10 Instagram Updates So Far In 2023Feb 27, 2023
The new year is serving up a bunch of Instagram surprises. From verification to broadcast channels to rebalancing the algorithm, the platform resumes its seemingly desperate grasp for purchase in the social marketplace.
Use it for Your Business
Here are the top three Instagram updates to know for your business and seven honorable mentions in case you find them useful.
Zuck (aka Mark Zuckerberg) announced Meta is launching a paid subscription service to get verified on your Facebook and Instagram accounts. The monthly $11.99-14.99 fee promises increased reach, exclusive features, added security, and access to an actual person for support. The service is currently being tested in Australia and New Zealand but is not available anywhere else yet.
While this sounds like a small price to pay for all the perks, in my opinion, much is still unclear on when and if businesses will be able to use this service. The announcement says businesses aren’t eligible, and Meta will only grant the service to those whose “real name” is their profile name (validated by photo identification). I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.
2. Broadcast Channels
You can think of Broadcast Channels like a group DM, but only the creator can post. Followers can react to messages and answer polls only. When you join a creator’s channel, notifications will appear in your DM inbox among the rest of your DMs. Creators can charge for access to the channel if they wish. Currently, Broadcast Channels are only available to a select few creators.
I’m struggling to find a use case for these channels that you can’t accomplish in another way. You can post polls and deliver messages in Stories. And Instagram already has a paid subscription feature to deliver exclusive content. Unless this would solve a specific problem for your audience, I don’t foresee creating another social media channel you need to populate with content.
3. Rebalancing the Algorithm
I’ve seen several influencers saying Instagram is going back to prioritizing photos over video; however, that was not what was said by the Head of Instagram, Adam Mosseri. He admits Instagram showed too many videos to people last year and has since rebalanced the algorithm to show equal amounts of photos and videos.
I’ve witnessed this change in my feed, as maybe you have. The direct result is Reels views falling by 20% or more, which has data-tracking social media managers everywhere sweating!
If you are anything like me, you posted way more Reels last year because that’s what gets you eyeballs. Experiment with posting equal amounts of images or carousels vs. Reels and monitor the results. Then, adjust your content calendar if the outcome is favorable.
The following updates are nice to know but not necessarily crucial for brands:
Lead form button – This new profile button is a great opportunity for followers who want to use your services to submit an inquiry, answer questions and provide contact info; however, I’m not sure how many people look at those profile buttons. Learn more here.
Gifts – Followers can gift creators stars that, once enough are accrued, can be cashed in. People aren’t going to just gift businesses money, so this is more geared toward artists and influencers. Learn more here.
Location sticker – For local businesses, add a location sticker to your Stories, so they come up in geotag search results. Learn more here.
Navigation update – The shop tab was removed from the bottom, and the plus button was moved to the bottom. Learn more here.
Quiet mode – Set the times when you don’t want to be disturbed. Quiet Mode silences notifications and sends an auto-reply to DMs. Learn more here.
Story memory prompt – Instead of hiding in the archive section, a new prompt will appear as a story bubble at the top of your feed, where you can opt to repost Stories from previous years. Learn more here.
Text-only posts – Some accounts have been given access to create text-only posts in-app. They look similar to when someone takes a screenshot of their notes app. Learn more here.
Just because it's new doesn't mean it's worth your time: Are these Instagram updates worth your time?
Meh: I give it 2 out of 5 thumbs up.
Considering this crop of updates, I’d keep calm and post on. Try one of the updates if it sounds fun or you have time to kill, but don’t expect much.
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