This week, Instagram came out with an "exciting update": Live Rooms. Basically, you now have up to 4 people in a Live (previously only 2). Read the official announcement here. The announcement came after Adam Mosseri, Head of Instagram, tweeted this:
Now, the part about this feature being something that has been requested for a while now got people FIRED UP. Especially #MarketingTwitter. A few speculations included insights for Reels and/or Guides, the 'Swipe Up' feature for all accounts, and the long requested "back to a chronological feed" (which honestly, at this point, is a pipe dream).
Personally, I had an alarm set for 8 am California time and was refreshing my Twitter feed nervously. I had high hopes that Instagram would be giving us insights for Reels. It seemed logical because we all know that Instagram has really been pushing Reels (in attempt to compete with TikTok), and many creators have been chasing that ever-so-sought-after viral Reel. Instagram, if you're listening, how are we supposed to know what performs well when we CAN'T SEE ANY INSIGHTS from our Reels? Anyways, that wasn't the announcement.
I was underwhelmed by the announcement for 2 reasons. First, I don't really use the Live feature on Instagram. With this announcement, I may incorporate them into my content plan as with every new feature, Instagram tends to "push it" meaning that the algorithm will reward accounts that utilize new features consistently by exposing their content to more and more people. Second, I probably wouldn't have been so disappointed if the announcement wasn't teased as something that people have been requested for a long time. WHO REQUESTED THIS? Please show yourself.
Many people (myself included) are speculating that this is Instagram's move to compete with Clubhouse. If you haven't jumped on Clubhouse yet - it's a new-is audio-only social media platform where you can join rooms of individuals speaking in real time. It's invite only right now, but it's gaining traction FAST. Whenever a new social media app gains traction, Instagram/Facebook is always not far behind with releasing a feature to directly compete with them. Guys, Mark Zukerberg isn't a billionaire by chance. Instagram/Facebook will truly do anything to stay on top.
All of this to say - is Instagram even listening to its users? Surely Instagram has a team of people dedicated to collecting consumer feedback... Are they purposely ignoring the people who have been loyal for over a decade in favour of profit from advertisers or simply to keep up with trends to keep their market share? Let me know your thoughts in the comments.