Social Media Expert, Nick Rogers, Explores The Possibilities And Limitations Of AI-Driven Platforms

Audience Engagement
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With 3.6 billion people logging into social media worldwide— around 49 percent of the entire earth—platforms have never had a wider reach. Savvy social-media-marketers, like Nick Rogers of Pvsted (pronounced as posted ) Media Marketing Agency, have seized the opportunity to promote products like never before, representing various brands and growing the careers of up-and-coming influencers. An increasing part of their role is understanding how AI affects the way that content is promoted.

Nick Rogers, founder of Pvsted Media Marketing Agency.
Nick Rogers, founder of Pvsted Media Marketing Agency.

The 'Value-Based' Algorithm

Rogers, the 22-year-old owner of Pvsted Media, can personally vouch for the power of social media marketing. He dropped out of college in 2017 to pursue his own endeavors and has seen his agency flourish due to the marketing sector's rapid expansion. "The growth and progression feels insane." His particular 'niche' is in working with clients to help them optimize their Instagram pages so that they reach more followers. Since the algorithm changed in 2016, Instagram now works on a ‘value-based’ system, suggesting content that fits with the user’s previous preferences.

Rogers helped Richard Garcia leverage the algorithm to organically reach over 200,000 followers. He says, "Our strategy is centered around helping our clients be genuine people on social media. Avoiding giveaways, fake followers and bots and opting for slow, controlled growth of a real audience that loves them. This is our specialty.”

The Role Of AI In Social Media

“AI in social media is actually one of its most powerful features,” comments Rogers. “People complain that Instagram doesn’t have a chronological feed like the old days. But now, with AI controlling the feed, the algorithms know exactly what you liked in the past and will recommend content that you will probably like NOW and into the future.”

For marketers like Rogers, this is a robust development as it allows him to post content similar to his previous and most popular content. In short, it gives him predictability and consistency. Rogers says that “[his] business is unique in that he doesn’t use much software outside of google suite: Google Sheets and Drive for files, data collection and determining next movers for ad copy and creatives.”

Straightforward And Emotional Content Is King

Rogers advises influencers to keep it simple. The best performing posts normally have a "plain background, basic editing and a strong message conveyed via a relatable story". Researchers recently found that connection trumps all other considerations when it comes to making sales. Connected customers are likely to buy twice as much as their disengaged counterparts within a given timeframe.

Tell Your Story

When it comes to the delivery of the story itself, science points to the importance of character-driven stories, which trigger the release of Oxytocin—sometimes called the love hormone. It encourages us to be more empathetic and cooperative: a marketer's dream.

Listeners tend to 'mirror' the storyteller's emotional state. The ‘mirror neurons’ fire in the same patterns as those of the person sharing the message. Whatever is seen on the screen; people start to feel it.

You Can't Fake It

Of course, for every genuine influencer, there's a story of someone who has duped their audience and feigned success. Reports suggest up to half of all Instagram influencers could be overinflating their accounts with fake followers, with approximately 45 percent of accounts being ‘fake’.

However, AI moderation, and consumers, are getting smarter. Rogers points to examples like the 'Instagram star' who couldn't sell 20 shirts to 2.6 million followers as 'evidence' of the growing sophistication. Without a genuine connection, sales won't happen.

Advice For Would-Be Influencers

Given that AI is here to stay, and the algorithm ultimately designed to help all users, Rogers advises making it work to your advantage:

  • Develop a real relationship with your followers. “There's a reason the biggest influencers and brands in the world are at the top. They understand their audience right down to how they think, dress and communicate. Emulate the likes of Nelk, GaryVee, James Charles and the Faze Clan.”
  • “Ignore those who push ‘growth hacks’ in an attempt to ‘dupe’ the algorithm. There are no shortcuts to success.”
  • “Keep everything simple. Don't try to get too fancy with edits and graphics. Make sure that whatever you do supports the story; not detracts from it.”
  • “Tell relatable, character-driven stories with a message. These are the ones that resonate with listeners.”
  • “Avoid AI-generated captions. People relate better to human input due to the small nuances in text and conversation.”
  • “Ignore those who seem to be 'doing better than you'. This isn't a race; it's a craft. True art can't be rushed.”

At a time when AI, and machine learning, is changing the face of society, it seems that we (humans) are staying much the same. The old sales adage: 'People buy from people', has never been more accurate. The medium might have changed; the algorithm might shift, but without the element of human interaction and emotion, no one is buying.

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