What kicks in the IG algorithm?

  • So I rushed yesterday to come up with something for inktober2020 yesterday and threw together this pic: Screenshot_20201012-124516_Instagram.jpg
    So not sure what happened but so far it has 600+ likes. I usually get like 100ish on a really good day during inktober.

    Does anyone know what causes this? I know the mouse is cute, but good grief, that's a lot of attention. Has anyone else had this experience? How can I keep it going?

  • i don't know anything about instagram, but honestly my gut says it's the super cuteness of your mouse. 😄

  • @chrisaakins come on! Your image is fun and witty! You totally deserve the 600+ likes!
    Compared to your other works, I feel this drawing is brighter. With the energy of the action, it is a real cool cute piece. Well done!

  • Moderator

    Wow congratulations!!! The mouse is totally cute.

    I wish I got 100 on a normal day.
    Did you add any new #’s?

  • @burvantill no, that’s what’s so weird. No one shared it, either, as far as I know. People like da mice, I guess.

  • SVS OG

    Accept the compliment! All of your mice deserve hundreds of likes so I’m glad to see this guy paving the way.

  • It’s a mouse, flying through the air, on a bar of soap, triumphantly I might add, what’s not to like?! Ha ha, it’s totally cute and no wonder it garnered so many likes!

  • I had that happen to me once, I had mermaid piece that got like 300 likes on IG and I normally only get about 30-40 on my best days. It never said it was shared so I have no idea...it must just have got enough likes at the right time to bump it. I can’t seem to gain any traction on IG at all now though. Most years during Inktober I gain about one follower a day and I think I got 4 for the month so far.

  • SVS OG

    @chrisaakins woah! Congratulations! I’ve never had 600 likes on any of my pieces. This is an accomplishment. From what I heard, Instagram valuses Shares and Saves nowadays over Likes and Comments(?). Maybe alot of people shared and saved your piece? If you didn’t have much of those interactions, it’s because people really loved this piece which is no mystery why. It’s a beautiful piece. Congratulations again! 💓

  • Thanks to everyone who responded. I am glad I made a decision to keep doing the inktober mice from last year. I am learning a ton about how to get a working process. I think it is working towards developing a consistent style.

    I would also like to do a book on them in the future and I am glad people like them. Maybe I could get enough sponsors for a kickstarter.

  • SVS OG

    @chrisaakins well, you have my support if you ever launch a kickstarter

  • Hey, guy with an Instagram here. There is NO making sense of the algorithm. The moment you think you understand it, they change, tweak or drop portions to make way for more clickable or profitable posts. Somedays I'll get 80-100k impressions from hashtags and other days with similar content I'll get under 5k from hashtags.

    I will say if you are trying to build a following, on a day that you post something that gets some attention follow it up the next day with similar content. Ride the wave until it dies down (and it will).

  • I think the colors are appealing too. When you look at the little square on IG feed these colors are likable and popular. They are brighter and softer (less saturated) than many of your others.

  • Time of day and day of the week likely have a little hand in it too if you’re looking to recreate the reach.

  • Besides this being a great illustration--in my experience, cute little animals will get you a LOONG way on Instagram. By far, my most liked posts are of cute little animals, especially cats, bunnies, mice.. fuzzy things.

  • @kimmypie I am trying to keep that in mind. I squinch the picture down really little while I am doing the color study to see if it works as silhouettes. I didn't do that at first. Learning, learning, learning...
    @AnthonyWheeler wow, 80K is a lot of impressions compared to me. Congrats! I am inclined to agree with you about the wave thing. The next day I got over 1000 likes and that definitely has not happened to me before. The day after that was more in the range of my other Inktober pieces. Today's is higher than the rest. Go figure...
    @Nyrryl-Cadiz Thanks! I hope to in the next year or two.
    @Coley @Natalie-Lundeen yeah, people like mice, I guess. I also one day want to draw a hedgehog, too. And a baby penguin. I almost did it for outpost but I couldn't have the little guys freezing to death in Antarctica. 🙂

  • @chrisaakins I'm not sure if this is accurate at all but what I've heard about Instagram is:

    the quicker you get interactions the more people its shown to, if you get a comment and respond straight away your post is more likely to be visible to more people, and it can snowball from there

    If you use the same hashtags all the time you will not be shown to as much people as you are considered spam

    If after posting you go back and edit your text this restricts the amount of people its shown to

    Time of the day you post

    Apparently posting stories regularly too helps boost your exposure when you do a grid post

    I've also heard using 3rd party posting apps to automatically post are not good

    All of the above might be rubbish

    And it definitley comes down to what it actually is your are posting and a bit of luck too.

    Try not equate the amount of likes to success, the amount of likes you get can be quite random and it can be detrimental to an artist to link the 2.

    My advice when you get loads of likes enjoy it, it means your audience enjoys your work. If you post something the following day and it gets very little this could be completely random and have nothing to do with your work.

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