10 Fresh Instagram Tactics to Use Now
Just as Instagram continues to roll out new features on a regular basis–from introducing hashtags and links to bios, to sharing feed posts to Stories, to the emoji slider–you, too, need to regularly add fresh tools and tactics to your Instagram strategy.
Below, we’ve pulled together a list of tactics for you to experiment with, along with examples from best-in-breed Instagram brands in 2018.
1. Choose a Feature, Not a Product
Put together a product awareness campaign with Instagram Stories, not a brand awareness campaign, like Manduka did.
Manduka knows that their Instagram Stories views are primarily coming from users who already follow them. Taking this opportunity to explain features and tell the story of their latest product release to this likely buyer is a very smart move.
2. Educate in a Brand-Relevant Way
Another tactic to try is audience education. Make sure that the educational campaigns you put together for Instagram are related to your brand, and that they eventually lead back to your product and/or core brand values.
For instance, skincare line Tula recently published an educational series on Instagram Stories about what different herbs and compounds do for the skin—featuring only ingredients that are present in their products.
Dr. Oz does a good job with educational content along these lines as well, using clear visuals to tell the story of essential oils and their benefits.
Note that neither of these examples starts with the brand or product: they are focused on increasing engagement and providing audiences with real value. A savvy way to find out which kind of content your audience is looking for is to use a listening solution to identify hot topics in your industry right now.
3. Pass It Off
Conduct an influencer or employee round-robin, like Women’s Health did recently on Instagram Stories.
Come up with a core question or theme, and ask your participants to structure their content around this theme. Choose a time period for each participant to take over, from one hour to one day to even one week, and determine a posting cadence.
4. Take Advantage of Highlights
Use Instagram Highlights to its fullest potential, and bucket your Instagram Stories content into different highlights categories.
This will give your Instagram Stories content a longer shelf life than the typical 24 hours, and it will help visitors to your Instagram profile immediately know what your brand is about, what you offer—and if they should follow you or not.
5. Get Early Feedback (and Film It)
Do you have a new product coming out? Release it to influencers and/or employees early, ask them to film their reactions on their phones, and then weave this together in your Stories, both sponsored and non-sponsored.
Bonus Points: Intersperse these raw clips with more polished, designed frames, like in the example above.
6. Use Your Sound Clips
Barneys NYC has a podcast. To publicize this podcast, and repurpose this content, they create Instagram feed content using snippets of recording from the podcast.
On episode 4 of #TheBarneysPodcast, our own @simondoonan sits down with his husband, potter and interiors guru @jonathanadler to discuss their disastrous first date, adventures in Peru, and how Adler went from a clay-spattered, bohemian potter to running his namesake design empire. We promise it’ll make you laugh. Subscribe now on Stitcher, Spotify, Apple, or wherever you get your podcasts!
A post shared by Barneys New York (@barneysny) on
If your brand has a podcast or any events recordings, layer the audio files with sleek visuals for content that is sure to please.
7. Show the Process
Food Network does a wonderful job of showing the bones of how a recipe is put together on their Instagram feed.
A post shared by Food Network (@foodnetwork) on
Your product may not involve an edible or drinkable item, but it most likely has several pieces and stages which make it come to life, whether those are humans, tools, or even software components. What process can you reveal on your Instagram feed?
8. Choose a Palette
Farmacy, a skincare brand, uses its Instagram feed to create an association between the brand and a certain color palette.
This is reflected when you visit their profile, but it is also effective in creating a visual association that Instagram followers come to appreciate and recognize immediately.
9. Team Up
Use a listening solution to identify other brands that are a major part of the conversation in your space.
Available starting Wednesday, May 30th at the brewery, and Friday, June 1st around the Pacific Northwest. Release parties with @fortgeorgebeer @moderntimesbeer & @holymtnbrewing Tuesday, May 29th Astoria Trolley Party (SOLD OUT) Friday, June 1st @whiteowlsocialclub No cover. 5-8pm Saturday, June 2nd @pine_box Tricycle Races! 6-9pm #Summerof3WayIPA
A post shared by Fort George Brewery (@fortgeorgebeer) on
Ask these partners to cross-promote content with you to leverage all your followers in one campaign.
Our friends at @Honest asked our co-founders @LaurenConrad and @HannahSkvarla to curate a Mommy and me giveaway to celebrate #MothersDay. Head to @Honest to enter for a chance to win $250 gift cards to @Honest, @TheLittleMarket, @OnceUponAFarm, @ArielGordonJewelry, and @LittleMoonSociety. That’s $1,250 in gift cards for you, mama! Honest is also donating a year’s worth of diapers for a family in need to @baby2baby in the winner’s name.
A post shared by The Little Market (@thelittlemarket) on
10. Feature Real Reviews
User-generated content will truly never die, since the social experience is rooted in the conversations that social users have with one another.
Feature positive reviews of your product in your feed on a regular basis.
Want to learn more about Instagram innovators, coming up with fresh tactics every day? Download the guide below.
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I’m the Head of Marketing Communications here at Simply Measured, where I'm responsible for our content program, social media marketing, PR, and comarketing ventures. I love yoga, The X-Files, peaty scotch, hiking, and poetry. If I were a social media channel, I’d want to be Instagram, but I think I’m Twitter.