Instagram is a visual network that has traditionally been preferred by artistic organizations with eye-catching visuals to share. Because of the emphasis on imagery, many businesses believe that Instagram is only fit for them if they have a striking product.
However, Instagram isn’t just about amazing photos and well-curated grids anymore. Two months ago, Instagram’s CEO, Adam Mosseri, said that Instagram is “no longer just a square photo-sharing application.” He stated that the platform’s top priority is to engage and that it will concentrate on four major areas: authors, video, shopping, and communication.
For marketers, this information is priceless. It means you’ll be able to develop marketing strategies that align with Instagram’s goals and make the most of the platform’s features. Below are the most important trends and projections that you should consider incorporating into your Instagram strategy.
Instagram has been a popular tool for online selling in past years. It’s not only about brands including direct purchase links in their product posts. There’s a whole online seller network dedicated to selling solely on Instagram.
Four years ago, Instagram introduced a new feature that enabled users to add links to their Stories. Since then, marketers have made great use of this option to include direct product buy links in their Stories. The team at classic gaming site Solitaire Brain, for instance, often shares new card designs from their solitaire games on Instagram. Through this feature, they drove a 5% increase in new subscribers to their site. This trend will continue to expand because it lets brands promote their items while also converting sales.
Last year, in an attempt to assist small companies in expanding their eCommerce capabilities, Instagram made the “View Shop” function available to all marketers. With Shops, brands can offer platform-direct transactions or lead them to their website. Customizable options in Instagram shops help companies make their Shop feel more genuine to their brand.
Instagram Live had a boom once the pandemic struck. People wanted new ways to communicate with one another, and this feature allows regular people to feel close-connected to artists, influencers, superstars, and others. What makes this feature even more appealing to marketers? Adding the ability to purchase items directly from the Lives.
If you’re offering products or services, this is one of the most important trends to get familiar with!
Instagram Stories feature has grown extremely popular among Instagram influencers since its launch in August 2016. As reported by Meltwater, 86.6% of Instagram users share Stories, and over 80% of brands think Instagram Stories has had a powerful effect on their brand and increase followers on Instagram. Furthermore, nearly 90% of influencers use Stories to produce content, with 63% planning to use Stories “more regularly” in the following year.
Many businesses use Instagram Stories to advertise deals, sweepstakes, and challenges, as well as to showcase display or relatively brief video ads. Because Stories are fleeting, they create a sense of urgency, which is excellent for marketing discounts and freebies. Short, engaging, and addicting stories are an efficient medium for brand advertisements and promotions.
To take full advantage of Instagram Stories, you need to have a solid strategy in place. To stimulate involvement, consider using the features given to all users – polls, emoticon sliders, stickers, etc. You can conduct polls to learn more about your customers and their interests in your brand or goods. You can also use polls to get insights into what your clientele wants from your company in the future. Offering your customers a choice and including them in the process improves consumer trust for any brand.
If you have a lot of followers, you should check out the Swipe Up function. Rather than constantly altering the link in your profile to meet your marketing initiatives, you can add links for specific content.
Instagram Carousel Posts
An Instagram Carousel is a post featuring many pictures or videos that can be viewed by sliding or clicking left. You can publish up to ten photos or videos in a single post.
According to Socialinsider, Carousels accounted for only 3% to 4% of Instagram posts in 2017. However, in 2020, we witnessed a 19.44 % increase in popularity. Also, Carousels outperform images and videos, with 1.92 % interaction per post vs. 1.74 % for pictures and 1.45 % for videos.
How to use Instagram Carousel?
- Tutorials are an excellent method to demonstrate the value of the things you sell. Use still photos, short videos, or a combination of both to provide step-by-step explanations on how to use a given feature. Tutorials aren’t only useful in the moment; they’re also worth saving. And because ‘saves’ count into your Instagram interaction metrics, you want users to press that small banner button under your post to bookmark it.
- Education: Instagram descriptions come in handy for lengthy writing and insights, but they lack the visual appeal of an image. When you have a relevant story to offer, create text images and share the content in an Instagram Carousel post. It’s also great for sharing instructional content. Make a set of photos to teach a concept, go over some history, or provide interesting information.
- Spotlight: Make a list of profiles you like, authors you respect, local companies you patronize, or anything else you want to highlight on your account.
- Storytelling: Make a tale in ten slides or less. To tell a story, add a brief slideshow with pictures, text, or a combination of the two. Instagram Carousels can be used to share the progress of a project, the phases prior to a product release, or even the history of your organization.
- Engagement: Make it worthwhile for people to scroll through your Instagram Carousel posts. In the process, inform users to swipe left in your description; studies suggest that posts with “swipe left” generate more engagement than those without.
Instagram Reels has risen in importance like no other option before. Sure, Instagram stories have been a big hit, but Reels takes Instagram to a different extreme. It is among the most famous Instagram trends that people have embraced.
Instagram Reels shares many elements with TikTok, with the added benefit of not requiring users to register a different account. They can perform the same thing as on TikTok without creating a new account.
Reels option allows you to design and explore short and exciting videos. You can use filters, audio, and artistic tools to create multi-clip videos. Instagram reels can be as short as 15 seconds or last up to 30 seconds based on your needs. Some of the top apps for Instagram reels are iMovie, Quik, etc.
Short-form videos are far more effective at capturing someone’s interest and growing your Instagram audience. As an outcome, in a world full of disruptions, short videos can help you deliver your message in a matter of seconds.
Furthermore, the Reels function ensures innovation. You can quickly produce compelling material with a range of editing options. Everyone can have a good time making educative, engaging, and whimsical clips using AR technology, music, timers, and funny filters. The idea is to portray a more humanized and authentic side of your brand.
Without a doubt, Reels are one of the top Instagram trends for 2021. In addition to adding a sense of originality and vitality to your content, these videos are promoted not just through a special tab but also in Explorer, which can do wonders for your visibility.
Instagram TV (IGTV)
IGTV is Instagram’s long-form video tool. Organizations and creators can use IGTV to broadcast pre-recorded videos of a maximum of 60 minutes if uploading from the web and 15 minutes if uploading from the smartphone.
Also, IGTV authors are entitled to the same advertising revenue as YouTube publishers. Consequently, users may find it easier to share videos from YouTube to Instagram. Instagram is likely to roll out more IGTV features soon.
Video creators can leverage video editing technology to increase the quality of their content and its rating. Customers prefer instructive information from their favorite brands to conventional marketing.
In an attempt to lure more content creators, Instagram is now allowing advertising on IGTV. Creators can sell their video content by using this tool. The ad pops when a user clicks on the IGTV video preview icon to watch the full video.
Given the success of YouTube advertisements in between videos, there is no question that IGTV advertisements will be highly profitable and remain popular in the coming years. You can also use an advertising CRM to manage and track your leads.
Instagram allows users to use up to 30 hashtags in a single post. Many social media professionals say that at least 20 should be used per post, and hashtags always were and will remain a trend.
However, there is one area where you should take precautions while using Instagram hashtags. Instagram now penalizes users who use the same set of hashtags in all of their posts. It’s essential to tailor your hashtags to the topic of each post. Use one of the numerous Instagram hashtag generators tools to stay on top of the latest and most popular topics.
During these last few years, Instagram has become one of the most powerful tools for brands and corporations. It is one of the most beneficial platforms for companies because of the large consumer base and the numerous options to target them.
This year promises to be memorable for this social media giant. With so many possibilities at your hand, Instagram is THE network to use to promote your brand and content.