To keep up with what users want (and its popular step-sister, TikTok,) it seems like Instagram is coming out with a new update or feature every day. Between changing feeds and the heavy push toward video, Instagram has also unveiled tools that help creators make content within the app and keep fans engaged throughout.
While it may feel frustrating to have to keep up with the latest all the time, the good news is that these tools are built to help businesses, creators, and influencers succeed. Taking the time to get familiar with them now will only give you additional tools to build out a strong social media strategy.
Let’s dive into some of the most recent features and how you can use them to increase reach with Instagram.
Increase Reach with Instagram with These Features
Custom Link Stickers
While the link sticker replaced the good ol’ swipe up link a while back, recently Instagram has given us the capability to customize the text that appears on the sticker. This means that now your link stickers become buttons with CTAs!
Now you can be more direct with your calls to action and clearer about where you’re sending users to. There is a character limit so it’s best to stay clear and to the point so that users know what to expect when they click through.
Add Yours Sticker
You share a very important goal with Instagram – engagement. All those GIFs and stickers aren’t there to help make things pretty, they’re powerful engagement engines. The Add Yours sticker in is no different. This sticker allows anyone who comes across it in their Stories to add a picture of their own to a “collection” that can be viewed by tapping the sticker.
You may have seen people sharing images of their pets, their last haircut, or their favorite dish. Businesses can get creative and ask fans to share pictures of products in use, the last time they were at a store, or even how they are using the product right now. This is a great way to increase user-generated content and engagement.
Pro Tip: Try to keep the content easy, like something a fan would already have saved in their camera roll instead of getting up to take a picture. It will increase the number of people who participate!
Collabs are a non-invasive way for brands and influencers to share audiences. When something is posted as a collab, it will be posted to both accounts. The accounts share likes, comments, and engagement on that post.
For brands, the collabs feature opens up a new way to partner with influencers, boost brand awareness, and engage with another community in a meaningful way. You’ll be notified of engagement as you would on a regular post, making it easy to join the conversation.
Pro Tip: Collabs with the right influencers can be a foot in the door of a new market you’ve been trying to reach.
As we know, influencers rule Instagram but working with influencers has been notoriously tough. Especially through Instagram’s crowded inbox. For bigger brands, between fan comments, customer service questions, and collaboration requests, it can be impossible to circle back to someone you were interested in working with.
This new inbox aims to solve that problem. Not only will it streamline conversations, but brands will be able to search for influencers and vice versa. Influencers that have marked brands as their favorites would come up first in the brand searches, immediately creating a list of interested people.
Video Comment Replies
Just like on TikTok, you can reply to comments on Reels with a video. Video comment replies make your content strategy work smarter, not harder. These can help address commonly asked questions in a way that gets delivered to your wider audience instead of replying to the same question over and over. These comments also link back to the original video so are a great way to connect pieces of content such as a teaser video of a product launch and the final release.
Although Instagram quietly rolled out this much-requested feature, it could be a game-changer for businesses that encourage their audiences to use it. Users now have the capability to switch their main feed from the algorithm-ruled feed we know and love to a chronological feed of their favorite accounts.
If followers end up using this feature, it means your content can get better reach from your superfans – the people that love your brand enough to want to stay updated.
One of the draws of Lives is the spontaneity, but this has also been a setback for creators and businesses alike. If fans can’t plan to attend your lives, they will likely miss them. Not anymore! Brands and creators can now schedule times to go live. This will appear on your profile and users can click a button to set a reminder.
Scheduling can be done as far as 90 days in advance which means they can be worked into your monthly strategy. If you have a well-defined plan for the month that includes Lives, be sure to add them into the account so that users can start planning ahead!
Specifically built to help address the issue of credit given where it’s due, Instagram rolled out enhanced tags in content. Now when a user taps a photo to see who has been tagged in it, they will also see the tagged user’s profile picture and even industry or category.
For companies with multiple brands under one roof, advanced tagging could be one way to cross-promote accounts in a more natural way, especially if different brands are grouped together in one image. For organizations that collaborate with speakers, advanced tags can be used to give the speaker more detailed exposure.
Like, Follow, Share to Increase Reach with Instagram
It takes engagement and a lot of planning to grow a social audience. Social media managers are trying to create accounts that people want to follow and these features from Instagram can help create the type of content that keeps people coming back. Of course, to create the bandwidth necessary for strategy and creative ideas, it helps to take the mundane, manual tasks off of the list.
Social media has advanced beyond the need for a simple scheduler. Using a tool that can automate certain tasks to give time back to the team means that they can jump on using them, creating a bigger fanbase, and generating more revenue.
If you haven’t considered consolidating your digital marketing tools, let’s talk about what that could look like.