5 Instagram Marketing Trends Micro-Influencers Must Be Aware of

If you’re known in your Instagram niche as an authority, you know how hard it is to build up that reputation. It takes constant, consistent hard work. It takes a willingness to do the small things. And it takes an eye for content that people love.

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Being a relevant, high-engagement micro-influencer is a full-time job.

You may be doing great right now, you could do even better if you take advantage of some of these trends that are changing the face of Instagram.

Are you ready to take the next step? These are the trends you need to know about.

1. Consistent Engagement Driving Organic Growth

If you want to build up your follows, the easiest and quickest way to do it is to start liking posts so you show up in people’s feeds. With 4.2 billion likes a day, Instagram has engagement in spades, and those likes help people get noticed. It’s a common trend, and it’s only going to get more prevalent as the influencer market gets tougher.

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Fortunately, if you want to get a bit of an edge, companies like Kicksta make a living doing the work for you, helping you get ahead of the curve on your post-liking game.

As noted in Kicksta’s latest guide, “With 25 million business profiles on Instagram, we’re living in a time where it is not enough to simply have a social media presence to get real followers on Instagram. You have to attract the right kind of Instagram users to gain that crucial social proof to help your brand stand out.”

“At the same time, your competitor could have a mediocre product, but be driving more sales than you because of the social validation they’ve gotten from their followers on Instagram.”

As likes continue to trend up, having someone to help you will get you further than going alone.

2. Instagram Stories Increasing in Popularity

Over 400 million people watch Instagram Stories each day, and if you’re not keeping up, it’s time to get on board. When Stories came out, the functionality was very similar to Snapchat, but the size of Instagram’s user base made Stories an instant splash that got engagement immediately.

Stories are a great way to drive engagement, especially with the introduction of some of the stickers that add interest and excitement to otherwise regular posts.

Countdowns, temperatures, question boxes and more will give users ways to engage that regular posts just don’t have. Take advantage.

3. Instagram TV (IGTV) Breaking Out

Instagram TV is a stand-alone, vertical-video app that allows for long-form content creation that will directly compete with regular and streaming video services like YouTube and Twitch. With the vertical format, it’s exclusively targeted at mobile watchers.

Video’s still continuing to grow, and Cisco notes that 82% of internet traffic is poised to be video by 2021. Instagram wants to own their piece of the pie, and that’s where IGTV comes in.

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This year, Instagram is pushing hard for IGTV to take off, as it wants to position itself in the long-form video space the same way it has in the short-form video space. If you can get in there early, especially when the competition is lower, you’re going to be able to carve out a niche more comfortably than you will if you wait.

Use the trend now so you can jump the gun on those who are trying to wait.

4. Instagram Shopping Driving Superior Conversion Rates

If you sell products, you absolutely have to jump on the Instagram Shopping trend. Instagram Shopping allows people to buy directly from your Instagram posts. Those posts show up natively and can have a label and a white shopping bag in the corner that indicates that the item is available for purchase — a far cry from the conversion power of those old “Link in bio” workarounds.

Some 75% of people who see a business post on Instagram take action, per their own statistics. That’s a fantastic engagement rate for anyone. If you’re trying to bump up your sales, take advantage of the opportunity to send people directly to your products.

Beyond that, Instagram Checkout will soon allow you to offer products completely through Instagram without a buyer ever having to leave the app.

It’s a trend that’s already starting to take off, and you’ll be able to grow your sales and your brand awareness in a way you simply couldn’t before.

5. Authenticity Becoming Increasingly More Important

The final trend doesn’t necessarily have to do with anything that Instagram itself is doing, but rather a consequence of the heavy influence that brands have through influencers. That’s authenticity.

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People are starting to be more skeptical of product endorsements, especially those that they see pop up all over the place. Particularly for micro-influencers, it’s more important than ever that people see that you’re really using the products that you’re promoting — that you really care about them, not just the companies that give you money.

Authenticity has always mattered, but as the platform becomes saturated, it matters even more than it did before. Be authentic, and you’ll stand out from the pack, especially the ones that really do care more about the paycheck than the people.

You’re in the Driver’s Seat

Micro-influencers are in great position in 2019, with Instagram making some changes that allow you to grow your audience, put out new content, push products and create a more fulfilling, immersive user experience. You’re in the driver’s seat. Make sure that you take advantage of it — but do it with the same authenticity that’s gotten you to the spot you sit in now.

If you take advantage of all of these advances and trends and position yourself well, you’ll be in a great position to succeed. Don’t get left behind — forge ahead, and use all the tools that you’ve been given to make 2019 a banner year.

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5 Instagram Marketing Trends Micro-Influencers Must Be Aware of was originally published in Hacker Noon on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.