Since its first release in 2010, Instagram has evolved from a personal platform for curating images to a nifty branding tool that helps businesses maximize their online presence. But, Instagram is just getting started. The company has rolled out a couple of features that can elevate your social media strategy. What are those features and how can you use them to attract more customers? Read on to find out.
Instagram is one of the essentials for social media marketing strategy, along with Facebook and LinkedIn. The platform grows in popularity among businesses for brand-building purposes as its number of users hasn’t shown any signs of declining.
The numbers don’t lie. Hootsuite reports that there are 1.1 billion active Instagram users every month. More than 500 million of them utilize the platform daily. Instagram is also a perfect tool for businesses that primarily target the younger audience, considering that 71% of Instagram users around the globe are under the age of 35. Instagram amassed a total of $9.45 billion in ad revenues in 2019, according to eMarketer. The platform would continue to enjoy a high double-digit growth—expecting to amass $13.86 billion in ad revenues by 2020.
Recently, Instagram rolled out a couple of features that you can use to enhance your social media marketing strategy further. Here are those features:
1. Branded Content Ad for Social Media Marketing Strategy
The branded content ad allows businesses to collaborate with Instagram creators to advertise products and services on their behalf. With this feature, businesses can promote posts made by content creators as feed ads—reaching target audiences beyond both their own and the creators’ followers. The feature is equipped with inbuilt metrics for businesses to gauge and measure the effectiveness of the campaigns and make necessary changes based on the results.
This feature truly transforms the advertising strategies employed on Instagram since it brings the content creators—who wield tremendous influence over Instagram users—into the equation. Instagram users perceive content creators to be more trustworthy because they are capable of creating more authentic and relatable contents. This ultimately translates to higher engagement rates and better customer conversion rates as compared to traditional advertising avenues. And we have some study to back this up. According to a survey by Ipsos, 68% of people say they come to Instagram to interact with creators.
2. Quiz Sticker in Stories
Introduced on 23rd April, Quiz sticker is the newest addition to Instagram Stories, which businesses can utilize to ask their followers multiple-choice questions. With quiz stickers, businesses can connect and interact with customers to figure out products and services they favor the most.
Starting today, you can use the new quiz sticker in Stories to ask your friends and followers a multiple-choice question. See how well your friends know you. 🤔🙃 pic.twitter.com/a6y1PaOnSY
— Instagram (@instagram) April 23, 2019
Not only that, the quiz stickers allow you to package information about your products and services in a way that piques your followers’ interest. Giving them the liberty to guess or search the right answer to your question ensures that they are engaged, entertained, and have better retention of your products and services thereafter.
More importantly, however, we don’t recommend you to solely rely on quiz stickers to gauge your consumer behavior online. This is because the demographics of respondents are variably not well-defined unlike marketing research in a controlled environment.
3. Horizontal Video on IGTV
Since its rollout on June 20th last year, IGTV has become the major driving force in attracting marketers to Instagram. While IGTV is essentially a standalone application, fortunately, however, it also offers basic functionality on the Instagram app and website. IGTV enables users to upload longer videos compared to Instagram. Thus, it becomes a popular tool for marketers to create unique visual contents.
The new update lets users watch videos on IGTV in horizontal mode, whereas previously, it only supported full-screen vertical videos. This new update significantly improves the user experience in terms of video-viewing, since widescreen view works much better for videos with more intricate shots. Thanks to this new update, viewers can watch videos in much higher resolution. Additionally, users can turn the screen sideways to change from vertical to horizontal mode on their smartphones and vice versa.
4. In-app Shopping Checkout (Beta)
This feature was introduced in early May to several brands and celebrity influencers for beta testing. It essentially empowers content creators to tag products featured on their posts. This allows people interested in some of the products to shop for them on Instagram directly. By clicking on the tags on the post, users will immediately go to a checkout page to make a purchase. According to Instagram, content creators and brands, tagged on such posts, will have access to insights and metrics. Instagram hopes such access can help them measure the performance of the shopping posts.
Instagram is aware that besides keeping up with their social circles, users also explore pages on things they care about. This includes art, entertainment, fashion, and music, among other things. Thus, Instagram is planning to bring this functionality to the mainstream soon. As the feature is gearing up for public launch, we predict that Instagram will quickly rise to the top as one of the most convenient places for online shopping.
The Future of Social Media Marketing Strategy with Instagram
Since 2018, Instagram has been aggressively pushing and redefining the boundary of content marketing with new capabilities to bring brands closer to their target audiences. These new features encourage brands and content creators to build stronger collaborative relationships that mutually benefit both parties—a marketing ecosystem rivaled only by Facebook’s.
As a visually-oriented platform, Instagram recognizably has plenty to offer to further transform the playground for social media marketing. After all, a picture is worth a thousand words. With this knowledge, Instagram strives to harness that as its primary forte through constant rollouts of interactive features.
And to end this post, we are happily looking forward to covering more of them!
If you are looking to increase your social media presence, then look no further than using our services. Script Consultants is a copywriting and content marketing agency that offers a diverse array of content strategies across mediums, including traditional, digital, and social media. Book a free consultation by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, check out our other blog posts on copywriting here!