Jessica Nigri is one of the top cosplay creators in the world, with millions of social followers across various platforms, including 4.7 million followers on Facebook.
But during a recent, wide-ranging interview about her new documentary, Nigri told Business Insider that all social platforms were not created equally when it comes to helping her business.
Like many creators and online publishers, Nigri has felt the pain of Facebook’s algorithm shifts over the last year.
“Facebook’s reach has been decimated,” she said, referring to how many people see posts from her page.
While on YouTube Nigri has 1.2 million subscribers (far less than Facebook), it has been the more reliable platform. She said she has moved away from Facebook over the last year, as she and other top cosplayers have seen decreased reach, with external links they post not getting the numbers they used to.
This echoes the broad changes observed by online publishers, which saw Google overtake Facebook as the largest source of referral traffic last summer.
When Facebook put an emphasis on video last year, Nigri said that worked for awhile to boost reach, then began to fall off.
“I have noticed that videos in general are receiving less reach than usual,” she said. “It’s concerning because a lot of people depend on social media to showcase their work and reach new audiences.”
Nigri said it was too early to understand how the latest big Facebook News Feed shift, announced in January, would affect her.
In a blog post about the shift, Facebook exec Adam Mosseri wrote that “Pages” (like Jessica Nigri’s) “may see their reach, video watch time and referral traffic decrease.” However he also wrote that, “Pages whose posts prompt conversations between friends will see less of an effect.”
So for creators like Nigri, it’s a game of wait-and-see.
What’s more worrisome for Nigri is that she now she fears the same thing that has happened over the past year with Facebook is happening with Facebook-owned Instagram. She said she feels that Instagram is starting to restrict reach on creators, though it has not publicly declared a similar strategy shift to Facebook.