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A Guide to Instagram's New Guide Feature: How can you use it to engage your audience

A Guide to Instagram's New Guide Feature: How can you use it to engage your audience

Admin 02-02-2021

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, every media channel played its part to make sure that people received the correct information regarding the disease so that they don’t believe any rumors. With the same intention, Instagram introduced its Guide feature in the beta version and invited medical experts and field professionals to use it. The experts and creators used it to spread awareness among the people about the coronavirus pandemic.

With its increased popularity, Instagram rolled out this feature for everyone in November 2020. There are some of the initial users who have already posted different guides for their followers to read.

That being said, not a lot of people know about Instagram Guides because the feature is hidden behind the “+” (Add) sign in the user profile.

In this blog, we will talk more about Instagram Guide and how you can use it to further engage with your social media audience. So stick around if you want to add one more layer to your social media marketing strategy with Instagram Guides.

What are Instagram Guides?

Instagram Guides is the latest feature of the Instagram application that allows you to share your recommendations on posts, places, and products. You can use this feature to give a virtual tour of your products, services, and other related information.

Instagram allows you to select your posts or the ones that you saved to create a guide based on posts. Likewise, you can only create a guide of products available in the Instagram shop. It asks you to choose the products from your page or the businesses that you follow to create a guide on products. For places, you can choose the posts tagged with that place or location.

Within the Guides, Instagram allows its users to write short descriptions (about 2000 characters long) with a headline (around 60 characters long) for every section. At the top of the guide, you can choose to add a cover photo that is not one of those used in the guide along with the guide title.

See how @heads_together used Instagram Guides to talk about different important topics on self-care and health. You too can manage your Instagram and other social media accounts from a single platform with social management software. This will help you organize your social media interaction more efficiently.

How Guides can improve your business?

When you realized that most of your audience is on Instagram, and you want to keep them engaged with their content. You must already be sharing posts, stories, IGTV stories, and reels about your business and its related information.

Guides will act as a connecting link between all your different posts, products, or the posts shared by your followers, customers, or affiliate businesses. Once you create a guide, you can share it with your followers via Instagram stories, posts, or DMs. Your non-followers can also see the guides in the explore section if you have added relevant hashtags to your guide.

There are many ways to use Guides to connect with your customers better. In this section, we will be seeing what all you can do with Instagram Guides to increase your brand reputation and trust in social media.

Tips

When it comes to sharing genuine information, tips or pointers on any topic are some of the most sought after content. People like to read any information in bite-sized pieces rather than long content. This way, they can consume more information in lesser time. That is why users prefer to read tips and pointers more than a long wordy post on the same topic.

With Instagram Guides, you can give useful information in the form of tips and pointers enhanced with pictures and videos and share it with your followers through Instagram stories, posts, or DMs.

You can make your products or services a part of this guide. For example, if you are a skincare brand and you are writing a guide on Winter skincare tips, you can use your winter-specific products in your guide and make it easier for your audience to simply buy your products from the Instagram store.

Moreover, if you are giving your followers truly useful tips, they will come to trust your brand more. This will eventually increase your reputation on social media as a brand.

How-tos

Whether it is using a new product or trying a new recipe, most people turn to the internet to know how to use or make it. Businesses with an Instagram page can think of how their customers use their products and put a guide to the most unique use of the product.

For example, if you are a business that makes mint chutneys, you can put recipes on how your followers can use mint chutneys to create other newer recipes. This way, you are giving your followers new and interesting information while also promoting your products.

You can create a product how-to guide to show the process of using your product in the most efficient way depending on your industry. This will help your customers to find it easily in your Instagram profile and purchase it directly from there.

Product Catalogs

Creating an online product catalog on social media is everything a business owner would want. The followers of your brand or business can engage with the post of your products, view the complete catalog in a guide, and buy it directly from your Instagram store.

For example, if you are a fashion designer that creates and releases a new collection every season, you can create a guide to your latest collection. This guide with images, compelling product descriptions, and posts linked to your Instagram store will help you to send your users down the sales funnel faster than other channels.

Moreover, when all your products are woven into a single collection-based guide, your customers will be able to find their favorites faster. You will be able to offer them a way to purchase without redirecting them to another page where they have to find the product again. Thus they will be faster to purchase it.

Storytelling

Imagine if you can get a complete yet concise news story in a single Instagram Guide, wouldn’t that be amazing?

News stories generally span over time ranging from days to years. News accounts can use their previous posts on one story and connect it in a Guide dedicated to that story. This allows users to remember where the news started and how it has evolved through the days in one single guide.

The description attached with every post allows you to add more information on the subject. And if the viewer wants to learn more about it, then they can click on the post to read further on any particular event of the complete story.

If we take the launch of any important satellite, news stories about its proposal, the commencement of the project, hurdles in it, and finally, the launch itself will have a gap of several days or even months in between each event. News channels can create a guide by linking their posts on every single event of the whole ordeal in a single guide to allow its followers to refresh the story from the beginning.

Event Guides

Event posts are common on Instagram, the organizers would share a poster of the event along with the schedule in another image. With guides, organizers can share the complete schedule with their followers and related information in one single place.

So, suppose you are organizing a conference on World Mental Health Day, you can share different posters, information of speakers, and a little backstory of the day in one guide. This way, once you have shared different posts on your Instagram, you can link them all in one single guide to help your followers get all the information that was first divided into different posts. With the guide, you make sure, that your followers do not miss any important information about the event.

Over to you…

The use of Instagram Guides can only be as profound as your imagination. That being said, it certainly opens up a new point from where you can connect more easily with your customers.

As a business owner, you can ask your digital marketing agency to invest some of their time in guides as well. It will help you to increase your brand reputation and trust on social media. And that will ultimately result in higher sales. If you want to manage your social media on your own, try social management software for free to help you build your social presence more effectively.

Are there any other ways that you would want to use Instagram Guide? Tell us in the comments, we would love to add them to this list. And for more information like this, check out our blog.

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