Who remembers pre-2016 Instagram? No stories feature to compete with Snapchat, built-in filters were still used, and of course, everyone’s feed was still in chronological order. When Instagram made the choice to switch to an algorithm-based feed, many people were understandably annoyed. While the idea was good (your interests determine your feed), having an algorithm-based homepage makes it hard to keep up with friends, family and other accounts you may follow. However, as of a few weeks ago, all this has now changed.

Instagram has brought BACK the chronological feed feature!

Well, with a catch.

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Instagram recently released a new feature that allows users to pick two settings: “Following” and “Favourites”. The “Following” feature allows users to view their feed in chronological order, meaning all posts and stories will be back in the order that they were posted in. The “Favourites” feature on the other hand, is a specific feed made up of accounts that users choose as their ‘favourites’. There is even a special button labelled ‘add to favourites’ to designate a specific user to this category. 

The only catch is that users can only have one or the other. To have the chronological feed back, the designated button must be chosen, and the algorithm-based feed will still remain the default option when you open the app. It isn’t perfect, but at least it’s a start.

So what does this mean for your brand?

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The Drum reports that this change is both a blessing and a curse for brands. On one hand, brands must have their timing perfect to reach the users who decide to go back to the chronological feed. No longer will ads be served up; the most recent content will prevail, meaning brands will need to think more deeply about things like time zones. However, perfectly timed content targeted to the right audience will give some brands a huge boost that will put them above the rest. It’s all about timing.

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