Social media platforms are evolving—every day, it feels like—so put this roll-up of Instagram’s Q1 2022 changes to work as your cheat sheet! 

Changes in our platforms may feel random, but they’re always based on trends in what’s keeping people on platforms longer, and engaging more. So, while we may wish things would stay the same for more than a nanosecond, usually they do bring opportunities… if only we can figure out how to optimize them.

As you review these, be sure to think about them both as a user, yourself, as well as how they may impact your followers’ experiences. Changes nearly always have an impact on how our followers interact with (or even get), our posts…

The other important detail to note: changes won’t be rolled out all at once, so you may not see this in your own platform right away—but keep an eye out for “what’s new” callouts when you’re logged in. Your time will come soon!

Give Extra Credit with Enhanced Tags

Are there people who’re helping make your brand great? The photographer who took your branding photos, for instance, or the makeup artist or hair stylist whose genius gives you confidence and “the look”… or graphic designers that add juice to your posts?  

Enhanced tags 🏷️ make it easy to share the love and help them get found! 

  • Choose Tag People after adding a caption, 
  • then tap Show Profile Category to search and select the contributors you’d like to credit. 
  • Tap Done, then Share!

Your followers will be able to go directly to the tagged account. Your collaborators will send you lotsa ❤️! 

Create a 3D sticker to use across Meta 

Bring your image a new, playful personality by creating a 3D avatar that you can use on Instagram, Facebook, and Messenger. Mixing things up in your social communications is a positive way to create engagement, and make your personal (or business!) brand feel more approachable, less “all-business” and serious.

Here’s how to create yours: In Instagram, go to your Profile and choose

Settings > Account > Avatars

You’ll discover dozens of ways to personalize your presence, from face and features, to body and clothes, and much more! 

Enhanced video options

Have you been sweating over what type of video to share, how to help people see them once you finally make a choice? Instagram heard that and has made some changes to ease your stress levels:

  • All video is now being kept in one place on your profile and stream, so there’s far less pressure to optimize one type of video vs another.
  • A new feature allows you to schedule your Instagram Live videos — they’ll appear as a highlight in your profile.
  • You can remix public videos…

Whaat? Yes, you read that right! Another exciting introduction (similar to TikTok duets, if you’ve seen them), is the ability to remix other people’s public videos with your own video content. 

This is a great tool for interacting with collaborators, brands, and/or influencers. Use remixes to record feedback or review a product, build on others’ ideas, or start a conversation. 

(They do have to have the option enabled; if you’d like to know how to enable it on your profile, here’s a step-by-step how to).

And it’s SO easy! 

  • Choose a reel you’d like to use, and tap the three dots at the bottom right. 
  • Select Remix This Reel — a camera window will show up on one side of your screen; the original reel will be on the other. Tap the shutter button to start recording live, or tap the image icon at the bottom left to upload a pre-recorded one. The initial reel will play while you record. 
  • Tap Edit, to see a preview of your reel — and feel free to add stickers or filters if you like.

When you share your finished reel remix, the account holder for the original reel will be credited too.

Engage & Earn with Subscriptions

Have you been wanting to create a more exclusive community experience within Instagram—and make extra income, too? Subscriptions is for you: it’s a feature that’s gradually rolling out, and you’ll want to take advantage of once it comes your way.

Subscriptions make it possible for you to charge followers a monthly fee to access exclusive content — e.g., go Live only to subscribers, or share stories just for them. 

Also, subscribers will receive a purple badge, marking their DMs and comments as part of their most dedicated group. 

There’s also an active effort in the works by Instagram to make it possible for creators to take their subscriber lists into other platforms, as well as to other websites and/or email. Stay tuned!

More Feed Choices

One of the early changes announced this year, is a set of options to how posts arrive in your feed. (If you don’t see “Home” in the upper left corner of your screen when you’re in Instagram, you don’t have it yet.) 

This is good info for you to have as a user, but it also impacts how your posts are received by your followers, so read on:

Home: this is the experience you likely have now. Posts come into our feeds chronologically, but ranked based on Insta’s algorithms for how interested we are expected to be (and so keeping us on the platform longer!). 

Favorites: choosing this option will prioritize posts from accounts that users have favorited. 

  • This, in particular, makes it extra important that your content delights your followers, because if you’re NOT a favorite, your content is less likely to get seen. 
  • Since not all users are going to be “in the know” about preferences and their impact on what you see, you may want to include reminders — especially in replies, but even in post text — to make you a favorite so they’ll see more of what they like!

Following: this is the old way feeds were served up: a simple chronological list of posts from the accounts users follow. 

Are you stumped about something on Instagram? Or about how to make it serve you and your business better? That’s what I’m here for! Join Coaching Club for monthly training, or if you tired of the DIY approach, I’d love to talk to you about our social media management services.