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A few days ago, several Instagram users and influencers complained about their accounts being suspended. Many influencers also reported that they experienced a sharp decline in their number of followers and reach. 

On the other hand, Elon Musk’s takeover of Twitter has resulted in blue ticks getting behind a paywall. That means users will now have to pay for the famous blue ticks that were earlier given for free to celebrities, and other known personalities. A lot of these celebrities also used to act as influencers on the platform. 

Additionally, we all remember how TikTok’s exit from the Indian market came in as a rude shock to audiences and especially content creators who had worked hard to scale up and make a name for themselves on the platform. This begs the question that if it is safe for creators to rely on just one platform. 

Aayushman Sinha

According to Aayushman Sinha, Founder of BlackCab and Represent, It’s not advisable to build just for one platform, as there’s no way to guarantee the future relevance of these. “We saw platforms like Clubhouse blow up during the pandemic but it saw an equal loss of relevance in a few months. You can’t lay all your eggs in one basket.” 

Ayush Shukla

Citing similar thoughts, Ayush Shukla, Founder of Finnet Media, stated that it’s not safe for any influencer to rely on just one platform, and he also advised that creators should be present on multiple. “Especially if that is your only source of income. A lot of people understood the value of diversifying after TikTok’s exit. It is dangerous to be dependent on just one platform. You should be on at least two-three platforms, if not all.” 

As per Vivek Kumar Anand, Director - Business and Innovation, DViO Digital, new-age influencers must shift their focus from being social network specific to creating content that aligns with their interest and the audience no matter what platform they are on. He gave examples of creators like Bhuvan Bam and said that although he started as a comedian on YouTube, he is equally famous on other platforms. 

“Nowadays, many new-age influencers focus on consistently creating content, staying on top of trending, and creating platform-first content such as reels and shorts. However, suppose you are doing something because everyone else is doing and focusing on building format-first skills such as transition. In that case, you are building followers more precisely for the platform rather than a fan for yourself. The idea is to go platform-agnostic and content-specific. Instead of the platform first, the focus should be on the content and audience for which you are creating the content and then you should stream to the channels in formats that are true to that platform,” he added. 

Isha Borah

Isha Borah, a fashion influencer, stated, “It’s subjective and it also depends on the type of content that you create. Instagram majorly lets creators put focus on products, photos, short stories, and small videos. So, if a creator is solely into creating content that shows tips and tricks, short skits, styling ideas, and products, then Instagram would be apt for him or her. If a creator is more into creating vlogs, then YouTube can help serve the purpose. Now, if the creator is active on only one platform and God forbid that platform receives the same fate as Tik Tok, then they can think of tweaking their content for the other available platforms.”

“What I want to say is that relying on one platform and being active on it should not be a cause of concern because of the recent happenings on Instagram and Twitter. When Tik Tok got banned, a lot of creators were affected. However, they still made their way into either Instagram Reels or YouTube and are still continuing to showcase their skills successfully,” she added. 

Sharan Hegde

Sharan Hegde, a finance influencer, said being present on different platforms has helped him get through the recent glitches on Instagram. “Some creators, including me, saw a 90-95% drop in reach recently. When we reached out to the Instagram team, they were not able to explain it. I was doing a branded promotion at that time. Luckily, I am on YouTube as well as LinkedIn, so I used my other options. I agree that having a presence on multiple platforms will ensure longevity as a content creator.” 

Prakhar Gupta

Prakhar Gupta, an Instagram influencer, said that the TikTok ban was truly a major loss for users and influencers who had created their own niche on the platform and relied on it as a source of income. “They devoted years of effort behind creating engaging content, and followers which isn't an easy job.  Hence, yes, relying on one platform can be risky hence having a backup plan and presence on multiple platforms would be the right thing to do. Influencers today need to create communities irrespective of the platform.” 

Challenges of being on multiple platforms 

Despite backlashes from audiences and the creator community, platforms like Instagram have been evolving their algorithm constantly and it has been difficult for some creators to keep up with the same. 

In such a situation how difficult is it to create content for different platforms with different audience bases, environment and algorithms while being mindful about the quality of the content. According to some leading influencers, it is a must to understand who the audience is before going out on multiple platforms. 

According to Gupta, influencers of all categories - lifestyle, fashion, travel, fitness etc are now more than ever required to create infotainment content which is not only entertaining but also provides information and encourages their users to consume their content effectively. 

“With algorithms changing every day, the only thing that an influencer needs to focus on is to create content that engages, provokes thought and plays an instrumental role in decision making.  With the growing market and competitors, it is very difficult to be sustainable on all the platforms. I wouldn't advise using similar content on different platforms. For example, the content uploaded to Instagram and LinkedIn or Reddit cannot be similar because users switch between applications to view different content and every platform has its USP. Uploading irrelevant content can definitely affect users' reach and credibility. It is important to stay relevant to your end viewer irrespective of the platform.” 

Anand of DViO Digital said people are not limited to only the big 4 platforms (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram). He said there are many regional platforms out there, such as Moj, Sharechat, and more, launching all the time. As a result, the social landscape has become scattered, and for an influencer to create a following on each channel takes much work.  “An influencer needs to identify where they can find their followers and which format is best to make the content of their interest. Someone with a deep understanding of regional nuances can leverage a platform such as Sharechat, similarly if someone is very opinionated they can take to Twitter, content that needs explanation and a long format can go on YouTube, while fun and trending pieces are best suited for Instagram,” he explained. 

On the other hand, Hegde stated influencers need to be smart with content creation. “I don’t put in extra effort for YouTube, it's the same reels that go there. The best part about this is that I get a different kind of audience on YouTube. Some things that perform well on Instagram might not perform well on YouTube and vice-versa. The audience on YouTube is more mature because they are there for education purposes whereas the audience on Instagram is there to relax and destress.”

Explaining how he manages content creation; he said the algorithms for Instagram and YouTube are very different. “On Instagram, you are given reach in the first 2-3 days after which it slows down. On YouTube the reach stays for around two weeks, you can go viral even after weeks.” 

Fashion influencer Borah said it can be tricky as well as easy to sustain on different platforms, as it all depends on the type of content you make. She explained that some of the most popular vloggers in India not only have a lot of subs on YouTube but also have a huge number of followers on both Instagram and Facebook. The more popular you are, the more people will be keen to know about your lifestyle, your family, and about you. 

“This is one of the reasons why I feel sustaining on different platforms won’t be an issue as long as you are popular on one. You can also segregate the type of content you want to post on different platforms. That being said, it can also be tricky if your content is specific and particularly focuses on a certain type of audience. Using the same content on different platforms can increase engagement if your content is generic and your followers are different on each platform. Instagram is primarily popular among millennials and Gen Z, whereas Facebook has millennials and Gen Z along with a more diverse group of people from other age groups who may or may not be on Instagram. So, when you post content such as a travel video on YouTube and Instagram, you can also share it on FB to make your content available to more people. This can increase the reach of your content,” Borah elaborated. 

Sinha of BlackCab and Represent stated, “Content creators also need to treat their content journey as a full-time job, like a 9-5 ultimately, and in those hours you should innovatively work towards building content for all relevant platforms. Disciplined creators have seen immense growth because of this - look at Ankur Warikoo.”