/ there's more important things than algorithms /

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I've seen a lot of posts going around on Instagram lately about the new algorithm that Instagram has started using. To be honest, I pretty much ignore it all. Not because I don't want to be informed - I do! I want to know what's going on so I don't get buried, ignored, & forgotten. As a creative trying to sell something it's important that my service gets in front of the eyes of the people who will want it, and the only way to do this is to strategize and plan. The real reason I ignore (most) of this new algorithm information is because, more than likely, it will just change again. I'll spend time trying to beat this algorithm just to have everything switched up again. So, while I'll keep some things in mind to hopefully make this change a little less "painful", there are some things I want to implement that, in the long run, will hopefully be timeless and impactful to all who come across my page, whether or not algorithms keep changing.

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I want people to come away from my feed encouraged + inspired.

Our world is so negative; barely a day goes by without hearing of something bad happening. Instead of using my feed to complain about something, someone, or my own problems, I want people to know they won't find that on my feed. Authenticity, yes. But not negativity.

I want people to come away from my feed feeling like they made a new friend.

I'm sure we can all talk about feeds where we come away feeling like we know the person even if we've never met. I'm sure we can also talk about feeds where we got a bad vibe from the person, whether it was through complaining, trash talk, or negativity. I want people who visit my feed to come away feeling welcome and able to ask questions or start a conversation with me and actually get a response. I want to be warm and inviting, or as much as I can be through a iPhone screen! 

I want people to come away from my feed excited about their own life.

I know what it feels like to be discouraged and discontent with life. I want people who visit my feed (and my blog, for that matter), to realize that life is so worth living, even in those quiet, small, mundane moments. It's easy to see other Instagrammers, Youtubers, and bloggers who are traveling the world and "living the dream" and become discontent with your own daily grind. In reality, while some people may be living amazing dream-lives, most of us are just like the rest of you - working a part-time or 9-to-5 job to fund our dreams, having sick days, grocery days, and days of totally loosing all productivity. I want people to not look at my feed and envy me for what I do, but look at my feed and get excited about finding joy in all areas of life - the exciting and the ordinary. To not live vicariously through me, but to let my adventures spur them on to their own adventures.

I want people to come away from my feed challenged to live more fully.

In a "let's binge Netflix and lounge around all day" society I want to encourage people to live more fully, where they are, with what they have right now. Don't wait for your "big break" - take small steps today to get you where you want to be. Don't get discourage and don't give up. Life is rarely one big break into success. It's hundreds of tiny steps forward (and many steps back) that get you where you want to go. Make a (doable) plan and start making steps in the right direction. I want people to come away from my feed challenged to not just sit around, but to actually do. To get excited about doing and learning. To realize they have one life and to live it well and fully.

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In closing, I wanted to share something I read today on Facebook. It was a thread in a Facebook group where the moderator of the group asked the young women to share about some of the photographers that they admire and who influence them. It was so inspiring to see these young women name other women who they look up to and admire. No competition, just community. One comment stood out the most to me, and that was a comment written by a young woman about another young woman photographer. She said that this photographer inspires her because she really loves Jesus and that shines through in such a powerful way through her brand. I knew exactly who this woman was talking about, and couldn't agree more. This beautiful, Jesus-loving young woman blends her love for her Savior and her love for photography together so seamlessly and it truly is inspirational. As a follower of Jesus, ultimately that's what I want my feed to be about - Him and making Him known. Only what I create here on earth for HIS glory will matter in eternity. He could care less about how many followers I have or if I nailed the perfect shot. He wants me to be living for Him, and then letting Him spill out of me in a way that draws people not to me and my accomplishments, but to Him.

I feel so far from these goals at the moment. All too often I find myself sifting through photos, trying to find one to put up just because I haven't posted in a few days and I'm losing followers. But my aim and goal for 2018 is to intentional with my feed and my influence as a creative. I hope I can look back on this year and not only see beautiful images, but see friendships formed and lives changed through the gifts God has give me. 

How are you dealing with the new algorithm? What is a way you've learned to still be relevant and "show up" in everyone's feed without sacrificing quality?

Samantha SuzanneComment