taylor asked Is there any fear that Instagram is going to set up their algorithm to marginalize business profiles that aren’t paying for advertise like they did with Facebook pages? We still have our Instagram profile setup as a personal page for fear of this in a word. Yes,
we know Facebook wants to monetize more, right? It is a profit for profit company. Its goal is to generate more profit, and its profit comes from businesses. By and large. If you look at the most recent earnings calls, ads are still the vast majority of their business. And as a result, they need people to buy more ads.
The CEO Sheryl Sandberg, always on every quarterly earnings call makes a note of how many businesses use Facebook, how many have pages and how many are participating in ADS. And she started mentioning that with Instagram as well and the way they’re trying to monetize Instagram together.
Things like the stories format their messages through that common code base that that CEO Mark Zuckerberg talked about over unifying the WhatsApp, Instagram and Facebook Messenger back end systems to create more ad inventory. So their roadmap to monetization is super clear. Companies need to pay to be seen. So
it’s pretty much a given that at some point, they will look at Instagram companies spending money on Instagram and say, we need to make more money out of this. What’s the easiest way to do that? Well, as simple as they did with Facebook, once they convinced businesses to switch over to pages or to business profiles and give businesses something like a little bit of reach for some time and better analytics. Then they get to turn the screws and say, Yep, now you got to pay to be seen.
That’s just the way it isn’t. It’s a it’s a perfectly rational thing to do. Right? It is their business. This is not a public utility. This is not
A charity This is a business that needs to make money.
And if they have a whole line of business with relatively untapped revenue, of course, they’re going to say, let’s get more money out of this segment of the business. So what’s your strategy? What’s your play for this? A lot of people say, should we convert our profile? Should we do this? We that the answer is start a second profile, start a business profile and then pivot the existing profile to something that is related but maybe has a slightly different point of view or has a slightly different purpose. One of the things that I see people do
not as well on social media is not have a defined purpose for each of the channels that they use. So
they do pretty much the same thing everywhere and treat every channel as pretty much the same thing. Even though behaviorally we interact with all these different channels in very different ways. We go to YouTube for very different reason that we go to Instagram we go to
For a very different reason that we go to LinkedIn and to see them all as one sort of monolith is doing ourselves and our audiences a disservice. So when someone goes to your LinkedIn profile or your LinkedIn page, what are they getting? That they can’t get anywhere else? What are they getting on Facebook from either they can’t get anywhere else.
What are they doing on Twitter? And what are you doing on Twitter that they can’t get anywhere else? So for myself, Twitter is where I post a lot of stuff, particularly at conferences and events. I shared news throughout the week, but it’s where I go to interact with people very publicly and where I share stuff when I’m at events because I can live tweet along things I think are interesting. Facebook, my Facebook page functionally exists to show ads, right? There’s there’s not a ton of value that my Facebook personal profile is where I spend time with friends. My Instagram profile is where I share aspects my personal life, my company’s Instagram profiles, where we show off interesting cool looking data visualizations and
And so it’s sort of a proof point for the work that we do. My personal LinkedIn profile is where I connect with people and have meaningful personal interactions, especially around things like hiring or careers or questions. People have the company’s Facebook the company’s LinkedIn profile is very much about sharing thought leadership sharing stuff that is interesting out there. And so with every one of these channels, there is a purpose and a function.
What’s yours? What are you doing with Instagram right now? And what could you turn your Instagram profile into the strategy I recommend and the one that I pursued with Facebook as you keep the personal profile maybe make it more personal, maybe make it you know behind the scenes or the people of whatever your company name is and then you have the business profile which is the the one that you expect to get penalised and you expect it to require it be required to pay money for at some point and that’s what you use to share fully full on business stuff that’s still relevant to your audience with the expectation that you
You’re going to put be sinking some money into this, you’re gonna be sinking some money into this to have certain types of content seen. This also maps back to your content strategy to each channel and then yourselves, your company overall needs to have an overall content strategy. And the one that I recommend that I use personally and that I teach other people about is called the hero how the health model this is from Google circa 2014 it’s been tuned up over the years
but fundamentally there’s a hero idea or campaign or something that once a quarter you put like 60% of your money into that campaign and and that and your time and your effort and it’s the big idea what’s the big idea for your company that this quarter you’re going to hammer home so for real the last couple months for for my company trust insights we’ve been promoting the
it’s actually a march 1 today so that’s that can get start to get retired now, but that was for about three
months, the thing that we pushed, and that was the big hero content, the the hub content is monthly campaigns monthly things, it’s a, it’s a promotional piece, it’s something that you want people to see and engage with. That is really an ask in many ways.
And then there’s the help of content. The Daily stuff like this video, for example,
where you’re creating content on a daily basis that is helpful, that is educational is entertaining, that is something that people would want this very tactical and a lot of ways. And so if you have hero hub help, and you have a budget divided like 60, 3010,
then you have the ability now to allocate budget and say, Okay, now on Instagram, we’re going to, you know, promoting the hero stuff on these days, the hub stuff on these days and then maybe start using stories to do help content and you would do that on the business profile while reminding people from time to time on the personal profile that hey, we’re still around and then sharing personal stories and personal things on
On the personal profile you do as a person or as a, as a collective of people. I’ve seen some companies very successfully do sort of like HR and recruiting stuff with a personal profile like hey, these are these are the people who work at x company and seeing that be very successful.
One thing I would suggest you do is in your space using the social analytics tool of your choice, look at what other companies are doing with their Instagram profiles, look at the data they’re generating and see
what is working for them, what types of content types of images what types of stories and that will help you give give you some ideas about ways to tell personal personal level stories on the personal profile and business level stories on the business profile, keeping the two separate and then expecting the business one to be the one that you pay for. So good question.
We know we know Facebook will monetize Instagram more heavily. We know Facebook will monitor
What’s up more heavily? We know Facebook’s going to monetize Oculus as soon as they can get by thing so expected be ready for it have a strategy that’s rolled out for it now so that when the change comes you’re not surprised and you have you have allocated the amount of budget and resources you need to make it work for him so great question please leave any follow up questions in the comments and of course subscribe to the YouTube channel and the newsletter I’ll talk to you soon one help solving your company’s data analytics and digital marketing problems. This is trust insights.ai today and let us know how we can help you
You might also enjoy:
- How to Set Your Public Speaking Fee
- How to Start Your Public Speaking Career
- Best Practices for Public Speaking Pages
- How to Set Your Consultant Billing Rates
Want to read more like this from Christopher Penn? Get updates here:
Get your copy of AI For Marketers (2019 Edition)