How This New Instagram Feature Will Dramatically Change Marketing in 2017Photo by Michael Loccisano/Getty Business Features Instagram
Ever come across a really interesting or inspiring Instagram post you wish you could save for later – without taking a screenshot that takes up precious storage space on your phone? Now you can with Instagram’s newest feature, which enables users to save any post they see to revisit in a separate folder called – wait a minute – “Saved.”
For users, this is an obvious added experience so posts can be more easily shared and stored for later – such as when you really need that fashion inspiration, that motivational quote, or that hilarious video to show everyone at the office the next day.
If you’re in the marketing department for a brand, there’s a lot more value within this feature for you, both now and down the road. It’s likely that you use the advertising side of Instagram, so as a baseline, knowing what resonates with your target demographic and what doesn’t is critical.
Here’s where it can be really interesting to create content your customers can save.
In one way of approaching Instagram as a marketing channel, you may already test out the engagement rate for one product using two different concepts. In 2016, you may have found that using artistic shots led to a higher CTR than models using your product in front of a flat background.
With saved posts, the element of emotion is added as a marketing metric. CTRs are really only useful as part of a sales funnel, and unless you have an amazing funnel that can measure Instagram engagement all the way to a sale, that CTR is literally worth just as much as a like. With a saved post, now we know your target audience was moved by your post. Of course, we don’t yet know what kind of analytics brands will have about saved posts, but at the least you can takeaway that it resonated enough to keep it to show others; to view again; or maybe take action on later.
In marketing, that’s a good indicator to keep trying to recreate that emotion until you start driving home more saved posts than your intended target audience.
Ron Schott, Senior Communications Manager of Social Advertising at Microsoft, expanded that this feature could also keep a brand’s audience engaged within Instagram for a longer period of time. He said, “I was thinking of a scenario the other day where a brand working with a number of influencers could tell a multi-perspective story across a number of different handles and encourage users to save the posts in order to experience the full story. In that aspect it’s about providing a cool experience that you wouldn’t get with Instagram’s newly-instituted algorithmic feed.” However, it would immerse a user into a brand’s story – not just your typical Instagram story, but one created by multiple saved posts.
Schott added: “Ultimately I think the ability to save posts is all about understanding and better serving our audiences. To me it’s about getting as much data as I can to either validate our creative direction or enough data to say why we should do something else. We as brands have to keep in mind that we’re trying to play in this space of where content from friends, media companies, celebrities, and other brands comes together. If we’re not creating stuff that makes someone feel something, we’re wasting our consumers’ time and probably our money.”
For a brand, making someone feel something – as we all know from some of the best ads on television out there – is often the key not just to good brand loyalty, but organic shares about saidthat ad and thereby brand. This new feature from Instagram will change marketing in 2017 not just because it’s the splashiest new feature – and not just because companies like Microsoft are already thinking about it only six days after the announcement of Saved Posts – but because Instagram just became the only social media platform to enable marketers the ability for their target audiences to express how they feel about your content. This allows you to create content that continually resonates better, ultimately driving your company above and beyond next year’s sales goals.