With each year, social media marketers like to predict what's going to happen in the next year. Instagram is a huge platform today with over 1 billion monthly active users. There have been many updates in recent times on the platform. And there are several trends both driven by users and some brought up by the platform itself. Here we can see the Instagram trends:
1. Instagram Live streams get longer
Instagram Live which was first introduced in 2016 has much evolved for businesses as well as individuals to broadcast content. Last year i.e. in 2020 there was a spike in usage of Instagram Live mainly for conducting announcements and events digitally. Also, there was an increase in live views by 70% from February to March 2020.
Live videos from one hour have been extended to a maximum of four hours which now appears on the explore page. For example, a Mani-pedi company Olive & June uses Instagram Live runs a 7-day boot camp for users who like manicures or pedicures. They just need to sign up on their website and follow their Instagram Live sessions. This way they try to increase their engagement by introducing new products and keep the audience connected.
How can you use Instagram Live:
* Create shared live streams with other Instagram users.
* Use the Q&A sticker to answer questions your followers ask you.
* Use Instagram Live to promote a product or service.
2. Generate revenue through Instagram
Not Instagram offers you several ways to purchase a product without leaving the app. In 2020, Instagram Shop was extended to businesses who wanted customers to save, purchase and checkout from the app. This feature allows you to add product tags not just on posts but also in stories and live broadcasts. Instagram content creators can receive a 55% cut through video ads on IGTV. The badge feature was launched in order to support content creators during their live streams. While a user watches a content creator's video ads, the users can purchase badges while viewing the video. Badge purchases appear in the comment section and the user can get listed in the creator's list of badge holders which helps unlock a special heart.
How to generate revenue through Instagram:
* You need to set up an Instagram shop for your business.
* Then use product tags in your stories and posts.
* You can partner with content creators (influencers).
3. Short, concise graphics in carousel posts
You can create Instagram graphics with free apps on the internet. A carousel consists of 10 posts and channels use for creating educational posts which can include topics like mental health, relationship advice, health tips, daily hacks etc.
How to use carousel graphics:
* You can pick any topic that you are interested in and create it into slides.
* You can find apps that offer ready-to-go templates.
* Once you create infographics, you can convert them into slides.
4. Educate or summarize with Instagram Guides
Instagram guides were introduced for creating well-being tips. In order to create guides, Instagram worked with companies and content creators to help alleviate the grief or anxiety of users. Since then, Instagram guides have been made available for everyone to be used in a variety of ways.
Instagram guides recommend you products, places and posts. Each guide has a small section available at the top where you can put a short brief or summary of the post. These features are available on your Instagram profile page which is next to the IGTV tab. The Instagram guide is one way to highlight your most important content similar to Stories highlight.
* You need to introduce your product lineup.
* Bring off your favourite businesses in your locality.
* Create informative articles on topics you like.
5. Reel out your moves.
Instagram Reels introduced in 2020 is inspired by TikTok's features where you create short videos with fun music pairings. Instagram Reels allow you to post videos limited to 15 seconds and also allow you to stitch multiple clips together into one video. These videos are usually casual and funny. Reels can be shared if you save the reels videos, it will appear in its own tab in your profile page and will also show up on the Explore page.
How to use Instagram Reels:
* Upload social media content like how-to guides on how to use your products or services.
* Search for a trending meme and create your own version of it.
* Collaborate with an influencer to share how they use your products.
6. Accept an Instagram Challenge
Instagram challenges are not a new thing but have become quite popular during this time of pandemic since content creators have a lot of time in their hands.
Challenges become viral like memes and it follows a set of guidelines or rules. Each post leads to one or more posts and it could become viral.
How to use Instagram challenges:
* You need to find popular video creators creating trending challenges.
* Start a challenge on your own.
7. Support small businesses and nonprofit organization with stickers
Though stickers have been on Instagram for a while, there are new ones that are being continually added. As small businesses are facing a tough time with the ever-changing dining guidelines, Instagram has introduced new ways to help support the businesses.
Each sticker allows a viewer to click through to take an action. Restaurants can promote their go-menus by using the Order sticker. A Donation sticker can be used by anyone to help a nonprofit organization raise funds. You can also use the Support Small Business sticker to support your favourite business.
How to use stickers to support businesses:
* You need to add your preferred delivery service to your profile page to make use of the order sticker.
* You can promote your favourite cause and help the entity reach a fundraising goal.
* You can collaborate with other brands to create a series that helps promote your favourite small businesses.
8. You can be more casual.
There are a lot of challenges you see on Twitter and TikTok. Likewise, creating content for social media during this pandemic is a challenge. You don't need to look professional on Instagram. Sometimes amateur photography, publishing screenshots of tweets and memes can look more relatable and engaging.
How to become more casual on Instagram:
* You can take a fun tweet or a tweet posted by a fan and use that screenshot in your post.
* You can find a popular or trending meme and try to fit your own brand's voice into it.
* You can create and publish a casual video instead of creating a highly professional, well-curated video.
There are numerous trends that keep rolling over on social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram etc and you need to keep monitoring current trends constantly on a regular basis in order to show your audience that you're not afraid to try new things.