Every system changes over time depending on the needs of the users as well as what the developers see as fit for the future. One of the platforms that have undergone so many changes in just a short while is Instagram. The social and marketing platform has seen so many changes and I’m proud to say that these changes have made it easier to use and more effective.
Today we look at the trends that you can expect in from this visual platform.
- Better Content Delivery
With over 400 million active daily users of Instagram Stories alone, it goes without saying that more and more people will use Instagram Stories this year.
With more people embracing this feature, Instagram went a step ahead to allow users to link to video URLs (exclusively IGTV). This means if you are a fan of this app, this is the year to get more out of it.
- Sponsored Content to Take Centre Stage
You must have noticed the tonne of sponsored content on the platform over the recent months. Influencers have realized the need for sponsored content, and more of them are using the feature to make sure they get the right people to see their posts.
If you are planning to join this bandwagon, you need to have a budget for sponsoring your content.
- Smaller Influencers are Taking the Day
The year 2019 will see the rise of nano-influencers that are currently taking Instagram by storm. More and more brands are opting for these kinds of influencers due to the deeper connection to their audiences and the high engagement rates they bring to the table.
Brands regard these influencers to be more authentic than their bigger counterparts. Due to this, the influencers have a better rate at converting their followers into customers who are ready to spend.
- Ecommerce Shops to Become Bigger
Gone are the days when shoppers had to get redirected to another site to buy your stuff. With the shopping features that are already in place (shoppable posts), you can easily sell your merchandise directly from the platform to your followers.
We expect to see more developments in this area over the coming few months with the aim of making your selling experience better and the buying experience wholesome.
- The Rise of Instagram Ads
2018 saw millions of businesses investing in Instagram ads to extend their reach. With Instagram fighting hard against bots such as Instagress, many businesses have seen a drop in engagement, which subsequently forces them to invest in ads to enjoy the reach they enjoyed before the depreciation from the algorithm.
To this end, more and more companies are investing in ads to gain the visibility they need to stay relevant in such a competitive environment.
Businesses have various options when it comes to ads – Stories ads, feed ads, carousel ads, video ads and even Instagram Collection ads.
- Bigger Focus on Bio
Writing up a description of your business is going to become a big thing this year. Your bio is where you share what you do, who you are and why people ought to follow you. It represents one of the most vital aspects of your marketing strategy, something that you shouldn’t overlook at all.
Of recent, Instagram has announced that it will soon roll out various ways to present your user profile to the masses on Instagram, which not only will improve user experience but will also help you get more clicks.
- More Offline Instagram Experiences
If the business focuses only on the online experience, then you are being left behind. One of the 2019 trends to look forward to is creating an amazing offline experience.
If you are a business that sells from a physical location, make sure you have offline experiences for customers that visit the store. This would encourage the customers to take a snap and share it on their pages.
- The Rise of Direct Messaging
The age of Direct Messaging is here! The year 2018 saw a huge rise in direct messages. Users were able to send messages, gifs, Stories, voice messages and even share posts.
The DM feature on Instagram has slowly become a robust messaging platform, with many people seeing the feature as an alternative to WhatsApp or Facebook messenger. In fact, the rise in the use of this feature has made Instagram to come up with a standalone Instagram Messenger app though it is now limited to iOS users.
We expect Instagram in 2019 to provide a standalone app, effectively reducing the use of the DM feature on the platform.
- Advanced Measurement Tools
As a brand you need to make sure you know whether you are performing or not when it comes to marketing on Instagram.
If you wish to make your marketing successful on Instagram this year, you need to identify and use advanced tools to measure your performance. You also need to compare your performance against your competitors.
Using measurement tools allows you to know if the marketing strategies in place are working, or if they aren’t, you need to know what areas you need to improve upon.
- Influencer Vacation Experiences
2018 brought to fore an interesting trend among Instagram brands. Previously, the brands would send products to influencers to allow them sample the items and then post what they thought.
Times have changed and now brands handpick their favourite brands and take them on vacation, giving them a chance to try the products and post all about them in a glamorous environment.
The year 2019 will be a great and insightful year for this visual platform. With so many improvements and tools coming up, we are excited to know what kind of trends that the platform will come up with.
These trends aren’t definitive, and the giant platform might spring up some surprises for its users. This is why you need to be on the lookout for the changes so that you don’t miss out on anything good that will come your way. Take time to use the various features to your advantage, both as a brand or an individual.