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KENYA’S INSTAGRAM MAFIA & WHY BRANDS SHOULD CARE!

For a long period of time, Instagram has been showing posts in a chronological manner which made the playing field even to all and sundry regardless of the number of following one had. Recently, there was a switch that saw the app prioritize content that users would most likely love to see or engage with.  Consequently, this saw the rise of ‘Kenya’s Instagram Mafia’ ; a game of lies, laziness and a scheme of feigned engagement in attempts to cheat. If you are an influencer and you are doing this, shame! If you are a brand, here is why you have to care!

A NUMBERS GAME.

No one worries about your content anymore, well, as it seems. We always thought content is king but we are apparently wrong. In my little experience from pitching emails showing the intention to work with certain brands, the first response one gets is normally an inquiry on how your numbers are. “How are your numbers? Kindly send us your media kit,” the email reads. Responses that may turn you down normally bear the words. “There was a competitive look-through in the numerous applications and due to your numbers, you unfortunately rank below the ones with great numbers.”

There is an increasingly acute obsession in numbers. Brands have continued to express their desire to know how much social media numbers you have at first glance without looking at content and this is the problem!

HOW ‘THE MAFIA’ OPERATES.

Firstly, nothing prevents one from opening a group of 50 or more loyal people on Whatsapp, that always ‘support’ each other. Whenever you put up a post, these people rush to the post, like and comment on it, “SUPERB! SO BEAUTIFUL! GOOD JOB!WE WANT MORE!” They may also just use emojis which is equally a response. This inflates engagement on their posts greatly!

Secondly, there is something called Instagram pods. Now, Instagram pods are formed by creating group messages of around 10 to 20 users, usually bloggers, influencers and content creators, with the occasional business in there too. Users in the pods are expected to follow one another in the group. Once that’s done, they send over a photo they’ve just posted so that other pod members can like and comment on it and boost engagement.

Such behaviour is on the rise at the moment and it is the reason brands ought to stop their obsession in numbers and use clever criteria to choose who to work with.

The average ‘Instagram mafia’ has a really lovely page that would always appeal to marketing managers.

WHY BRANDS SHOULD CARE!

Brands, you need to stop and start to care!  The said Instagram pods can and do skew results. Working with an Instagrammer or a blogger that is part of a pod means their own numbers are wholly wrong.

The obsession with numbers also skew payments. Agencies or managers evaluate influencers on the size of their audience or engagement. Top influencers who are showing high numbers are commanding high prices, and the brand no longer knows if the engagement is genuine.

FINAL THOUGHT

This ‘mafia’ operates on a variety of fields, from beauty, food, travel, photography,name it! Bloggers and other influencers, you need to come clean! Brands, content is king, not numbers! You really ought to care!

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—Kech

 

20 Responses
  • Rih!
    October 16, 2017

    What the hell?
    People do this?
    So fuck content then?
    Sorry for cursing

    • Outside Black
      October 16, 2017

      It is so sad to find out the extent people are willing to go. It is unfair and unethical and brands need to know what really goes on.

  • Ivy Miricho
    October 16, 2017

    Preaach!

  • Olivia Amboya
    October 16, 2017

    What criteria then would you recommend?

  • Ivy aida
    October 16, 2017

    It’s been there for a while. No one cares about content no more. Numbers only. Thing is, brands just want to move their business and yet numbers have been tempered with

    • Outside Black
      October 16, 2017

      I totally agree with you. I am glad you noticed it way earlier. We should really do something about it.

  • Grace
    October 16, 2017

    Word

  • Gloria Mwendwa
    October 16, 2017

    Truth! And it’s really unfortunate

  • Gloria Mwendwa
    October 16, 2017

    You know I think that, as an individual, stick to the truth. Content. Grow yourself in the experiences you choose to share with the world. First and fore most you should be able to enjoy what you’re doing. Turning your passion into a business I think is challenging. But it is not impossible. Having a steady growth based on hardwork, truthfulness and excellence will eventually stand the test of time.

    • Outside Black
      October 16, 2017

      How are you this spot on? I totally agree. It always takes time just as everything else does and yes, sticking to the truth & making good content always wins!

  • My Travel Stories
    October 16, 2017

    I have been waiting to hear someone talk of this, and you did it so well. Myself I have been approached by many people asking me to pay them to generate followers and likes on my social media platforms but I believe in having 100 followers or 10 likes that are genuinely generated rather than fake generation of traffic.

    I believe it’s time everyone thought of content rather than numbers

    • Outside Black
      October 16, 2017

      I have also had such messages sent to me as well. It is sad, very sad!I share similar thoughts with you.

  • Nyamweya
    October 16, 2017

    It makes newbies scared to venture into the game. It’s become so clicky

    • Outside Black
      October 16, 2017

      No, don’t be scared. Just start,do your thing & give it your all.

  • Michelle
    October 16, 2017

    Insightful post … Sometimes with the Internet you cannot win :/

    • Outside Black
      October 16, 2017

      True! It is what it is. Maybe we should just play along perhaps?

  • joymoraa
    October 21, 2017

    This is so sad and has always been there, you even wonder what happened to authenticity? The new algorithm worsens this state.But what can be done really?’If you can’t beat them,join them’

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