Digital Marketing

Unveiling the Mystery of Shadow banning on Social Media: Tips to Keep Your Content Visible

Anastasia Michael
5th July 2023
4 minute read

Have you noticed that your social media content is not getting the same attention as before?

Have your views, likes, and overall engagement dropped? Chances are that you might have been shadow banned. Whether you are a marketer or content creator, this can be frustrating and discouraging, especially when your content was doing so well. What exactly is shadow banning, you might be wondering. This blog will unveil what shadow banning is and how to avoid it.

What is Shadow banning?

Hootsuite explains that shadow banning is when a user is muted or blocked on any social media platform but won’t get any official announcement from the platform itself. If muted, you can still create and post content, but none of your followers will see it; it’s like creating content for the void. Your content and comments are hidden, and you won’t appear in searchers.

Even though you may not have violated any community guidelines that might cause you to be banned altogether there is that the moderators and admins didn’t like about a specific piece of content you posted, even if it is something small. Unfortunately, since there is no official report, you can’t make an appeal to revoke it.

However, social platforms such as Instagram and TikTok argue that shadow banning is not a thing and it doesn’t happen on their platforms. Even so, the CEO of Instagram, Adam Mosseri, when asked about shadow banning he insisted that shadow banning doesn’t happen on Instagram.


How to know if you have been shadow banned

Even though platforms deny the possibility of shadow banning, here’s how you can find out if your account has been shadow banned.

  • Your account doesn’t show up in search: Try searching your account just like your followers would; type in search your username or hashtag (if you have one associated with your account) and see if you show up.
  • Drastic drop in engagement: As mentioned before, if your engagement has dropped dramatically in the last few days or weeks, such as fewer likes, comments, shares and follows.
  • Specific features are unavailable to you now: All of a sudden, some features on the platforms are not working anymore, but when asked around, you are the only one having this issue.



Hootsuite states that another possibility for being shadowbanned is that you might be posting low-quality content, behaving like a bot (spamming likes and comments) or spreading misinformation. These are deemed not appropriate or are not up to the platform’s standards.



How to avoid getting shadow banned 

Being cautious of shadow banning might save you a headache and your account’s/brand’s social media strategy. Here are tips to have in mind to avoid this situation.

  • Community Guidelines: Avoid violating community guidelines! This might be obvious to you, but reviewing community guidelines from time to time will keep them fresh in your mind. So, the next time you create your content, you will avoid hate speech, nudity or misinformation. However, if you are posting content that is not safe for your audience but is not mentioned in the guidelines, there is also a risk of being banned.
  • Don’t act like a bot: If you think following many people in a short time frame, spamming likes and comments or using too many and irrelevant hashtags is a great strategy, then think again! Platforms consider this bot-like behaviour and will likely ban you. The same goes for banned hashtags!
  • Consistency is key: If you are a long time in the game, you know this is the number one rule to run a successful social media account that converts. Take into consideration the best time to post on each social media platform. Meta business suite for scheduling content directs you to which days your followers are most active and encourages you to post those times and days.
  • Don’t buy likes or followers: Social networks always encourage authentic content, and don’t like it when you buy fake followers and likes. If you do so, the algorithm will not be in your favour, and you may get shadow banned.


To wrap up

To conclude, simply posting consistently and creating valuable content that will keep your followers engaged will avoid shadow banning and be essential for a successful social media strategy.

In the unfortunate event of being shadow banned, try and review your hashtag strategy, remove any content you think belongs in the grey area of the community guidelines, and stop posting for a few days until you come back with a more robust social media strategy.

Contact Us

Let’s get the ball rolling.

Get A Quote

We are passionate about innovation, ideas and experience. Tell us about yourself and your project and we can start the ball rolling.