How will Instagram change in 2020?

What's next? Instagram Marketing Trends 2020

What a year 2019, Instagram! The "everybody’s darling" of social networks has grown and changed. Whether IGTV, interactive stories or in-app shopping: Instagram is no longer the same as it was at the beginning of last year. Reason enough to take a closer look at the most promising tips and trends in Instagram marketing for 2020. Because a particularly big change is still ahead of us, at least here in Germany. Hidden likes in the feed could significantly change the content that we see or want to see in the future.

Trend # 1: More creative in content creation

While it is not yet clear to what extent hidden likes will affect the German Instagram landscape, we dare to guess: no publicly visible likes lead to more creative content. Why? Quite simply, on the one hand there is no fear of a poorly performing post. The inhibitions to try something new decrease, since a possible failure is no longer publicly visible.

But there's a second good reason to post more feed posts. Stories have become increasingly popular over the past year, but the number of feed posts has been falling steadily for years. This is because companies and influencers, but often also private individuals, only allow carefully selected and edited content in their feed. This should be carefully considered and put together appropriately, after all, it is important to get as much commitment as possible for each post. But Instagram has a vested interest in ensuring that the feed is also used regularly. Because even if Stories Ads 2019 have been continuously developed and improved, Instagram Ads in the feed are still developing, and Stories is still missing the ad inventory.

So that means? Get creative! With a higher number of posts, it is good to experiment with what goes down with your target group. Are videos more popular than pictures and do your subscribers read long captions (both further trends, but more on that in a moment)? Every target group is different and here it is actually worthwhile to just be brave and do it. Nevertheless, you should make sure that there is no chaos on your own account page. In its entirety, the feed should still look aesthetic and tidy, after all, we're still on Instagram. The feed can be easily planned with apps such as Later.

You can find more Instagram tools here:

Trend # 2: Short videos instead of pictures

Videos mean more engagement, we've known that for a long time. But videos also mean a lot of work. Where does the content come from, who takes care of editing and editing? 2020 makes our work easier. As with photos, it is important to rely on authentic and hardly edited output. We owe this trend to TikTok, whose audience is also represented on Instagram, or whose videos are also shared on Instagram.

TikToks is also about perfection, but not in terms of editing or aesthetics, but rather about the crisp, creative content that could go viral. This is admittedly easier on TikTok than on Instagram, but marketers can still take a look at something here: Instead of preparing every detail perfectly in the background for a long time, just do it. The quality of our cell phone cameras is our best friend. Also important: Don't take yourself too seriously. At the beginning it is a good idea to take a short video instead of a photo. Five to ten seconds is enough. The workload compared to a photo remains the same. But a video induces followers to interact longer with their own content, which Instagram also likes to see.

This clip by Nicole Ciotti is a good example. She could have chosen two pictures for the post, but instead she filmed a short video that probably captures the entire scene and mood better than any photo and yet doesn't mean much more work. With the possibly imminent introduction of Instagram Reels, the editing of short videos in the app should also be made easier.

Trend # 3: AR and stickers in stories

Even though we just referred to a shift back to the feed, stories on Instagram are and will remain an extremely important tool. Instagram Stories have 500 million daily active users. There are more and more ways to make them interesting. Above all, interactive stickers that are easy to use for everyone.

Augmented reality effects are somewhat more sophisticated. But there is great marketing potential here. By opening the Spark AR Studio to everyone, everyone can try out and create their own filters. These can then be used, for example, for certain events or as a supplement to a campaign.

Trend # 4: IGTV as an undiscovered format

IGTV was initially accepted rather skeptically by most, but has now blossomed into a popular format. The videos, which are up to ten minutes long (for verified larger accounts even up to 60 minutes), work surprisingly well on a platform on which even short clips are usually skipped into stories. Very few accounts use the full hour, but the five to ten minute videos in particular are also watched.

But the format has only really had great potential since Instagram showed its indulgence and no longer insists on vertical videos. In addition, the IGTV videos are displayed on a separate page and can thus be found more easily by followers. IGTV Series can also be subscribed to. So everyone who has already watched an episode gets a notification as soon as the next one is online. But the ultimate kick start was the opportunity to post published IGTV videos in the feed. As a little teaser, so to speak, to tempt viewers to watch the rest of the IGTV.

In terms of content, a large concept does not have to be worked out, but recurring formats could prove their worth, such as the “Katernews” at Vice. IGTV could also be a great format for companies, online shops or brands, for example to publish behind the scenes videos or answer questions.

Trend # 5: authenticity and transparency

Authenticity and transparency are always buzzwords. Online shops can provide insights into processes, product routes, manufacture or origin, for example. Companies may want to tour their office or introduce the team. Internal customs such as a weekly breakfast together or the office dog can also offer good and regular content. Here, too, a little creativity is required, but basically the trend in 2020 should be more towards simple and effortless content. Which brings us straight to trend # 6.

Trend # 6: Savable and shareable

Snackable was last year, 2020 will be savable and shareable! The function of dividing posts in stories has two advantages for marketers: First, it pays to create content that is simply shared by followers, because that means more reach without having to do anything else. Second, this also means that simple content can be prepared for your own story. Content that is particularly useful here are memes and tweets. In the meantime, influencer Gala Darling simply posts a quote from herself. Of course, that works too.

As entertaining as some memes are, they shouldn't be posted too haphazardly. Your content or your statement should always match the brand voice. The same goes for tweets. Here you can share your own tweets, but also, for example, statements from people in the industry.

Savable content, on the other hand, brings us back to the Instagram that we know and love. After all, the platform is still a place of beautiful pictures - ideally so beautiful that it is worth saving it in your own collection with the small bookmark. But not only beautiful pictures can be saved well, longer and informative texts, guides or recipes are also usually well received.

Tip: If a call to action (CTA) is built into the post, followers are often more inclined to comply.

Trend # 7: longer captions

Length actually pays off. Captions, like hashtags, are a difficult topic on Instagram, on which opinions are divided. Here, too, the length of the captions should be adapted to your followers or target group - it pays to try it out. However, it has recently become clear that most Instagrammers are willing to click on “read on” and also read long captions.

These offer themselves for the already mentioned look behind the scenes, but also to establish your personality or the personality of your company. Well-considered storytelling can be carried out in captions and thus a deeper bond with the target group can be established. Even for anyone who would not call themselves a novelist, it is definitely worth adding more than just three emojis to the caption. In our guide you will learn how to write good captions.

On Instagram, hashtags still belong in the captions. Click your way through our guides on this topic and find out everything you need to know about hashtags in 2020.

Trend # 8: In-app checkout

With the new possibilities for in-app shopping at Creators and in-app checkout, Instagram can become a true e-commerce platform. In 2020 it can be assumed that significantly more shopping tags will be seen by influencers. The potential here is gigantic. Especially for influencer marketing, these innovations mean that the real benefit of a cooperation with an influencer can be better measured. Finally, the products sold directly through the account could be accurately measured.

Trend # 9: More followers through giveaways

As is regularly shown, for example, with our go-arounds of the month, competitions are often a very successful way of gaining new followers. And who doesn't want that? After all, these are the ones who diligently give us likes, share them and, ideally, ultimately become customers. Most of the time, reaching a certain number of followers is pure hard work (this is how you achieve organic reach on Instagram), but often there is a lot of trickery and e.g. subscribers bought. While we don't want to encourage this in any way, a competition or giveaway can occasionally generate a lot of new followers.

So-called loop giveaways are a popular way of doing this. With these several accounts represent one or more mostly high-priced winnings. In order to participate, interested parties must follow each of the accounts and comment on one of the posts about the competition. In contrast to the use of bots, calling for this does not violate the guidelines of the platform. While this tactic promises a rapid increase in the number of subscribers, as a brand or company you always have to ask yourself how “high quality” the followers should be. After all, a high number looks good, but if the number of likes or comments is incorrect, it looks very dubious in the worst case.

It is usually worthwhile to rely on a longer-term Instagram marketing strategy. Now, at the beginning of the new year, is the perfect time to question your own strategy and set new goals. A look at our trends for the coming year can help you with that.

And now it's your turn: where do you see the trends for Instagram 2020?Have you already adapted your marketing strategy to 2020?