Instagram can be a powerful tool for reaching your target audience, generating new leads, and ultimately increasing your revenue. If you’re new to the platform and overwhelmed, or are confused by the constant updates, you aren’t alone. Social media changes so quickly, and Instagram is often at the forefront of those changes. While this is great for keeping their users from getting bored, it’s not always great for small businesses who are trying to keep up.
Today we wanted to share with you the multitude of different post types, what each is, and how you can use that post type to achieve your goals.
Before we dig in, if you’re confused by any of these types of posts, the best way to figure it out is to experiment on Instagram by heading to another user’s profile and watching their stories versus their other reels, versus their carousels. Familiarize yourself with the tools available to you before you go any further.
If you’ve been with Instagram for a while, you know the platform started as a visual feed. You would see one image/video and a caption and that was it. It would sit on your profile for viewers to see forever if they pop over to your profile. It was simple and effective. Today, this is still a posting option, and it can work well. The key is using it not as your only way of posting, but as a piece of the puzzle.
Instagram actually prioritizes users who use their new posting options. That means you’ll be able to get in front of more viewers when you use tools other than just a traditional Instagram post. If you only ever use individual traditional posts you’ll be missing out on opportunities to increase your engagement and reach within the app.
A carousel is the closest post type to a traditional post. The only difference is you’re able to use multiple images or videos in succession and viewers can scroll through them one at a time. This is a great way to keep users engaged and provide them with more opportunities to save or like your post. People are far more likely to stop and scroll through your images to make sure they aren’t missing out on an entertaining or instructive piece of content.
Carousels are especially powerful when used to provide inspirational content, how-to posts, or story-telling. With the ability to include up to 10 images, that’s 10 opportunities to draw people in. Use them wisely!
Over 500 million people view Instagram stories every day. Let that sink in. Half a billion people are using Instagram stories daily. If you haven’t been using stories, now is the time to rethink that strategy. What are they though?
Instagram Stories allows Instagram users to share photos and videos to their “Story.” A story is visible to followers of the user’s Instagram account- and to specific users that the Story’s sender follows. Instagram stories were made to compete with Snapchat, so posts are ephemeral, meaning they disappear after 24 hours. Another caveat is that you only have 15 seconds per story to share what you’re looking to share. You can combine multiple stories though to get your message across.
It’s no secret that video content is king online these days. Instagram Stories allow users to harness video in unique ways and engage their users like never before. Plus, it’s a less formal way to interact with your audience that will allow them to feel like they know your company or personality better. It’s a powerful tool for building trust, educating, and increasing your brand recognition.
You can even add in polls, GIFs, and question boxes to provide your followers with new ways to engage with your business. As they engage in these ways, the best part is that Instagram will reward you by showing those users your content first whenever you post.
Reels are the latest release by Instagram to keep up. If you’ve heard of or been on Tik Tok, Reels are basically the same thing. You have up to 30 seconds of video time to create your Reel. The big difference from stories is that your Reels will live on your profile like regular posts, so they have a longer shelf life.
People use reels for educational content, how-to videos, funny stories, reviews, a “day in the life,” and inspiration. It offers the unique ability to match your videos up with music or other audio, and unlike stories, it can even show up on the “explore” page where people can go to find new content.
One difficulty you may find is that it may take you longer to create a Reel than an Instagram story because there are so many little features to learn. That shouldn’t stop you from using them though, because right now with this feature being relatively new, you have exponential potential to reach new audiences and viewers who appreciate the content you will produce.
The best way to use these post styles is to use them together. A combination of all of these will reach more viewers, provide them with various styles of content, and show Instagram that you’re committed to keeping up with what it’s users want. Doing this will reward you in big ways and help you reach your Instagram marketing goals.
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If you need help with social media management for your business contact us directly at https://fusiononemarketing.com/contact-us.