5 19 blog

Have you been keeping up with Instagram’s latest updates? 2016 has been a busy year for the popular mobile photo-sharing, video-sharing, and social networking app. Just last week, Instagram overhauled its logo design from the retro-looking camera icon that has held sway on home screens for years, into a new icon vector rendered in a swirl of sunset colors and flat design aesthetic (the Internet was less than enthused about the new look – lots of memes deployed).

In March, Instagram also announced it would be switching over to algorithmic filtering, no longer presenting the pictures in a chronological order. Then in February, officially rolling out support for multiple accounts to its iOS and Android apps, at long last.

While all of these additions are worth mentioning, some updates that Social Media Beast is especially excited about include expanded advertising options. Prior to the launch of new advertising solutions, Instagram functioned purely as a brand-building tool. Last year, thankfully, the app unveiled the option to link to external websites, giving access to more meaningful results that come from the addition of a call to action button at the end of the ad sequence. But that doesn’t suffice for advertisers in search of a full range of direct-response advertising and content marketing: e-commerce, app downloads, lead generation, news and thought leadership, full-length videos, page post engagement, and more.

Instagram is now an end-to-end advertising solution driving real business results focused on three key areas: “Expanding ad offerings to include action-oriented formats, enabling more targeting capabilities, and making it easier for businesses large and small to buy ads on Instagram.” Here’s some way to make the most out of Instagram now that they support more objectives:

Video Views

Tell a story using video. Not only has Instagram increased its video-length limit to 60 seconds (previous cap was 15 seconds), you can also see how many times a video has been viewed. This makes it much easier to measure the impact of that piece of content on a fan base.

What’s more, Instagram’s recent rollout includes swipeable video carousel advertising. This will allow advertisers and business owners to share up to five separate videos with one single purchase. This is an opportunity to create innovative storytelling and pack more content with even more compelling visuals.

Reach & Frequency

Like Instagram stated, “Advertisers also want to target their messages in more effective ways and reach people not just because of their age, location and gender, but because of the people, places and things they love.” This is extremely powerful because we can achieve a solid brand visibility, predictable reach, and greater control over message frequency.

Page Post Engagement

Instagram was one of the most engaging social platforms in 2015, but it is growing so fast that it’s becoming more and more difficult to achieve organic growth.

There’s a continuous decrease in engagement on Instagram due to more brands and other users joining the platform and posting more often. Also, a typical Instagram user now follows more accounts. This means that there’s more content in their feed and makes them miss out on a lot of stuff (hence, the reason Instagram is veering more towards a Facebook-like News Feed). This is the reason Instagram is heading towards becoming much more of a “pay-to-play” platform in 2016. To get people to engage with your content and cut through the noise, you will need to invest for page post engagement.