In celebration of its 10th birthday, Instagram recently hid an Easter egg in its app. As you click through the settings, you will discover a hidden menu that allows users to change the Instagram app icon to one of its nostalgic logos that many would fondly recall.
Apart from changing the app icon, you probably also scrolled through your IG feed.
What was your first Instagram photo that you posted?
Instagram Users Like You and Me Were Once Young
“Facebook is for the middle-aged, while Instagram is for the young.” This statement has probably followed Instagram throughout its 10 years of existence. The young people of that day have now entered adulthood; some are middle-aged and up.
A recent report appeared not to regard the occasion of Instagram’s anniversary. It announced that Snapchat was the top social media app used by young people. 34% of the user demographics cited Snapchat as their favorite app. Instagram had fallen to third place at 25% after TikTok ranked second at 29%. To call Instagram “middle-aged” may seem cruel. But it is undeniable that it is what it is. Having said that, Facebook and Instagram continue to have a strong foothold in digital marketing. Leveraging these two platforms consistently yield desirable results.
Changing Preferences When It Comes to How Images Look
Many things have changed in the last 10 years since Instagram first began. Both founders of the app left a few years ago after it was acquired by Facebook. The app functions have changed and continue to do so. User behavior has also evolved. If you scroll through your own IG photos or have used IG like me for the past 10 years, you would notice how your preferences for posting IG photos have evolved. From heavily filtered photos to not using filters at all, to playing around again with IG’s filters. Others have Photoshopped images, sliced images up and pieced them together again, cropped photos into Instagram’s ubiquitous square format, or left them in portrait or landscape format. Others post single or multiple photos as well as video clips.
Are marketers aware of all these small changes embraced by users over the years?
User Behavior Has Implications for Marketing Practices
As a digital advertiser, I not only observe social media trends; I also analyze their implications and come up with effective marketing campaigns that leverage these trends. Instagram has changed with how user behaviors have evolved on the app. Take the F&B industry as an example. Instagram has changed the way we eat. When it comes to food these days, the camera takes precedence. How food looks is now more important than how it tastes. The phone’s default function centered on capturing impressive food shots. It is needed in the kitchen more so than ever before. Marketing in other industries, such as travel and fashion, has also evolved. Blog posts have given way to Instagram photos, which now take priority when it comes to social media management.
How many of such changes did marketers catch over the past decade?
Look Toward the Future of IG Marketing – AR, IG Shopping, and Video Clips
Even if we consider the past, we should also look toward future developments. AR filters have been trending of late, and many of my brand clients have asked how their marketing strategies need to adapt as a result. Look a little farther down the road. Instagram regularly rolls out upgrades to its Instagram Shopping platform, and Reels is a fierce contender in vying with TikTok for the best features for video clips. These are two other developments that marketers should note. Perhaps your online store has not yet found its way on Instagram, or your strategy toward adopting video content is still fairly laid back. My advice then would be: it’s time to draw up a proper marketing plan, pronto.