Yes, Instagram has huge potential for small business owners to boost their efforts in marketing. After all, they are projected to reach 1.2 billions users by 2023! (statista.com). However, Instagram never fails to surprise us, and now, more than ever, keeping up with the new updates can be quite a challenge.
Surely, there’s a new Instagram feature rolled out every week?
“How can a company as big as Instagram, get an update so wrong?”
"Stop being a TikTok copycat."
“Make Instagram Instagram again.”
Over the years, Instagram has updated their app to stay on top of trends and ensure they aren’t overtaken by competitors. In 2013, we saw the introduction of videos as they competed with Vine. In 2016, there was the launch of stories because of the success of Snapchat stories. Here we are, in 2022, with a big push for Reels to compete with the latest, TikTok.
The aim of the changes to Instagram is said to “improve user experience”. However, they are making it more difficult for small businesses to reach their followers and grow organically.
If you are in any social media related job or role, keeping track of the platform is a must. So, we wanted to write up a handy blog post to help you make the most of the new instagram updates...just in case it never reverts back to its original features in the near future.
1. Shift Your Strategy
With some careful, creative marketing, you can still grow your audience and increase engagement with the newest features. Your focus should be on creating high-quality content.
The most used feature in the world of instagram right now is Reels. They are powerful when you want to grab the audiences attention and are a fantastic opportunity to reach wider and more relevant audiences. For example, users who are likely to be interested in your brand or business, will begin to see your content on their feeds, even if they don’t follow you.
Whether it’s by entertaining or educating, it’s obvious that creators and businesses are using this feature to build brand awareness. Though keep in mind, the average attention span in 2022 is 8 seconds (Kings College, 2022), so, quality, quality, quality will have to be one of your top priorities.
2. Embrace the Link Sticker
Sharing links in stories was the best way to share information and/or resources. However, this feature wasn’t made accessible to every user. Before the link sticker was created, Instagram users needed at least 10k followers or a verified accounts to be able to add a link to their story.
Now, whether you have a business or personal account and regardless of follower count, you can share as many links as you want!
3. Be Meaningful
Sounds obvious…but, the way we’re consuming and engaging with content has changed massively.
Instagram still remains a ‘social’ media platform. We have to be SOCIAL!
This doesn’t mean leaving generic comments or emojis on people’s content for the sake of it or to tick “engagement” off your list. It means connecting with the right people, not the most people.
Have conversations with the people you follow and who follow you, respond and interact with stories, build new connections and strengthen current connections, support others by sharing their content.
It’s about being intentional! Start today and your engagement rate will soar!
Being updated about the changes is important. Having said that, using them in your favour to create high quality content and a fresh approach is the key to skyrocketing your business.