Instagram has recently launched a new content sharing format: the Instagram Guides.
The Instagram Guides (this is the Italian translation of this new feature) open new perspectives for sharing and creating content on the platform, above all because are very close to the editorial style typical of blog.
As always, every time Instagram launches a new feature, marketers all over the planet are wondering: how could we take advantage of this new opportunity to achieve our goals? In this article I would like to try to give you some ideas on how to use the Instagram Guides , but not before understanding what they are and how to create them.
Instagram Guides: what they are
Instagram Guides represent a completely new format for the platform , a sort of perfect mix between carousels (which we know very well by now) and blog posts.
Their main purpose is to bring together multiple types of content in a single place linked together by a common topic. Instagram itself describes them this way:
“a way to more easily discover recommendations, tips and other content from your favorite creators, public figures, organizations and publishers on Instagram. ”
From its definition we immediately understand what the real objective of this format is and its potential: making it even easier for users to discover and find useful information , such as advice and recommendations from the profiles we follow.
In other words, the Instagram Guides are a sort of folders, collectors of thematic contents designed to facilitate users in the use of the contents they prefer without having to scroll the entire feed of the account followed.
Another thing to know about Instagram Guides before actually discovering how to make one is that you can create some types of guides, such as:
- Guides dedicated to places
- Guides dedicated to products
- Guides that collect more posts of our feed
Already with this information I’m sure you will have come up with a couple of ideas on the possible uses of the Instagram Guides for your business… right?
But before we give you some ideas on how to use them in your communication, let’s find out together how to create an Instagram Guide.
How to create a guide on Instagram
The first thing to do to create a guide on Instagram is to click on the “+” button located at the top right of your profile homepage. Here you can select the type of content you want to create from Posts, Stories, Highlighted Stories, IGTV Videos, Reels and Guides (yes, it is the last item being the last function introduced by the platform).
From here you can choose the format that best suits your needs, among those listed above:
Each format is clearly designed to meet the Creator’s needs. To give an example, the format dedicated to Guides composed of feed posts is designed to create a sort of collection in chapters (we can in fact insert a title and a brief description for each post that we choose to insert in the guide), which the user can consult as if it were a real mini-magazine on Instagram.
But let’s look at them in detail.
The Instagram Guides dedicated to places [Place Guide]
Once we have chosen the “guide” form, Instagram offers us to choose the type of guide to create. By selecting the “Places” type, the platform will ask us to choose the place on which we want to make our guide , once identified it will show us the geolocated posts for the chosen place and will allow us to select them.
This means that the Place Guides will not necessarily be guides linked to the posts of our profile , but they will represent a collection of user-generated content linked to that particular place.
This type of guide, for example, can be really useful for those who work in the tourism sector and need to promote the area, but also for all local activities such as restaurants or bars , who might think of using this format to collect user-generated content linked to their physical location (perhaps showing the interior, the arrangement of the tables, the atmosphere, etc.).
The Instagram Guides dedicated to products [Product Guide]
This type of guide is very special, because it can only be created by relying on the products found in the Instagram Shops. The first shops that will be presented to you will be those of the accounts with which you interact most, so you can create your list of favorite products and that you want to recommend to your followers, but for those who have a Shop active on Instagram also represent an excellent opportunity to add information to your products that can be purchased online.
Also, you have already understood, this type of guides become an excellent tool also for influence marketing campaigns , since influencers may be interested in creating a list of products they recommend, in the form of an Instagram guide.
Once the product has been selected, Instagram will ask us to choose a content (photo or video), among the posts published with that product tag, our posts or simply an image selected from those in the product page of the shop itself.
We can then customize the title of our guide, its description, the titles of each selected product and their description (perhaps inserting the reasons why we recommend it).
Instagram Guides created with posts from our [Post Guide] feed
Probably the most immediate format and which most aims to increase the visibility of the posts in our feed , giving new life to the older ones, but which addresses a common topic among them.
For example, if we are a restaurant we can use the Instagram Post Guide to create a guide on the first courses of our menu, by selecting photos from our feed.
If we are a hotel instead, we could use Instagram guides to create virtual mini-tours to recommend to our visiting customers.
Or, we can use the Instagram Guides to collect the reviews we have received from our customers, as in this example.
Or s and we work in the digital field, as in my case, we can take advantage of the Instagram Guides to collect in a single place all the posts related to the social news column or the tutorials we publish, to make the most of the platform.
How to make our Guides visible
The good news is that, yes, Instagram Guides are shareable in Stories and via Direct Message, this only means one thing: being able to give them more exposure!
Being able to share them also via direct message, also allows us to greatly enrich our customer service , since we can answer a question from a potential customer with immersive and dynamic add-on content, such as guides.
I’ll give you some concrete examples.
If you are the manager of a B&B and your future guest contacts you on Instagram to get some tips on things to visit during his stay, you can answer him by sending him a guide on the places created previously.
Or again, if you work in a clothing store and you are contacted by a customer (potential or acquired) for advice on an outfit for a specific event or to find out about new arrivals or trends of the moment, you could answer him by providing your answer with a guide on the outfits recommended for a specific event or the guide created with the photographic posts of the new arrivals. See how in this case, Instagram guides can act as a real online catalog!
Furthermore, once created the guides are always editable, so even in the case of guides linked to a seasonal menu or a list of new products, it will be very easy to update them in a very short time.
Now you know what Instagram Guides are and how to make them on your profile , and I hope I have given you some ideas to take advantage of them in your communication and for your business.
If you enjoyed this article, please leave a comment and share with me your doubts and / or considerations regarding this new feature. I’m curious to read you!