At last count, there were almost five million pieces of brand-influencer collaboration content on Instagram, a number that’s only expected to rise in 2020. And Instagram is constantly evolving and changing to keep up with demand. As such, content creation on Instagram has become a streamlined process that makes both content consumption and creation simple.
With continuous changes coming in to make the Instagram User Interface (UI) more pleasing to the eye and easy to navigate, it looks like Instagram will be a firm favourite among creators and consumers for a while yet. Here, we explore exactly why that is.
Feed posts create a unified aesthetic experience
Feed posts make it very easy for content creators to unify their content and work on a personal brand. This might include using a particular colour palette, only posting certain types of shots like flay lays or selfies, or organising posts in a way that is pleasing to the eye.
The grid layout of Instagram means that creators are able to offer their followers a flowing sea of images that create a unified aesthetic experience. Essentially, it makes the images lovely to look at and makes it easy for creators to stick to an aesthetic style.
Take a look at our recent article on The Importance Of A Strong Personal Brand to learn more about why this is so crucial to influencer marketing.
IGTV allows us to get to know the creator
40% of millennials say that their favorite content creators understand them better than their friends. Creators and their communities form deep relationships, often built on the insights into their lives that creators offer followers. IGTV was an amazing add-on by Instagram, as it has allowed creators to post more in-depth, longer form video content that helps creators to build their communities by allowing their followers to get to know them better.
Although feed images and captions can help to build a personal brand, the long form video content that is shared on IGTV really allows creators to build a more genuine connection with their followers, while also creating valuable content that people want to see.
Additionally, by streamlining the consumption process and allowing people to view their favourite creators content on the Instagram app, they have cut out the middleman and ensured that people can consume content more easily than ever.
This is great for content creators who no longer have to get people to navigate away from the Instagram app to other video sharing platforms in order to watch their video content.
Plus, for those creators who have built strong communities on YouTube, Facebook or even TikTok, IGTV gives them a perfect place to share that content across more platforms and build an audience on Instagram where they may not have felt their content fitted as easily before.
Stories encourage engagement
While IGTV allows creators to post long form video content, Instagram Stories provides the complete opposite opportunity. Using Instagram Stories, creators are able to give their followers more raw, quick insights into their lives. Instead of posting the polished video content that we associate with IGTV, creators use Instagram Stories to share content on the go. That might be them sitting in a taxi and talking to their followers on the way to an event or even cleaning the house.
These unedited snippets increase followers’ sense that they know the creator on a more personal level.
Additionally, Instagram Stories are a quick and easy way for creators to engage with their community. With many tools on Instagram Stories that allow them to tag other people, add their location, include polls and even write content too, it can be a great place to interact with their followers and get them engaged. Followers are even able to ask creators questions that they can get an instant answer to. All these tools work to build the highly engaged creator communities that are so needed in influencer marketing.
Within influencer marketing campaigns, brands will often request Instagram Story posts that encourage followers to get involved in the campaign, whether that is by swiping up on the story to purchase a product, or by giving their opinion on a poll.
This boost in engagement makes working with creators more attractive to brands. Instagram Stories are also great for influencer marketing campaigns where the brand and creator are only collaborating on a more short-term basis. Stories time out after 24 hours, so they offer a shorter, less committal agreement between creator and brand. This can be useful when a brand is promoting an event or a one-off announcement. On the other hand, creators are also able to pin Story content to their profiles, where it will remain indefinitely and can be organised into easily accessible and clearly labeled categories.
Filters create beautiful posts
Instagram is also very attentive when it comes to ensuring that filters boost the content and the platforms gives creators as many options to flex their creative muscles as possible. The traditional filters on Instagram feed posts is what made Instagram so popular with creators in the first place, as the number of options enabled them to create a professional finish.
Not only does the aesthetically pleasing nature of Instagram’s filters and content make it harder for followers to look away, it also increases the likelihood that content will be shared on other platforms, with some content even being featured in out of home marketing campaigns. This makes the platform even more popular among creators, as it increases the potential for their content to be seen by more people.
Nowadays, filters are everywhere on Instagram, from feed photos to stories. A recent update even allows creators to make their own filters on stories, which can then be enjoyed by other Instagram users. This can really boost a creator’s engagement and encourages followers to share creator content with more people.
Instagram Shopping allows creators to sell products
In March 2019, Instagram began allowing creators to sell products directly from their posts instead of directing them to the brand’s website and away from the social media site. Since the changes came into place, followers will see a ‘Checkout on Instagram’ button on the shopping post that will allow them to proceed to payment without leaving the app.
This has been ideal for creators who sell their own products, or those who promote other brands. By making the user experience seamless, Instagram has made it easier for people to checkout off the back of a creator’s post, which in turn has increased the ROI potential of influencer marketing.
Private and group messaging
Previously, Instagram wasn’t seen as a messaging platform. However, in recent years it has made it easier for people to send private and group messages through the app. This has meant that Instagram has become the perfect place for people to reach out to and engage with the creators they follow, while also offering creators a further opportunity to build genuine relationships with their followers.
Group messaging has also enabled creators to engage with other creators in similar niches. Being a content creator can be lonely. While it offers amazing opportunities, some creators often miss the 9-5 that most of their friends are working. Instagram group messaging allows creators to make friends with others who are in the same field. They are able to swap industry insights, collaborate on content and make genuine friends, all without leaving the Instagram app.
Are you a creator looking to make the most of your community? Or maybe you’re a brand looking to partner with the best creators who know how to optimise Instagram and boost your brand? Get in touch today to learn more.
Ben Jeffries is co-founder of Influencer