15 Instagram Trends That Will Make An Impact In 2022

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Social Media Manager
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Lynn Corbitt

Last Updated: Dec 9, 2021

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Instagram is an ever-evolving community, which makes keeping up with Instagram trends a never ending cycle. 

The platform keeps introducing changes and users keep accepting them. In a matter of days, we see influencers adopting the new feature, so we go with the flow.

The question is: How can brands incorporate new Instagram trends and utilize them to better their client’s success on Instagram? The truth is, the faster businesses can accept new Instagram trends and incorporate them into their strategy, the better their marketing efforts will perform.

After all, we know the utilization of a new feature typically means a boost in the Instagram algorithm. Plus it gives you a chance to share your message in a completely fresh way. If you’re looking to focus your efforts on the biggest Instagram trend of 2022, look no further. 

We’ve collected the 15 biggest Instagram trends you should be aware of and how they will affect your social media marketing efforts in 2022.

15 Biggest Instagram Trends For 2022

1. Instagram Is Catching Up With Television

When IGTV first appeared in 2018, it looked like an extension of the stories. Instagram users got more space to film parts of their lives. But it grew big!

According to Instagram, 78% of total mobile data traffic will be going to mobile video. Despite its slow takeoff, IGTV is predicted to make great contributions towards that trend. What does this mean for brands? 

It means you should incorporate long-form video content in a vertical format into your strategy. Depending on the type of brand you’re promoting, you can showcase moments from behind-the-scenes, Q&A sessions, and interviews with influencers -really anything that your audience will be interested in. 

Instagram practically gives you an opportunity to broadcast your own TV show. Use it well!

IGTV In The Feed

With an update, users that broadcast on IGTV can now also share a short preview in their feed. If you check the kinoyoga profile, for example, you’ll see the vertical videos from IGTV among her posts.

Before this feature showed up, it was a bit difficult to promote IGTV channels. The low traffic and engagement that early adopters saw left many wondering if IGTV would be Instagram’s biggest flop.

Now that you can write captions and actively direct your followers to IGTV, it has the potential to capitalize on the ever-growing trend of mobile videos. Brands that utilize IGTV have to incorporate preview posts in their feeds as well. Otherwise, you’re really only doing half the job.

Instagram Live

When everything shifted to being online, Instagram Live started to boom amidst the beginning of the pandemic and is still popular today. Business owners are sharing their stories, and followers are finding new ways to connect with brands they love. No matter what industry you’re in, Instagram Live is sure to be an important part of your Instagram marketing strategy in 2022.

There are plenty of different ways you can use Instagram Live to connect with your audience, even if you don’t want to do the traditional face-to-camera type video. You can:

  • Share tutorials about how to use your products or services. 
  • Walk your audience through a step-by-step process
  • Introduce your team to your audience. 
  • Let your audience ask questions.
  • Host interviews.

No matter how you choose to use Instagram Live in 2022, you’ll want to get creative and be present on the platform.

Instagram live on Sephora's account

Reels

Reels are the most recent type of video to reach the Instagram platform, and they’re becoming increasingly popular. These short videos were inspired by TikTok, and they allow users to share some fun on the app. Businesses are participating in dance trends, people are learning more about one another, and it’s generally a lot of fun. They’re quick to watch, so people can enjoy them even if they’re short on time and aren’t able to watch something more long-form, like an IGTV.

2.  Rise Of Relatable Influencers

For a while Instagram influencers were able to promote brands without clearly disclosing their collaboration. They got paid to show you some products, but they never said as much. So Instagram users started calling out the influencers, often writing comments about their posts being misleading.

Now, Influencers are obligated to use the paid partnership tags, such as #ad or #sponsored. This has changed things for businesses and influencers; they now have to be more transparent with their campaigns. There was a fear that customers would be less likely to buy if product posts disclosed the collaboration with a tag.

However, influencer marketing is still very much on the rise, especially on Instagram. More importantly, though, relatable influencers are on the rise. These people don’t have the picture-perfect life. They’re showing the real aspects of their lives, as well as the glamorous side. Many people find them more trustworthy because they’re more relatable.

Many times these relatable influencers begin as micro-influencers, so if you’re looking to revamp your influencer marketing game (or start it in the first place), begin by looking for influencers with smaller followings. Just because they don’t have tens of thousands of followers doesn’t mean they won’t be beneficial to your brand. Often their following trusts them more because they’re so relatable.

influencer marketing partnership post on Instagram
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3. Reels And TikTok Takeover

We mentioned it earlier, but we’ll dive a little deeper here: Reels. And chances are you’re familiar with TikTok, too. Reels and TikTok are creating a whole new kind of content that users are beginning to expect to see. These short, catchy videos are becoming a part of everyone’s watch list, from teenagers to adults and anyone in between. 

While these kinds of content are new, they aren’t too difficult to produce. 

If Reels aren’t on your to-do list yet for 2022, it’s time to add them. You don’t have to create fancy dance videos, but a quick video showcasing your products set to a trending song can really make a difference for your business. 

Instagram literally re-organized their home page to create a button to access Instagram Reels at the bottom. Whether you like it or not, Reels are going to be here for a while, so get ready to try them during 2022.

4. Increasing AR Features

If you didn’t know, Instagram now has augmented reality (AR) features. The most popular features are in Stories. They’ve had basic filters for a long time, but now they have a new AR music feature so you can engage with the music while you’re creating your Story or Reel.

Whether you’re using filters to alter your appearance slightly to still look realistic or intensely to have some fun, almost everyone is using filters on Instagram. Chances are high that Instagram will continue to roll out more AR features throughout 2022. Keep an eye out for them, and have some fun trying them out yourself.

Instagram trend: AR features in Stories

5. User-Generated Content

User-generated content is not only incredibly popular, it’s also very helpful for branding and marketing. If you don’t know, user-generated content is content that your followers, customers and fans create on behalf of your brand. Then, you can (with permission) repost their content to your profile. 

Not only does UGC save your content creation team time, but it also helps your audience and potential customers trust you more. Think of UGC like an endorsement. When someone goes out of their way to create content about your product or service, people will believe what they say. After all, they’re putting their reputation out there for your brand. UGC isn’t anything new, but it’s certainly a trend that will stick around throughout 2022.

6. Social Rights Movements And Values 

While this isn’t necessarily a trend, it’s definitely something that is critical for 2022. Gen Z is quickly taking over the social platform, and they’re passionate about finding, following and purchasing from brands that are vocal about their values and morals. Companies need to be able to demonstrate their stance and values on their social media. 

It’s also important to remember that users can tell when you’re faking it. So if you’re going to take a stance on social rights issues, you’ll need to go all-in and make sure your messaging is consistent. 

Don’t simply post about something once. Make it a part of your messaging, like @tylerjmccall. When social justice issues arise, be ready to stop your scheduled and pre-planned social media posts, otherwise you’ll come across as indifferent to the current events. 

Instagram post on social rights movement

7. Easier Ability To Add Links To Content

Link in bio tools are increasing in popularity and are helping brands convert their followers into customers. While Instagram Shopping is great to keep people within the app, sometimes there are things you need to send your followers off of Instagram to see, like your blog posts or a services page. 

That’s where a link in bio tool like url.bio can help.

When you have a link in bio tool, you can effectively have multiple links on Instagram at one time. This can include other social media platforms, your latest blog post, or any resources you mentioned in your most recent feed posts.

Because Instagram only allows one clickable link in your profile, you want to make the most of that real estate. Using a link in bio tool can encourage your followers to reach more of your content, and it can help convert followers into customers.

There’s great news, though, because “link in bio” isn’t the only way to add links to content now. We all know that people with 10,000 followers can have the swipe-up feature on their Stories, right? Well, now there’s a link sticker feature available in Stories for anyone. So, you can talk about a certain product, webpage or blog and then link directly to it in your Stories with this sticker. This is a game-changer, and it’s something that’s going to quickly grow in popularity throughout 2022.

Instagram trend: link sticker in Stories

8.  Greater Transparency And Honesty

According to SproutSocial, 86% of Americans say transparency on social media is more important to them than ever. Users found video content to be the most transparent. 

In addition, today’s consumers want brands to be more transparent about the changes in their products, company values and practices, policy changes, and employment practices.

This is a big lesson for businesses to learn. When their audience demands information, they should be ready to provide it. Social media gives you the perfect platform to provide more transparency to your audience. As you can see below, consumers view video as the most transparent, and Instagram gives you many video options. There’s Stories, Instagram Live, IGTV, Reels and typical feed video posts. When you show up on video on social media, you can build trust with your audience because they can see and feel your honesty. If you need to admit to and apologize for a mistake, do so over video. If you’re working through a problem but don’t have all the answers yet, go Live and have an honest conversation with your followers.

Consumers want to see transparency, and you have the ability to greatly increase your company’s transparency simply through video on social media. 

Sprout social chart on social media post consumers consider most transparent
Source: Sproutsocial
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9. Increasingly Becoming An E-commerce Platform

Instagram is leaning more and more toward e-commerce. Brands were finding ways around them to direct their followers to shop from them, so Instagram made it easier in a few different ways.

Shoppable Posts and Stories

You can now tag your posts and Stories with direct shopping links once you have an Instagram store established. Basically, you need to put your products into a catalog with Instagram, then you can tag them in posts like you’d tag another person. The difference is, when someone taps on your shoppable tag, they’re taken to your Instagram storefront so they can make a purchase. They can also see the price on the tag, so they can know whether or not they even want to look more closely.

Purchase from Creators

Thanks to Instagram Shopping, creators can now earn money directly from the platform. This is a big step because it means that your potential customers have fewer barriers to converting and making a purchase. When users have to leave the Instagram app, each click away is a chance for them to decide they don’t really want to make a purchase. However, when that purchase can happen within the app, they’re more likely to go through with it. 

Instagram Shops became important in 2020 during the coronavirus pandemic, but they’re going to continue to play a major role for online sellers in 2022. Use this feature to tell your brand’s story and share with your potential customers so they can enjoy the shopping and purchasing experience.

Instagram Checkout

So, once you’ve tapped on a shoppable post and selected a product, you’ll see a button that says “Checkout on Instagram.” You can input your payment information and make your purchase right there. Buyers can even save their information for easy purchasing next time. This is a great benefit to brands, as people will be more likely to complete their purchases this way.

10.  Instagram Carousels For High Engagement

You’ve seen Instagram carousels before. You might have even created one or two. Moving forward through 2022, you’ll want to make sure they’re on your radar. Carousels involve multiple photos or videos in one post. They’re enticing for people to want to swipe through, and you can use them to showcase multiple photos from an event, various product angles or anything else that goes together.

carousel post on Instagram

On Instagram, engagement is key – and it’s not just likes, comments and shares (although those are all incredibly helpful!). Engagement on a carousel post even includes swiping through the various images that were included. This is an easy way to boost your engagement and help your standing on Instagram.

11. Instagram Rooms

Instagram Live Rooms debuted in early 2021, and they’re sure to take off in the next year. Instagram Messenger Rooms have been here a little longer, but we’ll mention them, too. Instagram Live Rooms allow you to go Live with up to three other people. This is great if you want to team up with other business owners, influencers or customers to talk about your product or business. Or, you can use them as a round-robin Q&A setup. There are so many ways to use this tool, so make sure it’s on your radar for 2022.

Instagram Messenger Rooms came out in 2020, around the same time as Facebook Messenger Rooms. Think of these rooms as another way to video chat with a group. You can have up to 50 people in a messenger room, and it works well for semi-privately connecting with people who are far apart.

12. Instagram Shop Tab Ads

It might sound counter-intuitive, but up until recently there weren’t ads in the Shop tab of Instagram. Of all places, that seems like the most important one to have them! The good news is that they’re available now. Brands can now advertise their products on Instagram within Shop.

Instagram shop tab

This is a great decision because people who are browsing the Shop tab are already in the purchasing mindset – or at least they’re ready to browse. By advertising there, you can ensure your product ad appears for someone who’s ready to buy. Advertising in the feed and other places on Instagram can be helpful, but you’re not sure if you’re catching someone ready to buy. In Shop, you are.

13. Businesses Incorporating Memes Into Their Social Media Strategy 

Believe it or not, memes are still sticking around, and they’re making their way to businesses for 2022. The most important thing to know before you add memes to your strategy is that you must understand what the meme means and how it works before you try to use it yourself. The last thing you want to do is use a meme incorrectly. Someone in your audience will call you out on it, and you don’t want that.

Wedding Hashers incorporating memes in their social media strategy

Instead, take the time to learn about the meme you want to use, see a few examples and then create it for yourself. When done correctly, memes are funny ways to connect with your audience from a new standpoint. They make brands relatable and approachable. Don’t be scared to use them, but definitely make sure you understand them first.

14.  DMs Are Getting Big

If you watch IG Stories often, you probably noticed that replies on Stories translate to sending direct messages. Influencers and brands alike often use the question sticker in Stories to encourage conversations and then share the answers they get in direct messages.

DMs are becoming the most effective and impactful means for brands to connect with their Instagram followers. 

The users can send voice messages, share posts or stories, or even have a video chat. Instagram is slowly but surely turning into a convenient messaging platform. Making connections is no longer limited to liking posts and commenting on them. Now, the users can really engage with the profiles they like.

It’s important that you include direct messaging in your social media marketing strategy. It’s great for humanizing your brand and getting really personal with your followers. 

Instagram Stories features

15. Well-Curated And Scheduled Instagram Feeds

Having a nice-looking, consistent Instagram feed is still important. After all, potential followers are going to visit your profile and look at your feed in order to decide whether to follow you or not. You want to give them a good reason to stick around. The good news is, in 2022, you don’t have to sit on your phone posting every day. There are plenty of tools that you can use to schedule your posts in advance – you just need to plan time to sit and create them in batches.

Many of these tools also have a way for you to preview your feed. Use this feature so you know that your images will look good together. If you like posting graphics with words on them, you can ensure you don’t have too much text next to each other. You can check to see if you have clashing colors in adjacent pictures. By taking the time to plan, curate and schedule your Instagram feed, you can be ahead of the curve in 2022.

Instagram Trends In 2022

We cannot predict what Instagram will introduce next.

What we can say, however, is that Instagram trends are constantly changing, and brands should use those changes as an opportunity. Observe the trends, and find ways to include them in your strategy!

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2 Comments

  • debora says:

    This article is very informative, updated and transparent.
    What a useful information provided by this blog! It’s remarkable. Thanks for helping me out

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