Most Important Instagram Updates For Realtors
It seems like Adam Mosseri and Instagram are working around the clock to make changes to the platform. At this point Adam hops on Ig Reels a few times a week and describes the new changes, states that they’re just in testing stages, and explains the reasoning behind it all. Some are fans, some are fo’s. Seems like Instagram is set on their long term vision and they’re working hard towards achieving it, even if that means shifting from the original foundations of being a “photo sharing app”. What does this mean to your and your business? Since most Real Estate Professionals utilize social platforms to generate leads and provide social proof it's crucial that you’re up to date on the most important changes of 2022 and how you can utilize them starting today!
We’ve curated a list of the most important changes Instagram has made based on the niche of Real Estate Professionals and how they could best employ them.
Let us know your thoughts in the feeds page!
January - Chronological Feed View
Back in January they brought back (probably from a lot of complaints) the original, chronological feed view. Feels like good ol’ 2011. Now by simply clicking on the top left hand IG logo you get to choose from two options. First is a button called ‘following’ which takes you to a chronological feed of all the people you follow. No recommendations, no hashtags, no ads. The second option is called ‘favorites’. When you click here you have the option of viewing the posts of only the people you have manually added a favorite ‘star’ too. If you’re one of those people that follows four thousand people you probably don’t know, this is an easy way of filtering the posts you really want to see. Some changes have been made since but the concept remains.
April - Reel Editing Tools
In case you didn’t notice, Instagram recently updated the editing tools on one of their most popular features – Instagram reels. This update should help you trim and rearrange your video clips within the Reels composer easier than before. Now you can reorder, delete and trim each of your clips in just a few taps. No longer do you need three separate apps to make simple edits to your reels. We believe reels should be well thought out but not nit-picked until perfection. You’re simply posting a short video to share with your followers not composing an oscar award winning film.
April - New Messaging Features
As announced this year, Instagram will focus more and more on messaging as a crucial feature of making the network more engaging for its users. The latest Instagram updates include a few new hidden gems to improve messaging.
Active Now – On the top of your inbox, you will see a showcase of the active friends at the moment, so you can choose who to chat with now. This is helpful when you’re following up with prospects, you can catch them exactly as they’re online.
Silent – using this option, you can send the DM, but it will not send a push notification to the person you are writing to. This is useful if you write late at night and don’t want to disturb them.
Quick Sent – if you are scrolling the feed and find content you want to DM to your friends, now you can long tap on the Arrow icon, and it will popup icons from your friends that when you tap on their avatar it will quickly send the link to the post into their DM.
New music sharing – with the integration with Apple, Amazon Music, and soon with Spotify, will allow users from these apps to share a 30-second clip of a song to their friends in an Instagram DM.
May - Immersive Feed Experience
Instagram/s CEO announced that they are testing a new immersive experience in the main Home feed in the Instagram app. This means that video will become a bigger part of the feed, and takes up bigger space. Both photos and videos will take more of your screen – will have a taller format. The goal of these feed changes is to learn how people prefer to interact on mobile and if this 9:16 format is proven to be better for a mobile-first experience. Well, if we compare it with TikTok we can see that they are already full-screen by default, and maybe this change comes as an influence of the competition. This seems like the route they are going to stick with so you have to change your recording style and photo editing to match the 9:16 format.
June - Captions For Reels
When you upload an Instagram Reel, auto-generated captions will automatically be turned on. With this feature, Instagram is making the process of captioning content more seamless for creators while making Instagram more accessible for members of the deaf and hard-of-hearing communities, in addition to people who consume videos with sound off.
How does it work?
When uploading an IG video auto captions will be turned on automatically. To turn off the audio captions, tap “Advanced Settings” in the upload flow and toggle “Captions” off by clicking the switch. This will automatically disable captions for all of your videos going forward. When viewing a video, you can tap on the overflow menu and select “Manage Captions” to access a switch to turn on and off captions.
June - New Audio Features
Adjust volume and add voiceover – You can find them by clicking the song note icon on the preview screen after you’ve uploaded your reel.
Import audio – You can import audio from any reel that you have in your library and overlay it onto your video.
Text-to-Speech – Sometimes you don’t want to hear the sound of your own voice, so you can just type text in and a fun voice will read it right over your video.
June - Grid Pins
An ability to pin photos to the top of the grid in the profile. It is allowed to pin up to 3 photos or videos. This feature works great when you have viral content you want to showcase. Or a video of the week/month that you want to leave up on your page while the newer posts flow down.
To start pinning, just follow these steps:
Go to the post you want to pin,
Tap the 3 dots in the top-right corner
Choose ‘Pin to your profile’
July - Template & Dual Camera
Instagram is getting very serious about helping every user create Reels. They can finally do this very efficiently by providing pre-built Reels templates that everybody can use and create a Reel very fast. This is a great way to inspire people and help them create Reels, even if they have no idea how they work. Reels Templates are very easy to use. Just click Use template and your own magic and create the Reel. We believe that with Templates, we can see more and more adoption of the Reels video format. Templates will help boost your creative juices and allow you to easily be able to create more real estate content.
Dual: In addition to the new Reels templates, users can now record their take on what’s happening. This means you can simultaneously use the phone’s front and back camera to record a video of both perspectives. One way you can use the dual camera is when you’re doing a home walk through you your followers can both see your face and the home. This can get very creative in the real estate field.
July - New Maps Updates
Instagram is making improvements to the Map functionality. The new update includes an option to search for local businesses by category. With the new Instagram search map, you can find businesses near you and get more information about them. This can be useful when you’re looking for a specific type of business or want to explore what’s nearby.
To use the new Instagram search map, simply search for a city or a nearby location:
Once you are on the Map zoom out and click Search this area
The search results will bring local businesses categorized by their industry or type
You can click on Hotels, Cafes, etc
We believe this is just the beginning for Instagram Maps, and we will see more features in the future. If you have a physical office make sure you’re on these maps. I wonder if they can somehow incorporate an idx feed with your listings so prospects can search through it? Interesting thought.
One question we find ourselves asking a lot is, how social should we be as real estate professionals? Are we more of an online business or offline business? Will we miss the bus of the social business boom or it won't affect us as much? Ask yourself these questions.
Are you a social butterfly? *in the online presence*
How much more business can you get by being really active on social media?
Is it worth your time and energy in creating content?
Will you make more money by spending a couple hours a week to create content or will it be a waste?
Where is your main source of business and will being active on instagram boost your sales?