Instagram’s CEO announced the platform is no longer a photo-sharing app

Instagram’s CEO announced the platform is no longer a photo-sharing app

“We’re no longer a photo-sharing app or a square photo-sharing app. Let’s be honest, there’s some really serious competition right now. TikTok is huge, YouTube is even bigger, and there are lots of other upstarts as well. People are looking to Instagram to be entertained, there’s stiff competition and there’s more to do. We have to embrace that, and that means change,” Instagram’s CEO said in the video.

Social Media Back Story

Let’s get a little bit of history to figure out why he said that. 

  • First, people started blogging on platforms such as LiveJournal and MySpace. That was the time when people were using their personal computers. 
  • Then Facebook introduced a new format of posting pictures with short descriptions. The game has changed and people wanted to see more visual content rather than just plain text. 
  • YouTube changed the way we consume video and empowered amateur creators to compete with famous TV shows. A new era of video streaming and the rise of amateur creators. In marketing, we faced a new power – influencers. DIY and lifestyle vlogging took over the internet. 
  • Then lots of people became mobile users and Instagram introduced us to a mobile-first platform. Users could share square images that they can consume from any device. You could be making money by just posting pictures made with your phone. The boom of travel bloggers and beauty experts. 
  • And now TikTok is reimagining the way we consume information again. You don’t need to spend hours editing and researching. Just be authentic and unique. People want to see emotions, they want to be entertained. TikTok made it easy for creators to get a vast reach without significant investment in production. 

What’s coming?

Over the past few years, mobile internet has gotten 2-3 times faster, people have more data on their phones, therefore they are able to consume more content. No surprise with the rise of high-resolution mobile screens, cheap data plans and fast-speed internet people’s behaviour has changed.

The future of the internet is VIDEO. That’s the format where you can communicate with your potential customers via text, image and voice. Video ads are the most impactful format where social media platforms can sell more ads, therefore they will be pushing this type of content. 

I always say that lead gen campaigns are just to get your foot in the door and video campaigns are where the real marketing starts. It’s like talking to customers but at scale. 

Mosseri (CEO of Instagram) says “We’re also going to be experimenting with how we embrace video more broadly — full screen, immersive, entertaining, mobile-first video. You’ll see us do a number of things, or experiment with a number of things in this space over the coming months.” He said that Instagram will start rolling out these features in the coming weeks. Instagram will recommend full-screen videos to the users in the coming months.

What does it mean for Real Estate Social Media Strategy?

We need to adapt our advertising campaigns and focus on producing video content. It means that the impact of display advertising will get lower and agents who are not experienced in video blogging will face a hard time finding clients online. 

Mosseri posted a video of himself on Twitter and wrote, “Changes are coming to video on Instagram. At Instagram, we’re always trying to build new features that help you get the most out of your experience. Right now we’re focused on four key areas: Creators, Video, Shopping and Messaging.”

It means that Instagram decided to follow the YouTube and TikTok path where all engagement is happening on the platform. They don’t want people to leave the app. They want people to watch, message, and pay on the screen. 

What type of videos will be in demand on Instagram:

  • Educational videos – you can talk about the selling process, buying process, taxation, home inspection, home evaluation, etc. These videos won’t give you a lot of views but will establish you as an industry expert.
  • Video tours – switch from photos to videos, make it engaging. Video tours are your chance to make Real Estate fun. These videos can get a broader audience because even those people who are not interested in changing their homes right now would love to get a sneak peek at some cool places. 
  • Lifestyle – show the everyday life of a realtor. These videos can show that you are a real person like your followers, establishing trust at scale. They will help to keep your audience engaged for a long period of time. 

How will these videos work in advertising?

Advertising campaigns will depend on a type of client you want to work with. 

  • The warmest leads will come through educational videos because these will bring them value right away. These videos can work as lead gen and nurturing. They establish your credibility and can help to bring new clients into your sales pipeline. 
  • Video tours will work similarly to listing and list of homes campaigns. They will bring customers that are interested in buying a property. You can still use FB Real Estate audiences to target relevant people. The difference here is that your approach will be more engaging than just a photo or collage. Keep in mind that these leads will be colder than those that you would receive from educational content because it’s just entertainment for a broader audience. 
  • Lifestyle videos will most likely attract long-term leads and other realtors. It will work well for branding campaigns. Other realtors will play a crucial role in your engagement (shares/likes/comments). People have more trust for someone who has an engaged audience. 

Great future-proof Instagram examples

These realtors are not ideal but good examples of where you should be heading to. I always say that you shouldn’t be perfect in marketing, just be a little bit better than the majority. 

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