Social media is constantly evolving to provide better user experience for its consumers. There's always something new in the social media space as platforms continue to roll out small yet powerful updates and changes every month. So, even if they are minor updates, they can still play a big part in influencing any brand's social media strategy.
If you are a social media marketer, it's important to stay up-to-date with the ever-changing social media world to keep your business up and running. However, keeping up with these new features is hard when you have a million things to do and a lot of tasks on your plate. We know that it's a struggle and we feel your pain. That's why we are here to help. As part of our ongoing effort to provide you the latest news and insights about social media, we would like to share with you a rundown of the five new features Instagram released this month of October.
Here are the 5 notable features you might have missed on Instagram:
1. Instagram Adds Polling Stickers to Stories.
Instagram is making its Stories a little bit more interactive by adding a new polling feature. Users can now easily create polls and get answers directly from their followers with polling stickers. This feature allows users to ask their fans a question by providing two options their viewers can choose from.
Source: The Verge
The polling stickers are just like any other stickers available on Instagram Stories. You simply drag and drop it onto your image and you will have the option to customize the questions. The viewers can vote by tapping on the answer of their choice and they will be able to see to overall results when they watch your Story.
If you want to see the results for yourself, you only need to open the viewers' list for that story. There you will see who voted and which option your fans selected. This is a fantastic way to drive more user interaction on the platform.
2. Instagram Released New Alignment Tool for Stories.
With the continuous updates and better features being rolled out on Instagram, it doesn’t come as a surprise anymore why many users are leaving Snapchat for its competitor. Along with the new polling stickers, they have also added an eyedropper tool that enables users to copy colors from their pictures. These colors can be used for texts and brushes. This tool can also automatically detect which color scheme works best for your story. It will offer color recommendations as well. If you're someone who lacks in creativity and struggles with design, this creative tool will be an immense help for users like you.
Source: The Verge
Another one is their new alignment tool, which is limited to iOS for now. It will help you place or arrange your design elements and make sure that texts or stickers are properly centered on your pictures or videos. Whenever you use this feature, you will see these blue lines or so-called alignment bars while adding designs to your story. It will point out if any of your texts or stickers are not within the viewable screen.
3. Instagram Introduces the "Superzoom" Feature.
They have added a new camera format for their Instagram stories and it is called "Superzoom." This feature allows users to create a dramatic Chipmunk-style zoom with a single tap. It will automatically take over your camera to zoom in. It works on both the rear and front-facing cameras by the way so that users won't have to use the manual zoom feature of their smartphone camera anymore.
Zoooom in on your friends with Superzoom, an easy way to record a funny video with dramatic sound! 🎵 📷 pic.twitter.com/LVzku13qmO— Instagram (@instagram) October 26, 2017
How does it work? You simply need to tap the shutter button if you want to create a 3-second long Superzoom. You can also tap and hold longer if you want to produce longer one.
4. Instagram Now Has a Two-Person Live Streaming Option.
It lets users invite friends to join them on a live video stream. This option splits the screen in two to let viewers watch people in one video stream. It's a fun way to go live with a friend.
Source: We Are Social Media
Instagram users can add another person to the video feed by tapping the "new" icon and "add" button. There's a catch though: Your co-host, the one invited, needs to be actively viewing your live video before you can invite them to join you. That means your friend needs to participate first on your ongoing broadcast on Instagram. It's a qualification they must meet before they can go live with you.
5. Instagram Now Has Deeper Integration with Shopify.
This feature lets sellers that are registered in Shopify to tag items in an Instagram post. It’s for the merchants to inform users or potential customers on Instagram know that items are available for purchase when they click on tags.
Source: The Verge
Instagram already introduced shopping tags November last year, but they were only made available to a couple of brands such as Kate Spade and Warby Parker. This time around, they have extended it to Shopify. The company has been testing the feature throughout 2017 with a handful of merchants to see if they get a good response before releasing it to the public. The company also noted that the product tags will only be visible to users based in the United States and merchants will be allowed to sell tangible products such as food, gadgets, and clothing.
Now that we've introduced to you five of the most notable features released by Instagram, we hope that you can integrate them in your marketing strategy in social media. The sooner you adapt to changes, the better it is for your engagement online.