Algorithms are the mysterious piece of code that curates your entire social media feed.

We all kind of know-how algorithms work—constantly watching and taking into account your likes, comments, shares, and who you follow—putting it all together and showing you a curated feed to your liking. But even for digital marketing experts, it can be a lot, especially when Instagram/Facebook constantly changes and updates their user interface and algorithm. Even TikTok, the new game changer taking the social media world by storm, is somehow still mysterious.

Keeping up with the Algorithms can feel like a marathon. Especially when all of them are different, take Instagram, for example, as one of the first early adopters of the curated feed, following in the footsteps of its parent company Facebook in 2016. Instead of showing followers’ posts in chronological order, Instagram switched to a curated feed system. Well, six years later, Instagram is bringing back the chronological feed! Users will soon have three options for their feed:

NU Media | Algorithms: Always Something New

  • Chronological: Which will show you all the posts as those you follow post them.

  •  Home: This is the way Instagram is now. A Curated feed of what you missed, might want to see, and those you interact with the most.

  • Favorites: this will be a curated list of followers posts you can’t miss! Essentially a curated feed that you create.


These changes allow users to choose how they want to view their feed. It’s also big for marketers!
Who do we have to thank for this? Well, many point fingers at TikTok, which has always had two different feed options:

For You: This is a curated feed that, over time, will show you TikToks specifically tailored to your likes! and one of just those who you follow. In many cases, no two For You feeds are alike!

Following: This is the feed that shows you the new Tik Tok posts of those that you follow.

The Social Media newcomer is disrupting the social scene, causing various social sites to prioritize video content over photo posts. And although Instagram has reels now, the factors that decide what goes viral and what doesn’t are very different.

NU Media | Algorithms: Always Something New
The differences between Instagram and Tik Toks algorithms really aren’t that much. They are pretty similar; It’s more so how the apps work in general. Instagram is a followers game. Posts from those you don’t follow besides boosted ads won’t show up on your insta feed. For brands, more followers usually mean more eyes on your posts.

Whereas with Tik Tok, trends are the name of the game. The trendier the sound or hashtag, the more Tik Tok will boost your video. Also, with Tik Tok, You are shown posts from anyone on your main feed. For brands Tik Toks algorithm sort of evens the playing field allowing your content to possibly be viewed by as many people, perhaps allowing content to go viral easier.

Keeping up with algorithms can be A LOT, especially when there is always something new and constantly changing. But they are here to stay, and NU Media is on the algorithm and trend watch 24/7!

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