Instagram marketing trends you need to pay attention to

Post by Open Colleges on September 19th, 2021

An Instagram marketing strategy is how you plan on using Instagram to get in front of your target audience, build up your brand’s reputation and generate sales.

There are more than 1 billion users every month around the world. About 10 million of those users are in Australia. Yep, you read that right – 10 million Australians use Instagram every month. That’s a massive chunk of the population who are all using Instagram to connect, shop, entertain themselves and get their news.

If you’re not taking advantage of the massive marketing power of Instagram for your brand then you’re missing out.

Read on to discover the top Instagram marketing trends you need to know about right now and how you can make money from your Instagram account.

Everyone else seems to be making money on Instagram – why shouldn’t you, too?

The top 9 Instagram marketing trends

1. Great content is key

Having great content has and always will be key to the success of your Instagram marketing campaign. If your content is inconsistent, unappealing or doesn’t hold value for your audience then you’re not going to attract the followers you want. 

Once you’ve identified your target audience and your niche, it’s important to post content that they’ll find valuable – whether that’s in the form of insights, facts, humour, entertainment or anything else.

2. Use Instagram to sell your products

According to Oberlo, 50% of Instagram users follow at least one business, and 80% of users rely on Instagram to help make purchasing decision.          

In 2020, Instagram changed the ‘Activity’ tab to a ‘Shop’ tab. Clicking on this handbag-shaped icon will take users to an area where they can purchase the product.

There are a few different ways customers can purchase things directly from Instagram, making it easier than ever for you to promote and sell your products.

You can utilise Instagram Shop if you have a business account (which you should have already set up by now). After setting up your Shop, you can tag up to five different items in a post. If your followers tap on one of these tagged items in your post it will take them to your Shop. If they’re not ready to buy, they can save the item for later and add it to their wish list.

Another way you can sell products through Instagram is with the help of influencer marketing or affiliate marketing.  

3.  Make the most out of Instagram Stories

Stories disappear after 24 hours and they don’t appear in users’ feeds or in the Explore section. This makes the content you post here more exclusive. You’ve probably seen posts on Instagram which read along the lines of, ‘To find out more make sure you watch our latest Story’.  

You can also add stickers to your Stories. These come in the form of fun, cute emojis or you can get your audience to participate by including a question, poll or countdown. There are also product stickers you can add which make your Stories shoppable.

With an Instagram Business account, you’ll gain access to metrics and insights and a host of other features.

4. Get creative with Instagram Reels

Reels are Instagram’s answer to TikTok videos. Reels last for 15 seconds maximum and you can pair them with music, use filters and choose different layouts. You can also add multiple clips to the one video.

Generally, Reels tend to be on the fun and casual side compared to Stories, offering creators a chance to show their silly side. Reels are shareable and they have their own tab on your profile. Unlike Stories, they show up in the ‘Explore’ section.

5. People are looking for authenticity

A massive 86% of people surveyed by Stackla said that authenticity was an important factor when making the decision to support a particular brand. And 57% of respondents said they felt that less than half of brands create content that actually feels authentic.

Authenticity is important because, once you’ve built up a strong following, they’ll shy away from anything that feels inorganic or false.

What are your brand’s core values?

What do you stand for?

What do you believe?

Don’t be afraid to get real with your audience.

6. Tell your story with IGTV

Do you have something to share with your audience that’s too long for a Story and doesn’t quite work as a Reel? Why not tell your story with IGTV?

Posting regular IGTV videos that feature quality content will go a long way with your audience. You could even think about creating a themed series that you share with your audience on a particular day of the week.

Users can watch up to one minute of an IGTV video within their feed, and can opt to then watch the whole video. IGTV videos can last up to 15 minutes but they must be a minimum of 60 seconds long.

Discover what makes your target audience tick and watch your follower count increase.

7. Create your own AR (augmented reality) effect

Facebook publicly released the Spark AR Studio in 2019, and since then you can hardly move for all the custom AR filters that are now available!

Customising a branded AR filter is a great way to connect with your audience.

You can create a filter that will be published to your profile. You can keep it there for as long as you want. You can then use the filter in one of your own stories and add a ‘try it’ button so your watches can try it out for themselves.

8. Start creating more Live content

The best thing about Instagram Live is that if your audience is online at the same time as you go Live, they’ll get a push notification letting them know about it.

Like Reels, this is a chance for you to create authentic, engaging content for your audience that lets them see a more ‘human’ side of your brand. While you should still remain professional, Live lets your audience see what’s going on behind the scenes. It also gives your audience a chance to interact with you in real time.

One amazing example of the power of Instagram Live is the Isol-Aid festival. This livestream festival started after the COVID-29 pandemic hit Australia and forced the temporary shutdown of music venues. This was a huge hit to the Australian live music scene, and many artists suddenly found themselves without an income stream. Isol-Aid was started to give musicians a platform to play music and to allow their fans to still engage with their favourite acts. They also provided a way for fans to donate money to their favourite bands and musicians during a very difficult time for the arts community.

9. Create your own Instagram challenge

Generally, an Instagram challenge lasts for a set period of time (usually one month) and involves daily prompts that inspire participants to create a post that adheres to the challenge theme.

If you’re creating your own challenge, it’s best if you include a unique hashtag that people can use. A unique challenge hashtag can help to get you in front of new followers, and may help you appear in the Explore section or the Top Posts section.

Creating your own challenge can help you build stronger relationships with your followers, attract new followers and lend authority to your brand.

Alternatively, participating in someone else’s challenge is also a good way to attract new followers who are also participating in the challenge.

Ready to learn the ins and outs of Instagram marketing?

Are you ready to get your business in front of your target audience and start converting leads into sales?

Check out our partnership online Instagram Marketing short course to learn all the ins and outs of Instagram marketing, and how you can monetize your account.

Happy ‘Gramming

Community Design & technology Tips & resources
Open Colleges
By Open Colleges

Related blogs

Explore our collection of informative and educational blog posts to stay updated on the latest industry trends and expert advice.

See all recent blogs


Read Article

Top qualities of a successful Healthcare Aide

Read Article

Workers in Need: A Look at the Aging Care Crisis

Open Colleges
Read Article

Five Quick Tips for Requesting a Reference Letter

Open Colleges
Read Article

The Five Best Careers Working with Children

Open Colleges
Read Article

5 Soft Skills you need to accelerate your career

Open Colleges
Read Article

A Day in the Life of a Marketing Manager

Open Colleges
Read Article

5 tips on how to balance studying while working full-time

Open Colleges
Read Article
See all recent blogs