What Are The Best Instagram Features?
Instagram is one of the most popular social networking websites in the world. We have witnessed its fast and amazing progress in just 20 years. Experts believe that it is the best place for businesses to increase sales and expand their territories.
However, there is a deadly completion going on between giants of social networking websites. If you just miss one opportunity to make your social networking website, you might lose the game to your opponents.
During the last decade, we have seen how intense the competition between social platforms has been. In the frontline, these platforms are using their imagination to create more interesting features. A new feature means room for growth. New followers will come and start following a particular platform if they are happy with its constant updates.
And, this race doesn’t have an end. Just a few years ago, no one knew what TikTok is. Now, it has over 100 million followers only in the US! Why? The key to its success was partly because of an innovative vision about the future of content posted on social platforms.
What Are We Going To Learn Here?
Well, during the last 2 decades, Instagram has been constantly updating itself and providing its billions of users with more engaging and eye-catching features. In this article, we are going to dig into the world of Instagram's features. These features have helped Instagram to attract followers with a variety of interests.
Do you intend to get entertained by Instagram? It has many useful features. Are you planning to expand your business through Instagram? Well, it gives you analytical, commercial, and design tools to maximize the efficiency of your campaign. So, buckle up because I will guide you through the amazing world of Instagram features.
What Are The Features Of Instagram?
There are basically 9 engaging features on Instagram. They include filters, video posts, Instagram stories, stories highlights, Instagram stories video, Instagram Live, AR filters, IGTV, and stickers & quizzes. We really cannot say which one is the best. However, based on the area you are working on, your business, and some other factors, you might want to prefer one or two over the others. Now, this article may be the best place to get deep a bit and understand what each feature does and how we can exploit its potential in our favour. Let's get started.
There are basically 40 different filters on Instagram. They are used to modify your images and make them more professional. When you take pictures, no matter how hard you try, you might not be able to make them as punchy as you want. These filters allow you to increase your engagement rates by producing more appealing images.
What about businesses? Can they benefit from filters? Yes, it is possible when a brand used a fixed filter for all its posts. In this way, as soon as you see the post, you will be reminded of the brand. That's a great way for branding! In addition to filter options provided by Instagram itself, businesses can create their own distinguished and customized filters.
Nothing better than a cute and interesting filter can grave the brand's name into your mind. For example, imagine that your brand is selling tiaras. If you create customized filters with your tiaras, people can test them online and see how they look! branding can be followed by creating customized filters as you can put the logo of your brand somewhere on the screen when people are using those filters.
The same is true with cosmetics, glasses, piercing, and even accessories. However, you shouldn’t overuse filters as they get lame very fast and people will lose interest in them.
Naturally, humans prefer visual content. This is something every one of us can feel very easily, don’t we? We would like to get as much information as quickly as possible! And, what better than a short video can do the job?! With video posts, you can create lots of green content and do the branding at the same time. An example might help here. Imagine that you are selling leather boats online.
Now, you receive lots of messages and emails from your customers saying that they cannot distinguish real leather boats from fake ones. What can you do? You can create a video explaining how to detect real leather boats from fake ones. We call this video green content because it doesn’t get old even after several years because of its educational and informative nature.
Also, it helps you do branding as well. You can simply put the logo or website address of your business somewhere in the video. In this way, even people who are not your followers will see you and might start following you. Or, instead of producing professor brochures introducing your new product, you can create short videos captioning the best features of your products with nice music.
Some Great Instagram Video Posts Ideas
Let's see what else we can do with video posts on Instagram:
Teaser Videos: Promote Your Content And Offers
In teaser videos, you can excite your followers about your plans. They could be a nice interview with a celebrity, introducing a new product, announcing an opening day of your store's new branch, etc. Be careful! If you say or show too much on these videos, your new product will be spoiled. On the other hand, if you say less than you need, it doesn’t amaze anybody. So, step very carefully in the path of talking general and specifically at the same time.
Time-lapse videos are very good very you decide to compress several hours of work in just a few seconds. For example, if you are a professional painter and want your followers to appreciate your work of art more, you have to show them how hard it would be to create one. You can compress hours of painting in just one minute with a long shot of your office. Also, it causes people to trust you even more because they know you are the guy behind all those artistic ideas, not someone else.
Stop-motion videos are similar to time-lapse videos but they are serious of pictures in a row, not videos. What are they good for? Just like time-lapse videos, you can use stop-motion videos to highlight important stages of any particular project. For example, you have a plan to give a very important lecture and after the lecture, you want to show your followers what steps you have taken to have such a professional talk.
Perhaps, you will put 30 or 40 pictures of you getting prepared for the talk chronologically. First, a picture of you reading several boos, another picture showing you working at 3 am, or another one where you are walking on the stage and giving your lecture, etc.
Stories are great tools for increasing the engagement rates of your Instagram page. With Instagram Stories, you will be able to share photos, videos, texts, or a combination of all of them on your Instagram page just like normally posting something. However, the content of Instagram Stories will disappear after 24 hours. So, if somebody doesn’t see your Stories after 24 hours, he/she will miss them.
You might say what's the point of posting something when it is going to be disappeared after one day. How do you feel about an example? Let's say you are a fashion influencer and advertise cosmetic products. You want more visitors to come and follow your page, don’t you? Stories make it happen for you. When you advertise a product in your Stories, some of your followers will buy the product and love it.
Then, from mouth to mouth, you will be known as the guy who advertises amazing products. Now, if you keep advertising on Instagram Stories, your old and new followers will check on your page more often. Why? Because they will be always worried about missing your content! The more visits you receive; the more popular you become.
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Some Great Instagram Stories Ideas
Stories are being posted every day and analyzed accordingly. Some successful ideas have been proven to be effective in increasing your engagement rates. Let's review some of them:
Supplement Your Main Instagram Content With Bonus Info Via Stories
When you post on your Instagram page, it will report to you which post(s) are receiving too much attention. You can build upon this by using Instagram Stories. For instance, you post several professional photos of your modelling on the beach. Perhaps, 10 or even more people are moving around behind the scene to make these amazing photos of your body possible.
Well, when your followers see these nice photos, they might want to know what's going on over the camera. You can send some backstage photos on your Instagram Stories to give more information to your followers. Or, you share a photo of a new model of Audi car in an international exhibition and then post a short interview of you and the sales manager of Audi on your Instagram Stories to give extra information about the car.
Turn Stories Into Real-Time Events
You can start a competition and ask your followers to record while they are engaging with the challenge. For example, run a treasure hunt and invite your followers to participate. You can put some clues in different branches of your brands and ask followers to record their activities while searching for the final clues. Definitely, other people will get interested and know your brand better. It feels alive when you see natural Instagram Stories. Recoding conference presentations, meetings, and other programs are other targets for Instagram Stories.
Use Photos With Captions To Tell Your Stories
Every person has his/her interpretation of a photo, right? I mean you might post a photo on Instagram Stories with the hope that people notice X. Curiously, people will pay attention more to Y! Therefore, when you post a photo on your Stories, accompany it with a short text explaining the meaning it, or at least, what you want people to notice in it. In this way, followers don’t get confused and appreciate you for your accuracy.
Mix High-Quality Edited Content With Raw Authentic Content
Both high-quality and raw photos and videos can be in your favour if you mix them professionally on your Instagram Stories. I mean, sometimes, a raw and unedited image does much better than a heavily airbrushed one. For example, as an entrepreneur, you have to sometimes let your followers get to know you personally. So, you might want to share a photo of yourself and your family at 6:30 in the morning at the breakfast table.
Definitely, followers will lose interest if they see you and your family all dressed up and are faking a nice smile in the photo. It doesn’t make sense at all. In return, a simple and plain photo of you yawning and scratching your back has a charm to it because it is real. Of course, there are some situations when professional photos and videos are required more.
Stickers And Quizzes
Creating interactive Stories is one of the best ways to make your audience engage with your content. They shouldn’t just watch your Stories and then go away. They have to get intellectually stimulated. For example, if you are running a page about movies, you can invite followers to nicely engage with your content by putting a quiz in your Story.
You can create 10 consecutive Stories and ask whether a specific actor/actress has played in them or not. Or, depending on the date, you can ask historical questions and force them to think about the answer. This is how followers are not passive observers. In fact, they are active contributors!
In Instagram Live, you will have the chance to communicate with your followers directly in real-time. It is probably amazing for followers to be able to talk to their favourite influencers and ask their questions freely. Instagram Live can show people's personalities to each other as there is nobody between them on Instagram Live.
Thanks to the Ask Me option on Instagram Live, followers will ask their questions and the page owner will answer them right away. Instagram Live is a good way to show whether managers or businessmen can handle hard situations while they are happening. For example, how a manager will face a situation when somebody asks an inappropriate question during Live? Or, how friendly can a manager get without losing his/her prestige and dignity?
Importance Of Instagram Live
Instagram Live matters because of the implications it has for you and your followers. So, let's review the most important benefits of Live on Instagram.
Thanks to all innovations and advancements especially in the online world, everyone can hide him/her true identity and cheat people. You might be a professional hacker stealing from social platforms' users. You can role people by creating a fancy website and nice titles!
So, they trust you and start buying from you without being aware of the fact that you have no respect for them. Yes, we have to be careful about these people. However, if you want your follower not to think about you like this, you have to show them your true personality. When you go Live on Instagram, you are expressing your ideas and try to be honest with followers.
Creating A Sense Of Urgency
Page owners go Live when they want to announce something more important than the regular stuff. Otherwise, they would just post a video or text. So, every time your icon on Instagram is surrounded by a pink circle, it alarms your followers that Oh! He/she is talking about something very important.
hen, you will get more visits and generate leads. If the quality of your Live is good enough, the next time you go online, more followers attend to it. So, have a plan for your life. If you make it as exciting as possible, you are more likely to receive more visits every time. Again, don’t try to spoil Life! Keep it special for great moments. Otherwise, it wouldn’t be so much different from other Instagram features.
Better Tracking Your Performance
Instagram will let you know how many followers have visited your Live. So, in addition to all the above advantages, you can use Live as a trial test to understand what times of the day and what topics are the most popular ones. Then, you can adopt these topics to other features such as Stories, IGTV, etc.
IGTV is a video content hub owned by Instagram. You can use this platform to post long videos and are up to 60 minutes. Another interesting point about IGTV is that you can record videos in vertical format. Do you know why it is important? Because it allows you to use your phone in full-screen format.
What benefits does it have for businesses? First of all, it gives more visibility to your brand in terms of introducing every aspect of it in detail including all products and services. It might not be feasible to educate people very well in short videos.
However, with IGTV, you have the chance to create your educational content and let people save and watch it as many times as they want. It makes more of the audience be able to ask their questions. This might not be possible with Life because of its fast pace. However, here, the owner can collect all the questions and ask them one by one. here is a shortlist of several things you can do on IGTV and boost your visibility:
Interviews And Q&A’s
Have you ever seen those interviews on national TV? The poor host and guest have just five minutes to discuss really heavy topics such as women's rights, global warming, etc. On IGTV, you don’t have such restrictions. You can let an interview keep going for nearly 30 minutes with the other 30 minutes for the audience to express their opinions and ask their questions.
Video Greetings And Introductions
this is very good for people who have started their business a few months ago and are unknown on social platforms. With IGTV, you can introduce yourself without worrying about the time.
Product Demos, Tutorials And How To’s
Have you seen those fast and short videos on Instagram trying to teach you how to cook a portion of delicious food or build a handy craft? They are too fast to be learned easily. Instead, you can create a video on IGTV and let the audience go along with you.
Perhaps, you want to show your followers how to cook delicious but hard-to-cook food, right? You can do it on IGTV. Or, what about learning them to paint a big painting or repair some parts of a car. And, when there is a new product coming and people are not entirely sure how to work with it, you can buy and show them the basics. All these tasks are possible thanks to IGTV.
Stories are great but they disappear after 24 hours. However, you can keep them saved on your account under the section Stories Highlights. Also, your followers who have just joined your page can see all Stories-related content and get to know you better. Also, since your Stories are about different topics, Instagram allows you to categorize them in several classes based on their content. In this way, it will be easier for followers to find relevant information.
Instagram is one of the best social platforms right now. Many businesses use this platform to start and grow their businesses. Now, there are nearly 30 million businesses present on Instagram. One reason for such popularity is the amazing features of Instagram.
In this article, we introduced some of the most popular ones and showed you how to use them to expand your brand and increase sales. I hope you have learned enough! See you in other content. Take care.
I trust you enjoyed this article about What Are The Best Instagram Features? Would you please stay tuned for more articles to come? Take care!
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