Long question. Needs a long answer. Thing is, it’s not just 1 thing that is causing this, it’s multiple things happening at the same time. Let’s take the slime industry as an example because, it’s actually the best example of this.
Let’s also break down the question so we can answer bit by bit.
Why are big slime accounts loosing followers?
Because slime is an industry. Every industry has its ups and downs and every industry has a peak. After the industry hit’s it’s peak it usually always comes downhill from there. Think about blacksmiths. They were some of the most sought after professionals back in the Middle Ages but now, you barely see any. Even though they can still help out with some blacksmithing in 2019.
So if a slime account is just a slime account then it will go up and down with the industry. To fix this problem, a slime account needs to be a bit more than just a slime account. It needs to become a brand that offers more.
Gary Vee (google him, he is awesome) was just a dude that tasted wine. But he implemented some personal branding and was patient. Now he is an industry of his own. He can launch a slime business, a kids TV show, sports wear, social media agency, you name it. He can do what ever he wants because he is the acnchor. He is in full control of whether people like him or not. A slime account can’t stop people getting bored of slime. It can just create content around slime and hope that people love slime forever.
There is a time to niche down and specialise in an industry but there is also a time to expand and broaden what a company offers. The best time to niche is when an industry is on a rise. It’s hot. It’s hyped. And the best time to broaden is just before the peak.
Why are smaller slime accounts gaining followers?
Answer 1: Maybe they’re fake. Followers, views, likes, comments, they are all vanity metrics. Followers don’t directly translate into money. There are other systems needed for a business to convert attention into profit. Usually these systems are not public. We can’t tell if a business is successful or not, by looking at their engagement. However, it does make an account look like it’s popular and successful, so for this reason, lots of people buy fake engagement. It’s a really bad thing to do. Money can be better spent on improving the service/product or marketing it to reach real people. It’s always a good idea to spend £100 reaching only 10 real people compared to spending £100 and reaching 10,000 fake, non-existent people.
Answer 2: Maybe their content is actually better. Instagram works out if the post is “good” or not by looking at the profile’s followers and then looking at how many people viewed/engaged with a post. A small profile won’t get a huge amount of people viewing that post but, it’s the ratio that matters. Accounts with 1m followers will struggle to get 100k views within 10 mins of posting but an account with 10k followers won’t have a problem getting 1k views. Especially if the post is original.
Older Instagram profiles have a lot of ghost followers. It makes the account look big but it raises the bar for them. Bigger accounts need to get a lot of engagement on a post to be considered “good” by Instagram
In summary, follow these steps:
Step 1. Detach yourself from an industry and become a brand of your own. Get know for you. Your personality. Also diversify what you offer. Not just slime videos.
Step 2. Remove ghost followers. So what if you go from 20k followers to just 6k. At least your engagement levels will be high. You’ll almost always land higher on the explore page.
Note: I’ve come to realise that you don’t actually own any of the followers you have. If Instagram goes down, they take all of your hard work with them. Diversity where you keep your audience. Emails, podcasts, phone numbers, real life brand equity is something no one can take away from you. Obviously you’ll need to do some heavy research on how to export yourself from Instagram but it’s always good to start now. I need to do some of this myself too. 20k+ followers on Instagram but, pretty much 0 everywhere else.