• How can your Business make the most of Instagram in 2020?

    Instagram | IGTV Videos

How can your Business make the most of Instagram in 2020?

Last year one of our blogs provided insights into the most effective content and posting strategy for Instagram. Over the past number of months, a lot has changed on Instagram – a multitude of new features have been added, while others have been removed; furthermore, the cultures and conventions surrounding the platform have changed as a result of this. This month’s blog provides an overview of all these features, and allows you to assess if Instagram is a platform that you need to consider for your 2020 digital strategy.

Ask the Question ‘Is My Target Market on Instagram?’

The first thing to consider before adding Instagram to your overall online strategy is whether or not your target market is present on the platform. Instagram is the second largest social media platform in Ireland, but tends to appeal more to a younger audience. 71% of Irish Instagram users are under the age of 35, with the largest age group on the platform being 18-29. If your target market doesn’t fall into this age bracket, you are better off investing your time and money into Facebook; if however, you are looking to reach a younger audience, this platform is the place to be. It is also worth noting that there is a slight female bias of Irish users at 57% female vs 43% male.

71% of Irish Instagram users are under the age of 35, with the largest age group on the platform being 18-29

Tools to Check Out

1. Stories

Instagram stories were first introduced in 2016 as a rival for Snapchat, which was an extremely popular platform at the time. Since then, stories have gone from strength to strength and have even surpassed regular Instagram posts. The fact that Instagram stories garnered around 500 million daily views in 2019 is proof enough that this feature is not going away any time soon. It is now recommended to update your Instagram stories daily, while sharing to your Instagram feed 2-3 times a week is enough.

Some simple examples of how your business could make the most of stories include:

  • Answer your followers’ burning questions with a Q&A session
  • Get your followers talking with an interactive poll
  • Create a countdown to a big announcement or reveal
  • Add some humour with animated gifs and emojis

It is now recommended to update your Instagram stories daily, while sharing to your Instagram feed 2-3 times a week is enough

2. AR Filters

Facebook released its Spark AR Studio in late 2018 but it really exploded in popularity last year with massively viral Instagram story filters such as Arno Partissimo’s “Which Disney Character are you?”. Spark AR Studio allows anyone regardless of their technical background to create augmented reality (AR) effects and filters on their Mac or PC for use on Instagram, Facebook and Messenger.

As Spark AR Studio is still in its early stages, now is the perfect opportunity to become an early adopter of this new technology. AR could create exciting new opportunities for your business on social media such as allowing your followers to virtually “try on” your product before buying, or it could simply provide an opportunity to promote your business in a fun and engaging way, as Australian restaurant chain Taco Bill have done with their Taco Game filter.

3. Shopping

Shopping is still a relatively new feature on Instagram, which allows users to search for products, add them to their cart and checkout without ever having to leave the app. After linking an Instagram Shopping approved online store, you can simply tag the products shown in your photos, which shoppers can then click on and carry out their purchase as usual. This feature is definitely one to keep in mind for eCommerce businesses.

Instragram Ads | Shopping Tag Feature

What’s Trending on Instagram?

1. Authentic Content

The removal of the likes counter on Instagram completely shook the internet last year but this hasn’t affected the popularity of the platform. The freedom from the anxieties that the likes counter induced in some people has actually led to them posting more often and has changed the kind of content being posted.

There has been a recent shift away from “flawless” imagery towards more of a sense of authenticity. The app has been flooded with images of messy workspaces, relatable content and real, untouched people. More and more bloggers are sharing #ImPostingBoth or Instagram vs Reality posts which showcase the highly edited version of themselves versus a more realistic view of how they look in real life. You can adapt this format for your own Instagram content in the form of pleasing product photography followed by more candid “behind the scenes” images on carousel posts.

Instagram | Instagram Posts | The Truth is Not Pretty

2. Text Based Images

As beautifully curated feeds are no longer a must on Instagram, text-based images have also taken to fold in the form of memes, quotes and infographics. There is a current trend of sharing screenshots of posts cross platform, particularly tweets shared on a solid coloured background. This is great news for content creation as it allows you to recycle content from your other social platforms and introduce it to a new audience!

Instagram | Instagram Posts

3. Miro-Blogging

“Micro-blogging” in the form of using long captions on your Instagram posts is another trend that is becoming more popular. People want enough words in an article that the piece is comprehensive but not so long that they lose interest. Micro-blogging is a happy medium in this regard and Instagram can be an ideal micro-blogging platform with a maximum character limit of 2,200. Businesses can use micro-blogging to create conversations, speak their mind or tell a story to their followers.

With 1 billion monthly active users, it’s clear that Instagram isn’t going away anytime soon

Conclusion

With 1 billion monthly active users, it’s clear that Instagram isn’t going away anytime soon and with new and innovative features coming out every few months, there’s never been a better time to really get stuck into the platform. Interested in taking your social media marketing further? Talk to our Digital Marketing manager Jonathan Flynn, who can help you get the very best out of your online strategy.