HOW WILL INSTAGRAM EVOLVE IN 2020 AND BEYOND?Interviews & Opinions
Since the social media giant was born in 2010, Instagram has grown from strength to strength and today boasts a user base which exceeds 1 billion, 61% of whom are active on a daily basis.
Furthermore over 90% of accounts follow at least one brand, establishing the platform as a key network for marketers and creatives alike. But, how will the platform evolve and what will we need to know to be at the forefront of this evolution?
Read on to see a listicle of our six top predictions on how Instagram will continue to shake up the already ever-changing world of social media.
1. A FULL SHOPPING EXPERIENCE
What was once just a photo-sharing app, Instagram has since made a significant step forwards for shopping, especially since introducing checkout in March 2019. This feature made it quick and secure for people to buy products which they discovered on Instagram. This move was also interesting as it created a new way for consumers to engage with content and for brands to drive sales, achieved direct from the platform.
This year, we will see the Instagram checkout feature spark exploration and become an essential call to action for all campaign strategies. But, how can brans stand out in the crowd?
We believe it has never been more important for those working with creative talent to continue to hold themselves to the same high standard set out by the platform and ensure that the landscape continues to remain authentic to all those that use it.
We all know that the less genuine a channel becomes, the more likely it is to lose followers. This means that brands must put even more emphasis on sharing compelling, talent-first content strategies that spark engaging conversations and meaningful brand advocacy.
2. IMPROVED INSIGHTS
Instagram insights help you learn more about your followers, activity and performance. So, as more users discover the various features made available by the social media giant, the demand for advanced data will increase.
That’s because such information has opened up a wealth of opportunities and enables both marketers, talent and agencies alike to better understand their digital portfolio, so they can continue to engage with their audience.
When Instagram introduced ads in 2019, they also erupted an evolving ecosystem which allows brands to optimise talent generated content. Consequently, we believe this is just the beginning, and Instagram will continue to provide value for active advertisers. This way they can make improvements in order to separate themselves within the competitive market and engage with consumers who are otherwise becoming savvier. The key here is not just the creation of business intelligence about the online customer, but also the intelligent use of this data too to adapt, change and learn from.
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“When I was a kid, I wanted to be an astronaut,” says artist Scott Listfield (@scottlistfield). “I thought I’d grow up and live on the moon with my robot best friend and my flying car.” 👨🚀🌒💫 Scott’s home isn’t off Earth (yet), but he’s made more than 400 paintings featuring the same astronaut exploring the unknown. “I find the deserts and mountains of California to be as beautifully strange and alien as the moon,” says Scott, who lives in Los Angeles. #ThisWeekOnInstagram Illustration by @scottlistfield
3. FAKE FOLLOWERS
As the demand for brand content increases, more users strive for ever-high engagement and as such, are constantly manufacturing fake followers. In fact, reports suggest that these fake fans cost users over $1.3 Billion in 2019 alone. These users have fallen victim to the lure of fast community growth. However due to these synthetic communities which are based on fake followers, brands are losing money, trust and interest, now more than ever before.
Predictions point to a movement against these false numbers and a focus on credibility and authenticity. That’s why are committed to only working with true talent, who are able to define their integrity because they have professional representation which validates their voice.
Instagram is too working on measures against mischievous accounts that pretend to be something they are not. We believe that 2020 will bring clearer transparency regarding the practices that nominate account owners as genuine or not and hopefully with this we can begin to restore trust.
4. AR WILL BE BIGGER THAN EVER BEFORE
We expect to see more AR technologies on the platform moving into 2020.
In fact, the likelihood is that anyone will be able to generate their own AR filters moving forward which will in turn allow users to further engage with brand content and ultimately promote experience products online before purchase.
This means that brands can extend their presence outside of reality and reach new consumers who otherwise are unable to visit a store. However, such activity will require marketers to be on top of these ever-evolving AR trends to ensure they don’t miss a beat and so that they can continue to enrich the consumer brand experience, bringing both new and established customers along with them.
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The new #VersaceSS20 advertising campaign features long-time friend of the House @jlo who surprised the audience and broke the internet closing the runway show in an iteration of the iconic Jungle print dress. _ Directed by @mertalas and @macpiggott / @artpartner Chief Creative Officer @donatella_versace Creative Director @ferdinandoverderi Styled by @kjeldgaard1
5. CO-CREATED CONTENT
Our data reveals that co-created content published on Instagram has a x2.5 higher engagement rate and as such, quantifies how strongly talent-led marketing performs on this social media platform alone. Instagram allows users to tell their story, using unique creative tools and immersive formats that spark action. It also enables them to connect with new customers, whilst strengthening relationships with exciting ones, activated by true talent who drive credibility, authenticity and meaningful brand advocacy.
Ultimately, we believe that brands succeed by being part of the conversation, not interrupting or subverting it. The key is creating content that truly resonates with the audience. So, when talent is professionally guided through their content creation, marketers are able to rest easy knowing that this advocacy is able to drive positive brand perception and deliver real results. In fact, we have found co-creation can increase post approval by up to 85%, showing the value behind expert strategies which focus on quality, over quantity.
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It doesn’t matter if you’re heading to a cafe on your day off or racing to your next appointment. @mzwallacenyc new line of men’s bags can really do it all. From being shoved into a tiny overhead on a regional jet to being dragged down the hallways of the Olympic Training Center when my roller flipped over their Bleeker Duffel has held up on my travels the past few weeks. It even has the ability to fit my size 13 shoes, electronics and sweatshirt as I traveled across the country with only a carry on. Bottom line, I think this bag is great and I am only assuming the rest of @mzwallacenyc new men’s line is as well. #ad
6. TRUE TALENT
As trust becomes a key topic of concern, we believe that solving such issues remain at the forefront of our reasonability, as industry leaders.
For example, we believe that the term ‘influencer’ is wrongly used and simply defines anyone who is paid for content they share on social media, regardless of their talent, credibility or expertise.
So, as the space continues to become even more crowded, brands will need to develop a talent-led marketing approach in order to identify professionals who deliver qualitative and quantitative results.
Without a doubt, 2019 saw huge developments, both for Instagram and the industry. However as competition continues within social media (and new players such as TikTok enter the space) the outcry for creative content, activated by true talent will never settle as brands seek to adapt and reach their audience, across multiple touch points.
As a result, we will continue to prioritise hero talent and co-created content, which will become an essential ingredient across all digital strategies.