Posts, Stories, Live, IGTV, Reels, and now Guides.
Say hello to a whole new format of sharing content on Instagram.
What are Instagram Guides?
Instagram Guides were first introduced in May 2020 to help people find mental health resources to cope with the COVID-19 situation.
The platform enabled only a select group of expert organizations and public figures to participate in sharing recommendations and tips on how to look after oneself during the global pandemic.
As explained by Instagram, “When viewing a Guide, you can see posts and videos that the creator has curated, paired with helpful tips and advice. If you want to learn more about a specific post, you can tap on the image or video to view the original Instagram post. You can also share a Guide to your Story or in Direct by tapping on the share button in the upper right corner.”
Organizations like AFSP National, Headspace, and Klick Safe were some of the first few participants that shared wellness content using Instagram’s new long-form content feature.
But now, Instagram has expanded the Guides feature to all users to share scrollable and easy-to-digest long-form content. So, for marketers, now is a great time to learn a thing or two about this new feature. To begin with, let’s get started on how to create a Guide.
How to create a Guide on Instagram?
To create your first Instagram Guide, tap the plus icon on the top right corner of your profile page and select ‘Guide’.
Once you select ‘Guide’, you’ll get the option of selecting three types of Guide formats which are as follows:
- Places: To recommend places in your city and beyond.
- Products: To recommend your favorite products.
- Posts: To recommend the posts you created or saved.
Places is the perfect guide type for anyone who wishes to share their location-based recommendations. The blog post-like format allows you to narrate your recommendations with extra commentary and context without limiting yourself to posting videos and images.
And for brands, this is a great way to highlight posts of customers tagging the physical location of your store. This way you can also show off your user-generated content in fun and engaging ways.
Oh, you don’t need me to spell this out for you.
For businesses that are always on the lookout to find new ways to showcase their products, this feature is right up your alley!
But remember, products under this type can be featured only if they are available on Instagram Shop.
Pro tip: With the holidays just around the corner, you can create a holiday-inspired Guide on how your products come into play during this time of the year, paired with helpful tips and advice on how to use them.
This is a very neat format that can be used to share a thread of related posts that you’ve either already saved or shared to your feed.
NBA’s Guide featuring the players of the upcoming 2020 NBA Draft Class season is a good example of how to use this Guide type.
After you’ve successfully published a Guide, it’ll get its own placement on your profile along with the other forms of content you’ve published.
Instagram has also mentioned that in the coming days, you’ll be able to access Guides within the Explore tab, just like how you access Reels and IGTV.
This works well for businesses on Instagram as it opens up a lot of opportunities for brands to get the word out on who they are and what they do via a curated flow of posts and visual storytelling. There’s also room to entertain influencer partnerships, as influencers can now create Guides solely focused on product recommendations.
Okay, I created my first Insta Guide. Now what?
At the end of the day, social media updates like this only grants an equal playing field to organically reach new customers, but the success of it will always ride on the marketing strategy employed.
And let’s be honest, these days you can’t truly make headway on social media without a software suite. Not only can they free you from spreadsheets and email, but they also ensure you stay on top of all your social media tasks.
As a social media management platform, we’re constantly evolving to integrate the latest Instagram features into our own platform.
Using Falcon, you can create, manage, and collaborate on your Instagram strategy, including Stories, videos, and images, and also plan your next campaign with advanced insights. Talk to one of our strategists today and discover just how deep you can now go with your social analytics.