10 Advanced Instagram Features You Should Know on Instagram’s 10th Birthday
Happy birthday Instagram! We are celebrating this occasion by sharing with you the advanced features you should know if you want to make the most out of your Instagram activity.
In honor of it’s 10th birthday this month, the social network has released several new features:
- Stories Map provides a look at the locations you tagged in your Instagram Stories over the past three years.
- A range of different icons for the app, available for iPhone users who want to customize their home screen or miss the original Instagram logo.
- In-stream shopping for IGTV in the form of a shopping bag icon you can add to IGTV videos. A similar shopping tab for Reels will also be coming soon.
Unfortunately, these new features are quite minor and are not going to revolutionize your Instagram experience. We would like to use this opportunity to look at the Instagram tools that are important for your Instagram marketing success. In honor of this landmark birthday, here are the 10 advanced Instagram features you should know and employ as part of your Instagram Strategy:
1. Live Video
Broadcasting live to your followers is a powerful way to capture their attention. Going live takes just a couple of steps from the Instagram stories camera. When you stop recording, your video will disappear as soon as the stream stops. While you’re live, use pinned comments to frame the video and let everyone know what’s going on — a pinned comment could also be a great way to encourage interaction and responses from your audience. When someone you follow starts a live video story on Instagram, you’ll see “Live” under their profile photo in the stories bar (and you may also get a notification)
Want to boost your Instagram strategy? Start posting IGTV videos and invest in developing this channel. More and more Instagram users are watching videos on the app. Therefore, IGTV is a way to gain more chances to appear on the Explore page. This Instagram feature allows posting long-form video content of up to 10 minutes and make a running video series.
3. Location Tagging
Adding a location to an Instagram photo or video is a good way to let your followers know where you are, so they can find your business. But you should also know that Posts and Stories with a tagged location result in higher engagement. It’s a way for people to discover you not only when searching for accounts or hashtags, but while browsing places around them.
4. Sharing to Stories
You already know that sharing content from others is an integral part of your Facebook activity. On Instagram, you can not share directly to your grid, but you can share them to appear as your story. Not only is this a great way to showcase content that you like, but it’s also a way to reach out to new followers, as people whose posts you share get a message in the DMs.
5. Interactive Stories
The more interactive your stories are – the better. Use them to make polls, quizzes, and, of course, Q&As. Check out the pre-made layouts offered by Instagram or find templates in apps like Canva.
6. Story Stickers
Stickers are little features meant to make your stories more engaging. It’s a good rule of thumb to try out all these options and find the ones that work for you best. Pay special attention to stickers specially designed to boost businesses, like Small Business Recommendations, Food Deliveries, etc…
7. Shoppable Tags
If you sell physical products, you can turn Instagram into a direct sales channel by connecting your catalog to an Instagram shop. You will then be able to tag items in your Instagram posts or stories, and give your visitors an opportunity to buy them while browsing your account.
8. Scheduling through Creator Studio
It’s important to be spontaneous and authentic on Instagram, but that doesn’t mean you can’t make life easier by scheduling some of your content ahead of time. Connect your Instagram and Facebook accounts through Facebook Business Manager and start utilizing the Creator Studio Interface to work like a social media pro.
9. Special Characters
Using bold or italic font on Instagram probably won’t cause a spike in your sales. But adding more flair to your captions or bio can make people notice you – and that’s valuable. There are several ways to do this – copy and paste special characters from WORD or look for sites created for this purpose that will turn any text into various fonts you can paste into Instagram.
Use the Highlights feature creatively to showcase your best content, connect with followers, and introduce your products. Don’t neglect this important part of your account that can be much more than a collection of your past Stories. Consider visitors who will get a first impression of your business by going through the highlights and think of the messages you’d like them to get.
These Instagram features are what pros on the network are using to stand out and reach their audience. Have we forgotten any tools every marketer should know? Tell us in the comments.