The world of social seems like it can change over night. So there’s no doubt that jumping into a whole new year brings updates, trends, and new strategies. Here’s my breakdown of the top five Instagram trends small businesses can take advantage of in 2021…
- Carousel posts with text. One of the main reasons your business should be posting is to educate your follower. The best way to do this is to literally spell out your content via a carousel post, (a post with two to ten photos/videos), that contains text. When followers see a carousel post, the temptation to swipe left is hard to deny. Results? Carousel posts with text can see two or even three times the amount of engagement and reach. Click here for an example.
- Reels. I’ll be the first to admit, when I saw Reels introduced last year they seemed super cheesy to me. Pointing and dancing to bubbles of words? It just wasn’t me. Instead of disregarding the new feature all together, I challenged myself to think outside the box on how I could use Reels to authentically share content. Need some ideas? Try sharing a behind the scenes or a step by step video that incorporates short bubbles of words describing what you’re showing. Click here, here, and here to see what I came up with. So what happened to my engagement when I posted these types of reels instead of shaking my hips and waving my finger? My reach still expanded to the thousands and my number of comments doubled.
- Instagram Shopping. In an effort to support businesses needing to shift their sales model during the Covid-19 crisis, Instagram announced a new shopping experience right inside the app. Click here for more info.
- IG Stories. Instagram stories originally debuted in 2016, but because video content is taking over, plan on using your IG stories A LOT this year. According to Instagram research, they’re reporting that nearly 500 million users are active each day on IG Stories. So how do you leverage IG stories for your business? For starters, always share your most recent post to your stories. Then, engage with your audience by asking a question or posting a poll via the stickers inside stories.
- Accessibility and Inclusivity. What’s the ultimate way to be a strong brand that goes way beyond your company’s IG feed? Be inclusive and accessible. But let me be clear – intentionally developing content that highlights diversity, equity and inclusion is not a passing trend. Your businesses image, values, and social media presence regarding global, social, and political events is a pertinent consideration, always.
Communicating consciously requires a heightened sense of awareness and should not be done carelessly. Stay away from excluding entire groups of people from your content by starting with simple solutions like this:
– Use imagery that represents a mix of the spectrum of people who make up our world – genders, ethnicities, disabilities and ages.
– Start your caption with “Trigger Warning” when posting sensitive topics
– Add captions to your videos and IG stories for the hearing impaired
– Think globally by acknowledging different holidays and languages
Serving up conscious content on all of your social channels leads to inclusivity and accessibility, which leads to brand loyalty and strong customer connections. Stay aware, learn, and adapt as you move forward!