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Saturday, November 28, 2020

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Instagram is now 10 years old, and to make this occasion special, it has added two new updates and features for celebrating, from visual changes to expansion of the tools of eCommerce.

The main celebratory element is its Stories Map, which provides a private look at where you’ve posted Instagram Stories from (when you’ve used a location sticker) over the past three years.

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The main element is their Stories Map, it gives a private look at where you have posted Instagram Stories from over the past 3 years. (when you have used the location)

Instagram Stories map

It’s an interesting addition though, yet it serves a reminder that Instagram tracks your movements even with your ‘disappearing’ stories.

Indeed, Stories posted in public that include a location are already searchable on the application, giving more perspective on how other posts about this location. So, it is not a big stretch if it comes to functionality. It may just feel a bit invasive and gives you a reminder that Facebook is tracking your data

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Also, instagram is also adding a group of different icons for the application that will align with the IOS-14 inspired trend of customized home screens, that has been posted as screenshots by many iPhone users.

Instagram icons

Presently, you are able to choose from different app icons to suit your custom theme better. The new icons were in a test last month by Chris Messina, and are available when you:

  • Update your Instagram application to the most recent version
  • Go to your profile, then tap the ‘Settings’ icon
  • Drag the screen down in the main menu to uncover the app icon listing that is hidden above.

Besides these funny personal additions, Instagram has added in-stream shopping for IGTV this week. This will display a new shopping bag icon that is added to the IGTV videos when the creator applies shopping tags.

Shopping in IGTV

That may be a new motivator for businesses and influencers to use IGTV. Also, Instagram has also noted that a shopping tab for Reels similar to the IGTV’s will be coming soon as well.

eCommerce is a major element of the growth strategy of Instagram, and besides adding Shops, adding streamlines to purchase products in-stream that will be critical to increase Instagram’s potential revenue. Instagram has added shopping tags in Stories in 2018.

Shopping in Reels may become very interesting, and one of the most underrated elements in TikTok’s rise is shopping in stream, that became a basic element of the Chinese version of the application “Douyin””

Douyin shopping

There is no platform that has efficiently made money from short videos in western markets until now. However, in-stream shopping might be the main way to unlock the potential. And that’s why Instagram is planning to add the same option to Reels, just to ensure keeping tabs on its main competitors.

Also, Instagram has shared some new updates besides an overview of the history of the application and its growth.

Instagram 10th birthday

In their usage insights, Instagram has shared that 900M emoji reactions have been sent in the app every day. Half of Instagram users watch a video on the platform daily. KPOP is the number one most discussed genre of music among Instagram users. And more than one million posts mentioning “meme” are shared every day.

However, the major stat was that:

“The average user sends 3x more DMs than comments”

That is especially important when you think that Facebook is working on merging its different messaging tools, and include more paths for people to connect privately by Instagram. Opposite to posting to their home feed.

The primary excitement of being able to post in public on social media has been overridden by the judgmental division that has gradually driven people to more closed spaces to avoid any disagreements and arguments about what they share online. That has made messaging the biggest tool for connection, and though users are still posting regularly, and Stories have witnessed a massive jump, still, messaging is the major connector in the last two years after all.

These statistics from Instagram prove the growth again, and as private messages are not the ideal vehicle for marketing, it is worth thinking of in the strategic plan.

It is interesting to think about how Instagram has improved over the last 10 years, and how social media has changed generally the way we engage and interact. Also, though these new additions give a way to celebrate with the platform, the achievement also serves as a time to contemplate how social media has changed and where we are going in the next decade.

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