15 Hidden Instagram Hacks & Features Everyone Should Know About by Lindsay Kolowich | @lkolo25

In the past few years, Instagram has quickly become the go-to social network. And if you think it’s just middle and high schoolers are the ones using the app, think again: Pew Research Center reported in 2015 that 26% of adult internet users use Instagram. Compare that with the 23% of adult internet users who use Twitter.

Not only do adults use instagram, 53% of adults ages 18–29 years old say they use it every single day.

To help beginners and advanced Instagram users alike familiarize themselves with the platform, we’ve put together a list of 15 of the lesser-known tips and features Instagram has to offer.

Whether you’re a recruiter looking to showcase your company’s culture, a marketer in the ecommerce industry, or an individual looking to take your Instagram game to the next level, there are tips and features in here for you. (I think we can all agree #4 is a game changer.)

And for further reading, check out this list of the 11 best photo and video editing apps for mobile.

Note: Before getting started, make sure you’re operating on the latest version of Instagram, version 7.13.1.

15 Hidden Instagram Hacks & Features

1) Get notifications when your favorite people post.

Never want to miss an Instagram post from your favorite people again? You can choose to get a notification every time a specific users post a new photo. All you have to do is turn on notifications for each user individually.

To turn on notifications for a specific user: Visit that user’s profile, and open up one of their posts. Then, click the three dots in the bottom right-hand corner of the post, and choose “Turn on post notifications” from the menu that appears.

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Want to turn post notifications off? Just follow those same steps.

Note: If you followed these instructions and still aren’t receiving notifications, double-check that you’ve allowed notifications from the Instagram app in your phone’s settings. Here’s how:

  • To allow notifications on iPhone/iPad: Go to “Settings,” then “Notifications.” Choose “Instagram” and then turn on the setting to “Allow Notifications.”
  • To allow notifications on Android: Go to “Settings,” then scroll down and choose “Apps,” then “Instagram.” Select the option to show notifications.

2) See all the posts you’ve Liked.

Ever wanted to see the posts you’ve Liked, all in one place? All you have to do is go to your own profile and click the “Options” button (a gear icon on iPhone/iPad and three dots on Android). Then, click “Posts You’ve Liked.”

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To un-Like any of the posts you’ve Liked, simply go to the post and deselect the “heart” icon below it. The user won’t be notified that you’ve un-Liked their post.

3) See the posts your friends have recently Liked, commented on, and so on.

You already know how to see the posts of yours that others have Liked recently. But what about the posts the people you follow have Liked recently? Or what they’ve commented on others’ photos, for that matter?

To view the recent activity from the people you follow: Click the heart icon at the bottom of the home screen that shows which people have Liked your photos. Then, choose the tab near the top that says “Following.”

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4) Look through pictures without worrying about accidentally Liking them.

Live in fear no more. This is more of a hack than a feature, but here goes: To look through someone’s Instagram photos without “double-tap paranoia,” scroll through their feed while on airplane mode. Without internet access, you won’t be able to Like their photo even if you accidentally double-tap it.

The pictures won’t load in the first place if you start on airplane mode, though. You’ll have to go to the feed first so the pictures load, then turn on airplane mode, then start scrolling. When you reach the end and need to load more pictures, simply turn airplane mode off, let more load, and then turn it on again.

  • To turn on airplane mode on an iPhone/iPad: Swipe up from the bottom of the screen and click the airplane icon. Or, go to “Settings” and then “Wi-Fi,” and switch “Airplane Mode” on.
  • To turn on airplane mode on an Android device: Swipe down from the top of the screen. Then, swipe from right to left until you see “Settings,” and then touch it. Touch “Airplane Mode” to turn it on.

5) Clear your search history.

I swear this blog post isn’t all about how to convince people you’re not a total creep. But let’s face it: there are times when we all wish we could just clear our search history on Instagram. Luckily, you can.

To clear your search history: Go to your own profile and click the “Options” button (a gear icon on iPhone/iPad and three dots on Android). Scroll down and click “Clear Search History.” When prompted, click “Yes, I’m sure.”

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6) Reorder the filters, and hide the ones you don’t use.

If you use Instagram a lot, chances are you have a few favorite filters you use all the time, and others you never touch. To make editing photos easier, you can reorder the filters in your editing window and even hide the ones you never use.

To reorder or hide filters, upload a photo and begin editing it, as you would when editing a new post. When you get to the filters page, scroll to the very far right of your filters options and click “Manage.”

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To reorder filters: Simply hold your finger down on the three grey lines on the far right of the filter you’d like to move, and drag it to reorder.

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To hide filters: Deselect any filters you’d like to hide by tapping on the white check mark to the right of the filter.

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When you’re done, exit the filter manager by tapping the “X” on the top right of your screen.

7) Use Instagram as a photo editor (without having to post anything).

Love Instagram’s filters and editing capabilities, but don’t necessarily want to post the photo to your account right now (or ever)? To use Instagram as a photo editor without posting anything, all you need to do is publish a picture while your phone is on airplane mode.

First, be sure you have “Save Original Photo” turned on in your settings.

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Then, turn on airplane mode. Here’s how to do that:

  • To turn on airplane mode on an iPhone/iPad: Swipe up from the bottom of the screen and click the airplane icon. Or, go to “Settings” and then “Wi-Fi,” and switch “Airplane Mode” on.
  • To turn on airplane mode on an Android device: Swipe down from the top of the screen. Then, swipe from right to left until you see “Settings,” and then touch it. Touch “Airplane Mode” to turn it on.

Next, follow the normal steps to post a photo to Instagram: Upload the photo, edit it, and press “Share.” An error message will appear saying the upload failed, but you’ll be able to find the edited image in your phone’s photo gallery.

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8) Insert line breaks into your bio and captions.

When you write a caption in Instagram, you’ll see the keyboard doesn’t give you an option to press “Enter” or “Return.” The same is true for your bio. So how do all those people put line breaks in there?

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Here’s a handy trick I learned from Stephanie in her blog, Life in Limbo: Write out your caption in a different app, copy it, and paste it into Instagram.

Stephanie’s found that this doesn’t work sometimes, but the app with the best outcomes has been the Facebook app. She suggests opening up the Facebook app and creating a new status by clicking “Update Status.” Write your caption in the text box as if you were going to publish it on Facebook, line breaks included. Then, instead of posting it on Facebook, copy the caption and paste it into your Instagram caption or bio. The app should preserve your line breaks.

While this is a great hack, keep in mind that Instagram recently started capping captions at three lines without users having to click “More” to see the whole thing.

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9) Hide photos you’ve been tagged in.

When someone tags you in a photo or video on Instagram, it’s automatically added to your profile under “Photos of You,” unless you opt to add tagged photos manually (see the next tip).

To see the posts you’ve been tagged in: Go to your own profile and click the person icon on the far right below your bio.

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To hide the posts you’ve been tagged in from your profile: Once you’re looking at the posts you’ve been tagged in, click the three dots in the top right of your screen and choose “Edit Tags.” Then, select the posts you’d like to remove from your profile. When you’re done selecting posts, click “Hide From Profile” at the bottom of your screen. When prompted, click “Hide From Profile” again.

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This won’t remove the posts themselves from Instagram, but it will remove them from your profile so you and others can’t access them.

10) Adjust your settings to approve tagged photos before they show up in your profile.

Again, when someone tags a photo or video of you on Instagram, it’ll automatically be added to your profile by default. But you can change that so you can manually select which photos you’re tagged in show up on your profile.

To add tags manually: Go to your own profile and click the “Options” button (a gear icon on iPhone/iPad and three dots on Android). Select “Add Manually.”

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Once you choose to add photos to your profile manually, you’ll still be notified when someone tags you in a photo.

To manually add a tagged photo to your profile: Tap on the photo you were tagged in, then tap your username and select “Show on My Profile.” (If you’d rather not, simply choose “Hide from My Profile” instead.)

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11) Remove photos from your photo map.

Alright … if you’re seeing this for the first time, I’m about to show you something a little creepy. When you go to your profile and click the location pin icon under your bio, a map will appear, which groups photos by where you were when you posted them.

Here’s what the map looks like. As you can see, you can zoom in on that map to a better idea of the specific location that photo was taken … right down to the street level. Yikes.

geotagged-photos-east-coast.png geotags-in-boston.png

If this realization creeps you out, you may want to remove the location data on some or all of your photos.

(Note: This is different from simply removing the geotag from an individual photo. Here, we’re removing all the location data that Instagram recorded and attached to a photo at the time that you took it. If you geotagged the photo, it’ll remove the geotag, too. If you didn’t geotag the photo, it would still have shown up on the map if your phone settings let Instagram know your location, so this step would remove the rest of its location data.)

Luckily, Instagram doesn’t make you go through individual photos to remove the location data from a photo. Instead, it lets you remove location data from photos in batches — and right from your map in the Instagram app.

To remove location data from photos: Go to your profile and click the location pin icon under your bio.

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From there, you’ll see the map that groups photos by where you were when you posted them. You can zoom in and out on different parts of the map to get photos’ more specific locations.

When you’ve narrowed in on which group of photos you’d like to go through to remove location data, click “Edit” at the top right of your map. As shown in the screenshots below, the numbers on the photos will turn from blue (left) to green (right).

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Tap a grouping of photos and click “Edit” in the dropdown menu that appears.

A new window will open that displays the photos from that grouping in one place. From there, you can deselect the photos from which you’d like the location data removed — either one by one, or by choosing “Deselect all.”

Once you’ve deselected posts to your liking, click “Done” on the top right of your screen. In the window that appears, click “Confirm.”

deselect-photos-from-map.png remove-geotags-confirmation.png

POOF — location data will be removed from those photos forever. (Note: When you remove the location data, it’ll be removed permanently.)

(One more note here: The language “Remove 4 geotags?” is admittedly a little confusing. To reiterate, you’re removing the location data from the photo entirely. If you geotagged the photo, it’ll remove the geotag, too. If you didn’t geotag the photo, you’ll be removing the rest of the location data that was attached to that photo when you posted it. In the end, whichever photos you deselect will be removed from your map permanently.)

12) Browse photos taken in certain locations.

One fun thing you can do on Instagram is browse photos taken at a specific location, or taken near your current location. I like to do this when I’m in a particularly beautiful place, or when I want to scroll through photos taken at a specific event or something like that.

Here’s how to do both of these things.

Browse Photos Taken at a Specific Location:

You can either search for a specific place, or you can click into a geotag on an existing photo.

To search for a specific place: Tap the magnifying glass icon at the bottom of your home screen, which will bring you to the general search page. When you click in to the search bar at the top, four tabs will appear. Choose “Places,” and type in the name of a place. When you press “Search,” it’ll show you all the top and recent posts that were geotagged with that location.

To look at photos from a certain geotag: Go to the photo that’s geotagged with that location, and click the geotag. It’ll show you all the top and recent posts that were geotagged with that location.

Browse Photos Taken Near Your Current Location:

Tap the magnifying glass icon at the bottom of your home screen, which will bring you to the general search page. When you click in to the search bar at the top, four tabs will appear. Choose “Places,” and click “Near Current Location.”

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Choose which geotag you’d like to browse from the options that appear. Let’s say I chose to browse photos tagged with the HubSpot geotag. When I click “HubSpot” on the menu, I’ll see the top and recent posts that were geotagged with “HubSpot.”

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13) Drive traffic to an external website.

One of the biggest frustrations people have with Instagram — especially businesses — is that it isn’t a great platform for driving traffic away from the app to a website, a Twitter page, or somewhere else. Why? Because clickable URLs aren’t allowed anywhere except the single “website” box in your bio.

If you put a URL in a photo caption, it’ll appear as plain text, meaning users would have to painstakingly copy the URL, open a web browser, and paste or type it in there.

One sneaky way to get people to visit your Instagram profile, which is where that one clickable URL is allowed, is to use your photo captions to encourage people to visit your profile for a link. Then, update that URL frequently to point to your latest blog content, YouTube video, product, or offer.

Check out the example below. On the left, the photo caption provides a text call-to-action to visit the user’s profile so you can click the link related to the post. On the right, you’ll see the link itself. Update this link frequently to point to your latest content or offer.

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Image Credit: SmartInsights

14) Hide ads you don’t find relevant.

Instagram, like its parent company Facebook, tries to show you ads that are interesting and relevant to you. You might see ads based on people you follow and things you Like on Instagram, your information and interests on Facebook, and the third-party websites and apps you visit.

If you see sponsored posts you don’t find relevant, though, you can let Instagram know and slowly teach its algorithm what you like and don’t like to see.

To hide ads on Instagram: Tap on the “Sponsored” label on the top right of any ad, and choose “Hide This.”

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From there, it’ll ask you to share why you don’t want to see the ad anymore.

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You can also opt out of seeing ads based on sites and apps off of Instagram and Facebook from your device’s settings. Note that even if you choose to opt out of seeing these types of ads, you’ll still see ads based on your Instagram and Facebook activity.

  • To limit ad tracking on an iPhone/iPad: Go to “Settings” and choose “Privacy,” then “Advertising.” From there, choose the option to “Limit Ad Tracking”

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  • To turn off interest-based ads on Android: Go to “Google Settings,” then “Ads.” From there, choose the option to “Turn off interest-based ads.”

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15) Send photos privately to your friends.

Sharing posts with all your followers or with the public isn’t the only way to share photos on Instagram. You can also share them with individual users or with groups, kind of like a Facebook message or text.

You can either send a new photo to friends, or send a photo that you or someone else has already posted.

To send a new photo privately: Upload a photo and begin editing it, as you would when editing a new post. When you get to the “Share to” page, choose “Direct” at the top of your screen. From there, you can pick and choose whom you’d like to send the photo to, whether it’s an individual, a new group, or an existing group. When you click “Send,” it’ll start a direct conversation with that person or group.

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You can access your direct messages at any time by clicking the mailbox icon at the top right of your homepage.

To send an existing photo privately: First, open the photo. It can be your own photo or someone else’s, as long as they have a public account. Next, click the curved arrow icon to the right of the Like and comment icons underneath the photo. From there, select whom you’d like to send it to. You can add a message if you’d like, and then click “Send.”

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What other lesser-known Instagram features do you know about? Share with us in the comments.

 

Top 5 Instagram Marketing Trends for 2016 | Latergramme Blog

Top 5 Instagram Marketing Trends 2016
Top 5 Instagram Marketing Trends for 2016 by Taylor Loren

With a new year comes a new content calendar — and a new set of challenges! With social media changing so rapidly, it can be hard for marketers to stay ahead-of-the-game (or even just keep up).

To help you get creative with your content this year, here’s a list of the top Instagram marketing trends for 2016:

1. Using GIFs on Instagram

The emergence of GIF-like apps and Apple’s Live Photos is sure to make 2016 the year of moving photos on Instagram. Popular apps like Boomerang by Instagram and DSCO by VSCO are growing steadily and will be a major Instagram trend for marketers in 2016. Combined with a variety of apps that convert Live Photos to GIFs, plus the new Instagram feature that loops video posts, we’re expecting to see users and brands get creative with motion this year.

2. Experimenting with Instagram Advertising

Instagram ads used to be carefully curated (at the high cost of $200k+ per ad), until Instagram opened its door to all advertisers at the end of 2015. The quality of most of the initial ads was sub-par at best, and users were not very happy with the spam-like photos in their feed. But with time comes experience, and in 2016 we’ll see marketers and brands begin to experiment with  Instagram ads in order to find out what works on the platform (and what doesn’t). Plus: 30 second video ads? We’ll see!

3. Stock Photography for Instagram

Gathering content for Instagram is a major challenge for marketers, and finding high quality content is even tougher! Thankfully, new players in the stock photography space are recognizing the need for high quality, Instagrammable images at an affordable price.

With startups like Stocksy, which offers beautiful stock photography from Instagram-loved photographers, and Flashstock, which pairs brands with localized photographers around the world, marketers now have more options than ever to outsource their Instagram content for a nominal fee. Don’t have a budget? You can search for awesome content and repost it right from your Latergramme web dashboard.

4. Linking to Content

The ability to click a link in an Instagram caption is a dream for many marketers, and we can only hope that Instagram brings us this feature in 2016. If not, expect to see more creativity from brands and influencers as everyone tries to get their followers to actually visit a website from Instagram (aside from linking to their bio). We’re already seeing this from Instagram’s “Buy Now” buttons and services such as Like to Know It, which makes your Instagram feed shoppable.

5. Managing Multiple Instagram Accounts

As Instagram matures, expect brands to become more targeted on Instagram with the creation of multiple Instagram accounts for different verticals or customers (such as @nike, @nikewomen, @nikerunning, etc). Curated feeds are also rising in popularity, with entire accounts devoted to reposting content from others around a niche topic, like I Have This Thing With Floors, which is all about showcasing photos of feet on nice floors. Not impressed? They have over half a million followers and the hashtag has been used over 200,000 times.

Whether you’re managing multiple accounts for your brand, curating a feed with your friends, or just switching back and forth between work and personal, constantly logging in and out of Instagram can be frustrating. It’s rumored that Instagram may allow you to switch between accounts in the future, but you can easily start scheduling and managing multiple Instagram accounts now (for free!) with the Latergramme app.

– See more at: http://blog.latergram.me/top-5-instagram-marketing-trends-for-2016/#sthash.ohoORRxD.dpuf

Source: Top 5 Instagram Marketing Trends for 2016 | Latergramme Blog

How to Grow Your Instagram Exposure Social Media Examiner

Written by: Elizabeth Victor Published 4th August
How to Grow Your Instagram Exposure

Are you using Instagram to promote your business?  Want to increase your exposure?

Making a few simple tweaks to your Instagram marketing can generate more engagement and increase the visibility of your content.

 

In this article you’ll discover how to get more exposure for your brand on Instagram.

#1: Embrace the Hashtag

Descriptive hashtags on Instagram will help expose your content to more people. This will lead to more engagement and ultimately grow your followers.

For anyone who doesn’t already know, hashtags are short, descriptive keywords, preceded by the hash sign (#), which enable users to find content they’re looking for with a simple click. Relevant hashtags in posts help create a dialogue between your business and other users.

There are a number of things you can do with hashtags to get the ball rolling on Instagram.

First of all, add hashtags relevant to your industry or niche to every post your business makes on Instagram. Remember, you can use as many hashtags as you want, which will help you attract a wider audience. Note: Research has found even small accounts that use 11 or more hashtags receive an average of 77.6 interactions.

So if you’re an online retailer specializing in women’s clothes, include the hashtag #womensfashion, among others, in your photo description. This will help users find inspiration, as well as help you land more followers, improve brand awareness and increase sales.

#2: Engage With Your Community

To make the most of your efforts on Instagram, it’s vital to spend time engaging with your community and other users on the platform.  See what photos and hashtags attract the most comments and likes, and jump on the bandwagon. You can also re-post exceptional images from your followers.

Also, determine where people from your target demographic hang out. Find out which accounts they follow and then engage with them. Comment on their photos and like their posts. Remember to add value with your comments and don’t be spammy.

If you’ve done your research and interact with the right people, these users are likely to engage with your brand and follow your account. Your brand will also start to show up on their followers’ radar.

#3: Launch a Contest

The prospect of getting something for nothing has always been alluring in the world of marketing. Use the reach and popularity of your Instagram account to host competitions and attract more followers. An Instagram contest is a great way to drum up excitement and get people talking about your brand.

Whether you go with a tag, hashtag, like to win, share or other type of promotion, your Instagram contest will certainly be a hit.

#4: Build Awareness of Your Instagram Handle

Even though this is fairly obvious and straightforward, it’s still worth mentioning. The first step in Instagram marketing is to promote your handle to your customers. Then they’ll know you have a presence on Instagram and where to find you.

There are various ways to spread the word that your business is on Instagram. If you have a storefront, print out an Instagram badge along with your username. Laminate it or put it in a frame and display it in your store. This is something you can share virtually on your social platforms as well.

You can write a blog post on your Instagram presence, and share it on your different social platforms. Be sure to link to your Instagram account from you website as well.

#5: Cross-Promote Visual Posts on Other Social Media Channels

Part of the reason Instagram is so popular is that people love visual content.

Don’t limit your visual posts to Instagram. Share them on all of your social channels, such as Facebook and Twitter. That way you can leverage the fan bases of all of your social accounts.

Cross-promoting is yet another way to raise awareness of your Instagram account.

Final Thoughts

Instagram now has more monthly users than Twitter, which makes it one of the most popular social media networks out there.

A visual platform like Instagram is the perfect social media channel to convey your brand’s personality to your audience. Use these tips to effectively market your brand. You’ll increase your audience, as well as your visibility, and in turn grow your business.

Source: How to Grow Your Instagram Exposure Social Media Examiner published on Social Media Examiner on 4th August 2015.