Hello Hello F22 Crew!
Instagram is arguably one of the top three social media sites used by bloggers, and probably THE biggest used by influencers overall. Since they are owned by Facebook, there is a lot of integration between the two-including when updates happen and how they are related. From algorithms to outages it can be a lot to keep up with. So here are the basics about recent changes on the platform!
Facebook Confirms Rumors About Clear History Tool
People often forget that Instagram belongs to Facebook. This means if you search or interact in any way with a company on one of these platforms it’s VERY likely that an ad for something will pop up on the other platform. This is where the ‘clear history tool’ comes in. Basically if you’re a marketing/social media person like me you know Facebook has been talking about doing a clear history tool for awhile now, but it’s just now coming to fruition. Basically it means that users can wipe away all the information Facebook has stored on their activity (Who you talk to, brands you interact with etc). Many ‘normal’ users think this is great, but it makes doing my job harder! This will make it harder for marketing peeps to acurrately target customers with ads. While I’m sure you will still get plenty of ads, it means some of them may be off brand for you. I should also note that this is a manual thing, meaning you actually have to go in an wipe your activity yourself-kind of like your Google search history.
Horizontal Video is coming!
Alright, onto the truly original Instagram updates: horizontal video is now available on IGTV! Basically this means that to watch a video you can now turn your phone into landscape mode and enjoy a full screen version of the video. So uhhhhh thanks for getting on the bandwagon IG.
If you’re a blogger or any type of online money maker, you may be using a business profile to gain metrics on your engagement. It seems that IG has listened and is in the process of rolling out creator profiles. The new creator profiles pair the analytics from a business profile, with the more authentic feeling from a personal file. Creators can access data surrounding their engagement rates, gender and growth of their audience as well as simplifying how people interact with you. This goes along with the new branded content for creators that I’ll touch on later!
Branded Content Ads Roll Out
I kind of call this update the ‘sell your soul to us’ update. Influencers (aka creators in IG lingo) can now partner with brands in new ways. This is the 101 of it; Companies (or anyone with a business profile) can ‘partner’ with creators in the advanced settings area. Then a creator can create a post (most likely about the brand) on their own. Then this post will pop up in the brand/companies “exisiting post” feature. The brand can then use this post as a larger part of their marketing campaign, including that it will look like it’s coming from the creators profile while including a ‘paid partnership’ caption to appease the FTC gods.
So why does this matter?
A. You’re probably going to be seeing ads from influencers you DON’T follow. Slightly annoying, right?
B. This may influence how much creators get paid for posts, and how many businesses are partnering with. Seeing as vanity metrics may be going by the wayside (that comes later hold on!), this allows brands to see exactly how much someones following influences sales, their following, and engagement.
Creators Can Tag Products
Businesses have been able to tag products for awhile now, but now that may be moving over to creator profiles as well. Basically this allows influencers to tag products their using/wearing and send curious viewers to an in-app product page. This is still in early testing, but it could open up more affiliate opportunities, not to mention partnerships with brands. This may also send the era of using a ‘link tree’ in your bio, down the drain.
In Beta Testing: Instagram May Hide Vanity Metrics
Alright, on the big boy that brought you all there. Instagram is slowly testing hiding ‘vanity metrics’ (aka likes) on posts from everyone except the person who created the content. According to a new Tweet, it appears that Instagram is now expanding the test to more countries, including Australia, Brazil, Ireland, Italy, Japan, and New Zealand!
What does this mean for you? Well if you’re just a personal user who likes to look at friends’ profiles and cats-not much. It will mainly affect the creator/business dynamic. Creators often try to leverage social proof (such as likes) to get brand deals. There is also a bit of a psyychological aspect. Basically if all your friends are interacting and liking a brands content, you should too right? Well that aspect is basically void if this update goes world wide. This could end up being discouraging for a lot of users, but it could also put our minds at ease on a daily basis. IG brags that they are doing it for mental health-but it seems like many people aren’t buying that.