2017 has been quite a year in the world of Social, so we wanted to bring the very latest news on everything Instagram.. hope you enjoy!
Instagram has announced that you can now follow hashtags so they will appear on your news feed alongside the accounts you follow.
This new feature allows you to see the top posts from your favourite hashtags, it show the latest stories from that hashtags in your story bar, and it allows you to see what hashtags people are following on their profiles.
Due to some hashtags having thousands of posts, Instagram have included an algorithm to filter what you see so you only get the best posts in your news feed. Users will be able to further filter their feed by clicking the ‘I don’t like this’ option to make it more personalised.
This new feature will give you the ability to follow topics you like and see new content from users you may have previously missed. It suggests other hashtags to follow, and allows you to see what other hashtags users are following, showing you more things you may be interested in.
The idea of this new feature is to show users more content, keeping them in the app longer and in turn allowing more reach for advertisers.
Instagram is also testing a new private messaging app called Direct. It is currently only available in six countries: Chile, Israel, Italy, Portugal, Turkey, and Uruguay on both IOS and Android.
Installing Direct will remove the inbox from the Instagram app making it only available through the messaging app. It appears Instagram will be moving towards removing the messaging features from the main app and having a standalone app like there is for Facebook and WhatsApp.
On the app, it opens straight to the camera like Snapchat, you can alternatively pull down to show a screen that allows you to type your messages instead. To the left, is a profile screen allowing you to access settings and change accounts. On the right, are your message inboxes. The app allows you to create and share stories whilst giving you exclusive filters and other creative tools on Instagram.
There are currently 375 million people using the direct message feature so it makes sense for Instagram to have all of these users going to a separate app. Although it’s a small issue, a downside is now having to leave the main Instagram app go back and forth between Instagram and Direct instead of having everything in one place.
Highlights is a fairly new feature that was quietly rolled out on Instagram this year. Highlights are a way that you can save stories into specific groups by also giving them a name.
The feature can be accessed by clicking on the Stories Highlights section, which can be found in a new section of your profile below your bio. From there, you can choose which Stories you want to include in your Highlight from a list of past posts, select a cover for the Highlight, and give it a name.
The Highlight will show up on your profile as a circle for other users to tap on and view. You can add as many Highlights as you want, and they’ll stay there basically till the end of time
These can be cleverly used by business to either showcase different ranges of products or services, or if they want to showcase what lift is like to work inside a particular company
Here’s an example of what they look like on your page, after giving them a suitable name.