Social Media Marketing for Small Businesses

December features

Happy new year everyone!

I’ve seen a lot of people in the last few days saying that their 2022 goal is to improve their Social Media presence, and knowing about the most recent features is going to be essential. Instagram in particular rolled out quite a few new features last month.

Instagram – Take a break

‘Take a break’ was designed to help teenagers spend less time scrolling through the app for hours on end by allowing them to choose an amount of scrolling time until the app reminds them to take a break.

You’re probably wondering how this could possibly help your business. The truth is, scrolling through Instagram is necessary for your business to thrive -you need to interact with others and you might need some inspiration- however, scrolling for hours isn’t productive. Setting a daily limit can help you manage your time.

This feature is available on both iOS and Android, and in both cases, the reminder will take up your whole screen making it impossible to miss. On iOS, you can choose 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour, 2 hours or 3 hours. On Android, you can choose any amount of time up to 23 hours and 55 minutes. I would recommend 15 to 30 minutes (if you do in fact use it daily).

Instagram – Story Links

Earlier in 2021, Instagram made Story links available to all users regardless of their follower count. The famous ‘Swipe up’ was replaced with a link sticker. I know I said this article was about features from December, and don’t worry, it is!

In December, Instagram improved this feature. You can now personalise what your link sticker says and adjust its colour. Rather than having a sticker with an unreadable URL, you can now have a sticker that reads ‘tap here’, for example.

So, how do you use it? When you are adding the link, tap “+customise sticker text” to write what you want it to say. When you’re satisfied, click done and tap on the sticker until you like to colour. Currently, there are only three* colour choices but try to find the one that best matches your brand colours.

*This number is from my experience on an Android, it might be different on iOS.

Instagram – Reel Replies

When someone comments on one of your Reels, you can now reply to them by sharing one of your other Reels. For those of you who use TikTok, this is going to be quite familiar.

This feature allows you to refer people back to a previous Reel if they are asking a question that you have already answered. It will appear in the comment section like a sticker.

Pinterest – Idea Pin Replies

This is the same as Instagram’s ‘Reel Replies’ -can you imagine how angry Pinterest must have been that Instagram launched Reel Replies four days before they could launch Idea Pin Replies??

The only notable difference between these two features is that Pinterest asks you if you’d like to share an existing Idea Pin or create a new one.

Twitter – Auto-captions

Twitter now auto-caption muted videos on the app and you can turn on the feature on the web.

According to my research, the major issue with the new feature is the inability to report poor captioning. In my experience, my feed has no videos. This feature is three weeks old and I have yet to have the opportunity to see it in action.

New Year Resolutions

If you are one of the many people I have heard saying that their 2022 goal is to improve their Social Media Presence, I hope I can help you. I write articles like this one every other week (and I am always open to suggestions as to what to discuss!).

If you are based in the UK, send me a request to connect so you don’t miss any of this free advice. If you have £50 to spend on your goal, I can review your profile for you, discuss your plans with you and help you set some goals. I’d then have a look at your profile once a month for three months in order to send you an email with ideas to improve your strategy, upcoming dates you could use and features you might want to try. You don’t have to do this alone, click here to get started.

If you are based outside the UK, send a little note with the request to connect. I’m afraid I can only work with companies based in the UK, but that doesn’t mean I don’t want to support you.