There have been some excited new updates and upgrades to Instagram recently! Below I sum up six of my favorite new features and recommend ways that you can use them to enhance your brand and grow your influence on Instagram.

New Instagram Features Summer 2018

New Features on Instagram Summer 2018

Sharing Stories You’re Mentioned In

Whenever someone @ mentions your account in their Stories you get a notification in your DM inbox. Now you’ll notice that there’s a little blue link above that notification that says “Add This to Your Story.” Just tap and the app will automatically set up a new story for you where you can add text, stickers, links, etc.

You can use this in your businesses by asking your followers and customers to mention you in their stories. When they do, share it to show your community that you value them. Pro tip: Set up a Story Highlight of your best mentions. Learn how to make Highlights with beautiful covers in my tutorial.

New Instagram Features Summer 2018

Sharing a Post to Stories

See a post that inspires you or features your brand? Hit the paper airplane share button below the photo and you’ll get the option to “Add post to your story.” Just like in the example above, IG will automatically import that post into a new story draft for you to tszuj it up!

Pro Tip: If you see someone in your community posting about a big accomplishment they just achieved, share their post to a story. Sharing positivity will bring more positive growth to your brand!

New Instagram Features Summer 2018

Mute Accounts

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the amount of posts in your feed but don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings by unfollowing them, then the new Mute setting is for you. It’s similar to unfollowing someone on Facebook, but staying their friend. When you see a post in your feed and you’d like to Mute that account, just hit the three dots at the top right and tap “Mute.” Instagram then gives you the option to mute just their posts or mute their posts and stories.

If you want to make sure that you don’t miss posts from your core tribe, you can try muting accounts that clutter up your feed. The person you mute will not be notified.

New Instagram Features Summer 2018

No More Missed Messages

Now your DM inbox includes messages from people that Instagram thinks you’ll want to talk to. You won’t miss as many important messages just because you’re not following the sender. In my in-person workshops a lot of people discover their “other” inbox for the first time and they’re blown away that they have dozens of messages about potential business opportunities that they never responded to!

The “other” inbox isn’t gone, but Instagram is trying to outsmart it and get important messages in front of your eyes.

New Instagram Features Summer 2018

Customized Call to Action Button on Profile

Finally, a way to get more than one link in your profile! If you have a business profile (which you should!), then you have seen the Action Buttons for “Call” “Email” “Directions”, etc. Well now there’s a way to add a customized action button that links in with their party programs.

To access this, tap Edit Profile, then Contact Options. From there tap “Add an action button.” You can choose from over a dozen third party sites such as Acuity, Booksy, ChowNow, EventBrite, MyTime, OpenTable, Yelp, etc. I think the most practical option is to link up with EventBrite and share a “Get Tickets” button to promote your next event.

New Instagram Features Summer 2018

Make Your Own GIFs

You probably know that I LOVE Stories and I love adding fun GIFs to my stories. They are a great way to add some personality and pizzazz to your account and, used correctly, they can enhance your brand presence on Instagram. Well, not they can really enhance your brand because Instagram is allowing you to create your own custom GIFs!

If you know what you’re doing, it seems pretty easy. Step one is to create a Brand account on Giphy. Then you’ll need to upload sticker style gifs. I’m hiring a designer on Fiverr to create custom gifs for me. So even if you’re not a graphic designer or animator, you can still get in on this exciting new feature! Read more about it on the Later blog.

New Instagram Features Summer 2018

Make sure that you’re taking advantage of all the great features of your Instagram account! Enter your details below to get access to an exclusive video tutorial I created to show you exactly how to create awesome Stories Highlights that will reinforce your brand on Instagram and let your followers get to know you better.