article by Marisa D. Aceves
While you may be hesitant to adopt Instagram marketing, it has incredible potential to transform your business. Connecting with your customers is more important than ever before. Applying these new marketing trends will help you produce the right content to increase retention, reach new audiences, educate, and delight.
Lookout Instagram Tiktok’s here to take your crown. Tiktok has surpassed Instagram and Facebook in global iOS and Android downloads. Hold on, don’t say goodbye just yet. With 81% engagement, Instagram is still the second-most popular social media platform. Innovative influencer marketing, over 2 million monthly advertisers, and plenty of new features still make it a great place to connect, build brand awareness and increase leads and sales.
What does this mean for you? Let’s check out the latest Instagram marketing trends to help your business shine.
1. Influencer Collaborations
Research statistics predict at least 67.9 percent of companies with more than 100 employees will use influencers to help sell their products and services. Many established businesses experience a phenomenal boost in sales like Lynda and Audible. Suggesting influencer collaborations should be your top go-to marketing strategy.
So how can you use Instagram influencers to achieve similar results?
Before you create your first influencer campaign:
- Know the audience you are trying to reach.
- Understand the purpose of your business. Who do you serve?
- Are sales your top goal, or are you trying to raise brand awareness?
- What kind of product are you planning to launch?
- Which influencers are a good fit for your business?
- Do you have a large advertising budget or a limited one?
- Make sure you use real influencers. Keep in mind not all influencers are reputable. Before you decide to create your first campaign, you need to make sure your latest influencer is genuine. Use saas companies like Smartfluence to help you find the best influencers for your business. It uses AI-powered analytics to analyze the audience data on each influencer. In addition, you will uncover valuable information on their audience credibility and reach.
When creating your next influencer campaign, make sure you use your goals to help you make all your decisions.
Do you want to increase your Instagram engagement, then create more videos? Video is still the most popular form of content for the majority of marketers. Even if your brand receives the type of engagement others wish they had, including video as part of your marketing strategy will help you increase it. 86% of customers claim that video content greatly influences their purchasing decisions.
Using the Story feature can help you optimize your engagement through polls and so much more. According to a recent Social Insider study, brands posting up to five stories a day provide a retention rate of 70%. Creating short, entertaining video bursts to build brand awareness and share company values is another way to gain engagement. The Reels feature, an answer to Tiktok, allows anyone to become a creator on Instagram. You can instantly share your reel with your audience of followers by posting it to your company feed.
Targeting Local Audiences
Another way to reach new customers is through selective targeting.
A recent Statistica report reveals that investment for location-based marketing will increase from $12.4 billion to $31.5 billion in 2022, making it a valuable addition to your marketing arsenal. You can target a local audience by selecting influencers from a specific geographic location. Often, this is a location that covers an upcoming event or area of your store. For instance, your company may pay a Dallas, Texas influencer to create an Instagram Story or Post marketing products for sale at your stores in Dallas, Texas. Micro-influencers are perfect for this type of marketing. They have social media influence in a narrow niche. In exchange for money or products, they can market your goods and services to their audience, which is a great way to expand your reach and sales. Geo-tagging makes this concept even easier. On Facebook and Instagram, you can effortlessly geo-tag your content targeting audiences in specific locations.
Due to its educational value and popularity among Youtube influencers, podcasting is on the rise. People love podcasts because you can listen to them while working. Constant exposure to blue light has affected viewership, so eyes-off podcasts are the perfect solution. Are you still unsure about whether to add podcasts to your marketing strategy? Then check out these encouraging statistics. In 2021 15 billion hours were spent listening to podcasts. A recent podcast study by Forbes shows that 54% of people were more willing to purchase when hearing an ad. Predictions for the year 2024 estimate there will be up to 100 million U. S. podcast listeners. Now you know why most marketers view podcasting as a vehicle for current and future marketing campaigns. Have you decided podcasting is for you? If so, then consider these tips for podcast promotion through Instagram.
- Add your episode link to your Instagram Bio.
- Since Instagram uses hashtags to help people find information on specific topics, make a podcast hashtag.
- Use targeted posts to announce your upcoming podcast.
Creating Relatable Content
Gone are the days when Millenial Instagram users would slave away trying to create the perfect Instagram feeds. Viewers crave authentic, filter-free connections. If you want to endear yourself to your audience, share when appropriate your good times and bad.
When you create guidelines or goals for your audience, make sure that they are achievable. Showing your humanity creates feelings of safety, trust, and camaraderie among your audience.
With constant exposure to current technology, audiences have less time or patience for long-drawn-out videos. Tiktok increased in popularity because it offered a wide variety of entertaining and educational content in a series of short video bursts. On Instagram, Stories and Reels are a perfect way to make short videos building your brand awareness or announcing upcoming sales and offers.
These features are perfect for targeted influencer marketing and have generated a generous amount of exposure in likes and views.
Instagram Stories and Reels
The Stories and Reels features have been increasing in popularity since their initial inceptions.Instagram Stories allows you to share short videos and images with your followers. You can add stickers, filters, and timestamps to your story to create desired effects. A recent report by Sproutsocial says 33% of brands are responsible for the most viewed stories. At least 36% of businesses use Instagram Stories for product promotion. 93% of marketers in the U.S. plan to use it more frequently in their marketing efforts. If your want to reach the Millenial and Gen Z crowd, 25% find products and services through Stories.
The Reels feature is the Instagram answer to Tiktok. Like its competitor, it allows you to share short, 15-second videos with your audience. Add sounds and effects if you like. You can also share the videos with a larger Instagram community through the Explore page. The difference between Reels and Stories is that Reels offers more editing tools. Reels also give you the ability to combine multiple videos with smooth transitions using the align mode. All Reels are video content, not pictures. Curious about the impact of using Reels for your marketing efforts, then read on.
- The NBA used Reels to achieve 22% higher engagement than their standard, informative posts or Stories.
- Louis Vuitton reports all of its Reels to go Viral.
- Red Bull France regularly receives 2.4M views.
If you want to improve your viewer engagement and brand awareness, create Reels including content your audience already values.
Shops and Shopping Features
The Covid-19 pandemic affected many businesses, plunging their lucrative sales into oblivion. To address this problem, Instagram debuted Insta Shops. With this feature, your potential and existing customers can directly purchase products and services from your profile. Additionally, Instagram added many other tools compatible with Insta Shops like Shoppable Posts, Collections, and Live Shopping to create the seamless shopping experience you get on e-commerce sites.
You can drive traffic directly to your website via the Product Detail Pages included in your shop or utilize Checkout customers can make an in-app purchase. The possibilities for creative and lucrative marketing are endless. Include this new feature in your Instagram marketing plan and increase your chances of making a sale.
Mult-channel Marketing campaigns
While this is an article focusing on Instagram, adopting other compatible platforms will increase your ROI. Businesses that use this marketing strategy gain 91% customer retention. The brands that use multi-channel marketing, at least 50%, claim that it helps them achieve their financial goals. If your engagement on the social media platforms you use is strong, you can gain up to 6% more profit. Multi-channel marketing includes multi-devices as well. People are constantly switching devices throughout the day. Therefore they respond best to reliability. A recent study found that approximately 60% of millennial buyers expect brand consistency shopping on mobile, laptop, or tablet. While multi-channel marketing can seem like a complicated process, once you correctly set up your channels, you can begin to reap the benefits of an efficient, automated sales funnel. If you decide to use this as part of your marketing strategy, make sure you focus only on the platforms where your audience engagement is high enough to make your efforts worthwhile.
Fishing for vanity metrics to grow your Instagram following will never do. When you create your brand, express who you are and what is important to you. That is what authenticity is all about. Instagram followers crave authenticity, honesty, and integrity. Effectively delivering your unique brand message is one of the keys to helping you create a profitable and sustainable business. You can create relevant experiences with the online community you build. Real, genuine human connections make carefully curating content that moves your audience to action an enjoyable experience. So have fun with your brand and reap the rewards. Your followers need to relate to your struggle and feel connected before they buy. If you want to make those valuable connections, you have to put in the work. Sara Nicole Landry, a successful blogger who grew her audience from 70k to 1.7 million, suggests you dedicate at least 4 hours every day to community engagement. Commenting, replying to direct messages, responding to viewer posts, and engaging on other pages are all ways you can create stronger connections. Supporting others, she says, builds trust. People start to believe in you and your message. Sharing tips and tricks, style choices, or a new pet adoption can make it easier for your audience to relate to you. When your followers get value and meaning from your posts, they are more likely to share them with their followers. So put an extra effort into creating sharable content.
What is a microbrand? Microbrands are small businesses that operate only in a specific location or niche. While more established brands like Nordstrom and Target market to a broader audience, microbrands use direct-to-consumer marketing. They use social media ads and advertising on podcasts to build their audience. Experts in creating strategic, hyper-focused content and campaigns, microbrands excel at creating a dedicated, engaged following. Instead of selling to the masses with an overall generic voice, they use personalized marketing to speak directly to their audience. While their audience may be significantly smaller than established brands, they resonate with them by appealing to their concerns, hobbies, interests, and values. With this information in mind, you should focus your efforts on a local market instead of a large international one.
Nano influencers are influencers that focus on a niche market but only have around 5,000 followers. When you create your next marketing campaign, consider using their social media expertise. Their mini-communities are smaller yet more engaged than your average influencer or celebrity. Surprisingly, nano-influencers connected with at least 8.7 percent of their followers.
The Unpolished/Unfiltered Video
According to a study conducted by the Guardian, simple stories minus complicated filters and fancy editing get the most responses. The intense amount of time it takes to produce professional video content is a waste of time and effort. While Instagram Stories bring in more followers than standard picture posts, the staged look is out. Gen Z audiences have traded manufactured experiences with everyday relatable occurrences, often making unedited films straight from their phones. Now you can relax and stop over curating your page.
When it comes to planning your Instagram strategy, content reigns supreme. You need to create engaging content to help your business succeed. While there are plenty of new content marketing tools to help you do this, the last thing you need to worry about is overproduction. Audiences today respond more to unfiltered content instead of the slick, edited videos that were popular two years ago. Even though production is not as much of an issue, creating; eye-catching, meaningful content which tells a story should be a top goal. Instagram viewers have a keen sense of what content is authentic and what influencers stage. Your brand has to make sure you create with honesty and integrity. Fitness entrepreneur Haley Madigan includes quality, visually appealing posed and natural photos of herself in posts. She wants her audience to see her Instagram feed is more than the typical impossible-to-achieve fitness results. Which helps her better connect with her audience.
Marketing Using Memes
If you spend any length of time on the internet or social media, you probably know what a meme is. Memes are an easy form of cultural expression present long before The Selfish Gene author, Richard Dawkins, coined the term in the 1970s. The first known meme showed up in a Pompeii ruin in 70 AD. Today, we use memes to give advice, tell a story, for entertainment, etc. Many types of businesses use memes effectively in their marketing. Brands like Bark Box, Apple, and Ruffles choose to target their customers with memes that appeal to their sense of humor. For instance, when Apple began selling AirPods, it used this widely shared meme created from a picture of a 17th-century painting of the queen knighting a subject.
The popular tweet illustrates the new Airpod user introduction into the 21st century. As the demand for Airpods began to soar, they started to sell out in most stores. While not all marketing campaigns will experience this level of success, a strategically used meme can increase your target audience and sales. While memes are inexpensive, relatable, and encourage community engagement, you have to make sure the ones you use fit your brand voice. Sure, memes can be hilarious and timely, but marketers have to be careful. Using the wrong memes can offend or alienate your audience. A pro tip for using memes is to research your target audience. Get to know what is important to your community. What issues keep them up at night? When posting your meme, leave out a call to action(buy, like, or subscribe).
With the demand for authenticity, fundraising has increased in popularity. A response to the financial devastation of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Instagram Social Fundraising feature allows users to create fundraisers for their favorite causes. When it came out in July 2020, Instagram and Facebook users raised an impressive $100 million in pandemic aid. Recent discussions about racial injustice fuel users to utilize social fundraising for activism as well. Including fundraising in your marketing efforts allows you to use your business to do good. You can share with your audience what issues are close to your heart. These days, Instagram users look for brands with a social conscience. So show your audience and the world you have a human side. Give back.
More and More influencers and brands are growing comfortable with sharing stories with their audience. Enter the trend of using Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to create longer content. Stories help your audience to better engage with your content. By reading and commenting on your relatable microblogs, they feel more connected to your business. The new Instagram Guides feature makes it easy and fun to share long-form content with your audience. With Instagram Guides, you can create scrollable content in the form of slides. If you like sharing tips, tricks, and advice, then this feature is for you. While Instagram made this feature specifically for health and wellness supporters and professionals at the start of the pandemic, now, all users will have access to this invaluable feature. The flexible format allows you to provide guidance, create visual stories, and whatever moves you. For marketers, this also means you can share mini-blog posts with content at all stages of the buying process.
Keeping up with the latest Instagram marketing trends can seem like an intimidating process. You may not have time to use them all at once. However, employing a few of these tactics in your social media marketing strategy will increase your chances of connecting with your audience and generating new leads and sales. By breaking each marketing suggestion down into bite-sized, doable chunks, you can avoid indecision and begin to take action. So say yes to the new. 2022 could be your best year yet! Take charge of your future and dare to change the face of your business.
Meet The Author
Marisa D. Aceves
Hello, my name is Marisa D. Aceves. I’m a forever curious B2B freelance writer, artist, and marketer. When not slaving away in the studio, I enjoy sharing marketing strategies, SEO tips, and tools and technologies. Follow my blog and receive my latest tips on art marketing, digital marketing, and business software reviews.