As active IG users, brand promoters, and influencers in our own right, we’ve been paying close attention to the turn of events on Instagram marketing in 2021.
From January to date, we’ve noticed how the attention of the Instagram community has tilted from one activity, tool, or feature to another.
Although not all these trends have been particularly significant for marketing purposes, some others have changed the face of Instagram marketing as we know it.
That said, if you’re a social media marketer, we completely understand why you should be concerned about trends on IG, plus how you can best position yourself to make the best of the moment and stay ahead of the competition.
So, in this post, we have identified and compiled the top 5 Instagram trends of the year and how you can key them into boosting your business—even beyond this year.
But first, why trends?
Trends are a major part of the Instagram experience, and the same applies to all other social media platforms.
With well over 1 billion users per month, Instagram is one of the busiest social media platforms out there. Each user has their respective interests and most likely, post about them each passing day. Now, that’s a lot of activity, going by the stats.
But then, certain topics, activities, or ideas might become popular among a large group of users for some time. When this happens, we consider it a trend.
As an IG marketer, capitalizing on trends to promote your services or showcase your products is an invaluable marketing strategy.
Since the start of 2021, Instagram has witnessed quite a handful of trends but not all trends are essential for driving conversions.
Hence, it's highly important to identify which ones apply to your niche and use them constructively.
Here are five of the most relevant trends you could use as an Instagram marketer in 2021, 2022, and beyond:
1. Optimize your content
Sounds cliché, but content remains one of the most basic factors to get right in marketing. Creating great content has been around since day 1 of digital marketing.
But it has strengthened as consumers and clients across the globe no longer give a second thought to stilted and unnatural content that’s focused on selling the product rather than providing the value that they (the consumers) stand to gain from said products.
So, whether your content is an image or video and even involves a copy, it won’t fly if viewers don’t find any promise of value in it.
Create natural and relatable content, rather than making bogus and idealistic promises. Concentrate on content that appeals to users’ reasoning instead of exploiting their feelings.
2. Pay attention to your Instagram Stories
According to Instagram Internal Data, Stories are used by at least 500 million users every day. Businesses make up one-third of this number, and it’s easy to understand why.
Since its launch in 2016, Instagram Story has helped brands reach more users than ever before. The best part is that Instagrammers who might not be following you can even see your content. As a result, it remains a trusted tool for reaching across to new clientele.
And in 2021, the stats are even more impressive! More people now use the Instagram Story feature and this expands your opportunities on the social networking platform.
Now, Stories last only 24 hours but you can post as many as possible each day, to build a great relationship with your viewers.
In addition to creating awesome Stories, you can join relevant challenges or even create one.
Taking part in challenges, both on your feed and via Stories, puts your brand in the spotlight. The sort of spotlight you need to scale your business.
3. Be creative with Instagram Reels
Ever noticed that you get more engagements from your videos than images? That’s right! Sponsored IG videos, for example, generate 3x more comments and reactions than pictorial content.
This explains the strength of visual posts. Creating relevant and catchy videos is a strategy for growing your brand and expanding your clientele. And that’s what Instagram Reels helps you achieve.
Thanks to this feature, you can create short clips of 15 to 30 seconds with the potential of reaching as many as 500 million users.
Also, use AR effects on your videos to boost the chances of getting more views and engagements.
More so, feel free to let the creative juices run, coming up with unique videos and posting them strategically. Rather than sticking to promotional videos, spice things up with educational and entertaining videos too.
They help in building public awareness of your brand. And not just on IG, but the entire Internet!
4. Place your brand on the Explore tab
An average Instagrammer spends close to an hour on the platform every day. Well, that’s because there’s always more to see!
The Explore tab is Instagram’s way of making users spend more time there. Businesses and digital marketers are capitalizing on this opportunity to push themselves there so new users can see them.
Getting your brand on the Explore tab is competitive but not entirely difficult.
The first step is to share your Reels to the Explore tab. Then you have to stick to the right tags on all your posts, engage with your existing viewers, and post at strategic periods of the day.
Once you’ve ticked the necessary boxes, Instagram's algorithm does the rest of the job for you.
5. Go Live… again and again!
We saved the best for the last! Live is the most real-time and interactive feature on Instagram.
Like other features, Instagram Live has the tendency to reach as many users as possible, even if they’re not following you.
Once you go live, your session is placed as the first content on the Story tab of relevant users.
The best part is that followers who have their Live notifications on will immediately get a message informing them you’re live. Talk of taking your business to their doorstep!
However, be careful to make your live sessions more about the viewers than your products, services, or brand.
Show users how to use certain products, answer their questions, and provide clarification where necessary.
Build a great relationship with your customers and conversions will follow naturally.
Above all, understand that Instagram is a fast-paced community with lots of innovative ideas and trends from time to time.
Hence, you should keep yourself updated on the latest IG features, strategies, and practices. But be careful not to get lost in the flood.
Sift through ideas and ensure that they align with your business goals before adopting them.