Instagram New Features and Trends for 2020
The year 2020 has brought a lot of changes in our life as well as on social media. A lot is happening in the social media industry right now.
Despite all the things, Instagram doesn’t seem to be stopping. They have launched many new exciting features in the current year. Instagram has come up with some of the major features such as Instagram Reels to some of the small but very much useful updates such as pinned comments and a lot more.
We will see all the features and Instagram trends in a single place. Read it carefully because you are also going to get some secrets tricks and tips to use.
Let’s talk about one of the major features first - Instagram Reels. It’s a feature inside Instagram that allows you to create, edit, and share short videos.
You can access the feature by going to the explore page on Instagram. The feature was first launched in India when the Indian government banned TikTok. Instagram took the opportunity and launched Reels for Indian users.
In a recent update, Reels is made available for all the users in the world. You can create short videos of 15 seconds. Just like TikTok, you can add audio, use the AR effects, and also adjust the speed. Further, Reels also has a feature to set the timer and the countdown.
Not to mention you can align the videos. It allows you to line up all your clips/objects to create a transition video or to add other people to your Reels.
You can surely record the clips one by one or you can record the complete video in one go.
It’s quite new and almost similar to TikTok. If you want to watch another Reel, you don’t need to tap or swipe right like Instagram stories. Instead, you can swipe up for the next Reels. Now, it does feel like TikTok, right?
Unlike TikTok, you can’t share Reels outside Instagram. The sharing features are like IG posts. One can share the Reels in their stories or they can DM it to other users.
Tips on Using Instagram Reels
It’s a major update done by Instagram. Instagram seems to be pushing Reels videos more than anything else. So, if you have not yet made the Reel, you should surely try one.
You can also add the audio or add the AR effects. If someone clicks on the audio or the effect, your Reels will be seen in that particular section.
Make sure your account is public if you want all the users to see it. Instagram will follow the privacy settings even in Reels. So, if your account is private, it won’t be shown to anyone except your followers.
Don’t forget to use Hashtags for better discovery. Hashtags work perfectly well in Reels. Once you share a Reel, it will appear on your profile. You can surely remove it if you want.
If you have not yet made a Reel, create one now. It might give you a decent reach with ease. You can create a Reel from the same place you create your story. Alternatively, you can click on the Camera button on the top left corner on the home screen. If you can’t see it there, make sure you have updated the app. If you can’t see it even after updating the app, you can wait for a while as it may take some time for the update to roll out for everyone.
Pinned comments are something that you can use as a creator as well as the user. You can pin three comments on your post. You can either hold the comment and the pin option would be on the top bar. Alternatively, you can swipe the comment and you will see the Pin option directly in the thumbtack. You are allowed to pin up to three comments.
The pinned comments appear on the top (of course). Along with this, pinned comments will also be seen directly from the feed. In simpler words, the user can view the pinned comment without opening the comment section. While scrolling the feed, if they came across your post, they will directly see the pinned comment below the post.
Most people who are active on YouTube will be knowing about this feature. The only difference here is that you as a creator can pin up to three comments.
Tips on Utilizing the Pinned Comments
Just like Reels, Instagram is pushing accounts that are using their new features. So, make sure you pin the comments.
You can ask your users to comment on your post to win the “Pinned” reward. For instance, you can say “Comment something valuable and get a chance to be pinned.” It will encourage your users to comment.
As a user, you should try to get your comments pinned. The pinned comments are the most liked and view comments. Many users will open your profile and might even give you a follow. So, it will give you a decent reach.
You can even use it as a business. You can find relevant businesses that have a similar audience as yours (not your competitors). Comment something valuable or entertaining (depending on the business you have). As they are not competing against you, they might your comment and you will get decent reach.
Even if they don’t, it surely increases your brand awareness. All you need to do is make sure not to spam. Some of the creators also pin the first three comments irrespective of what the comment is. You can take full advantage of it by turning on the push notification.
Did we just ask you to turn on push notifications of someone’s page to be on the top commentator's list? Well, you can use the same strategy for your IG handle too. Add caption or outro in your video that says “Leave a comment in first 3 minutes to get pinned”. If you have decent followers count or impact, people will turn on the push notifications to get pinned. Further, you can also ask them to comment something relevant. In this way, they will read/watch the complete post before commenting.
DM me Stickers
The next Instagram feature is DM Me stickers. You might have seen some of the people already using it. It allows your followers to instantly start a conversation. Yes, it is just like what the name says.
You can leverage it to get more messages. The simple sticker seems to be a lot more effective than you think. Many agencies are already using it. You can use it to get feedback about your brand.
Also, it helps you to connect with your followers. Of course, engagement is the primary thing that increases trust and brand credibility. It’s super simple yet effective.
Tips to use DM Stickers
- Ask users to give feedback
- Use it like a poll or a survey
- You can use it to improve your products. For instance, you can post something like “What’s the thing that you would like to see in our product?”. And then, you can add the DM Me Stickers.
- Don’t neglect it by thinking it is just a DM sticker. The sticker will surely increase engagement.
Talking about stickers, there are few more stickers introduced by Instagram. You can use the support stickers. There are many stickers here.
One of them allows users to share their favorite businesses in their stories. Not to mention, the sticker also allows you to tag the business. It is a way to boost small businesses as the economy is crumbling and many small businesses have already lost a fortune.
The next is a donation sticker. The sticker is for the fundraiser. You can use the sticker to raise the fund with the eligible non-profit organization. All the payments are handled by Instagram. As a result, there is no fee and the organization will get all the money that the user donates. No more third-party fees.
Further, Instagram also added the food order and the gift card stickers. You will need to have a business account to use one of those. You can use it in the stories.
Tips to use Stickers Effectively
Don’t use all the stickers (Of course). You can ask your users to use the stickers and tag your business.
As a user, you can always help small businesses by sharing their stickers. Even one sale might be enough for a falling business. If any of your friends have started a new business, make sure you give them a shoutout with the sticker. Also, don’t try to use the sticker in any spammy way.
All these have been very much useful for small businesses.
Talking about business, Instagram shopping is the best thing Instagram introduced. It’s pretty old now and most of you might already be knowing about it.
Due to the global pandemic and lockdown, shops are closing. It had become very difficult to sell for the people who didn’t have a website yet.
They can leverage Instagram shopping. The users can see the products and buy them directly from there.
As a business, you can add products and create a catalog. It makes a lot of things easier and faster.
Instagram will automatically recommend the products depending on user activities.
You will see a shopping bag inside the navigation bar. Just click on it and you will see the complete list of awesome products.
Using Instagram Shopping to get more Sales
The same rules apply here that apply to any eCommerce business.
The main thing is to use proper high-quality images for your product. Further, you need to add a description of the product in the best possible way.
That’s pretty much all the things you need to do.
Badges and Ads for Creators
The number of creators is increasing on Instagram. There are many artists, music composers, editors, professionals, digital content creators, etc who are using Instagram.
With that, Instagram Live has recently gained a lot of popularity. People are using it for collaboration or using it as a way to connect with the audience.
The creators spend a couple of minutes in the live sessions and can connect with the audience. Now, IG has come up with badges. Users can purchase the badges from the live stream. Of course, the creator will get the money when users buy a badge.
Further, Instagram has come up with the idea of inserting ads on IGTV. They will also share the ad-revenue with the creator. Just like the users see an ad before watching the YouTube video, users will have to see a 15-second advertisement before they watch the IGTV video.
This is a great way to support small content creators. If this becomes a success, Instagram might be the new career option for many creators just like YouTube.
Should you rely on this Feature?
Ads seem to be a great source of income for beginners. However, you should not completely rely on ads. You should surely find another source. Your end goal should be creating a personal brand as a creator. The long-term goal will help you not only in generating income but will also help you to build your company in future.
To conclude, these are some of the brand-new features and trends on Instagram. It is highly recommended that you use all the features introduced by Instagram. As these are new features, Instagram will boost the posts to reach the maximum number of people. Therefore, you should use a maximum of these features.
All these features will encourage creators to post more content and be creative with their content. Also, the business feature will take Instagram to a whole new level. To use it effectively, make sure you follow all the Instagram best practice such as theming your content, using proper hashtags, engaging with the audience along with the new features. Combining the new features along with the old practice will grow your IG account.
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