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Top 5 Instagram Marketing Trends for 2016

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).

2. Stock Photography on 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, 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.

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.

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